Little over three months are left until the holiday season starts. And it’s going to be a season like no other. The effects rippling outwards from the pandemic and the uneven regional lockdown measures have had severe implications for retailers.
And the forecast for the shopping season is punctuated by greater support for smaller businesses, an elevation in consumer expectations from brands, and thinner wallets of consumers who are going to spend less.
According to the customer engagement platform Braze, 42% of shoppers expect to decrease their spending slightly or significantly. And this has major implications for retailers. And a turning point in brand strategy.
For brands and retailers to succeed throughout the holiday season and beyond, this strategy is best implemented on an ecommerce platform that has enough capability and functionality to deliver it, such as Salesforce Commerce Cloud. And these are the in-demand tactics to consider implementing.
Consumers consider a number of factors before making a purchase. And it’s no longer enough to just be a familiar brand. What has gained more weight for brand loyalty is for the brand to explain and promote its values to its customers.
To highlight this, Braze found that just 10% of consumers found that familiarity with a brand was important in making a decision when it came to purchasing online; but for 9 in 10 respondents, how a business reacted to the pandemic in terms of how it has treated employees and customers was an important factor.
Although this depends very much on which generation you are asking — and as an extension which generations that your company views as your target market — because the younger the generation the less likely they are to put an emphasis on a brand’s response to the pandemic.
Using Salesforce Commerce Cloud, brands will be able to continue this conversation as to how they are going to be dealing with the holiday season and be transparent regarding their customer and employee strategy.
Mobile, mobile, mobile
For the retail industry, the headline for the last five months has been the surge of ecommerce and the flatlining of in-store sales. The subheadline to the story has been the upswing in mobile ecommerce. There has been a rise of 62% in mobile acquisition of new users and ecommerce apps.
The latest version of SF Commerce Cloud, called Salesforce Reference Architecture (SFRA), was rearchitectured to be optimize mobile experiences. If mobile ecommerce is core to your business strategy, then SFCC comes strongly recommended.
Personalization is king
Among a seemingly faceless mass of online consumers, brands have been working hard to see the beauty — and value — in the individual. That’s because for the majority of consumers, they have come to expect tailor-made shopping experiences when they are browsing online.
Personalization — whether its based on a customer’s purchase history or in-session behavior — is going to be a priority heading into the shopping season, historically the busiest sales period of the year. And a platform like Salesforce Commerce Cloud has the capabilities to get personal with customers.
The pandemic has accelerated the shift towards ecommerce, and there’s a lot of disruption to customer behavior and spending patterns, which may involve a lot of items to juggle in order to pull off a successful holiday season. And by using these tactics you may be able to sustain your ecommerce into next year.
PS: UV is one of the world’s leading Demandware (now Salesforce Commerce Cloud) integrators. Contact us to see how we can work together.