It may seem like an untimely question but have you started planning Christmas yet? The festive period may feel like many moons away but the frenzy of Christmas shopping starts earlier and earlier each year. As a general guide we could say it kicks off as soon as the John Lewis ad hits our screens. Or as a sales barometer, if you like, when the weather gets colder.
So what we are saying is: don’t be caught unaware. Now is the time to plan well in advance to ensure the best return for your brand during what is by far the busiest time of the year.
The top three retail trends that will help you maximise seasonal sales
1. In-store experiences
In-store experience continues to influence shopping behaviour and spending. Shoppers want to see, try, and feel merchandise before making a purchase, yet they crave the excitement and convenience of using technology to experience products and shop in new ways.
If the shopper has a memorable experience in a store, they are likely to share it on social media, and have strong product recall. Wharton marketing professor David Bell agrees this is a key benefit of today’s in-store events. 20 years ago, if 100 people visited your store, maybe 10 of them would tell someone else about the experience. But today, when you have a physical footprint somewhere, 100 people come and maybe 20,000 learn about it because whatever goes on in there can be amplified through social media and digital.
Personalisation is another popular trend to utilise with shoppers searching for perfect products for their loved ones. Brands are using this to create stand out and form an emotional connection between the brand and customer. This positively impacts on the shopper’s purchasing decision. It gives them a great deal of satisfaction as they inject their own personality and knowledge of the recipient when choosing gifts from their favourite brands.
3. Social currency
Social currency – the sharing of information, experiences, opinions and purchases is a very important factor when it comes to influencing consumers’ retail decisions at Christmas. Shoppers want their brands to communicate a sense of who they are and love to discover and share engaging content about their brands and purchases. They also want their brands to help them form new social connections or relationships.
Knowing how to capitalise on these trends to achieve your objectives is what drives retail success. This is where HRG come in. As experts in retail marketing communications, HRG can help you plan and implement the best tactics and creative across your brand’s customer relationship marketing and in-store experiences. To learn more contact firstname.lastname@example.org