We may still be in the early days of pumpkin spice season, but the holidays will be here before you know it. And the forecast is looking merry and bright for the holiday season.
Not only are experts predicting a boom in holiday retail sales, but shoppers are expected to hit stores sooner this fall. In fact, many people plan to start crossing items off their gift lists sometime in early November.
While this is good news for the retail industry, it’s also a call to action for eComm marketers. This begs the question: Are you prepared to make the most of the opportunities ahead? If you're not making the most of first-party data, then the answer is probably "no."
To that end, the magic of the holiday season comes down to these three tips for collecting customer data in order to optimize insights and inform your marketing efforts.
1. Post-Purchase Surveys
Customer feedback matters. Without a holiday season post-purchase survey in place, you are missing out on opportunities for positive feedback from your customers.
Unhappy customers are not only more likely to complain or return items, but they’re also more likely to leave feedback about where you fell short. While knowing that customers are unhappy — and why — is important, it’s only one piece of the puzzle.
Enter the post-purchase survey, which gives you access to the rest of the pieces. Together, they add up to a more holistic and actionable understanding of your customer's needs, expectations, and experiences.
According to PWC research, customers who have a great experience with your brand are not only more loyal, but they’re also willing to pay up to a 16 percent premium for your products and services. In addition to revealing areas of improvement, an effective post-purchase survey can help you see where you are wowing your customers…so you can continue to do so.
Another recipe for success here? You can also use post-purchase surveys to gain more specific insights into targeting offers and products to particular customers.
Floyd’s Cyber Monday Survey
Detroit-based Floyd, a direct-to-consumer (DTC) furniture brand, sent out a survey to gather more information about their customers’ thoughts on bean bag chairs (a few days before Cyber Monday). Customers who filled out the survey had a chance to win a $1,000 coupon.
2. Product Recommendation Quizzes
eCommerce is transactional by nature. In most cases, consumers click their way to sales without a single human interaction.
However, consumers don’t like feeling like nameless, faceless customers. On the contrary — they're increasingly demanding personalized shopping experiences. In fact, companies that use personalization well generate a staggering 40 percent more revenue from those activities than their competitors.
Product recommendation quizzes are your chance to give them the personalization they crave. The best product recommendation quizzes steward site visitors through the shopping experience and clear an obstacle-free path to purchase.
Another way to look at eCommerce quizzes? As automated and scalable personal shoppers. When they do their job well, consumers end up engaged and ready to buy a cart full of products that meet their exact needs.
Along the way, you’ll also be capturing valuable zero-party data. Now that’s what we call a sweet victory!
The Holiday Meal Planner
McCormick created a “Holiday Meal Planner” quiz that helped their customers navigate the hard question of how to prepare a holiday dinner. The quiz consisted of questions about party size, dietary preferences, number of courses, and kitchen equipment available. It provided not just product recommendations but an entire meal plan complete with recipes and quantities to purchase.
3. Pop-Up Forms
If you’re not using pop-up forms because you think they disrupt the consumer experience, think again. Research indicates that the highest-performing pop-up forms convert at an impressive 9.3 percent.
But even if your eCommerce site is already using pop-up forms to collect first-party data, chances are you’re not asking everything you could be asking — especially if you’re only requesting their names and email addresses.
Other potential fields include birthdays, products of interest, the reason for their visit to your site, how often they plan to purchase products from your brand, and email preferences. Going beyond the basics will help you whip up tailored segments that are more likely to lead to sales.
During the holidays, it’s important to create pop-ups that entice new customers to sign up with more than just an email and phone number.
Work with a Reputable eCommerce Agency
Third-party data is valuable, but its potential is amplified when combined with first-party data. Implementing these three strategies will position your eComm brand to obtain collective intelligence that will help you enhance your consumer list segmentation, refine your consumer targeting, and drive conversions.The early bird will get the worm — and the ROI — this holiday season. If you’re ready to leverage the full power of digital marketing to scale your eCommerce business and grow your brand, the digital marketing experts at CakeCommerce are ready to help.