Consumers didn't let the fact that there was one less week between Thanksgiving and Christmas this year stop them from filling their online shopping carts.
Shoppers made up for the truncated shopping season from Thanksgiving through Cyber Monday by pulling out their wallets in full force, something that must be taken into account when you review your business metrics. Retailers should see tremendous lift from now until Christmas, and the good news is that, so far, we are.
Smartphones and tablets have surged ahead as the shopping devices of choice for consumers, according to analysis of more than 150 leading ecommerce websites, comprising more than 165 million sessions. Here are some other highlights.
Smartphones and Tablets: Ecommerce Equals
We've seen big gains in key performance indicators for both smartphones and tablet devices. Let's break it out by metric to start to understand the performance:
Why are mobile phones and tablets the devices du jour?
Consumers are becoming more comfortable, whether shopping from their smartphone, which they are tethered to all day, or their tablet-their go-to device at home. Retailers have also become better at converting shoppers-and enhancing the website experience-on these devices, a win-win for both consumers and retailers.
Winning on Email
The one black eye on marketing statistics so far this holiday season is email.
Traffic and revenue from email are down considerably from last year, with traffic plummeting 37 percent and revenue sliding 21 percent. Just about every other channel is outperforming last year.
Email marketers will need to take a hard look at what they are doing and more importantly what they need to do to counteract this performance. Sending more of the same email isn't going to change this trend. The solution: Send relevant email.
The email that consumers opened led to higher conversions, 24 percent higher. That means those retailers that did a good job and got through the clutter were rewarded.
‘Tis the Social Media Season
For the past couple of holiday seasons, social media has been seen as a money pit when it comes to marketing. In fact, many have been writing the epitaph for social marketing for years. But so far this season, both traffic and revenue are up.
Social experiences are now at the forefront of mobile usage because of social's ability to deliver a better user experience. Only time will tell whether this trend is here to stay, but many are betting that it is.
Ready, Set, Shop
We've seen a very impressive start to the holiday shopping season, especially for digital, despite this shortened shopping season. That doesn't mean retailers should take their foot off the gas.
Instead, see what you can do to pivot your programs where possible. At the top of my recommendation list: Look closely at your mobile website experience on both mobile phones and tablets to see how you can increase efficacy and the overall experience. And don't underestimate the importance of email. Make sure you are sending smarter email for the remainder of the season.
Holiday 2013 is already in full swing so get out there and make the most of it!
Title image courtesy of Shutterstock
Meet Your Favorite ClickZ Contributors
Many of ClickZ's leading expert contributors will be at ClickZ Live, the new online and digital marketing event kicking off in New York (March 31-April 3). Hear from the likes of: Jeremy Hull, Lisa Raehsler, Andrew Goodman, Bryan Eisenberg, Mathew Sweezey, Aaron Kahlow, Stephanie Miller, Simms Jenkins, Jeanne S. Jennings, Dave Hendricks and more!
Nathan Richter advises top enterprise clients including Best Buy, QVC, Urban Outfitters, Sports Authority, and PETCO on website optimization. A veteran of digital marketing and online retailing, Richter has extensive hands-on experience helping enterprise clients implement successful multichannel marketing campaigns. Richter has directed online marketing and site optimization programs for David’s Bridal, QVC, The Franklin Mint, and dELiA's.
March 19, 2014