Omnichannel eCommerce strategy: Powered by Venditan
Operational challenges are part and parcel of business growth. When retail businesses attain a certain scale, the management of disparate touchpoints becomes progressively more challenging.
When various websites, physical stores, and online marketplaces operate independently from their counterparts, it inevitably creates challenges for both businesses and customers.
Lack of integration between channels can result in inventory discrepancies, inefficient order fulfilment, siloed customer data, and an increasingly inconsistent customer experience.
Therefore, at a certain stage of this journey, it becomes necessary to consolidate this multi-channel mosaic into a coherent approach.
An omnichannel eCommerce strategy offers a solution to this issue.
It strives to seamlessly integrate a business' diverse sales channels, encompassing both online and offline platforms, in order to deliver a unified and consistent experience for the customer and a more robust management and planning solution for the business.
In this piece, we will discuss how our omnichannel eCommerce platform, Venditan Commerce, is perfectly positioned to help retailers who are experiencing such issues themselves.
Omnichannel eCommerce - a quick recap
"Omnichannel eCommerce" is not a new buzzword.
The term began to gain popularity in the retail and eCommerce realm during the mid-2000s, and it has since established itself as a well-known concept, one that we should all understand to some degree.
While it is challenging to provide hard data, we know that omnichannel adoption was initially driven by retail giants and industry leaders, recognising the need for a holistic understanding of behaviour when dealing with millions of repeat customers across several touchpoints.
As is usually the case, this approach then became tried, tested and standardised across the wider retail landscape. The rise of mobile devices and the increasing prevalence of online shopping have further fuelled the adoption of omnichannel, as did the COVID-19 pandemic, as brick-and-mortar businesses faced temporary closures leading to an increased reliance on online sales.
In 2023, it is evident that omnichannel is no longer considered a mere "nice to have" but rather a fundamental requirement for advanced success in the retail industry.
As the cost of living crisis prompts consumers to reassess their spending habits, it is the retail companies that can adapt quickly and offer exceptional customer experiences that will not only survive but also flourish.
The problem we set out to solve
We believe that the eCommerce technology market doesn’t work for retailers and distributors.
It is a fragmented market with thousands of pieces of technology available. Plenty are excellent at their function, but, they only provide a partial solution to improve one specific operational area, such as demand forecasting, or customer data management.
This is a big challenge for businesses that are looking to implement a truly omnichannel experience for themselves and their customers. It isn’t feasible to integrate scores of expensive technology without an incredibly large budget.
Seeing this gap in the market, we set about creating real change. We developed a full, end-to-end eCommerce platform that does it all: Venditan Commerce.
A composable, omnichannel eCommerce platform
Venditan Commerce is a composable and omnichannel eCommerce platform designed to revolutionise the way that online retailers and distributors operate.
It combines best-in-class modules and cutting-edge management systems, helping retailers and distributors to grow every aspect of their online and physical operations - all from a single point of control.
One single view of stock and customer
Venditan Commerce gives businesses a unified view of stock and customer information, creating a smooth and consistent experience for the customer and back office staff alike.
No matter which channel they’re using, customers can easily find out if a product is available, see what they've purchased in the past, and receive personalised recommendations.
With centralised inventory management, order fulfilment, and customer service across all channels, staff benefit from a streamlined operation that eliminates data silos and improves efficiency. Inventory levels become more optimised, orders can be fulfilled from the most convenient location, and consistent customer support is easier to provide.
This improved experience builds trust, makes customers happier, and empowers staff to do a better job that grows the business.
We operate our own integrated EPOS module
That holistic view is driven, in part, by our cloud-based EPOS system.
Running on industry-leading AURES hardware, we have answered the age-old disconnect between online retail and the traditional brick-and-mortar store. Integrated with the Venditan Commerce platform, our in-store POS technology will automatically update stock levels when an item is sold on the shop floor, meaning the sale is reflected in a master stock level that can be configured to the business’ liking.
This also means that in-store staff can focus on providing personalised and memorable experiences, using real-time insights from the EPOS system to advise on the customer’s order history and loyalty progress.
Powerful reporting tools have also been built into our EPOS software. As well as running the standard X and Z reports, users can extract detailed sales, marketing and replenishment information for online and in-store performance.
Stunning website design and development
We don’t just provide the technology that works in the background. We deliver best-in-class eCommerce website development that is proven to help online retailers sell more.
