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Developing an Omnichannel Consumer Decision Journey Strategy

[Insights That Work - Case Study] SKIM developed a dual level omnichannel strategy for their client to grow e-commerce and strengthen retailer partnerships.


A pet food company wanted to develop and implement an omnichannel strategy. The client’s internal teams – including e-commerce, brick-and-mortar, brand, and marketing were struggling to develop a cohesive strategy to guide each function/channel. The client team needed foundational consumer decision journey research to better understand the shopping journeys for individual channels and the interactions among the channels.


SKIM recommended a three-pronged strategy using our Habitual Journey Framework, multi-faceted research design and customized socialization and insights activation workshops. This strategy would help the client team navigate through multiple channels of consumer decision journeys to develop strategy and use a structured alignment and socialization framework for cross-functional stakeholder interaction and insights activation. The strategy described:

Apply an industry-specific Journey Framework. The most important decision for any consumer decision journey research is choosing the right framework rather than any specific research methodology. SKIM applied and customized our Habitual Journey Framework for the pet food industry. This framework allowed the client to differentiate distinctive touchpoints and content needs in a routine and habitual journey from a switching (disrupted) journey.

Develop an integrated Research Design. SKIM’s research design included research audit and trend analysis, workshops, observational deep-learning, quantitative research and digital behavioral data integration. This multi-faceted design allowed the core client team to develop granular insights that are specific for each product category, channel, key retailers and strategic consumer segments.

Create a collaborative Insights Socialization and Activation plan. Getting journey insights right is critical but insights are only the tip of the iceberg to achieve tangible business impact. An effective activation requires a collaborative mindset and careful planning to navigate internal silos and convert insights into actions. SKIM worked closely with the core client team to embed a highly collaborative socialization and activation process.

Internal & external alignment. Making insights actionable and accepted starts with explicit up-front alignment with account teams, shopper marketing, category management, eCommerce teams and external retail partners. Pre-research workshops and stakeholder interviews were conducted. We built in multiple alignment points throughout.

Socialization and synthesis. Journey research takes time. To keep stakeholders engaged, and create ongoing alignment with the core cross-functional team, SKIM designed a number of interim workshops to deliver insights by stage. Foundational journey research comes with a large amount of data. An effective delivery requires stakeholder-specific synthesis.

Interactive dashboard with data visualization. Internal teams will inevitably have ongoing needs to slice and dice the data in new ways. To free up the core team from creating custom reports for these requests, SKIM provided an interactive dashboard to enable an efficient way to continuously leverage this research.

Customer-centric and category-level focus. To equip account and shopper marketing teams with insights to engage key customers (retailers), SKIM customized retailer-specific reports and focused on the category level insights with retailers’ needs in mind to facilitate manufacturer-retailer collaboration.


SKIM provided the client teams with insights to develop omnichannel strategies at two levels. First, we recommended specific actions on how to cohesively optimize presence in all channels while growing e-commerce. Second, we developed retailer stories to inform retail-specific strategies to strengthen partnerships.

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