The Adobe Digital Index has unveiled its predictions for this year’s online shopping season and looks like it’s going to be a winner for merchants. Not only does Adobe Systems predict this year will see the highest-ever online spending during the US holiday season, but Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday will break records.
Since we are entering the busiest shopping time of the year, consumers are getting ready by charging up their smartphones and tablets and looking for deals. So, how can merchants be prepared? By having an understanding of current shopping trends and consumer behaviour! For the 2013 Holiday Season, several trends will continue to evolve as we move forward in this fast paced mobile world. Here are 3 trends to watch for this season:
1. Use of “Touch” Commerce
The first trend we will see is Touch Commerce, whereby Tablets and Mobile devices will be used even more this holiday season to make purchases, price compare, and even do a little show-rooming. The user experience for online shopping is improving with each passing season and consumers are responding with higher conversion rates on mobile devices. Shoppers are going to want to buy products faster than ever before and mobile devices give that ease of access, as long as a merchant’s online store is optimized accordingly. If merchants are in the process of redesigning (or considering a redesign) their current site, a Responsive Design should be top of mind to take advantage and capitalize on the increased level of mobile traffic.
2. Location Based Commerce
Consumers love the convenience of shopping-on-the-go with their mobile phones and tablets, especially for location specific items and receiving locations specific deals. This holiday season we’re going to see merchants taking more advantage of this by focusing on Location Based Commerce. It’s going to be all about where customers shop, and how they utilize their phones during this busy shopping season. A great example are daily deal email campaigns, whereby customers receive emails via their mobile devices but need to shop in-store, helping to merge online and offline. Furthermore, consumers will also be taking advantage of their smartphones to compare prices, look up stock and even place products on-hold to picked up in-store.
Related: Online Shopping vs Offline Shopping
3. Online to Offline Integration
What’s the best way to make a customer’s overall shopping experience better? Through Online and Offline Integration! Merchants will be able to use virtual merchandising with tablets in-store and instant checkouts to make experiences better and faster. On the back-end there will be a lot more gathering of data, specifically, what types of products customers are purchasing, how and when. Merchants can then take this data a step further and ask themselves how can they better understand and therefore better serve their customers when they arrive in-store to pick up orders? Are there other opportunities to encourage customers to increase their spending, like using this data to possibly suggest additional (related) products to buy?
What other trends do you think we’ll see this holiday season? Leave your answers in the comments section below! Happy Holidays everybody!