Retailers' Guide to the Holidays

The Customer Buying Mindset: What to Expect this Holiday Season

by • November 16, 2017 • Small Business MarketingComments Off on The Customer Buying Mindset: What to Expect this Holiday Season1975

To have a knockout holiday season this year you’ll need to know how to get into your customer’s heads… and onto their smartphones. Deloitte reports that, “retailers stand a 75 percent chance of converting a desktop or laptop-using shopper to a purchaser this holiday season—and a 59 percent probability of converting a smartphone shopper to a customer.” Additionally, the National Retail Federation predicts that holiday sales are predicted to grow between 3.6 to 4 percent this season, which brings the holiday shopping average up to $967.13 per consumer. So yeah, it’s time to bust out all your retail tricks and capture consumer dollars this holiday shopping.

The first step to gearing up for a margin-busting holiday season is to make sure that customers are visiting your company’s website and social media – which ultimately helps to drive consumers into physical storefronts, as well. To help? Check out our quick-list of holiday hacks to reap your maximum market share in the holiday season ahead.

Holiday Hack #1: Spend a Few Extra Hours Creating Eye-Catching Visuals

They say a picture speaks a thousand words. In the case of today’s customers, a good photo can replace words entirely. NRF’s 2017 holiday research found that 89 percent of customers research a product online before ever viewing it in person, which means that your company’s product images can make or break your holiday sales. Ready to make your images worth looking at? Here’s how to get the best images on the cheap:

  • Think about how you can differentiate your product images from the competition while remaining product-focused. We’ve all seen enough irrelevant pictures and close-ups of models’ lips to last a lifetime… instead, aim to please and make your images ones that customers will want to engage with.
  • Since most smartphones already have the capacity to take incredible photos, you’ll just need to download a photo-editing app so that you can primp your pics to perfection. One to consider? Aviary.
  • Need a backdrop? Let your store become your studio! Sell online only? Consider using a classic photo-box to help create the best product images you can.

Holiday Hack #2: Use Product Photos as Clickbait for Your Website

Once you have a solid assortment of high-quality product and lifestyle photos, you can start using these images to rustle up customer interest for your website and social media. But before you start streaming your newfound photographic handiwork through Instagram, Snapchat, and Facebook, you’ll want to be sure those pics will look stellar on each unique social media platform. To help? Consider the below three tips.

  • Each social media platform looks best with a different size of image, so use Sprout Social’s image size guide to get down to the nitty-gritty with sizing specifics.
  • The savviest way to market to the next generation is to make them feel like they discovered the products themselves, so don’t overload them with advertising.
  • Instead of heaping on the advertising, focus on boosting social media engagement by streaming high-quality, unique product imagery — and then let the customers come to you.

Holiday Hack #3: Make Your Investment In Imagery Translate to Social Follows

Mobile shopping is no longer just a side note for retail traffic. In fact, 80 percent of Gen Z customers and 74 percent of Millennials told Retail Dive that their holiday purchases will be influenced by social media this year, so it’s important that your social media platforms look incredible on your customers’ smartphones and mobile devices. Here’s how to jumpstart engagement with your products on social media.

  • Get your stalk on. No, really… follow friends of your customers to introduce a new audience to your inventory.
  • Check out the hashtags that pertain to your company to find a whole bevy of potential clients that are already interested in your brand lifestyle. A couple of likes, shares and comments on potential customers’ pages can go a long way towards boosting engagement for your brand.
  • And finally, make sure your images are shoppable — each awesome product image should have a link to the place on your website where customers can buy your stuff online or direct them to the address of your physical store.

Finally, remember that the customer buying mindset this holiday season begins in the comfort of their homes and most often via their smartphones and mobile devices. Don’t let this fool you, though. There’s plenty of money to be made both in stores and online, particularly for those who are willing to put in a little extra effort boosting their images and social media profiles this holiday season. Make sure your photography is on-point and fully optimized for mobile engagement… and then start tracking down customers on social media so that the new big-spending holiday consumer can “just happen to stumble upon” your store. In return? You’ll be gifted with sales, sales, sales!

Take advantage of ASD Market Week’s 90+ free retail strategy sessions this March 11-14, 2018 in Las Vegas.

By Jasmine Glasheen,

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