Holiday 2019 is here. The old retail tradition of the Black Friday frenzy has been replaced by the new holiday tradition—in which the holiday season starts in September. The one-day spend is now spread out over four months. Once back-to-school is over, consumers are already counting down the days, and starting their holiday shopping. And retailers, well, you’ve been planning this since the end of 2018. Now that you’re in the thick of it, how’s your plan going? Do you have any regrets about opportunities missed, or brand envy?
The main trends we’re seeing with brands that are making an impact this holiday season are those brand and retailers focused on experiences. In Salesforce’s State of the Connected Customer Report 84% of customers say the experience a company provides is as important as its products and services.
For savvy online brands, they’re using holiday to create buzz-worthy experiences in the form of pop-up shops and special events. Cult beauty brand Glossier, which has a legion of online devotees, created a pop-up shop in key markets throughout the U.S., well before official holiday, with openings in October.
Beyond selling their best-selling makeup and skincare products, they partnered with local businesses and causes; It was more than just a pop-up, it was a fully immersive experience. For online-only retailers, pop-up stores and events are a way to explore entry into the built world. Allow customers who experience who you are and what you have for them—it’s a way for you to connect with your customers offline and in-person.
We partner with established and emerging brands to introduce their products in membership retailers like Sam’s Club and Costco. Right now, in the lead up to holiday, we’ve seen the number of special events quadruple compared to the first three quarters. These brands are tailoring the in-store opportunity to what makes sense for their brand—for those new to the market, it’s gaining new recognition; other are offering special pricing on new products; and still others are testing the in-store as a first step to their own brick-and-mortar.
These lessons learned from Holiday 2019 will help pave the way for retail success next year. What worked for you? And what’s on your radar for next year? Get in touch with us to help transform your retail experience into holiday magic.