Embracing The Future of E-Commerce in 2021 with Omnichannel Retailing
January 29, 2021
After almost a full year of battling the unseen virus, one collective aspect that many of us wish for better odds of is a recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. In light of that, the second week of January marked Indonesia’s achievement of a notable progress as the people witnessed the first ever COVID-19 vaccination conducted for President Jokowi along with a number of public figures. The first vaccination is planned to proceed with an even distribution nationwide, targeting 1 million people to be vaccinated each day.1 This plan becomes a new year resolution with the highest priority, in hopes of attaining herd immunity and reviving the gears of our economy.2
Being omnipresent is a true valuable investment
As the market continues its accelerated pace in shifting the demands online, new expectations are also projected to surface. Hence, brands need to be able to keep up. According to a recent study by Resulticks,9 Southeast Asian consumers are growing increasingly tech-savvy and ‘channel-agnostic’. This implies that the consumers expect to receive a shopping experience that is “individualized” and “real-time” across multiple channels of their preference.10 In other words, Southeast Asian consumers are already starting to expect an omnichannel shopping experience. Therefore, on top of maximizing resources, brands that adopt the omnichannel strategy will also be able to cater to these forthcoming expectations and have a more likely chance to thrive in the future.
On the customer’s side, omnichannel is the strategy of using multiple marketing channels integrated in a way which affords the customers a seamless front-end experience. These varying channels include websites, mobile browsers, native apps, physical retail, social media, email, and more.11 In creating that seamless experience, the aspects in all of these varying channels need to be in sync, such as product stock, account information, order tracking, advertisements, loyalty programs, and so on. On the business side of things, this integration allows the brand to have a wide range of shopping touchpoints that are catering to more demands⏤meaning that the products in their inventory gets to be circulated more widely. For businesses that sell perishable products, this can be the right recipe for sustainability.
A 2017 study of 46,000 shoppers in the US by Harvard Business Review found multiple benefits that the omnichannel strategy can bring to brands alike. This all unfolded in the same year where the omnichannel strategy was at “an all-time high” due to its high rate of adoption among retailers and its ability to give brands a competitive edge to lead the market.12 It is apparent that customers who use more than 4 channels actually spend 9% more in the store compared to those who only used one channel. Apart from the bigger shopping baskets, omnichannel shoppers were also more loyal to the brand and are even more likely to recommend the brand to family and friends than those who only used one channel due to the seamless experience they enjoy.13 Simultaneously, the customers’ continuous connectivity to the brand’s touchpoints can further enrich the analytics that brands can apply in moving forward.14 That way, important aspects of the business and big decisions can all be supported by holistic data.
The omnichannel strategy’s effectiveness and favorability in the US market has influenced the Southeast Asian market as well. Resulticks’ study further indicates that 82% of firms in Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, and Philippines are open to improving their customer engagement by employing an omnichannel approach.17 Among players in the industry, MessageBird, an omnichannel customer service tool, evaluates Indonesia as a market with a high potential.18 Over the decade, ICUBE by SIRCLO that started their business journey in offering tailored e-commerce services in the US have brought their omnichannel expertise to Indonesia to help more brands employ the strategy. ICUBE by SIRCLO has helped brands from the fashion, beauty, home living, FMCG, and varying other industries in creating their own e-commerce platform to keep customers at the core of the business.
One noteworthy case study of omnichannel application in Southeast Asia is by Transmarco Group, a leading footwear and lifestyle retailer that manages various global and their own expansive range of brands; Hush Puppies, LeSportSac and Caterpillar, Obermain, Robelli, and many more. They operate across Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore through over 800 distribution points, multiple websites, and marketplaces. To be managing each shopping touchpoint is perhaps feasible, but integrating them with one another will provide the customers the seamless experience they seek in addition to making the business processes run more smoothly. As a baseline in pursuit of becoming the market leader, Transmarco decided to adopt ICUBE by SIRCLO’s centralised omnichannel solution for ease of management and visibility in the shopping hub for the brands they manage; 9to9.co.id.19
Despite what needs to be done behind the scenes, the benefits of omnichannel strategy can take retail brands further into the future, especially during a pandemic with many limitations. To consult on the ways your brand can achieve it or even straightforwardly take the leap to be omnipresent, visit icubeonline.com.
As Indonesia’s leading e-commerce enabler company, SIRCLO’s responsibility to restore the distance between brands and consumers has been greatly heightened in 2020. While parts of the world slowed down due to the pandemic, e-commerce called for a faster pace as it became the people’s solution for needs fulfillment. In stepping into 2021, we hope to conquer whatever challenges the future may bring and to also help business owners everywhere do the same. May the new year start with fresh opportunities and the hunger to achieve more. Happy new year!
SIRCLO neither provides regulated advice nor guarantee results. The materials we convey reflect general insight and best practice based on information currently available, and do not contain all of the information needed to determine a future course of action. Such information has not been generated or independently verified by SIRCLO and is inherently uncertain and subject to change. SIRCLO has no obligation to update these materials and makes no representation or warranty and expressly disclaims any liability with respect thereto.