In 2014 Topshop emerged as the best overall omni-channel retailer in the UK. This was according to a Kurt Salmon survey of 25 UK fashion retailers. The survey was conducted in order to find out how well businesses are performing across multiple channels. John Lewis, Marks & Spencer, Harvey Nichols, House of Fraser and ASOS were also highlighted as other top contenders.
According to the Kurt Salmon Partner, Siobhan Gehin, most retailers “do not have the ‘glue’ they need to link all the channels together, so they are disappointing customers and losing sales”. This, she explains, is partly because they have not fully embraced mobile, geolocation facilities and engaging editorial content.
Topshop, however, has been successful by comparison in optimizing its existing channels and embracing new ones. In this blog, we take a look at what those channels are, and why they work so well.
1. Engaging online content
Creating a great online experience is the key to bringing customers back again and again. Websites are not merely a place of transaction, they are also the retailer's chance to engage their customer.
Topshop have taken great pride in their magazine content, emphasizing it in their top menu. This helps give users ideas for the latest fashions and inspire their next Topshop purchase. Great content brings people back, and when they get inspired, they’ll head to the checkout.
2. Highly functional mobile website
Being where your customers want you to be is essential for any business, and mobile-optimized sites are crucial for any online retailer. In 2017, almost 59% of ecommerce sales occurred via mobile. Topshop have taken this on board, building a responsive and dynamic mobile website. The mobile menu slides out smoothly, you can easily scroll through the banner with a swipe of your finger. By designing their site with mobile users in mind, Topshop are well-placed to capitalize on the increasing number of mobile shoppers.
3. Blending offline and online
Shopping should never feel like an effort, or an inconvenience. But when every customer wants a slightly different experience, how can you bridge people’s expectations? Topshop are clearly trying to give people as many convenient and simple options as possible. With next-day delivery, in-store collection and order tracking, Topshop have catered for those customers that never want to see the shop, those that never shop online, and everyone in between.
4. Engaging social media
Great content should spread throughout your entire business, and where better to bring it to people’s attention than on social media sites? Showing off relevant items around Mothers’ Day, and giving lots of fashion inspiration to their followers, means their customers can always feel like the first to hear about new things. It’s easy to spam on Twitter, but Topshop keep it relevant with great pictures. This also allows the customer to participate by uploading pictures of themselves wearing Topshop's clothes.
5. In-store experience
While online shopping has been taking a greater and greater piece of the retailing pie, so much shopping is still done in store. That’s why if you have the physical location, you need to know how to use it. Topshop’s stores have all been tailored to create an experience that seems unique, despite its size and ubiquity. And at their flagship stores they go one step further and provide personal shopping to really make you feel special.
It’s the combination of all five of these things that sets Topshop apart. The feeling that you are getting something unique permeates throughout all their channels, and is the reason why they are such a successful retailer. If you're interested in omni-channel personalization then we're here to help.
A variant of this article appeared in 2014.