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The connection between Headless Commerce and Omnichannel

Iñaki BarturenJuly 23, 2021

With the business challenges brought by 2020, evolving towards a Headless Commerce approach has been a digital solution used by visionaries to achieve instant, remote, and easily accessible services.

Having the ability to adapt and integrate services in an agile way, scaling in the face of increased traffic, and deploying content on virtually any device, Headless Commerce is critical if you are looking to innovate towards omnichannel and improve it.

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Being where the client wants

With physical stores frozen for several months, transactions and customer contact turned towards remote purchase methods, both online and offline (such as in-store pickup).

Some businesses understood the change in customer behavior in time. They strengthened their sales channels and improved traceability of the interactions since they became aware that providing a good quality experience in any medium used by the customer is the best way to ensure a future sale.

A strategy based on omnichannel

Omnichannel is a strategy that seeks to create a steadier relationship with the customer, standardizing contact in the various channels used by a business, aiming to offer the same quality of service in all of them.

  • In omnichannel, the focus is the customer. An entire strategy is developed around it to allowing an equalized experience in all channels; this is a decision at the organizational level.
  • Some omnichannel advantages are experience consistency, rapid adaptability to changes in behavior, and standardization of available information.

How is it different from multichannel?

On the other hand, Multichannel places the product at the center, and the strategy of each channel may not be standardized.

  • The multichannel philosophy aims to provide the customer with access through their preferred channel and customize the marketing to best match the target market.
  • A customer may be surprised that the same brand works differently in each channel, sometimes with a pleasant surprise, but in general, with confusion that results in mistrust: Why does the digital channel work so well, and yet you cannot return a product to the physical store?
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Omnichannel advantages for the sustainability of a company

Offering a unique experience to customers, regardless of the channel, is investing in a long-term relationship. Research by Salesforce indicates that 89% of B2B customers would buy again from a business that offers a good experience. This percentage rises to 92% when it comes to end consumers.

These numbers are consistent with reports by HubSpot, which indicate that 93% of respondents declare they want to become frequent customers of businesses offering excellent customer service.

As a comparison for the customer experience importance, Zendesk states that 50% of consumers switch to the competition upon having a bad experience. This number increases to 80% if this is repeated.

On the other hand, if we consider that the two most effective sales channels for B2B businesses, according to a study by McKinsey & Company, are e-commerce with 41% followed by face-to-face sales with 37%, a reality that demands quality and consistency from sales channels. In the long term, the sustainability of a business (or at least its growth in highly competitive and digitized markets) may depend on it.

Using a Headless Commerce to standardize the experience

In this context, developing an eCommerce platform from a headless approach enables omnichannel adoption due to the flexibility provided by this CMS type for creating and publishing content in various channels.

  • A Headless CMS facilitates direct integrations to the frontend via API calls, so factors such as the search, selection, and payment of products are agile services not subject to their backend, which reduces errors and service drops.
  • Thanks to the inherent characteristics of a headless development, the content distribution will be CDN-based. It will load via API calls, improving device compatibility and connectivity by reducing loading times thanks to lighter content closer to the user.
  • Another determining factor is the additional security layer obtained when development is based on the inclusion of global and specialized providers, whose own infrastructure provides support for calls and transactions.
    • The first advantage is remarkable since, in a Headless Commerce, a service enhancing dynamic searches can be easily integrated to increase customer experience exponentially. Take Algolia as an example.

Algolia: the significance of a successful search and exploration

Gone is the customer's need to visit several stores to find a product. Currently, the search starts on any connected device; at home, while commuting, or while cooking.

In this sense, a search and discovery system is key to improving eCommerce conversions. This concept is essential in a market where the customer seeks more digitized and, at the same time, more human services. The key is that Algolia does all of this under a search-as-a-service approach (that is, under a pay-per-search model), which is easily integrated as a microservice via API.

  • For the customer, it is the eCommerce that should learn about their interests and tastes. Therefrom, offer them a universe of alternatives in the development of their purchase in a matter of milliseconds. Every slight delay in loading results means customers are defecting or, worse, going to the competition.
  • With Algolia, it is possible to deploy a predictive search that provides related content instantly when the user types the first character. It allows you to adjust the criteria and apply business insights when anticipating your customers, for which you can even use artificial intelligence.
    • In times of change, the customer is everything

      Today, the purchase journey begins on any device and in any place. Therefore, your product and sales channels must always be within reach and not be different in terms of quality of service.

      Let the customer choose how to contact you and how to interact. At all times, we must deliver the same experience and let those users know that we understand them each time.

      To deploy your omnichannel strategy, you can count on Reign as the best partner to migrate to a Headless Commerce. The focus will be to include world-class solutions such as Algolia, and deliver the best customer experience at each point of contact.

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