Actionable tips, community conversations, and marketing inspiration.

6 Tips for Creating an Omnichannel Marketing Funnel

Wilson Lau

Sr. SEO Marketing Manager @ AdRoll

In this day and age, the internet is king. Customers look up reviews, get recommendations from friends on social media, read articles about your company, and browse your social media posts, all before making a purchasing decision. However, remember that analog channels and in-store experiences must be part of your omnichannel marketing funnel, even though the digital marketing world is taking over.

Plenty of people will walk into a shop and price compare an item on their phone as they're walking down the aisle. 86% of people interact with at least two touchpoints during their shopping process. And one Harvard Business Review study of 46,000 shoppers across 14 months saw that potential customers who engaged with 4+ marketing channels spent 9% longer in-store than those who only used one. These include both digital and analog.

There's only one conclusion. If you're in business, you need to be in control across many different marketing channels and have a strategy that guides engagement across the board. You need to create a seamless, positive experience at every touchpoint. Be memorable and make things effortless for customers. This is omnichannel marketing. 

But how do you do it? How do you make the most of every opportunity to interact with each potential shopper? Personalize their experience and use all of the information you've gathered across channels for conversion?  

Almost 67% of shoppers credit bad customer experiences as the reason they didn't complete a purchase. Don't let that be your company. Increase ROI, build brand reputation, and reduce churn using the tips below.

Tips for Creating a Memorable Omnichannel Marketing Funnel

1. Understand your customer

What platforms do they use most to shop? What are some of the challenges they experience while shopping? What devices do they use? Figure out how they interact with each of your channels and which ones are most valuable so you can strengthen them.  

Don't waste your time on channels your customers don't engage with. Instead, focus on creating solutions to their challenges on the platforms they enjoy. Consider the experience you would like your consumers to have at each touchpoint and make a detailed plan.

Take a look at Starbucks. The company recognized that most customers go to Starbucks when they are tired — whether first thing in the morning or after a long day of work. Patrons just want to get their coffee and move on with their day, which makes long lines at the store frustrating. So, Starbucks created an ordering system within their app that made it quick and easy to pick up their caffeine without waiting or talking to anyone. Customers can now place an order and pay on the app, only setting foot inside a shop for a couple of minutes to pick up their ready-to-go order. Today, the Starbucks mobile app is responsible for 29% of their orders.

2. Use data

It's easy to recognize an opportunity when you are using data. Look at customer behavior online. Use social listening to learn about what people are talking about. Determine what channels are diverting the most potential customers to your ecommerce site and consider their demographics, age, gender, marital status, profession, etc. to segment your audience and make informed decisions about how to target each one. Measure and leverage all data to shape your strategy and next moves.

3. Create trigger points

Build offers into your omnichannel marketing funnel that are triggered by specific customer actions. Are they walking by your physical store? Send them a special in-store discount for a product they've searched for on your website. Did a customer receive their order? Wait a couple of days and then ask them for feedback. Did someone spend time on your site three days this week? Send them an enticing offer.  

Messages can be automated and triggered at different points in the omnichannel marketing funnel. Try to personalize each email for the individual or customer persona to encourage engagement. Automated emails are a terrific option for nurturing previous customers and encouraging additional purchases. When designed well, an email workflow will move the recipients through the funnel and help to increase customer lifetime value (CLV). 

4. Be helpful, not intrusive

No one likes to be bombarded with ads, texts, or emails, especially across touchpoints and devices. Give customers a few well–placed reminders of why your brand is a good fit for them, and let them do the rest. If they find you overselling, you will turn them off. But when they reach out for assistance, be ready. Share data across departments, and encourage teams to communicate and work together to improve the customer journey.

5. Offer loyalty points

Offering repeat customers special rewards builds trust and customer lifetime value. One study found that 40% of revenue comes from repeat customers. But you can lose the benefits of these programs if redeeming rewards across different channels isn't seamless and easy. Be sure to test and retest loyalty programs and understand how they work before implementation.

6. Retarget

 It takes an average of seven or more interactions with a brand to get the typical consumer to convert. Use retargeting to retain top-of-mind-awareness (TOMA), so they remember you when they are finally ready to purchase. Did a shopper leave items in their online cart? Send a reminder and perhaps offer a discount on the item they almost purchased to keep guiding them through the funnel.

Analyze, Learn, Refine

The only way to know if your strategy is working is by measuring the results. It's vital to understand the effect you're having at every point in the omnichannel marketing funnel. Are the geofenced discounts leading to increased purchases? Does the Facebook ad lead more people onto your site? As mentioned, data is your friend. Use this to your advantage. If something isn't working, it's not worth spending time and effort on it.

The amount of time and effort that goes into creating an omnichannel marketing funnel can feel overwhelming — but in the end, you will find yourself with a more memorable, valuable, and trusted brand. Follow these tips and avoid these mistakes to boost business in the new year.

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