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What is Omnichannel Marketing? How to Use It for Ecommerce

Adam Henshall
January 25, 2019

omnichannel marketingThis guest post is by Whitney Blankenship, Content Marketing Manager for Omnisend. When not writing awesome content, Whitney is reading up on the latest in digital marketing, ecommerce, and social media trends. Obsessed with pop culture, art, and metal. Powered by coffee. Fastest Googler in the West. Follow on Twitter.

In the ecommerce industry, omnichannel marketing has been a prevalent theme across articles, social media, conferences, and general thought leadership over the past few years.

Everyone is talking about it, but how many retailers are actually using it? How much of this is just theory, and how can we put omnichannel marketing into practice?

In this Process Street article, we’re going to walk you through the ins and outs of using omnichannel marketing for ecommerce. We’ll cover:

  • What omnichannel marketing actually is (and more importantly, what it isn’t)
  • How it’s different from multichannel marketing
  • Reasons to implement an omnichannel marketing strategy for your ecommerce store
  • Best practices to help you nail omnichannel marketing
  • Plus, 17 free ecommerce process templates for your business

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Top 10 Business Processes: Our List of Greatest Hits

top-10-business-processes

Whether the number of possible business processes is finite or infinite is debatable. Needless to say, there are a lot.

You can start with a broad, complex discipline like operations, mapping out the general, high-level process, and go on to create a vast amount of sub-processes that fall under the same area.

How granular you go is really up to you, and depends on what is most suitable for the way you conduct business.

There are, however, a number of processes that are absolutely essential to efficiently running any kind of business, regardless of size, industry, or location.

Processes that, without clear documentation and management, will cause bottlenecks that stifle growth or at worst, force an organization to close its doors.

In this post, we’re going to be looking at what we, here at Process Street, have identified as the top 10 business processes that you should care about and focus on continuously optimizing.

These are the big dogs. The greatest hits.

Each process will be paired with at least one fully customizable template that will help you get started or evaluate and refine your current processes depending on what stage you are at in mapping out and implementing your own.

My hope is that you will not only extract valuable insight from this article, but also find ways to apply the templates that have been provided in a way that is practical and useful for your team or organization as a whole.

Let’s get into it.

Oh, and bear in mind, these are in no particular order.

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Inbox Zero: How to Manage Your Inbox in Record Time

inbox zero

We’ve all been there. A letter icon on your phone has a five-digit number in the top corner and your apprehension at tackling it grows stronger every day.

You’re drowning in emails.

In 1993 I didn’t need a system for doing email… and yet, today, I feel like the only way you’re going to succeed at a job… is figuring out how to deal with a high volume of email.” – Merlin Mann, Inbox Zero Google Tech Talk

Lucky for you, there’s a handy method called inbox zero which you can use to blast through your messages and stay on top of your backlog.

Say goodbye to email hell; your easy (and free) solution has arrived.

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Content Creation Workflows: Why You Need One and How to Build It

content creationWhen creating content, it’s easy to think you should just make it and publish it. Simple.

But your content will not be highly effective if that’s your outlook – even if the substance of your content is brilliant!

Creating content – blogs, infographics, videos, podcasts – creates an opportunity for you to connect with your audience and to engage with a new audience. There is significant value which can be unearthed through an effective content strategy.

One of the simplest ways to improve your approach is to implement a documented content creation workflow.

It may increase the time you spend on a single piece of content or decrease it depending on your current process, but it could also prove to boost the effectiveness of your content by huge margins.

A blog post which is optimized for Google can bring you hundreds or thousands of hits every month. A post which is not optimized may be read by 10% of your email list and then disappear into the void.

Beyond the very real benefit of a good workflow improving the content, a solid team workflow can boost your overall output and practically run your content team itself.

Since implementing our new content creation workflow we jumped from 20k weekly visits from Google to 75k. In the space of 1 year. The new workflow has given us the consistency to keep breaking those numbers.

In this Process Street post, I’m going to explain to you:

  • What our content creation workflow looked like when we had a small team
  • What our scaled up content creation workflow looks like now
  • How you can build a content creation workflow like ours
  • The Process Street templates you can use to structure your new workflows

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A Practical Guide to Increase Productivity with Process Mapping

process-mapping

Process mapping is a useful tool for what can be summed up as “seeing the big picture and little pictures at the same time”.

That may sound silly to you, but that’s really what it is.

The primary benefit achieved from mapping out your business processes is that you can accurately evaluate each of the steps needed to complete a certain workflow, while understanding exactly how each of them interacts with one another and contributes to the process as a whole.

