OmniChannel vs MultiChannel Customer Communications: The difference explained

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The terms omnichannel and multichannel are frequently used in the business and marketing worlds, but what is the difference between them? After all, both entail communicating with clients through multiple channels, right?

While the latter sentence is correct, there are several important distinctions between the two concepts. In the end, marketing and client engagement are two quite different tactics. Read on to learn more about the omnichannel vs. multichannel debate, as well as the fundamental differences between the two and which is better for your company.

Concepts explained: Omnichannel vs multichannel

You can’t comprehend what omnichannel and multichannel mean unless you first understand what channel means. Simply put, a channel is how a company or brand communicates with its customers and target market.

 You might have two types of channels when it comes to the notions of omnichannel and multichannel:

  • marketing channels
  • consumer interaction channels.

The media via which a brand raises awareness and promotes its product or service are known as marketing channels. A website, a physical store, a billboard, or even the product packaging utilized can all be considered channels.

When it comes to customer interactions, customers can contact a company through a variety of channels, that can extend to social media, email, live chat, and phone calls.

What does it mean to be multichannel?

The use of more than one channel to market and transmit information about a brand is referred to as multichannel marketing. These many channels do not communicate with one another. A billboard, for example, is not directly linked to a company’s website; they are two distinct channels used to raise brand awareness. Similarly using more than one channel to communicate with customers is referred to as multichannel communications. Like sending order updates via email, resolving queries on social media dm, and giving support on calls.

What does it mean to be omnichannel?

The utilization of many channels to connect with customers is sometimes referred to as omnichannel. However, in this scenario, the various channels are combined to provide the customer with a smooth experience. In other words, a client can pick up where they left off on one channel and seamlessly continue on another.

A customer, for example, initiates a live chat conversation with a contact support agent. The contact is escalated to a video chat or over email to effectively address the specific issue. The consumer does not have to repeat the information supplied in the live chat when switching to the video chat or email channel because the two channels are connected.

What are the major distinctions between omnichannel and multichannel communications?

When comparing omnichannel and multichannel, there are three key distinctions to keep in mind. These are all focused on the goals and objectives of the various techniques.

1) Customer engagement vs customer experience

One of the most significant distinctions between the two is that multichannel communication focuses on increasing customer engagement, whereas omnichannel communications focus on improving customer experience.

The goal of multichannel is to throw as wide a net as possible to make as many people aware of a company as possible.

The goal of omnichannel is to provide a consistent customer experience for customers who are already aware of and interested in a company.

2) Customer-centric vs. channel-centric

Let’s look at this distinction in perspective.
Take, for example, social media. The goal of a multichannel strategy is to increase the number of followers, comments, likes, and shares on your social media pages and posts, as these metrics indicate that more people are interested in your business.
 
An omnichannel strategy, on the other hand, will place a greater emphasis on ensuring clients can seamlessly transition from your social network page to your website. When consumers click on a Facebook ad, for example, they are directed to the related product page on your website, resulting in a better and more seamless customer experience.

Another significant distinction between omnichannel and multichannel is that multichannel is concerned with channels, while omnichannel is concerned with customers.

The goal of multichannel is to increase the number of channels via which a brand may be promoted. Customers can pick how they wish to interact with a company with multiple channels. The more the number of channels available, the greater the customer’s options.

The customer, not the channel, is the focal point of omnichannel. The goal is to provide a seamless experience when the client moves from one channel to another, removing friction as they travel between different touchpoints. It is preferable to have fewer interconnected channels than to have many disconnected channels.

3) Quantity vs. Quality?

The quantity of contact channels employed vs. the quality of support provided through those channels is the final distinction between the two.

Multichannel, as previously said, is all about increasing the number of channels available. The greater the number of channels available, the better. It expands a company’s reach and gives customers the option of how they want to interact with it. However, little effort is made to connect the channels, which means clients must restart from the beginning when switching from one to the other, potentially lowering the quality of help received.

The level of service provided by a company’s channels is what omnichannel is all about. Consumers can use any channel accessible to them and be certain that the level of help they receive will be the same.

There is a significant distinction to be made here between the quality of support and the type of support. An omnichannel strategy does not imply that each channel provides the same level of customer service. A basic question can be answered via live online chat, but issues with modifying a shopping cart will necessitate a more visual level of support provided via video chat or co-browsing.‍

The integration of all available channels ensures a high level of quality. In contrast to a multichannel strategy, an omnichannel strategy allows customers to switch engagements from one channel to another without having to start over.

Both omnichannel customer care and multi-channel support assist multiple channels, but they are not the same. Every different customer care channel is covered by omnichannel customer service.

Every customer care channel is associated with omnichannel customer service. Agents can communicate information about their interactions across channels, creating a seamless experience for both the service provider and the user. Mezchip is one such omnichannel platform that integrates all your support channels to provide a single integrated and seamless communication flow for your customers and your agents.

Since multi-channel support does not contain related channels, it provides less information on how customers have previously dealt with your assistance. Customers may experience longer wait times and churn as a result of your support workers’ continuous requests for customer information.

Have a look at what the transformation of your system will look like with Mezchip omnichannel solution.

Remember, if this all sounds a little too technical, we may offer hands-on assistance. Schedule a demo or Sign up for a Free Trial.

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Gunjan Chandok

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