E-commerce website: from a pure player strategy to multi-channel sales
You are a pure e-commerce player and the growth of your company is well proven. To go further, why not diversify your sales channels? To do this, a multi-channel strategy must be developed. Here are some elements of success to deploy it effectively.
Redesign your overall strategy
To develop your company's sales, it is essential to be prepared (points of sale, marketplaces, distributors...).
First, take a step back from your current strategy. You will not necessarily target the same customers and offer the same offers depending on the distribution method: so set new objectives for each channel.
Adjust your internal organization
Once your strategy is established, reconsider your internal organization. It is essential to remove barriers between different distribution channels: your teams must also work in multi-channel mode.
To facilitate processes, the issue of data accessibility is becoming a priority. It is therefore important to consider the implementation of new management tools. Indeed, your e-commerce site becomes a distribution channel among others, and no longer the center of your company's information system.
Anticipate the growth of your business
By multiplying the number of points of sale and your presence in marketplaces, you will logically increase your sales. Your company must be able to absorb future growth in both production and customer service.
To do this, you need flexible tools to manage your business and link it across all distribution channels.
Put customer relations at the heart of your approach
It is essential to understand consumer expectations and place them at the heart of your strategy. Create a consistent multi-channel customer experience: they like to have the choice, take the time to think, look for information on the Internet before finalizing the purchase.
The main part of the approach is to create complementarity between the different sales channels. They will not all have the same goal:
the online shop will remain your preferred sales channel;
the physical stores will make it possible to highlight your presence on the local market and to establish a close relationship with the end customer;
the marketplaces will allow you to expand your customer base and your visibility on the Net.
Choose the best tools
You currently have Magento or Prestashop and this is perfectly suited for managing your online store. However, as part of a multi-channel sales strategy, the e-commerce platform will not be able to fulfil the role of an information system and ensure consistency between the various distribution channels, logistics, after-sales service, etc.
The best solution is to set up an ERP software and connect it with your e-commerce platform. The ERP will make it possible to automate logistics, manage stocks, update product repositories....
The information will be updated in real time, while avoiding multiple re-entries and the risk of errors between the e-commerce platform and the ERP.
This will facilitate communication and information transmission between the different teams. In order to choose your solution, do not hesitate to consult our article on this subject (E-commerce players: how to choose your ERP?).
Work with the best partners
A project of this magnitude must be well supported. To choose the partner who will integrate your ERP software and connect it to your e-commerce platform, it is necessary to ask yourself the following questions:
the integrator's experience: before you start, consult his references;
the typology of its customers: collaborate with partners who work with companies of the same size as yours;
the relationship between the integrator and the ERP publisher: is it a privileged partner?
support: will you be on your own once integration is complete or will a long-term relationship develop?
You now have all the information you need to develop an effective multi-channel strategy. It's up to you!