Omnichannel vs Multichannel Marketing: Which is Best?
Digital & Marketing Strategy

Omnichannel vs Multichannel Marketing: Which is Best?


When deciding on the right marketing strategy for your business, it’s essential to be informed. This strategy will influence your customer engagement, use your email marketing, and various other factors.

With the world changing at a rapid pace, your marketing should cover multiple significant areas. Online shopping could replace retail stores, and your team should be ready for a transition like this.

When coming up with your multichannel strategy, you need to consider the customer’s perspective. Marketing is always a significant investment, and making the wrong choice will influence your customer behaviour and cost you money.

Many businesses make use of different channels, sometimes including a mobile app. The most important thing, besides the customer, is to ensure that you send out a unified message across all channels.

Marketing professionals often use omnichannel and multichannelmarketing as interchangeable terms, but there’s a big difference between the two concepts. Let’s find out more about these two marketing strategies.

Multichannel Marketing

Multichannel marketing refers to using multiple channels to get your message across. This can include social, mobile, direct, and various other media. Each of the marketing channels works in a vacuum, and you create distinct marketing strategies and goals for each of the marketing channels.

When employing multichannel marketing, you can use online and offline channels to get your message out to your target audience, including aspects like direct mail. You use each channel to bring the message to your customer, putting the business in the centre of the approach.


The Effectiveness of Multichannel Marketing

Using the multichannel approach allows you to target more diverse customers. With single-channel marketing, you’ll target a specific group of people, and this group is the only one ever exposed to your brand. With the multichannel approach, you use more channels to target a variety of people.

Customers targeted with multichannel retail spends three times more than those targeted with a single-channel system. With a multichannel, you can expect more engagement from customers.

While it can be effective, there are some aspects that companies can have difficulties with:

  • Miscommunication in the messages that go out
  • Inconsistencies in the style and design over the various marketing channels
  • Customer frustration if there’s a lack of integration among the different channels

Inconsistency tells your customer that you’re disorganised and can’t be trusted. While you can easily overcome some of these challenges, others can be entirely out of your control.  The transition between these various media isn’t smooth since each type of media requires an individual approach. Multichannel retail, especially in terms of e-commerce, isn’t as effective as it used to be.

Omnichannel Marketing

A simple definition for omnichannel marketing is using the various marketing channels to create one customer experience. This will include your point-of-sale, traditional and digital platforms. It’s a seamless message that your customer experiences and is personalised to the needs of every individual customer.

Omnichannel vs multichannel

The Effectiveness of Omnichannel Marketing

Research suggests that more than one-third of all online purchases happen over multiple channels. Very few e-commerce businesses have implemented an omnichannel marketing strategy effectively. A few successful omnichannel examples include Disney, Nike, and Starbucks.

The customer experience is seamless, regardless of which marketing media they choose to use. The customer engagement that omnichannel marketing creates often leads to customer retention. The omnichannel retail approach allows for marketing automation.

The Importance of the Customer Experience

Since so many sales take place over multiple media, it’s vital to keep the customer experience in mind when choosing whether you’ll use omnichannel vs multichannel approaches.  The omnichannel experience, when implemented correctly, seems to be a better choice for e-commerce, as it streamlines the entire process and has good customer feedback.

Customer Focus

The omnichannel multichannel difference is that the omnichannel approach is customer-focused, where the multichannel system is company-focused. Very few technology solutions aren’t customer-focused in the social media age, and your omnichannel commerce can go hand-in-hand with your social media management.

Long-Term Value

Research has shown that customers who use various media to make sales are more valuable to the long-term success of your e-commerce business than customers who use only one channel. This includes shopping on mobile devices and customers who order goods to be delivered to the store or reserving items in-store.

Brand Consistency

The omnichannel approach allows your business to show consistency in the brand. This will let your customers know that you pay attention to details and that you’re consistent. Consistency, in turn, build trust in your customers, whether they are new or existing customers. The customer’s experience is always the same, so they know exactly what they’re going to get from the brand.

Challenges that Omnichannel Marketing Faces

The key difference between omnichannel and multichannel strategies is the seamless experience that we mentioned earlier. Your customer should browse Facebook on their mobile device, browsing your site, adding items to the cart, and then later finish the process on their laptop or desktop.


There should be an integrated process through all these different channels, and the customer should feel like they can quickly move from one to the other without losing out on anything. This isn’t an easy process to create. You have to pay close attention to every aspect of your marketing strategies, as well as the implementation thereof.


You need to access the relevant customer data to deliver suggestions that will encourage customers to make a purchase. Unfortunately, this data is challenging to get. Interpreting and coming up with appropriate strategies can be even more challenging. Small businesses, especially, struggle with this critical aspect, as acquiring the data can be expensive, and often you need to hire marketing experts to assist.

How do You Implement a Successful Omnichannel Strategy?

It’s essential to get your entire team on board to launch a successful omnichannel strategy. Everyone needs to speak the same language and carry the same message. Your team needs to understand the customer and their data. Every team member can play a part in creating a better customer experience for every individual.

You need to analyse the data and learn everything you can about your customer. Remember, the omnichannel experience means that it’s tailored for the customer you’re working with, and therefore you need to know them well. Ask for customer feedback and pay attention to what they’re saying. Instead of making excuses, implement plans to find solutions.

Targeting your message is an integral part of omnichannel marketing. Break your customers into smaller groups who share similar traits. This will make it easier to write personalised messages to your target group. You can look at aspects like their profile or their shopping behaviour.

When you implement your marketing channels, make sure that you follow up on data analytics, find any mistakes and fix them. No campaign will be perfect from the get-go, and you can always find ways to improve your user experience.

It’s no easy task to set up a multichannel or omnichannel strategy into your overall marketing strategy, but remember that there are many ways of asking for help, even abroad, such as digital marketing agencies in the UK.

Final Thoughts

While the multichannel strategy is more effective than only using a single channel, the world of online selling has moved to omnichannel retail. Your customer journey should be a seamless experience and aimed at the individual. Allow your marketing automation to make omnichannel retail more successful, but remember that the key is to personalise your approach.

Personalised Experience is Critical

It’s safe to say that the average customer expects cross channel communication. They also expect brand consistency. Customers have plenty of choices, and they will quickly move on if their experience isn’t exactly what they expected.  In fact, omnichannel marketing is so effective that up to 65% of customers have indicated that they are happy to pay for similar products simply based on their personalised experience.

Your Choice

The choice between omnichannel vs multichannel marketing becomes easy when you take all this information into account. Online shopping is growing exponentially, and every business should get their own strategy together to make the most out of the suitable technology we have available.

Omnichannel businesses are showing to be more successful than those that use media in separation. A customer-centric approach is critical to increase your sales and to increase customer retention, using two or more channels to do this.


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