Multi-Channel is the solution
The number of people with access to multiple retail channels is growing at an explosive rate. This has resulted in the birth of the ‘channel-hopping’ consumer one who uses online and offline channels alike. With "86% of shoppers around the world shopping on at least 2 channels now, channel-hopping is a reality retailers and brands will have to come to terms with."
The purchasing process might start on a Pinterest feed, or when someone sees their friend’s jacket. It might end after a search at the store, or at a buy button through Facebook.
The good news is that the more channels customers navigate through and to, the more valuable they become. Customers who shop through multichannel platforms spend "on average 4% more on every shopping occasion than those in store and 10% more online than customers who shop on single-channel. For example, customers who used 4+ channels spent 9% more in the store, on average, when compared to those who used just one channel."
Multi-channel management is the art and science behind decoding the subtle nuances of who, what, where, when and why people are buying from you on each individual channel you sell your products on.
“It’s about creating balance, and understanding when and where to amplify and show restraint throughout your channel mix, so you won’t overwhelm your following or burn your marketing dollars trying to convert people when they’re not interested. It’s about finding opportunities in your data and implementing creative or budget changes to capitalize when the opportunity arises.”
Managing multiple channels is a difficult and confusing task unless it is managed by one Company. The key is to have a strong inventory management, which allows you to connect to all your sales channels. That doesn’t come easy … nearly a third of retailers lack “the inventory visibility across stores, vendors, and warehouses in order to accurately promise multi-channel fulfillment.”
So... if your intentions are to become a multi-channel expert, in which you thrive off multiple platforms for sales growth, you'll need the infrastructure that can manage and up to maintain this form of retailing with little to no effort from you.