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Bridging the Omnichannel Data Gap: How FMCGs can turn Data into Value

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Old habits die hard. Customers are heading back to their favorite shopping malls and offline stores. They are now omnichannel customers. They often do research online before purchasing them offline. Thus, the need to collect and connect omnichannel data.

The need to see and experience what they are buying remains strong. This makes collecting in-store customer data critical to understanding your shopper.

FMCG brands need to focus on collecting omnichannel data. This is data generated from every customer interaction with a company.

You can generate powerful customer insights because the integrated approach gives you a complete picture of a customer’s behavior and buying preferences.

The Multichannel approach and collecting ecommerce data is not enough

While many brands have moved towards a multichannel approach, it is not enough. A multichannel approach runs as individual silos, instead of a centralized customer data hub that gives a comprehensive picture of each customer.

Many companies have an online presence and that’s where they collect the bulk of their customer data. While that is all well and good, most sales still happen offline despite the rapid growth in eCommerce. Projections by Forrester show that 72% of sales will still happen in the offline realm in 2024.

Harnessing Omnichannel Data enables innovation and drives sales growth

Through omnichannel data, FMCG brands can better understand both historical customer activity and present behavior. The data can help in predicting the future needs and wants of your shoppers, which can guide your innovation efforts. Insights will also yield upselling and cross-selling strategies that can drive sales growth.

Finally, omnichannel data provides you with data points that reveal bottlenecks in your shoppers’ journey so that you can improve their shopping experience.

This data-driven approach allows you to engage your customers with personalized offers and recommendations. According to a McKinsey study, data-driven marketing can help CPG companies deliver 5% growth in net sales and improve marketing efficiency by 10 to 20 percent.

Hyper-Personalization leads to superior customer service and brand loyalty

A well-executed omnichannel strategy allows for superior customer service because it allows for hyper-personalization.

For example, when they sign up on your website or online store, you get their personal details. This means you now can reach out to them to shop online again or to check out the deals you are offering in your retail stores.

A centralized data hub can give you key customer information like basket size, product preferences, returns, and even the selection process, giving you an insider look at how to influence purchasing decisions.

As customers return to their pre-pandemic habits of shopping offline, it’s important to integrate the data you collect from eCommerce together with your offline distribution channels.

The truth is that customers bounce around from the different touchpoints you offer. Offering a 1:1 experience with your customers will lead to brand loyalty.

The case for a true Omnichannel experience

While customers are generally hesitant to hand over personal data, they will gladly give it in exchange for rewards, value and a better brand experience.

For example, you can give them free samples, discount vouchers, extended warranties or early access to new products in exchange for customer data that you’d like to gather and use.

The truth is that customers want a smooth and integrated experience across channels. They don’t want their experience of your brand to be different in whatever channel they choose to engage in.

They want to have the best shopping experience whether they are browsing on your website or whether they choose to shop in retail stores. For example, you should be offering the same payment flexibility across your different channels, both online and offline.

A true omnichannel experience allows for a seamless experience for the customer and the key enabler for this is unifying both online and offline customer data.

The good news is that as an FMCG brand, you don’t need to rely on your retailers to access some level of customer data. 

You can work with companies like SKALE which gives you the ability to collect vital customer data, and turn it into valuable insights so that you can create a true omnichannel experience for your shoppers. At the end of it all, you should be able to know your online shoppers and in-store shoppers like an old friend.

The FMCG Marketer's Guide to First-party Data Collection

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