CRM in Omnichannel
How to describe the omnichannel in a nutshell? It is nothing more but a balanced emphasis on all sales channels and making sure that the consumer is always satisfied with the process, no matter what shopping path they choose. It might be just a purchase at a brick-and-mortar store, just online, or even ordering on the Internet and then buying it at a brick-and-mortar store or the other way round, first checking it out at a brick-and-mortar store and then buying it on the Internet. For omnichannel to work, there must be an uninterrupted circulation of information on the customer, delivery of detailed data, as well as building loyalty and especially brand awareness. If we imagine that sales under omnichannel are like a living organism, a person, CRM will actually be the heart. A heart pumping data around the entire organism, ensuring proper data circulation.
A CRM system is perceived as a solution for salespeople. That’s an outdated approach, though, under the omnichannel strategy it needs to be perceived as a solution that integrates all activities within the area of marketing, sales and customer relations. The first step when the company is thinking of taking actions under multi-channel sales should actually be to standardize IT systems for the entire organization. One CRM system should be used to serve both brick-and-mortar and online customers as well as B2B. That’s what makes it so important to choose a scalable platform with numerous expansions and an option to adjust it to our specific needs. The effectiveness of our brand in this broad sales strategy might actually be impacted by the right implementation of a CRM system.
What do we get out of CRM under omnichannel?
First and foremost, such system provides us with continuous and consistent customer communication, regardless of the point of contact between the customer and the service. It doesn’t matter if the contact is over e-mail or helpline or at a brick-and-mortar store. It works for telecommunication operators for example, where we can log in online and check our account, and then use the helpline or the customer service desk to ask for advice, buy an additional service, or extend the contract. Modern CRM systems allow to personalize an offer, utilize additional information on the customer, check the entire history, or even automate some of the processes and conduct a two-way marketing communication. That’s also a novelty of a sort, as up until recently marketing was only associated with one-way advertisements, now we can fully monitor how the customer receives the marketing messages and enter a deeper communication with them.
What is more, under Internet communication with the customer we’re not just limited to e-mail messages, it is also social media channels, contact forms, instant messengers. These channels, also thanks to advanced CRM systems, utilize different kinds of bots that allow to take some chores from people. It is also standardized business chat rooms that allow to achieve the same customer service experience from the level of a Messenger, helpline or text message. Thanks to exchange of information and advanced tools, it is possible for example to check in for a flight from the Facebook Messenger and then have the boarding pass on the phone a moment later. These are the advantages of a modern CRM and taking care of the “consumer journey experience”, which is the customer’s experience with interacting with the brand and the entire shopping or service process.
Integration of communication under the omnichannel strategy ensures a coherent price policy, uniform promotional actions online and offline or a single loyalty program, as well as unified policy on returns and complaints. A CRM system, when combined with other IT tools, allows to have it all under control.
It is also worth keeping in mind that a unified CRM system is crucial for sophisticated organizations when it comes to complying with the GDPR requirements. Thanks to system integration, meeting all the obligations enforced by the law is faster, and it’s easier for us to manage that data and keep it secure.
The role of CRM in organizing keeps growing
The first CRM systems could be seen as salespeople’s computer notebooks. Today the abilities as well as significance of a CRM system for companies are much greater. It is CRM that the entire process of acquiring and retaining a customer revolved around. A CRM system is a source of knowledge on customers’ behaviors, their preferences, their actions. CRM is currently the main component intended for a complete customer service. With ever expanding adaptation of the omnichannel strategy, the significance of CRM for subsequent businesses will only continue growing.