Google Cloud

Bridging the omnichannel gap

Maintaining your customer relationships remotely and improving your customer experience has never been more important than it is today. Currently, necessity has lifted customer barriers for trying out new retail experiences: over 50% of online shoppers tried a new service for the first time this year, the latest Google survey shows. Omnichannel retail – the complete integration of different online and offline shopping channels – is therefore gaining momentum. However, efforts to delight customers with an omnichannel experience do not always seem to match those put into making a sale. Research by Zendesk shows that 73% of shoppers believe generating sales across multiple channels is prioritized over providing a seamless customer experience. As a result, 87% say brands should put more effort into offering consistent experiences across retail channels. The question is: how can customers be placed in the centre of your omnichannel architecture? 

Personalized customer experience

By moving beyond the multi-channel concept, omnichannel retail focuses on the customer and the shopping experience as a whole. Its goal is to improve the contact between retailers and customers through different channels by offering personalized customer experiences. An omnichannel strategy integrates online and offline shopping perfectly, allowing the functionalities of each to complement each other. This requires essential changes for businesses: digital transformation is necessary to adapt to the new environment. 

Right now, listening to the needs of your customers, learning from their behavior, and adapting your operations is crucial. You should also anticipate the retail peak which accompanies the upcoming festive season. If you want to reach the full potential of your omnichannel efforts for the holidays, now is the perfect time to start. Google has a range of solutions to help you personalize your omnichannel customer experience.

“We need to appear and reach customers where they prefer to spend their time”

— Larry Luk, Chief Marketing Officer at L’Oréal

  L’Oréal: building tailored billboards for beauty

One of our partners which understands the importance of placing customers at the centre of omnichannel architecture is L’Oréal. Larry Luk, Chief Marketing Officer: “We need to appear and reach customers where they prefer to spend their time.” That’s why L’Oréal decided to minimize the friction between their online presence and physical stores by using new technologies. One of L’Oréal’s most successful strategies has been using Youtube as a marketing tool. But they went a lot further than just placing ads. 

 Luk explains: “We’ve recently carried out workshops to uncover new insights and nuances about the audiences we typically try to reach on YouTube such as fashionistas and beauty mavens. Using a deeper understanding of how people within these audiences engage with our brand, we built a number of new segments and tailored our messaging to their unique interests.” Please click here for examples of these personalized messages. For L’Oréal, tailoring online advertisements to their customers proved beneficial: it led to a 250% longer watch time. It also generated 124% more views, and a 101% increase in their subscriber base.

Recognizing the value of an omnichannel approach, L’Oréal implemented technical innovations at their physical stores as well. The brand understands the need for integration since even offline shoppers spend more time online before and during visits to stores. “To make our in-store experience more engaging, we’ve started testing new in-store features like virtual and augmented reality displays, and experimenting with cloud-based kiosks.”

Are you curious what we at Google Cloud can do for you as a strategic and technological retail partner? Stay tuned on our Founders Platform blog and future events!