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O2O Marketing Definition: What is Online-to-Offline Marketing?

by Jonathan Treiber April 23, 2019

O2O marketing (online-to-offline marketing) is the practice of using specialized techniques to entice customers in the online environment to make physical in-store purchases. An example of O2O marketing would be a customer seeing an ad online that influenced them to visit a store and make a purchase. Retailers interested in adding O2O marketing capabilities to their stack need a system in place to be able to track which of those online activities results with in-store purchases.

It’s simple to follow a customer’s journey through a website and identify online purchasing behaviors, and offline, store managers can easily track purchases and use inventory management to shape marketing decisions. Tracking a customer who starts online before coming into the store to make a purchase is a significant and meaningful challenge to overcome, but fortunately, marketers have a set of O2O strategies that they can implement.

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What Kinds of Companies Benefit from O2O Marketing?

Organizations from a variety of industries who leverage O2O marketing see greater customer engagement in their products and services. Retail, CPG, automotive, travel, and finance are some of the sectors finding the most success with O2O marketing. These brands deliver a consistent experience that meets the customer wherever they are in the purchase journey, regardless of touchpoint, and use specific digital marketing strategies to drive in-store sales.

Over 80% of shoppers will do online research before coming into a store to make a purchase¹. In the same way, marketers should understand the customer journey and customer pain points to create an experience tying online activity and research to the in-store visit for a truly omnichannel marketing experience.


Implementing O2O Marketing Strategies

Just as customers are unique, so too are businesses. There are several different O2O marketing strategies to fit the needs of any organization:

  • Buy online, pick-up in store (BOPIS)
  • SmartOffers®
  • Print-at-home
  • Affiliate marketing
  • Offline retargeting

Buy online, pickup in-store is perhaps the most widely used O2O marketing strategy, with several major retailers adding this convenience for their shoppers. In fact, nearly 40% of consumers who use BOPIS make additional in-store purchases spending on average $40 more.

SmartOffers® use secure dynamic codes to connect a non-transferable coupon with offline purchases. Dynamic offer values and creatives allow marketers to customize the offers for different audience segments and can be distributed across a variety of channels: email, text, social media, paid search, and more.

Print-at-home offers combine the convenience of printing at home with simplified consumer offer tracking. These offers provide upsell opportunities by allowing marketers to include additional offers or information once the offer is printed out.

Affiliate marketing enables partners to promote products on an organization’s behalf. Forming partnerships can help extend the reach of offers, engaging potential customers who might not have been otherwise interested. Brands need to be able to accurately attribute online affiliates to the in-store sales that they helped generate.

Offline retargeting re-engages customers who searched for a product or service online but did not complete the purchase. Offline retargeting uses direct mail to remind these visitors of the product that they sought out with an enticing offer or advertisement, compelling them to complete the purchase.

Implementing an O2O marketing strategy to reach customers more effectively has numerous benefits for businesses. Brands who have a unified experience have more satisfied customers, in turn raising both sales and brand value for continued business growth. To learn more about the O2O marketing strategies that can help your business, contact RevTrax or download the new eBook, Enabling Omnichannel Marketing Success
 with Online-to-Offline (O2O) Campaign Tracking.”

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Jonathan Treiber is the CEO & Co-founder of RevTrax


¹ https://www.hubspot.com/marketing-statistics