How Retailers Can Best Engage Consumers This Holiday Season
According to eMarketer, online retail holiday sales will increase 15 percent this holiday season, seeing a rise from $53.7 billion in 2012 to $61.8 billion in 2013. With statistics like this, it's easy to understand the immense pressure that retailers feel to drive increased revenues during this time of year. However, building and getting more marketing campaigns out the door isn't the answer. Instead, marketers need to take a customer-centric approach to their holiday strategy, leveraging the data they have about their customers to individualize the customer journey.
Here are three strategies to keep in mind in preparation for this holiday season:
1. Recent eMarketer research predicts that mobile commerce will rise to $41.7 billion this year. Consumers are expecting their mobile interactions to be even better than last year. Make sure that your email campaigns render flawlessly on any device by implementing responsive or scalable designs on all of your emails.
Using SMS to reinforce email messages is another effective way of executing mobile outreach, delivering your message directly to consumers’ mobile devices with a specific call to action. Because these forms of outreach are becoming extremely saturated, the consumer needs either a personalized or unique message to grab their attention. Stand out from your competition by using real-time content across all channels, whether it's an email with a shipping countdown clock, a text message with real-time pricing and locations, or a display ad with real-time social updates.
2. There's still time to create an integrated and individualized online and in-store experience for shoppers. Consumers expect to receive messages that are dedicated to them wherever they are — in-store or online. Driving consumers into the store is still one of the best ways to boost sales. Leveraging personalized email and SMS messages to deliver coupons and loyalty cards that can be used both in-store and online is a great way to get started. While consumers are in-store, try creating a digital relationship with them by using in-store signage that leads them to your company's website or mobile app. QR codes can also be used to help shoppers find more sizes and styles on your website, or drive them to your social channels to continue online engagement.