Understanding omnichannel and making it work for wholesale distribution

3 March 2014 | BlueBridge One

It’s a changed world: Say hello to omnichannel

The world is multichannel. Or so we once thought. It turns out to have evolved and is now actually omnichannel.

The digital age and the Internet exploded the traditional channel ‘cartel’ of broadcast advertising, print media advertising, direct mail and PR. Early on the Internet was seen as a single channel. However, technology development led to the proliferation of the other digital channels that are now multiplexed within it. E-commerce; email; social media; online ads; AdWords; affiliate advertising are some obvious ones. And it’s not just the power to communicate. It is also the ability to make a purchase.

One way to look at the channels is as a list of menu items. Depending on your market sector you choose the items you need, assemble them in the most appropriate way and structure activity across the channels to reach your targets. This is often referred to as an integrated approach and is widely accepted as a cornerstone of successful marketing.

Taking multichannel to the next level

Omnichannel takes this concept to the next level, emphasising the need for a strategic and joined up approach. Omni-channel reinforces and supports joined up communications across the different routes through which customers touch your brand.

For those retailing and e-tailing fashion and lifestyle goods, embracing an omnichannel approach helps to meld the 4Ps – product, place price and promotion – to create more seamless customer experiences.

One of the ways that seamless customer experiences are enabled is through fulfilment. Accurate stock reporting; slick payment, shipping and delivery operations; smart after sales service for warranty or out of warranty maintenance and repairs. This is all part of the omnichannel. It puts the customer at the centre and this is pivotal in shaping the positive customer experiences that drive loyalty and advocacy and which ultimately contribute to increased sales.

Adapt to omnichannel and disruptive change with NetSuite and BlueBridge One

More and more we see technology’s power to be a facilitator of disruptive change. This upsets established business processes. The traditional supply chain model of manufacturer-wholesaler-distributor-retailer is a good example of this. With smart technology a manufacturer can deal directly with end-user customers. And so can wholesale distributors.

NetSuite allows fast growing and mid-size wholesale distributors to add comprehensive omnichannel capability to their existing business model through a fully integrated business suite that includes the advanced SuiteCommerce engine and Retail Anywhere. BlueBridge One is a UK based NetSuite solution provider able to provide your customers with a full Ominchannel experience using either NetSuite’s SuiteCommerce Advanced or SuiteCommerce Mid-market platforms. Please click here to register for a FREE 14 day trial of NetSuite.

One key consideration of omnichannel is the continuing growth of mobile. NetSuite cloud-based ERP and SuiteCommerce powers a great shopping experience on any internet connected device. In any language, currency or business model, NetSuite ERP and SuiteCommerce enable wholesale distribution businesses to adapt to world altered by disruptive technology and embrace the omnichannel.