Experian – Analyst Urges Retailers To Be Ready For December 23: Sales

Be ready for December 23 email blitz, retailers warned

By Michelle Hammond
Monday, 05 November 2012

December 23 will be the biggest day of December for retailers receiving traffic from their email campaigns, according to an Experian analyst, who has outlined some key Christmas findings.


Tim Lovitt, a marketing and research analyst for Experian Hitwise, has identified key trends and consumer insights to help retailers maximise their Christmas and New Year sales.


“We know and you know that a lot of these campaigns can take months to prepare technically, let alone from a creative perspective,” Lovitt says.


“So if these aren’t ready now, you really will be missing out.”


Here are Lovitt’s key findings:


Be ready for December 23


December 23 (a Friday) will be the biggest day of December for retailers receiving online traffic driven from email campaigns, as multichannel retailers prepare their customers for the post-Christmas sales rush.


But overall, it may come as a surprise to learn retailers will record 70% higher revenue in November than December, with many people getting out of the online market by December 4.


Meanwhile, more than 10% of consumers will use mobiles in store to check prices before purchasing. Many more will use mobile devices before this to review their gift-giving options.


Offer a guaranteed delivery date


In addition to free shipping, Lovitt says retailers need to offer their customers a guaranteed delivery date.


“We know that delivery services are stretched… Make sure you are confident that if someone is buying something, they will get it for the key periods that they’re after it for,” Lovitt says.


“I haven’t seen too many sites doing this yet, but I suggest it will be quite strong with the shift to online in general.”


Word your emails well


In line with 2011, the highest email open rates during Christmas are likely to be achieved with the combination of “Sale” and “Christmas/New Year”, according to Experian.


This will closely be followed by “% off” and “Christmas/New Year”. Conversion will be higher for those that mention an offer.


Consider gift idea campaigns


“Gift ideas… allow someone to express their interests or their area of interests, and effectively see products tailored to their needs,” Lovitt says.


“[Gift idea campaigns are] great for someone who doesn’t want to see the entire stock range from a particular provider.”


Avoid a blanket approach


According to Lovitt, it’s important to think about where consumers are at in their lifecycle.


Now, depending on your sector and depending on your product, this will mean different things to different people. But it’s worth noting that people do progress,” he says.


“Someone signs up with you at 19. They are not the same person at 25 and 30, and could well have different requirements.”

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