Back-to-School 2014: The Biggest Trends and Tips for Retailers
3. Social sells and mobile connects. The mobile shopping revolution continues with BTS consumers … but there's a twist. The survey showed that smartphones and tablets are used "all the time or frequently" to research products, brands and pricing promotions. Smartphones are the connector and continue to grow as a purchasing channel, with 34 percent of respondents claiming they would buy more on smartphones this year than last. As an extension of the store experience, retailers must ensure that these critical features are easily deployed and accessed on smartphones and tablets.
4. Influencing across the spectrum. Regardless of channel, there were clear winners in the influence department. Email promotions and paper catalogs get a lot of attention — almost 40 percent of all shoppers across channels. However, Amazon.com topped the list, influencing 50 percent of online shoppers and 36 percent of in-store shoppers. Therefore, if you've been afraid of Amazon's shadow in the BTS season, be confident that social, mobile and local strategies will carry the day, especially when complemented with your own effective merchandising and outbound campaigns.
Marti Tedesco is the senior director of corporate marketing at Baynote, a provider of software solutions for retailers.