Multi-channel shopping (sometimes referred to as ‘omnichannel shopping’) is the practice of offering customers a variety of platforms from which they are able to purchase products, both online and offline.
E-commerce in Vietnam is growing at a rapid pace, with the presence of many e-marketplaces such as Tiki, Lazada, Shopee and Adayroi, as well as the strong development of social networks including Facebook, Zalo, Instagram, muare.vn, and lamchame.vn.
Utilising these platforms should be considered a vital factor in promoting products when more and more people are interested in shopping online and buying products through e-commerce sites.
Vietnam’s e-commerce market is now valued at about US$5 billion, but according to the Vietnam E-commerce Association (Vecom), the market will reach US$10 billion in the next four years.
“Retail businesses are moving from offline to online sales very fast. Many companies have selected the multi-channel shopping model. This is a trend that predicts the growth of retail sales through e-commerce,” Nguyen Thanh Hung, Vecom’s chairman, was quoted as saying in Dien dan doanh nghiep (Business Forum) newspaper.
The retail industry is changing dramatically in the world, including in Vietnam.
Currently, shoppers use a variety of internet-connected devices such as mobile phones, computers and even gaming devices to purchase products. They can shop anywhere, on the e-commerce sites, Facebook, Zalo, or via the store website.
Therefore, the application of multi-channel shopping platforms is forecast to be the core focus for retail businesses, amplifying shopping experiences for customers that will become a brand differentiator for e-retailers.
“The retail industry has seen a rapid change in its business model, from traditional retail to online retail, to serve higher demand from customers. Enterprises that are quick to employ the tools will significantly increase their sales efficiency,” said Nguyen Bach Diep, general director of FPT Retail.
Earlier this year, retail giant Amazon pioneered the unique multi-channel model with the launch of Amazon Go which is partially-automated, with customers able to purchase products without using a cashier or checkout station.
Inventory management will become a challenge that retailers must face when selling on multiple channels.
All data, from product information, orders, and inventory numbers will usually be independent in each channel. Shop owners must promote their products several times on each channel, and make changes manually, which can cause confusion, mistakes, and create an unprofessional image.
A single negative experience can make the shop lose customers forever.
Many online shop owners have said that they need a solution that can manage their sales in the most concentrated way, overcome these weaknesses and enable them reach customers in a more convenient way.