According to a recent study, 69% of Internet users in the US would consult their smartphones for product reviews and information, rather than seek out and speak to a sales advisor. More than half would also shop for deals and research prices while in-store.
These stats confirm that businesses need to provide multiple channels for their customers to interact and communicate with them. However, while lots of businesses are supplying more than one channel, a lot of them aren’t doing it effectively.
This is where the difference between omnichannel and multichannel comes in to play. These terms are widely used in the world of communications, but there is often confusion over what they actually mean.
The Difference Between Omnichannel and Multichannel
Both omnichannel and multichannel involve selling products or services across more than one channel; most businesses have both a physical and digital presence, this is why people are often confused by the difference. The main difference between the two comes down to the customer experience.
In the multichannel universe, where most businesses currently sit, the various channels aren’t connected. They may have a physical store and a digital store, but each one has its own inventory and is run as separate entities. This means that customers can’t return goods bought online to a physical store, or in-store assistants are unable to advise on online exclusives.
With regards to communications, the multichannel experience is again siloed. A customer can’t easily switch between communication methods and have to start their conversations, again and again, constantly having to repeat their information.
The omnichannel experience, on the other hand, breaks down these barriers and frustrations by allowing customers to engage with products and services via different channels without any interruption in their journey. With omnichannel communication customer experience is at the forefront.
The Key Benefits of Omnichannel Communication
There are countless benefits to omnichannel communication. Each and every one of them helps you to deliver the best possible customer experience, keep your customers happy and generate more revenue. With omnichannel communication you can:
- Create a customer experience hub
- An omnichannel approach can transform your contact centre into a hub that gives agents and executives a full view of the customer journey. When interacting with customers, the hub can seamlessly transition from one communications channel to another without losing any customer details; reps can send an SMS to their customer in the middle of a chat session, or switch from chat to a voice call with one click.
- Get a deeper understanding of customers
- The combination of cloud communications, machine learning and artificial intelligence enables businesses to analyse customer communications across all channels.
- Improve productivity and efficiency
- When call centre agents have the ability to seamlessly switch between communication channels, the first contact resolution rate improves. The option to interact and share information across multiple channels reduces wait times and the total cost per contact. AI and analytics also allow a business to identify and address bottlenecks in the communication process.
- Create a more personalised customer experience
- Integrating an omnichannel communication facility with your CRM means that agents can access detailed customer information at all times, regardless of the communication channel.
- Improve communications with suppliers
- Your supply chain is just as important as your customers. Omnichannel communication allows you to stay up-to-date on deliveries via the most convenient channel allowing you to address any issues before they impact the customer.
Speak to Kane
Kane Communications are here to help. We provide free, impartial advice with every step of the way to help you find the best solution and can deliver the perfect omnichannel communication system for you.
We understand that no two businesses are the same and use our knowledge and experience to deliver secure and reliable phone systems to help you provide your customers with an experience that is second to none.
Please feel free to drop us a line to discuss your needs in more detail.