The Lighter Side of Holiday Promotions [Cartoon]

October 28, 2013 Jen Burns

A shopper receives an offer online and arrives at the store to fulfill it, only to find that the physical store no longer exists. That is every retailer’s nightmare. Retailers must be sure that promotions are effective both in store and online, and that one isn’t cannibalizing the other.

Many retailers start by creating a consistent platform—a website or an app that is device-agnostic and is designed for use by everything from laptops to smartphones. That gives shoppers the ability to toggle between their preferred devices, improves the customer experience, and in some instances, can reduce online costs for retailers. The next step is to use a mobile analytics solution.

According to Forrester Research, only 46% of retailers use mobile analytics to understand and assess this channel’s revenue and profitability. If you are doing 10% or more of your e-commerce via mobile or if your mobile channel is growing fast, now is the time to deploy an analytics solution to help you understand profitability across channels. Retailers who take these steps now are likely to avoid misadventures such as this one.

That “marketoon” pokes fun at folks who are blissfully unaware of how much work needs to happen behind the scenes to pull off a successful online holiday season campaign. Sure, some people understand that there are inventory and ordering issues, as well as huge crowds during the holidays, but most, like the e-commerce executive pictured, underestimate just how much work goes into delivering a seamless holiday campaign.

In our 2013 Holiday Predictions Survey, we asked retailers to tell us about the significant investments they made throughout 2013 in preparation for the holiday. The biggest were SEO/SEM, e-commerce platform upgrades, and enhancements in mobile, which includes everything from apps to mobile payments. All those investments require time, budget, human capital, integration with existing systems, and training. It’s certainly takes more than a week to create a successful holiday campaign!

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