Omni-digital vs omni-channel: what is the difference?

One of the greatest challenges of retaining customer loyalty is offering customer care that is both personalised and seamless. Even though individualisation has established itself as a prerequisite for quality customer care experience, companies still need to pay close attention to users and consumers on every channel.

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However, emerging stakeholders dedicated to catering to every digital touch points demand to analyse the evolution of consumers’ expectations and usages through their viewpoint. Why does the concept of the omni-digital, often overshadowed by the omni-channel, still need to gain acceptance in the world of marketing and digital customer care?

The steady concern for omni-channel

“Omni-channel” alludes to the capacity of a company to integrate multiple channels or “touch points”, whether they be digital or not. A company that customers can contact via email or phone, for example, can call itself omni-channel. As a PwC study certifies, the advantages of good omni-channel approaches are already proven since it gives companies the ability to retain 89% of their customer base.

The changeover to asynchronous

An Ofcom study shows that younger generations favour digital channels at the expense of more traditional ones, such as the telephone. This changeover is the direct consequence of the need to emancipate themselves from time constraints. This explains the wide enthusiasm for asynchronous apps. These apps also give the freedom to start a conversation at leisure and receive an appropriate answer as soon as possible which gives users the experience of less demanding conversations.

Omni-digital, a context that a growing number of companies are prioritising

More and more customers, especially in industries such as banking and insurance, do not use physical channels to contact businesses (stores, customer care phone lines). In the banking industry, PwC revealed that 46% of customers have embraced an omni-digital approach in 2017, in comparison to 27% in 2012.

Omni-digital customers expect a smooth experience: what counts for them is to be able to use the channel they prefer to find a solution to their problem. Companies need to be able to offer a uniformed quality service across all of their touch points.

“Omni-digital” involves a strong aspect of connectivity that constitutes a major stake for companies regarding the variety of touch points they offer to their customers and users. Moreover, digital tools such as interactions platforms, CRMs, statistics tools, call platforms, process managing etc have become crucial to customer care departments. The essential circulation of information is now possible thanks to the interconnectivity of all these tools.

For everyone involved, omni-digital is a win/win offering. It consistently allows customers to communicate with companies at any time of day, without depending on customer service opening hours. Whilst, for the agents, through clearer communication channels their job becomes less stressful and more interesting and ultimately, allows them to provide a better, more efficient service.

This approach is a reflection of a company’s decision to adapt to its customers’ preferences; offering digital channels in  order to reduce time wasted solving an issue. The biggest advantage of this approach is that it has the most impact on customer loyalty.

By Julien Rio, Head of Marketing at Dimelo, a RingCentral Company