An Open Omnichannel Ecosystem: How Independents Can Optimize Their Ecommerce Offering

An Open Omnichannel Ecosystem: How Independents Can Optimize Their Ecommerce Offering

When you first hear “omnichannel,” you may not immediately recognize the word. If you’re a typical shopper in 2021 though, you’re likely well versed in the omnichannel experience. At Rosie, we define the omnichannel shopper as using a combination of offline and online channels for shopping, from initial consideration to final purchase. They’re tech savvy and expect the same branded, quality service whether they’re purchasing items in person, online, or on a mobile app.

Any retailer who hopes to compete with the big brands, who have spent millions of dollars upgrading their omnichannel customer experiences, needs to understand how to cultivate and appeal to these shoppers. That’s why we partnered with NGA to host a recent webinar: “An Open Omnichannel Ecosystem: How Independents Can Optimize Their Ecommerce Offering.”

Rosie Founder & CEO Nick Nickitas led a discussion with Grant Lunde, Digital Marketing Director of C&S, Alexa Dash, Director of Ecommerce and Marketing at Dash’s Market, Mark Mahoney, President of Dash’s Market, and Bob Rybick, President and CEO of Geissler’s Supermarkets. Don’t have time to watch the recording? Here are four key takeaways from our panelists on how they optimize ecommerce with their omnichannel program:

Utilize digital tools to meet customers where they are and translate the in-store experience online.

Rather than rely exclusively on transaction generated and third-party data to understand the customer, leading companies are also using rewards data and social media listening to gain customer insights. This gives a 360-degree view of the customer and creates a tailored experience across the entire omnichannel journey. Bob Rybick of Geissler’s noted how they’ve used their social media posts to engage with customers, making it a core part of their digital marketing to bring customers into the store to try the products they’re highlighting.

Additionally, independents are leveraging digital endcaps, which are now possible with our new feature, Collections. Independent retailers can bring elements of the in-store experience online by easily recreating displays without worrying about temperature control, space, and the time and labor that goes into creating a physical display.

Consider the type of experience you want customers to have when selecting third-party solution providers.

Shoppers prefer seamless solutions that are well integrated and exceptionally designed. The freedom to pick and choose integrated solutions gives retailers full control and flexibility over how all partners in their ‘omni-channel ecosystem’ work together.

Grant Lunde of C&S shared, “We ask ourselves how do we find the right partners to work together and find those integrated connection points? The idea is to get everyone to the table in a way that makes sense. We can’t think of what works best for us, but have to consider how the shopper wants the experience to look and feel.” From POS, loyalty and ecommerce, providers should integrate harmoniously to deliver an experience that exceeds the expectations of their shoppers.

Think of your digital strategy as an extension of customer service.

Rather than investing exclusively in store associates, leading companies place emphasis on high quality virtual support and being accessible to their customers around the clock - whether it’s a quick phone call or maintaining a presence and fielding requests on social media. When your customers require assistance, encourage them to use a variety of virtual support functions offered by Rosie, including live chat, phone, or email. It’s also important to provide customers with the same customer service they would experience in store even if they’re shopping from home.

At Dash’s Market, customers are accustomed to excellent, personalized service. “They’re getting that customer experience that they would get if they were in the store without even leaving their home,” explained Alexa Dash, as she shared her process for creating marketing panels to meet online customers’ needs.

Make it easy to shop online and in-person to strengthen customer loyalty.

Customers of all ages are utilizing the omnichannel experience, from busy families on the go to senior citizens who appreciate the flexibility and safety of shopping from home. To retain customers of different demographics, make it simple for them to shop with you however they choose to.

Mark Mahoney of Dash’s Markets noted they frequently use tools that cater to both in-store and online customers, like utilizing print ads and digital ads so they can reach both sets of customers. Customize your branded experience across all channels to build the personal relationships customers love when they choose to shop local.

The digital landscape is moving at a fast pace in the grocery industry, but with the right partners by your side, you can offer your customers an optimal shopping experience. To learn more about building your omnichannel ecosystem, reach out to a member of our team at hey@rosieapp.com.

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