E-commerce adapts marketing strategies to recession

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It should come as no surprise that online retailers, buffeted by the recession, are changing their marketing strategies to include more e-mail outreach and social networking in order to acquire and retain customers, according to a study out today by Shop.org and Forrester Research Inc.



E-mail, largely to retain customers, is a high priority for the year, say 88% of retailers, while 71% say they expect to send segmented e-mails based on stated customer preferences or purchasing data.



Online retailers say they also will use e-mails to highlight new product availability (55%), extend invitations to join in surveys or to solicit customer feedback (55%), or to feature online-only promotions (53%), according to the 12th annual State of Retailing Online study, which measured 117 online retailers.



With print catalogs continuing to decrease and brick-and-mortar retail sales remaining soft, many retailers have turned to online to boost their sales. A story in the current DMNews looks at how teen focused brand Vans is building on its earlier social media efforts to now directly incorporate e-commerce and social networking capabilities.

More than half of respondents (54%) say they expect overall retail growth to slow over the next year but despite that, four out of five retailers think the Web remains better suited to withstand the recession, according to the study.

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