Sure, there are plenty of retail marketing trends out there that make you think, “these things come and go.” That’s the definition of a trend, right? Well, we don’t mean to rain on your parade, but that may not be so true anymore. We’ve identified 4 retail marketing trends that are not only here to stay, but are also exponentially gaining traction.
1. The Power of Mobile
Increases in the use of smartphones over the last few years has been undeniable, particularly among Generation Y, the largest group of consumers alongside Baby Boomers. With 85% of Gen Y using smartphones, mobile has become a driving force in retail marketing. According to a Nielsen study, consumers are now using apps and browsers for about 34 hours per week on average: a 10 hour increase since 2012.
This lends to the new-found power of retail marketing through social media apps like the implementation of “buy” buttons on both Facebook and Twitter, and platforms such as Like2Buy for Instagram.
We know social media can be a lot of work, so check out our most impactful social media tips for when you’re short on time.
2. The Seamless Omnichannel
The blurring of channels does not mean that consumers should be approached differently through each channel. The buying process should instead be able to move to and from, and even simultaneously among different channels. In a 2013 Nielsen report, it was found that Americans reported owning, on average, “four digital devices.”
Consumers are now using multiple touch points in their buying decisions, bouncing from mobile, to online, to in-store. Seamless transitions across devices and brick-and-mortar locations, paired with a mobile-first approach are imperative in successful retail marketing.
3. Leveraging Big Data
You’ve heard the words before: big data. But never fear, it’s not a far-off mystical creature only available to large corporations. That perception of big data is a thing of the past. Now, more than ever, big data and analytics have become an integral component of SMBs’ ability to get to know their customers and customize their shopping experiences. According to management consulting firm McKinsey, those who use big data and analytics can increase their operating margins by nearly 60%.
Using big data not only provides insight into consumer behavior, but can also shape future retail marketing endeavors and products. While large corporations have access to advanced tools to track behavior, Belly helps SMBs bridge that gap. At Belly, each of our merchants has access to the Web Command Center, which provides an in-depth view of not only customers, but also of the success of email marketing campaigns.
Take a closer look at what kind of data and analytics our Web Command Center has to offer.
4. Personalization and Localization
With big data comes the ability to personalize the shopping experience, the final key trend in retail marketing. The influx of information that comes from a consumer’s smartphone, tablet, along with the rise of iBeacon technology, gives way to a unique shopping experience, including localization of products. By understanding the consumer in that location and at that time, retailers can now infer what they are looking for and adjust their inventory accordingly.
Consumers are now looking for unique experiences in addition to the products they are purchasing. This is where endeavors such as customer loyalty become even more important. With platforms such as Belly, merchants are able to personalize their rewards in a way that coincides with their brand and gives their customers what they want.
For some ideas on how to create a unique customer experience, check out our recent article highlighting experiential rewards.
The landscape of retail marketing has changed vastly over the last few years, but the trends of mobile-first, the omnichannel, big data, and personalization have made a significant impact and will continue to drive purchasing behaviors. While there are plenty of other trends that will phase in and out, these 4 trends allow for the most impact.
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