When migrating to Venditan Commerce we provide customers with a new eCommerce website, ensuring that this channel stands up to the latest requirements in UX and SEO.
While we are capable of integrating Venditan Commerce with websites developed and managed by other CMS providers, it makes it easier to deliver a successful omnichannel strategy when we work directly with businesses on their new eCommerce website.
Marketplaces and social commerce - we’ve got you covered
We understand the importance of marketplaces and social commerce as a driver of new customers.
Maintaining active integrations with the leading marketplaces, and working in partnership with Channable as our specialist partner for multichannel feed management, we have all of the tools necessary to ensure a consistent and coherent marketplace operation.
Marketplace feeds are populated with real-time product information pulled from the centralised Venditan Commerce data record: descriptions, images, pricing, product variations, stock - it’s all taken into account when the information is sent through to Amazon, eBay or wherever else the business wishes to sell online.
And due to the flexible nature of Venditan Commerce, we are able to easily integrate with any new marketplaces that a customer requires.
From delivery to payments and everything in between, Venditan Commerce is already connected to the partners you need to guarantee your success. You can also browse our full list of partners and integrations.
How do I know if an omnichannel eCommerce strategy is right for my business?
To ascertain the suitability of an omnichannel eCommerce strategy for a business, careful consideration of multiple factors and a comprehensive assessment are necessary.
The following considerations can help determine the potential benefits of adopting an omnichannel approach.
How do your customers behave?
As always, customers first. If you know that your target customers are actively using multiple channels throughout their shopping journey, it strongly indicates the need for an omnichannel strategy.
By analysing customer data and behaviour patterns, you can gain insights into their expectations of a seamless experience across different touchpoints. This valuable information can guide your decision to adopt an omnichannel approach, ensuring you meet the demands and preferences of your customers effectively.
What are your customers telling you?
Listen to customer feedback and identify their pain points. It will quickly reveal whether they are facing challenges or expressing a desire for you to provide a more seamless shopping experience. Common complaints about disconnected channels or inconsistent service can indicate the need for an omnichannel approach.
Is your current operation painful to manage?
If your operation spans multiple channels, operating independently and lacking integration, then you should get in touch with us.
Fragmented channels can result in inconsistent customer experiences, operational inefficiencies, and missed opportunities. By recognising these challenges, you can understand the importance of adopting an omnichannel approach to unify your channels, enhance customer satisfaction, optimise operations, and capitalise on untapped potential.
Where do you want to take your business?
If your aim is to scale and expand your operations further, you simply cannot do it without a unified approach. An integrated solution can support growth by optimising your back office, saving you time and resources whilst also improving customer retention through a better experience with you.
What technology do you need to make it happen?
Assess the existing technology infrastructure and capabilities of your business. How tied in are you to your current technology stack, both contractually and operationally? If your current technology infrastructure can support your omnichannel requirements through integration, and a cost-benefit analysis determines that this is the correct way to go, then great!
If your requirements are more complex, you’re serious about the growth piece mentioned above, or you just want a fresh start - that’s where Venditan Commerce will help.
To summarise, an omnichannel eCommerce strategy remains the best path forward for any retail business that is struggling to manage disparate retail touchpoints.
As businesses grow and add more stores, websites and marketplaces to their mix of channels, so does the likelihood of inventory discrepancies, inefficient order fulfilment, siloed customer data, and an increasingly inconsistent customer experience.
That is, unless, an effective omnichannel eCommerce strategy is provided to join up all of the dots and ensure that these different channels all talk to one another, making it easier for staff to manage the operation and customers to enjoy their experience with the business.
Venditan Commerce is the result of over a decade of continuous development spanning cohorts of excellent developers, and we believe it offers the best technology available for retailers to scale with minimal growing pains.
Our platform offers interconnectivity across all aspects of a retail operation; multiple websites, mobile commerce, physical stores, click and collect, and the various online marketplaces that we know users shop on - with all of the variables singing from the same hymn sheet.
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A single integrated solution
“We were constantly selling something online that hours earlier we had sold on the shop floor and frequently frustrating customers who wanted to redeem gift vouchers online that they had bought in-store, or vice-versa.
We knew we needed to end the previous approach of using different systems to run different parts of our business. The Venditan Commerce solution gives us great visibility across our entire stock, in real-time, no matter where we want to sell it.”
Shankara Smith, Founder