Black Friday and Cyber Monday came and went and consumers were led into a whole new shopping experience this holiday season. Over the last few months our retail clients have been focused on getting the right processes and tools in place to measure this year's holiday programs across multiple platforms. This is the start of convergence analytics coming of age. Big Data and dashboarding are merging into an array of offerings that answer the marketers’ need for a single view of multi-channel touch points. Marketers are now able to correlate trends from disparate data sources in a way never possible before. This holiday season you should expect to see digital campaigns composed of paid search, e-newsletter, social media, mobile, ect working alongside traditional marketing such as print, outdoor, radio, broadcast and so on.
A study from SAS UK, predicts that while shoppers will purchase just 1% more than they did last year, the high street is set to miss out. Instead of taking to Michigan Avenue for an annual shopping spree, consumers are predicted to instead look online and to their phones. Chris Webster, head of retail and technology at Capgemini, said: “Retailers need to gear up for the twin peaks of online sales in early December.”
Mobile access is also a must have, not a nice to have for retailers this holiday season, with close to 2 billion dollars set to be spent via mobile devices. Retailers who connect their online presence to their stores, with options such as click and collect, as well as those offering m-commerce options, with websites optimized for both smartphones and tablet computers are set to succeed.
Spend is up and volume is down so discounting is also expected to be a big part of retailers’ strategies this holiday. The combination of multichannel shopping and heavy discounting will increase competitive pressure. It’s absolutely crucial retailers have analytics technology in place to understand the increasingly complex customer behaviors to make the right decisions in real-time on product, price, promotion and placement.