Though last year was one of the biggest holiday shopping seasons to date, it wasn’t quite as massive as some industry watchers predicted it would be, largely due to unforeseen impediments like winter storms and the dreaded Polar Vortex.
As a result of many shoppers being compelled to shop from home, there was a boom in eCommerce activity late in 2013, which left shipping companies overworked and having serious difficulty getting items delivered before the holidays.
In order to combat that issue this year (because, yes, the Polar Vortex is coming back for us), many retailers are considering new and innovative technologies in order to take their shopping experience to the next level. Consequently, ecommerce is expected to be even larger this year than it was in 2013, meaning there will be even more pressure on shipping firms.
You see, what countless retailers are expecting is for shoppers to visit their stores and buy their products… but not in store. Countless consumers only pull the trigger after leaving, shopping around, and returning home to make their final purchase selections via mobile.
The growth year-over-year in mobile commerce is expected to contribute to this ultra-convenient process, as more and more consumers are using their mobile devices for shopping. Many retailers are taking advantage of this tech evolution by using beacon technology to send push notifications or marketing materials right to the phones of individuals who are in or around their stores.
This beacon technology will get its first real round of use during the holiday season, merging the online and physical shopping experience. Yory Wurmser, of eMarkter says, “The key is to make the experience magical. You want the consumers to be surprised and delighted about the information they’re receiving, and not necessarily know that it’s from beacons.”
And the first major test of this tech-centric approach to retail marketing is now just days away — Black Friday 2014.