Driving customer loyalty and ensuring reliable sales.
With COVID-19 cases rising and surging across the country amid the holiday shopping season this year, retailers have returned to the reliable safety precautions that shoppers saw during the early days of the pandemic. Socially distanced long lines, purchasing limits, contactless payments, and curbside pickup have — for better or worse — become the norm. Consumer behavior has changed forever over the course of the pandemic, and brands must now change with them. But in the most elongated retail season ever, one key component is missing — personalized promotions.
Let’s back up for one second. How did it get his way? Let’s take a look at what Scott McCall, executive vice president and chief merchandising officer for Walmart, said in a press release about the impending Black Friday shopping holiday: “We’ve been very thoughtful as we planned this year’s event…By spreading deals out across multiple days and making our hottest deals available online, we expect the Black Friday experience in our stores will be safer and more manageable for both our customers and our associates.”
Ecommerce isn’t anything new, but to hang what is, regardless of the pandemic, the biggest shopping day of the year mostly online is a big deal. To navigate a fluid retail season, the biggest retailer in the country has tipped the balance of its large crowds vs. high demand contingency plans. By driving more options online, with expanded holiday sale events, and with safety measures in-store, Walmart has signaled its willingness to change. That’s because COVID-19 has irrevocably changed the conception of going shopping.
The share of all digital consumer purchases increased from 27 percent in March 2020 to a current tally of 42 percent, while the amount of consumers that prefer totally digital shopping journeys increased by 22 percent since the pandemic began. Before, people used ecommerce out of convenience to primarily supplement their in-store needs. Now, out of health precautions and more, the near majority of American consumers know what they want to buy before purchasing online instead of grabbing their car keys to venture into a brick-and-mortar location to browse.
Because consumers are starting and finishing their shopping journeys online, and prefer technological channels to augment and potentially replace traditional shopping in the face of the pandemic, retailers must adapt to these shifts with new offerings. While methods like contactless payments or even curbside pickup are nice-to-haves, the only must-have for retailers aching to make up for lost sales that they currently don’t use is personalized promotions.
By managing offers so each only goes to a targeted audience, retailers essentially drive their own customer loyalty to ensure reliable sales. Such strong omnichannel efforts lead to higher and more frequent sales because the current, digitally primed and multichannel shoppers spend 82 percent more per purchase than those that tend to shop in-store only.
The current COVID and post-COVID realities reveal that retailers need to offer continually cutting edge digital services that go beyond merely offering basic ecommerce pleasantries. Powerful digital features like targeted promotions empower shopping experiences for the customer out of convenience and safety, but also help retailers drive the one-two punch of loyalty and sales at this key shopping period.
Interested in learning more? We would love to help with your promotional marketing needs. Learn how RevTrax’s solutions can help your brand during this holiday season by speaking with a specialist today.