What an Omnichannel Customer Journey Looks Like
An overview of omnichannel customer journeys and how to implement them.
Companies that are customer-centric have been found to be 60% more profitable than those that aren’t. But what do we actually mean when we say “customer-centric”? More often than not, we’re talking about the quality of customer experiences across channels.
Optimizing omnichannel customer journeys is essential for acquiring new customers, strengthening retention rates, and as we mentioned above, becoming more profitable. By understanding how customers move between platforms and channels, businesses gain the upper hand – gaining deeper insight into their behavior.
What is an omnichannel customer journey?
Omnichannel has come to define customer journeys today: referring to how users switch between multiple channels when interacting with a brand (and expect their experience to be uninterrupted as they do so). Today, 76% of consumers expect consistent interactions across all areas of a business.
A common example of this is with a streaming service. You could start a show on your laptop, and then switch over to your mobile device and pick up at the exact timestamp you left off at. That’s an omnichannel experience.
Or, perhaps you start a live chat with Customer Support, are disconnected, and then decide to call their hotline instead. The Customer Support agent that picks up should be able to see your previous conversation over chat, and begin problem solving from there.
4 stages in a customer journey + relevant channels for each
74% of customers use more than one channel to start and complete a purchase. The following sections serve as an example of how an omnichannel customer journey can unfold.
The customer journey begins when someone first discovers a brand, whether it’s through a paid advertisement, a blog article, or a social media post. During this stage, your brand’s primary goal is make people aware of the products or services you offer, and acquire new leads.
This isn’t the time for a hard sell. Instead, focus on how to help your prospective customers by offering valuable information, unique perspectives, and solutions to common challenges.
Content marketing is the creation and distribution of relevant, useful content that doesn’t explicitly promote your brand or sell your products. Examples of content marketing include:
The best content marketing focuses on your customers’ top concerns, pain points, challenges, and questions. By offering educational information to prospective customers, you can position your brand as a trusted authority in your industry and increase online visibility.
Social media marketing
Social media marketing is another powerful tool for the awareness stage: as its able to reach a large audience at no cost (if on organic channels). Today, 55% of consumers discover new brands through social media, such as Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Social media marketing includes:
How-to and educational videos
Active engagement is an inherent part of social media (when done successfully), so this is a great way to build a community of leads who are more likely to become loyal customers.
Influencer marketing involves endorsements, product placements, and sponsored content from people who have a high level of social influence or expertise in their field. Influencer marketing includes content such as:
Product unboxing videos
Brand ambassador programs
Influencers have cultivated a loyal audience that trusts them to share useful recommendations – an invaluable asset to your omnichannel marketing strategy.
Once your audience has discovered the root cause of their pain points, they move onto considering possible solutions. During this stage, a customer conducts research to determine their options: comparing aspects like pricing, available features, and customer support.
This is when you need to convince prospects to see your brand as the best choice. To do so, you need to create informative, educational content that highlights your company’s competitive differentiators (and showcase real-life success stories from current customers).
Each tactic used in the awareness stage – whether it’s a blog article, a sponsored Instagram post, or an influencer’s unboxing video – should lead your audience to a landing page on your website. This creates the seamless connectivity between different platforms that enables omnichannel customer engagement. Landing page content includes:
Gated or downloadable content
Side-by-side comparisons with your competitors
Industry-specific use cases
Your landing pages should contain all the information a potential customer needs to answer their questions about your brand. Don’t forget to include details like pricing, benefits, integrations, and other features that differentiate you from your competitors.
In-app and on-page marketing
This type of marketing is developed for and displayed to customers while they are actively using your app or website. Examples include:
Modals (full-screen overlays that remain until the user dismisses them)
This is an especially powerful strategy for SaaS companies that offer a free trial of their mobile or web-based apps. When customers try your software before they commit to a purchase, you get the added advantage of marketing directly to them while they test-drive your product. By guiding their experience, you will further unlock the value of your product for the user as they compare their options.
The decision stage is where you ensure you are a customer’s final choice. Although each stage of the customer journey is crucial, this is where the magic happens: a lead completes a purchase and converts into a paying customer.
Now that you’ve guided your customers through the marketing funnel and convinced them to choose your business, you need to demonstrate how your product or service performs as promised.
Live chat marketing
Live chat enables you to engage with prospects while they’re actively browsing your website, and encourage them to take specific actions (like completing a purchase). Examples of live chat marketing include:
Personalized product recommendations
Sales call scheduling
Live chat is your chance to deliver a tailored customer experience. With the additional context of a prospect’s previous interactions – which you gleaned from consolidated customer data – you can get straight to the point and offer solutions that are specific to their pain points.
Email marketing gives you direct access to your customers, and is easily testable (which drives more insights). By segmenting your audience, you can launch highly personalized, targeted, and well-timed emails, which can increase revenue by 18x.
Examples of email marketing include:
Order confirmation emails
Follow-up emails with product recommendations
Abandoned cart emails
Support and retention
The chances of selling to an existing customer are as high as 70%. Once a customer has purchased from your brand, you don’t want to let them slip through your fingers.
During this stage, your goal is to increase the chances of a higher customer lifetime value (LTV). After each purchase, continue to engage with customers early and often to nurture loyalty, and unlock long-term revenue growth.
In-app and on-page support messaging
Similar to the in-app and on-page marketing methods we discussed earlier, this channel targets your customers while they’re interacting with your brand’s website or mobile app. However, this content is designed specifically to help paying customers get the most out of their purchases. Examples include:
Tooltips (overlays that show users how to use and navigate an app)
To remain competitive, use the information gathered throughout the omnichannel customer journey to proactively reach out with personalized support messaging.
A knowledge base is like a self-service customer support library. This enables customers to learn about different features and offers how-to guides to help maximize the value of their purchase. A knowledge base might include:
Technical product documentation
Suggestions for high-impact activity
By following the routes that lead customers to your knowledge base, you can identify touchpoints in the omnichannel customer journey that need further clarification. For instance, if many users look for information about a specific feature after the onboarding process, you can add a tutorial or interactive demo to better explain that feature.
A true omnichannel journey requires a fully integrated tech stack
To provide an omnichannel customer experience, you need to connect all of your data and attribute it to individual customer profiles. Look for features like:
Segment unifies touchpoints across all platforms so you can fully understand the omnichannel customer journey. Our customer data platform uses robust customer analytics to provide you with deeper insight into customer behavior. Plus, multi-touch attribution identifies all of the touchpoints that lead to a conversion, not just the last one.
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