We’re on the cusp of the shopping season, with Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Singles Day kicking off the spending spree, and culminating in Christmas and Boxing Day.
However, this year’s different. In-store Black Friday stampedes are replaced with heavy online traffic, while brick and mortar stores are being replaced with click and mortar ecommerce sites.
From the outset the digital space appears cluttered, email inboxes filled with offers and discounts – but as a business you can still stand out and see your profits soar. All you need to do is provide a connected customer experience – that makes customers want to engage with you. Not just for the shopping season but beyond.
In this blog we’ll show you how:
Start with data
Your shopping season communication strategy must be data driven. Over the years, and through the lockdown you’ve collected lots of customer data. It’s time to connect that data in one place and examine their behavior and interests to create a rock-solid messaging strategy.
- Segment your customers based on their age, gender, average order value, purchase frequency, geography, and browsing history to serve offers targeted to their needs and desires
- Drill deep into your last year’s data, and know which products drove maximum sales
- Analyze your customers shopping behavior during lockdown to get the right products in front of them at the right time, and on the right channel
- Identify your most loyal customers and give them a special offer or preview before opening up to everyone else
Step up your communications
To cut through the noise, it is time to look at targeted communication campaigns. With price slashing being the norm of the season, it is personalization that will help you stand out. Know your customers, create tailor-made offers, build segmented campaigns, and be creative.
Make it personal
Once you have segmented your data, ensure the messages and deals sent across are personalized to your customers. A 50% blanket discount is lazy and impersonal. For example, if you’re an electronics brand, promote relevant high range products to high value customers, with contextual information like outdoor heaters for the winter – and address them by their first name to make it personal.
Run engagement campaigns
To engage your customers run targeted messaging campaigns across your digital channels. From welcoming new and existing customers to reminding them of an abandoned purchase ensure you have all your engagement campaigns setup.
- Send targeted Emails or messages via chat apps such as Viber to customers who have bought more than a certain number of times from a specific category for the past 6 months
- But don’t just rely on Emails and use different channels such as WhatsApp, Mobile App Messaging, Viber, SMS, RCS and Messenger. Due to COVID-19 and the shopping season your customers will get an influx of emails
- Offer incentives to increase the basket size – like a larger discount for a certain amount spent
- Notify customers about certain offers such as free shipping, next day delivery or click and collect options
- Remind customers about the return process and offer an extended return period
- Create referral bonusses for loyal customers
- Promote your messages across all touchpoints in a consistent manner
Setup your website and app
The shopping season means higher online volumes compared to normal days, which means your website and app must be ready to take on the traffic but also enhance the customer experience in a scalable manner.
- Invest in the right omnichannel customer engagement solution like Moments that will deliver advanced opportunities for connecting via digital channels. The solution should be able to build connected customer profiles and push automated campaigns at the right time across key channels.
- Provide a seamless checkout for all mobile and website users with a secure payment gateway
- Boost customer support by integrating intuitive chatbots through our chatbot building platform Answers, with a smooth transition to live agents for complex enquiries with Conversations. Remember, with a second wave looming there will be a lot more technology laggards shopping online
- Ramp up your omnichannel connectivity with triggered campaigns. Customers will window shop before they purchase, encourage them by making it easy for them to pick up where they left, or shifting from digital to live agent interactions. Set up automated workflows for email campaigns, and WhatsApp, SMS or push notification campaigns to maximize conversions.
- Add a get price alert for products before the actual sale for specific products and categories, to ensure automated notifications via chat apps, SMS or push
- Ensure geo-location flows to notify customers via in-app messages when they’re near a store
Prepare for delivery and returns
There is nothing more frustrating than a failed delivery or a complicated return process. The shopping season is the perfect time to attract new customers, but bad customer experience could lead this to be their last shop with you. It’s important to be a smooth operator for deliveries and returns.
- Improve efficiency and make the customer experience for both deliveries and returns less painful by ensuring 24/7 customer support at hand
- Use digital tracking to help customers determine whether their orders have been processed and when they can expect to receive products. Notify your customers at every step of the way for deliveries and returns
- For customers who choose to collect their orders, remind them of the process and use QR codes for a touchless in-store interaction
- Set automated reminders, to remind customers closer to the return date in case they wish to return the order, and avoid disappointment
Campaign to retain customers
Once the shopping season is over, your customer engagement doesn’t end there. It’s time to boost loyalty and retain new customers. Many customers during the shopping season are looking for the best deal, and are likely to enticed by discounts.
Build on this and incentivize new customers by:
- Incentivizing them to take specific actions. Like a 10% discount if they leave feedback
- A personalized message on an item they were interested in but out of stock
- A chance to have access to loyal customer privileges by making another purchase
With the right customer engagement and CX tools and strategies, businesses can overcome the challenges of this new post-lockdown world along with driving sales and acquiring new customers.
Kickstart your shopping season campaign today