Updated: May 14, 2020
The consumer goods and retail sectors are experiencing unprecedented disruption as a result of the lockdown and social distancing norms. Stores remain closed and global supply chains have been disconnected. While we can hope that the Lockdown will end soon, we have to face the reality that the world is never going back to the way it was. We have to accept Social Distancing as the NEW NORMAL.
No way to go but Digital
The only channel that has defied the lockdown has been the digital channel. Many shoppers have adopted online shopping out of necessity. Even after the lockdown, customers may switch from "Why should I do this online?” to “Is is absolutely necessary for me to do this in person?”—and it might be difficult to convince them to do so. We cannot expect that after the crisis, consumer behaviour will be restored to pre-pandemic pattern.
Retailers have just lost the luxury of asking "Should I go Digital?" The only question that remains to be asked is "How can I efficiently conduct my business online in order to reach the maximum number of customers and sell to them ?"
But "Going Digital" is an often misused terminology in the Indian context. Because
HAVING A WEBSITE IS NOT ENOUGH.
Shocking? But True. Having a website and stocking it with product images is not sufficient to call it a Digital Sales Channel.
HAVING A FACEBOOK PAGE IS NOT ENOUGH
Shocking again, but also true. No matter how many social media channels you have, if you are not engaging with customers to help them, you are just wasting time.
Diversification is essential to survive in this world of disruptions. And retailing has a solution in Multi-channel Sales. Multichannel selling is the process of selling your products on more than one sales channel. Multichannel management includes a mix of your own website and shopping cart, online marketplaces, mobile marketplaces and/or bricks and mortar stores. New age selling avenues like assisted e-commerce, reseller platforms and teleshopping networks could also be included in a retailer's channel mix provided the platforms offer the right audience targeting for the products.
Shifting from a store-focused approach to a multichannel mind-set requires retailers to change their traditional way of doing things and to adopt a more integrated approach to sales. Consumers value “convenience” and “efficiency” more and more as their options have widened and this has to be taken into consideration while adopting multi-channel sales strategies.
RETAIL STRATEGY FOR THE NEW NORMAL
Today's connected consumers switch between online and offline in the course of their purchase journey. Their ability to switch between stores, physical shops and mobile devices, making a purchase any time, anywhere is what makes multi-channel sales lucrative and challenging for sellers. Your multi-channel sales strategy should allow you to track their movement and walk alongside them, suggesting your own sales offers as and when appropriate.
Another important component of retail is offering relevant content for the target audience. In fact, creating content that is useful for your audience is what your main business should be. Selling your products/services is incidental and automatic.
Another crucial aspect to consider for multi-channel sales is Data. Data driven insights help you to understand the customer joumey so the right content and product reaches them at the right time and via the right channels. Hence it is essential to employ strategic thinking on data collection and analytics.
If you are the owner or the decision maker of a retail business, you should invest 15 minutes in a call with us before it is late. Leave a message on 98840 25989 / 98414 27227 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. We will call you back.