Online-Merge-Offline (OMO) Approach in Japan: Key Research Findings 2023

Attractive Customer Experiences from Customer Perspectives Generated by OMO Approaches

Yano Research Institute (the President, Takashi Mizukoshi) has conducted a survey on the efforts to realize online-merge-offline (OMO) measures in Japan and has found out the trend of market players and future perspectives.

Summary of Research Findings

In the B2C market, providing quality customer experiences (CX) has become more important in differentiation, as competing by using products and services has become difficult. In order not to be left behind from competitors, the online-merges-offline (OMO) approach has been attracting attention as a marketing method to provide attractive customer experiences, such as product promotions appropriate for each of customers based on their purchasing information and sufficient services for settlement and reward points, etc. The OMO approach in this research refers to a marketing approach that consolidates the strength of both online and offline and provides seamless services by eliminating the barriers between the two, thereby to improve every customer experience and convenience.

Nevertheless, in the situation where every B2C enterprise addresses to improve CX, customers are more used to being convenient as it has become natural to feel convenient. Therefore, the efforts on OMO should be to aim for being continuously chosen by customers rather than to generate a big advantage. The necessity of the OMO approach is regarded to become higher as a method to prevent from losing customers.

Noteworthy Topics

Required Factors for OMO-Related Systems

To realize the customer experiences appropriate for each customer through the OMO measures, the system using digital technologies become indispensable for B2C businesses. Hereafter, OMO related systems is likely to be higher in demand as an increasing number of companies addresses OMO.

It is possible for such B2C businesses focusing on OMO approaches to suffer excessive workloads stemming from new system deployments, which can negatively impact customer services such as lower quality services.

It indicates that those systems with added values other than improvement of CX are increasingly praised by the B2C businesses making efforts on OMO. Those added values can be the factor that does not increase system-deployment workloads for physical store staff, the factor of easiness to measure effectiveness of system operations and utilizations, and the factor of sales performance data, generated by contents such as social-media posts by sales staff, can be utilized and evaluated to improve sales staff motivation, etc.

Therefore, those systems required are to meet multiple demands such as improving work efficiency and solving issues, while supporting the generation of customer experiences from the customers’ standpoints which are inevitable for realizing OMO approaches. Generation of customer experiences from the customers’ standpoint does not indicate the improved convenience on the service providers' side but on the customers' side such as finding out the information on product stocks via physical store app, or back ordering the product at a physical store through customers’ telephone.  

Research Outline

1.Research Period: July to October 2023
2.Research Object: Businesses that provide B2C services, mainly retailers, service providers, system vendors that provide OMO-related products
3.Research Methogology: Mailed or emailed questionnaire, face-to-face interviews by our expert researchers, collection of and analysis from literature research and publicized information, etc.

Online-Merge-Offline (OMO) Approach

OMO, or online-merge-offline, is a marketing approach that consolidates the strength of both online and offline and provides seamless services between online and offline by eliminating the barriers between the two, thereby to improve customer shopping experiences.

<Products and Services in the Market>

Systems and services equipped both with online and offline advantages employed for B2C business aiming at increase consumer convenience.

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