This ability to evaluate all aspects of a process helps managers identify constraints, opportunities for improvement, and formulate strategies to implement changes without disrupting day-to-day work.

But how do you go about ensuring that the time and effort you put into constructing these maps translates into improved performance?

That’s the question we’ll be tackling in this post.

Before doing so, however, we must acknowledge that there is a huge range of complexity when it comes to methods for process mapping. If you are a small organization it can be as simple as drawing it out on a whiteboard, whereas enterprises use sophisticated mapping software tools like Appian and Lucidchart.

This point regarding complexity and different kinds of process maps leads us to another important sub-topic that needs to be addressed early on – the difference between process mapping and process modeling.

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21 Best Business Podcasts: Process Street Team Picks

entrepreneur podcasts

Podcasts are like hacks for your everyday life. They allow you to passively improve your knowledge and gain valuable insight into almost any topic you could imagine, whilst doing pretty much anything.

All of that time spent walking to the store, commuting to work, preparing a meal, working out; it’s all time you could be utilizing to improve yourself and your business.

This article is a selection of the best business podcasts from our team at Process Street; we’d recommend them to anyone looking to devote themselves to self improvement, stay sharp and keep pace with the cutting edge of business trends and insights.

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How to Support €38.8 Billion Revenue: Tips from IKEA’s Supply Chain

ikea supply chain

You can’t earn €38.8 billion in annual revenue by stumbling through your processes.

Specifically, the IKEA supply chain is the glue that holds the company together and allows them to flourish.

From their suppliers through to the product in-store, the supply chain is set up and managed in a way that reduces costs at every stage, makes the products more appealing to customers, and makes the brand as a whole seem more appealing.

It’s genius, really.

So let me show you how they do it.

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5 Great Ways to Involve Your Employees in Process Design

process-design

Finding effective ways to engage your employees in decision-making processes has become a priority for most organizations in recent years.

Why?

Because numerous research studies clearly indicate that involving your employees in how things get done improves morale, which in turn positively impacts productivity, loyalty, and pretty much everything else that enables a business to grow and stay competitive.

Really it’s just common sense. Treat your employees well, give them opportunities to contribute, and they will be more motivated to consistently produce their best work.

According to Salesforce research, employees who feel their voice is heard are 4.6 times more likely to feel empowered to perform their best work, while another study indicates that organizations with high employee engagement outperform those with low employee engagement by 202%.

It’s hard not to perk up your ears and think carefully about how much you involve your employees when such significant numbers are flying around.

In this post, I’m going to be going through 5 ways for you to involve your employees in decision-making when it comes to process design.

In other words, I’ll be looking to offer you some practical, tried and tested ideas for encouraging your employees to contribute to the design of internal business processes. This will not only offer them a channel for empowerment, but will also improve process adoption as they will be built through collaboration and teamwork. It’s a win-win situation.

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Breakdown of the Best Workflow Management Software

workflow manager

It’s become commonplace for companies to look to workflow management software to help them “trim the fat” and boost productivity metrics.

A majority of savvy business owners are searching for solutions to automate their workflows and push their business to that extra percentile of efficiency.

Multiple different names have been used to talk about this particular kind of tool: BPM software, process management software, workflow management software, to name a few.

Whatever you choose to call it, the proposition remains the same. Workflow management software offers a centralized hub for overseeing and optimizing all of the moving parts that make up your workflow.

These workflows are made up of processes, which are like sets of step by step instructions designed to guide you along the ideal path to a simple desired outcome.

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8 Smartsheet Alternatives for Superb Project Management in 2019

smartsheet-alternatives

The Smartsheet platform provides exactly what the name suggests – smart sheets. It is modeled around the classic Microsoft Excel spreadsheet, enriching its capabilities with powerful collaboration features and integrations.

In addition to providing effective collaboration tools, Smartsheet’s user interface is relatively simple, which has earned it a solid reputation as a good project management tool for businesses of all sizes.

So why even look for an alternative?

Well, you may not feel that Smartsheet is particularly well suited to how you manage projects in your team and organization as a whole. Perhaps you are not very familiar with Excel, or just don’t like it very much and would rather use a tool with a different look and feel.

It can also become a difficult tool to manage in the long-term. As you add more and more projects, the organization of vast amounts of spreadsheets can become fragmented and confusing.

So, if you are not a big fan of spreadsheets, and would like a project management tool with a more fun, engaging look to it, here are 8 fantastic alternatives that may well be what you’re looking for.

The main criteria I used for selecting the following applications is that they all have excellent feedback from users, reasonable pricing models, good customer support, and effectively address Smartsheet’s limitations.

Let’s get into it.

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