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Is your ecommerce brand missing out on sales? Whether you’re concerned about abandoned carts or just a lack of visitors altogether, omnichannel marketing could be the answer.

In this article, we’ll examine exactly what omnichannel ecommerce means, how it can impact on SEO marketing, and some ways to get your SEO strategy omnichannel-ready.

What is omnichannel ecommerce?

First, let’s define omnichannel ecommerce. This is simply a type of ecommerce that integrates the multiple platforms customers use to engage with your business. Essentially, all your marketing and shopping platforms are working in tandem to ensure customers have a seamless purchasing experience – and as a result, are more likely to spend.

So, how does it work? Omnichannel ecommerce works on the principle that the majority of customers will use multiple platforms to investigate or interact with a product before purchasing. This includes offline platforms, as well as online.

For example, a customer might start their ‘journey’ by looking at a product on your website, then visit your physical store to see the item in person. After that, they could finalise their purchase via your app, message the customer support team to change the delivery date, before receiving a ‘thank you’ marketing email with a coupon for future purchases. Website, physical store, app, customer support, marketing emails – all these different platforms are integral to the customer’s shopping experience with your brand.

A 2017 study by Harvard Business Review of 46,000 shoppers illustrated that 73% used multiple channels whilst shopping, rather than being exclusively online or store-only shoppers. Ensuring that these multiple channels provide a seamless journey can improve user experience, create unified branding and boost sales.

Multichannel vs omnichannel examples

If you’re familiar with multichannel marketing, you might be wondering how it differs from omnichannel marketing. While the two strategies sound similar, they are actually very different in practice.

Multichannel marketing acknowledges that customers use multiple platforms for shopping and advertising, but implements and develops these platforms in isolation to each other. Omnichannel marketing, on the other hand, unifies these platforms and their marketing strategies into one system, reflective of the journey customers take through them.

The way this difference impacts sales can be shown through multichannel vs omnichannel examples. If a customer sees a product they like on your app, they might try to look at your Instagram to see more photos – only to find your branding is completely different on the app. When they eventually decide to buy, they’re frustrated by the lack of an Instagram shop or links back to your website. They might feel it’s too much effort to trawl through the internet to find your website and they click away – purchase lost.

This illustrates the flaws of a multichannel approach – each individual platform could be wonderful, but like different departments of a business, they need to interact seamlessly with each other. With an omnichannel ecommerce approach, not only would the branding be consistent, it would be quick and simple for the customer to make their purchase no matter the platform.

How will omnichannel marketing impact SEO?

Some might argue that omnichannel marketing de-emphasises the importance of a strong ecommerce SEO strategy, as it takes the focus away from search engine results and onto a broader view of consumers’ shopping experiences. However, as Cleverism argues, there are very clear reasons to support an omnichannel SEO strategy. Well-implemented SEO ensures that, when customers decide to research a product after seeing it in store, your website ranks highly in the search engine results.

When combined with clear and effective content, you can both engage readers and rank in search engines. SEO content provides consumers with quality information that can influence their buying choices on multiple platforms and bolster user experience. You should also be utilising local SEO to ensure that your business is connecting with local customers.

SEO omnichannel ecommerce examples

So, how exactly can SEO impact on omnichannel marketing? Here are some SEO omnichannel ecommerce examples to consider:

Showrooming

Many customers practice ‘showrooming’, where they visit a physical store to look at items to buy later online. If your SEO isn’t properly implemented, it will be harder for consumers to find your online store. This makes it more likely that customers will get frustrated and buy elsewhere.

Webrooming

On the other hand, some customers might prefer ‘webrooming’, which involves researching products online, then buying them in-store. If you have a physical store or offer services locally, implementing local SEO can help your store get seen by consumers who want to shop specifically in your local area.

SEO and meaningful content

Let’s say that ideal customer of yours finally reaches your site, but your content isn’t informative or engaging, and is instead swamped with keyword upon keyword. Chances are Google won’t rate your website highly – and neither will potential customers. SEO needs to be integrated naturally within the article, rather than being shoehorned in to improve rankings.

Get your SEO omnichannel-ready

So, whilst it might not be exactly clear if omnichannel marketing is the future of SEO, it’s clear that many companies will be factoring omnichannel ecommerce into their future strategies – and SEO marketing will need to be adapted and incorporated into that. It’s not enough to simply toss in some keywords, you need a clear strategy that integrates with effective content and accessible platforms.

As SEO adapts to the potential of omnichannel marketing, it’s important to develop your SEO strategy as part of the overall user experience of your platforms – from content to website navigation. With two decades of award-winning experience in development – and specialist expertise for e-commerce SEO – Bing Digital understands how to implement every aspect of an SEO strategy, so you can feel assured your campaign is in expert hands.

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