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Omnichannel vs. Multichannel: What is The Difference?


Knowing the critical difference between a multichannel and an omnichannel approach can you structure your customer strategy and gain the best value out of your communication channels across your customer journey. Providing a seamless experience for your customer is essential for the customer experience economy.

Many businesses face challenges of fully understanding their customers' behaviour, so the important aspect of an omnichannel or multichannel strategy is to know which one fits better for your business.

So let's get down to brass tacks. What is the difference between them, and which one is right for your business?

What is a Multichannel approach?

'Multichannel' combines both direct and indirect communication channels. This type of customer strategy refers to interactions across websites, in-store, email, mobile, phone, etc. The customer service for each is siloed and not connected to the other channels.

A Multichannel strategy's primary goal is to encourage customers to take action by using their preferred channels. Be it a query on where their order is, a complaint, or a chat about services; customers can choose how they feel most comfortable doing this.

Customers are no longer on just one channel; we watch TV and use our phones simultaneously. We seek recommendations and reviews from friends or rely on social media for guidance, and before we even think about contacting a company, we do as much research as possible.

Deploying these multiple channels empowers customers to choose the convenient channel to interact with a brand when ready to make contact. It boosts a brand's presence, making it easier for the customers to reach out.

Multichannel allows customers to purchase goods and services in many ways without integration. The multichannel approach aims at enabling customers to reach the brand via a maximum number of channels. It adopts two or more channels to engage customers, and the most popular is social media & email.

What is an Omnichannel strategy?

Unlike multichannel, an omnichannel strategy is all about creating a cohesive and personalised experience throughout all interactions with customers. It streamlines all conversations under one platform across all channels like website, social media, email, phone, etc. It helps to better understand customer behaviour by mapping their journey to deliver consistent customer service.

In a nutshell, being 'omnichannel' means a flawless and connected interaction across any customer touchpoint journey and micro journey, starting from pre-sale to post-sale and everything in between.

Delivering an omnichannel solution can create consistent buying journeys, remove organisational silos, and increase valuable interaction history and context when customers switch channels.

"87% of retailers agree that an omnichannel strategy is critical or very important to their success."

When dealing with a large and active customer base needs this seamless way of operating - where a conversation can switch from social media to webchat to the phone without disrupting the customer journey.

So which approach is right for you?

The objectives of both multichannel and omnichannel strategies aim to reach potential customers across multiple channels, and both of these involve interacting with customers in numerous ways.

With recent research that shows that 67% of consumer rate the experience higher than any other aspect when deciding to buy, an omnichannel strategy is fundamental to the success of any B2C organisation

However, with any technology-led transformation, it is essential to understand the current and future state requirements. Understanding the needs, leads to correct planning and execution of the solution to deliver successful outcomes.

At Lokulus, we work with our clients to understand the objectives and to implement the right solution. Our unified customer interaction management platform means that our solution and channels can grow with your business demands to create a true transformational omnichannel solution.

Our solution will create a competitive advantage over the competition in a demanding customer base through excellent customer experience while giving you increased productivity across your customer service team

Get in touch with our team today to see how we can help