It’s a hugely exciting time to be in Shopper Marketing.
This fast-growing industry is constantly evolving with a steady flow of innovation.
So, when Shopify released their latest report on the ‘Future of Retail in New Zealand’ we thought it was a great time to pause, reflect and plan for the future.
Wherever you might currently sit on this shopper learning curve, we hope our thoughts help to spike your brand’s growth like a Bitcoin bull run.
Let’s get rolling.
The omnichannel retail revolution is evolving. Fast.
In the good ol’ days, marketers had only a few sales channels to choose from. Now, as digital continues to bring forth new opportunities an understanding of the richer palette of possibilities is required.
Shopify’s report highlighted a growing demand for greater flexibility by shoppers. This was evident with over half (57%) of consumers expecting greater purchasing options (like local click-and-collect and the ability to make in-person returns for all online purchases).
Our main takeaway?
There’s no excuse not to adopt an omnichannel approach according to Shopify’s Julian Bartram at this year’s Digital Day Out held by the Marketing Association (MA).
If there’s something we could add, it would be to not to leave your strategy to siloed teams in creative marketing, media, sales operations. Keep all parties looped in throughout the process. If you keep in mind all available channels during the design process, it’ll result in wider acceptance and more actionable briefs.
Use social media as not only a supportive friend, but your store’s conjoined twin.
It’s no secret your brand’s social media should be curated with your shopper in mind. But does your social strategy allow for easier conversions?
As new features evolve brands need to view social through a more sophisticated lens to stay ahead of the pack. During the heat of the 2020 pandemic, our friends at ‘The Florist’ took charge of this opportunity, quickly upgrading their digital presence to meet the needs of their Auckland-based shoppers.
By transforming their social media channels into a virtual store experience by using social shopping features, and cultivating a consistent experience across all channels, the brand attracted new customers into their sales funnel.
This omni-first transition made it easier for The Florist to deliver on their objectives, while keeping community engagement high under the lockdown restrictions. As a result it remains as one of their dominant traffic sources.
The bottom line:
As one of the fastest evolving industries, you’ll need to get serious about which retail channels will work best for your business in 2022.
By converting one of your most powerful marketing channels (social media) into a sales channel, you’re making it more accessible for customers to browse, admire, shop and share your updates within the platform they’re most active in. If you’re looking to get into eCommerce or to level up your store here’s a bit more on how a similar approach could boost your efforts.
Creating a consistent look and linking up your channels is only part of the equation. Measuring their effectiveness is critical for on-going success, with strategic monitoring being non-negotiable
It all boils down to effective campaign planning.
Digital campaigns – from nurture sequences to funnel management – are an essential marketing tool these days.
A case in point? KBB and Rockshop’s Music Month 2021.
To celebrate one of the biggest events in 2021’s music calendar the legendary Kiwi brands stormed the local industry with killer multi-media campaigns.
From smart collaborations to community incentives, through a full-blown omnichannel experience, both KBB and Rockshop attracted record customer traffic across the board.
How, you ask?
They delivered a second-to-none experience that caught the attention of both aspiring and successful New Zealand musicians with a collective desire to ‘level-up’ their music abilities, all while unifying them under a great cause.
KBB even provided one of their grand pianos in Glengarry’s Victoria Park store to share two great sources of inspiration: music and wine.
Experiment with emerging retail models.
Another way online merchants are upping their omnichannel shopper game is through brand activations and store pop-ups.
According to the report, opportunities for product interaction was key in helping shoppers feel more confident with their purchases (63%), along with feeding their desire for human connection (56%).
This model offers merchants a low-risk foray into the physical sale arena, without the commitment to a long-term physical space and offer a more intermit shopper experience.
Take Musashi’s ‘Beat Your Best’ Campaign for example.
While most competing brands talk a big game through red-blooded advertising and man-sized products, Musashi decided to ‘walk the walk’ instead.
The challenge was designed to give young male athletes an exciting, branded experience while trialing Musashi’s products – all while in the prime mindset and environment.
And the results spoke for themselves.
The campaign gave Musashi a massive lift in grocery sales and social media engagement.
Finally, define your channels and optimise where possible.
Now you’ve had a good think about potential sales channels, it’s important to consider how it plays into delivering the greatest return on investment.
Here are our top five focus points for sales funnel optimisation (that are commonly overlooked):
- Set up sales reports and analyse your customer’s shopping habits to find patterns.
- Reduce friction by testing each step of your sales funnel as if you are the customer.
- Optimise your landing pages for all types of browsing (including mobile).
- Research how they use both your online and physical store and update to suit their behaviour.
- Relook your retargeting marketing strategies (consider the effectiveness of your marketing automation and consider abandoned cart emails and loyalty programmes as your first port of call).
The crux of it all?
The future of retail will be defined by adaptability, innovation, and extending your shopper’s journey one step further.
Active social media following online? Upgrade your social media to be a sales channel.
Confident your online shoppers would appreciate a physical experience? Consider hosting an activation or pop-up store.
Whatever you decide – don’t ponder, don’t wonder, both are a waste of time. If you are finding yourself doing just that, we might just have the trick.