Recently, retailmenot.com has published a report showing retailers when and where promotions matter. You can use their findings to empower your promotion strategy and fit offered deals to the expectations of modern consumers. What’s at stake? The report shows that discounts and promotions are crucial factors for driving customer loyalty and influencing decision making.
Find your customers before their find your competition
Today’s savings-savvy shoppers have moved the fight for their attention to the point of offering coupons and promotions. And here is a space for your creativity. Amongst omnipresent competition chasing one another in offering discounts, you need to make your potential buyers sure that there is no point in searching for other deals. According to the report, the awareness that somewhere there may be a better deal than the one a customer is about to use, frustrates most consumers.
Channels that really convert promotions into customers
In the report, consumers were asked about the places where they look for discounts or special offers when shopping online. Let’s take a look at the winners amongst digital channels.
You can see that people who already know your brand are very likely to search emails and your website/app while looking for a deal. On the other hand, many savings-savvy consumers like to compare different offers using organic search or savings websites. Keeping that in mind, look at the actions worth considering to boost the conversion of your promotions.
Actions to take:
- Put short expiration dates on promo codes to cut down the time customers have for searching for other deals.
- Schedule multi-level campaigns that interact with a customer at every stage of the decision-making process
- Make sure that promotion banners on your website and blog are permanently visible while users are walking through your funnel or exploring your resources.
- You can use pop-ups and live chat to inform your visitors about active promotions or offer a welcome discount. Whatever you choose to do, be sure your promotions are impossible to overlook while viewing your websites/apps.
- Run recurring email campaigns to inform your opt-ins about scheduled promotions and available discounts regularly.
- Place unique codes or gift cards inside emails and distribute them to your opt-ins in response to taken actions. You can reward loyalty, celebrate birthdays, or simply invite them to make another purchase.
- Emphasize promotional messages with words like ‘exclusive’, ‘only 5% get these codes’, etc. Let your promotions create a feeling of luxury.
- Ensure your emails have a professional design and visible CTA. People buy with their eyes, keep that in mind.
- Don’t disregard SEO; the landing page and a blog with content [link] which is valuable for your customers can grant you a higher rank in the organic search.
- Generate some coupon campaigns dedicated for savings websites. Give them a batch of unique codes and keep an eye on how each website converts your coupons.
- Categorize your promotions to get a clear overview of the channels’ performance. You can use coupon prefix, UTMs, categories, or other techniques offered by your promotion engine.
The key to making good use of these data is tracking. Firstly, you need to figure out how to label your promotions to be clear about the source of each and every promo code redemption.
Ultimately, not every channel, even highly rated, must be a cash cow for your business. These data only show which directions give the biggest chance of success.
New personalization concept: Ask, don’t track
Despite the GDPR and the overwhelming fight for online privacy, customers still want individual journeys and pitilessly turn their back on retailers who misunderstand or disregard personalization. Moreover, the results show also that despite the fact that the whole market seems to target an extremely personalized customer service, most retailers still disappoint their audience.
If your concept of personal approach is simply based on order history and offering related products, you probably fail your customers. According to the report, customers find such “personalization” as invasive. At this point, you need something more, something that gives you a complete picture of your buyers without extending “invasive tracking”.
The report sheds more light on how modern consumers see the concept of providing personalized offers from retailers. It looks like most of them are willing to share data that helps to deliver individualized service instead of exposing themselves to online tracking of their behaviour.
Actions to take:
- Give voice to your customers, let them rate products and leave reviews. Making space for individual preferences of your visitors drives positive shopping experience.
- Use emails to ask about customer preferences and the content they would like to receive from you. To make it scalable, you can use dedicated surveys with checkboxes next to the topics/services about which you can send updates and news.
- Each time your customer interacts with your brand, let them know how they can rate your service or reach out to you with questions.
- Even if you don’t have dedicated infrastructure for loyalty campaigns, keep in touch with the customers who buy regularly. Their opinion is the most valuable feedback you can get. Moreover, keeping your opt-ins satisfied is a way easier and cost-effective than fighting for new customers.
- Offer coupons and gift cards in exchange for reviews and sharing data by your customers. Such actions let them know that you take care of solid relationships with them what instills loyalty in the long run.
- Always mention how you’re going to use the acquired information!
Report summary: Key findings to empower your promotions
- Revamp your funnel keeping in mind that promotions are vital at every stage. Discounts and coupons are no longer a luxury; they're the omnipresent expectation.
- Label your promotions to get a clear overview of the channels that perform well. Focus your growth tactic on the most profitable one instead of spreading your brand too thin with too many channels to look after.
- Engage your customers in acquiring data. Data is what makes your marketing relevant and ability to track and gather information without harming customer experience is one of the biggest challenges retailers need to handle. The fact that customers want to share their preferences can be low-hanging fruit, changing invasive tracking into a kindly questioning.
- Make the most of your promotion machine. Use coupons, discounts, and gift cards. Mix promotion types and schedule them ahead. Versatile campaigns awake excitement, help to exceed expectations, and give customers a reason to always come back while looking for new deals.
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The article based on the report Turbocharging Strategic Promotions: When And Where Deals Matter by A Forrester Consulting Thought Leadership Paper Commissioned By RetailMeNot October 2018. Read the entire report here.