As CMOs and brand marketers struggle with the complex challenge of delivering seamless customers experiences across the online and offline worlds, many of them neglect one critical component: the local brick-and-mortar store.
The evolution of marketing, driven by the rise of digital media and mobile adoption, has given way to the principle of omnichannel—a trendy term that has been added to marketers' vernacular to help define the process of delivering seamless marketing messages across all touchpoints.
Although brands now spend vast amounts of time and budgets on aligning the customer experience online and across devices, many overlook the local brick-and-mortar store—the channel that connects online and offline.
Marketers who fail to see this opportunity are missing the greatest weapon in their marketing arsenal. In fact, local storefronts consistently drive sales and convert potential buyers to active customers. Numerous statistics illustrate the significance of brick-and-mortar stores, but perhaps the most important is this: 92% of retail transactions in the US this year will have occurred in physical retail locations.
Considering the role local retailers can play in an omnichannel marketing strategy and as conduits for delivering effective customer experiences and driving sales in-store, brands need to take advantage of the opportunity provided by local retailers.
Omnichannel's Definition Is Broader Than You Think
The elements that comprise an omnichannel strategy should be those that drive customers to make a purchase. Why, then, are local retailers so often left out of the mix?
In part, it's because marketers believe that digital advertising is the most critical marketing strategy for driving sales. Research from the CMO Council finds that most marketers emphasize search, display, and social media advertising before in-store promotions. Nevertheless, more than 75% of marketers say they haven't measured the impact their digital marketing is having on driving sales.