Holiday shopping season is in full effect. For many retailers the sales garnered during the holidays make up a huge percentage of yearly revenues. Etail’s recent report “Holiday Retail Readiness” provides some interesting stats on trends, strategies, and technologies that companies are using to thrive during the holiday season. Digital, of course, is a major player, with mobile and email taking pertinent roles. Here are some of the more significant statistics from that report.
Seventy-nine percent of surveyed executives reported gains in site traffic in 2015. Just 11% say that they experienced a slowdown.
Seventeen percent of surveyed executives say that mastering SEO and SEM is the highest technology priority and biggest area of investment. That’s followed by website personalization (13%), in-store personalization (10%), and user experience testing and analytics (10%).
During the holidays, respondents say that abandoned carts have the biggest impact on customer conversions (55%), followed by unresponsive sites (43%), and Web content (38%).
Seventy-nine percent of surveyed execs say that they view mobile as a significant part of their holiday strategies.
Respondents say they discover new trends through the holiday season the most through Web analytics (69%), followed by customer-feedback forms (17%) and in-store data (14%).
Fifty-one percent of executives say that they anticipated mobile to increase sales by 20%—or more.
More than 50% of those surveyed say that they begin preparing for the online holiday shopping season in July, August, or September; that’s followed by April, May, June (33%), and January, February, and March (16%).
Executives in the survey say that their top concern during the holiday rush is providing a seamless customer experience (43%), avoiding a website outage (10%), and stopping security threats (2%). Forty-five percent say all three are a top concern.
Forty-two percent of executives say that managing the volume of customer inquiries during the holiday season is a major obstacle.
Fifty-four percent of execs say that live chat (54%), mobile messaging (20%), toll-free numbers (15%), and email (9%) are the top ways to offer the best customer experience.