With the holiday season round the corner, let’s look at some of the trends that shape this year’s holiday season.
97% of Black Friday shopping will take place online
With the threat of covid present in everyone’s daily lives, 97% of US shoppers will prefer to shop online and only 3% will go to retail stores compared to 8% in 2019. Also, mobile sales are expected to be much higher than 2019. By the end of 2018, smartphones were the primary devices that got the largest share in revenue generated in UK online retail. Mobile commerce is expected to overtake desktop/laptop ecommerce spending by 2023. According to Adobe, Americans are likely to spend $28.1 billion more using their smartphones compared to 2019. So, be sure to add your mobile shopping apps to the Android and Google Play Store ahead of the holidays and design/optimize your website for mobile phones. Focus on enabling push notifications along with interactive features, such as live video sales and real-time chat, making it easy for homebound customers and giving them a fully immersive shopping experience.
Importance of shipping
With such a high volume of online orders and supply chain delays due to covid, shipping will likely be a tremendous challenge this year. If you think, with the holiday rush, it will be difficult to offer next-day or two-day delivery to your customers, it’s good to be upfront and inform them. Implementing waitlists is another way to sustain customer interest in sold out items before they turn to competitors websites for similar products. Waitlists give shoppers an estimate of when the item will be back in stock. Also, frequently announcing holiday shipping deadlines will encourage shoppers to make their purchases ahead of the busiest shipping dates.
Importance of social media for sales and marketing
According to Salesforce, 10% of mobile orders will be through social channels (with peak days reaching between 12%-15% of mobile orders). With the importance of social media on the rise due to isolation caused by covid, we will see more businesses use Facebook or Instagram to reach out to shoppers. So, be sure to build an active social media presence, create engaging content, leverage the popularity of live video, and have quick response times. Doing so will lead to lasting customer loyalty and that’s what every ecommerce business owner wants.
Value-for-money becomes increasingly important
With the financial crisis brought on by lockdowns caused by covid, value-for-money has become important for many shoppers, driving them to seek out discounts and promotions. According to a recent study by Service Management Group, one third of respondents said “value for the money” was the “most important factor” when choosing where to shop this year. This, of course, involves a level of trust with your brand so be mindful of this and focus on what value you offer - highlight your value in your seasonal sales and promotions.