Retail Business Advice: Selling to the “Omnishopper”

“Omnishopping” has become an increasing trend in retail and consumer behaviour. So, what is it, and how are retail businesses advised to accommodate for the rise of the omnishopper?

What is omnishopping?

Quite simply, an “omnishopper” is someone who uses a mix of both digital resources and brick and mortar stores when making retail purchases. This can be a shopper who goes online to research a product, but then buys that product in store, or a shopper who will see a product in store, but then buy it online so that they can shop around for the best price.

Why has omnishopping become so common?

A survey carried out by Mastercard revealed that 80% of purchase decisions are now informed by a digital device. According to participants in the survey, the benefits of in-store shopping were speed (59%), availability of advice (54%), and the social experience (53%). This, combined, could explain the relatively slow growth of e-commerce as a percentage of retail sales (7.5% globally). Digital resources, however, also have their advantages. They provide shoppers with a wealth of information, right at their fingertips, allowing them to better compare product offerings, reviews and prices. Quite simply, digital resources and e-commerce are being used as a complement to brick and mortar retail, more so than a standalone substitute for it.

How does this affect retail businesses?

In the age of the omnishopping, retailers are no longer able to market to or via a single channel. The focus must not be on one channel, but on mastering the convergence of many channels. Retailers must optimise each channel based on its perceived benefits and drawbacks. One of the most cited reasons for shopping in-store was the availability of advice, so it’s a good idea to make sure that your staff are well-trained and able to offer expert advice when it’s needed. Similarly, one of the disadvantages of online shopping was the lack of this interaction, so it may be helpful to offer your customers the online version of in-store display, such as high-quality product images and video demonstrations. Another perceived benefit of in-store shopping over e-commerce was speed and convenience, so online options such as fast delivery and free returns may also appeal to the omnishopper. Omnishoppers see the benefits and drawbacks in all channels and opt to pick and choose, so it is best to create an optimised, multichannel approach rather than focusing on just the one route to sale.

Is the omnishopper here to stay?

Honestly, omnishoping is only going to become more prevalent in years to come. We are now seeing the emergence of a whole new generation of shoppers; those who have grown up surrounded by technology. These tech-savvy young customers will always seem to be one step ahead. Quite simply, we will see the rise of the generation that wants to have its cake and eat it. They want to enjoy the all the benefits and the social experience of in-store shopping, whilst also taking advantage of online freedom of information to discover and secure the best deal.

Retail Business Advice from the Fabulous Group

If you’re looking for advice in tailoring your retail business or marketing strategy to the omnishopper, do not hesitate to contact the Fabulous Group, where we have a wealth of experience in the retail and service sector. Simply call us on 0800 112 0880, or email for a no obligation chat.