How to Understand Your Holiday Shoppers

October 22, 2014

By: Kelly Schmalz Evans,
Author Title: 
Marketing Manager
, Springbot

Join Springbot, Tenzing and Digital Operative for “The Devil is in the Data” tomorrow, Thursday, October 23, to learn how you can use your store’s data to improve performance and increase revenue, without burdening your team for the holidays.

The majority of online stores have some sense of “who” their customers are, but for most, it’s still a guessing game when it comes to understanding the “who,” “what” and “when,” of their customer’s data in real-time. While there is a lot of available data out there, knowing what and how to analyze it with the ability to extract actionable insights is difficult.

The best place to start is to use your store’s data to put yourself into the mindset of your customers at every step of the buying cycle. This will help you to understand who is visiting and buying from your store, what marketing campaigns attributed to traffic and conversions, and when your customers are visiting your site and making purchases. With this understanding, you can approach your customers in the most personalized and efficient way possible—just in time for the biggest shopping season of the year.

What the Data Can Tell You:

1.Who You Are Marketing To?
Remember, during the holidays you might be selling to a different type of customer and they might want something very different from you than your traditional customers. Understanding who your customers are and being able to segment them into groups during the holiday season is a smart way to increase site traffic, average order value and overall revenue. As we approach the holiday season ask yourself the following questions:

  • Who are my store’s holiday shoppers?

  • Who is making purchases last minute?

  • What segment of my customer base is abandoning products and what products are they abandoning?

For example, a Springbot customer, who sells men’s and women’s clothing and accessories online, customized their overall marketing campaigns throughout the year to mostly target men as they made up 63 percent of their customers. After doing a deeper analysis to discover who their holiday shoppers were, they realized that women became their strongest buying demographic at 66 percent. Armed with this knowledge, they changed up their email strategy for the holidays to create content and feature products that resonated with their female audience – including highlighting men’s products as gifts. The results were impressive with a 31 percent increase in 2013 revenue compared to 2012 and a 43 percent increase in average order value.

Start simple by understanding the demographics of your customers, purchase and product data and creating segments based on this data. If you do not already have a tool in place to capture demographic data, you can collect this data through customer surveys, tracking tools or online resources such as FreeDemographicSnapshot.com for a quick overview.

2.What Worked and What Fell Short?
Of course you know how well your store performed during last year’s holiday. There are some great insights to be mined from your detailed holiday performance year over year. Go beyond the standard stats like average order value, number of newly acquired customers, customer buying behavior during the holidays and what marketing channels (and specific campaigns) contributed to that success. Look deeper at:

  • The buying habits of males versus females

  • The number of purchases by age category

  • What drove improvements in average order value

  • Your most effective abandoned cart offers

  • Your most successful gifting recommendations

  • Your free shipping offers and promotions

Using this data, you can go into this holiday season armed with valuable insights into who your holiday shoppers are, what products they are buying and what marketing channels drove site traffic and revenue in years past.

3. When To Start Marketing?
Yesterday. All kidding aside, it’s all about timing when it comes to generating holiday sales and retailers are stretching holiday campaigns to start earlier and end later. Now offers of “buy now, pay later” deals start in October and run through last minute shipping deals in December. Use your store’s data to zero in on when your key selling dates are and plan marketing campaigns around those dates.

For many stores, Cyber Monday, the Black Friday of Internet sales, is the key selling date of the season. Last year, online retailers noticed an average increase in Cyber Monday revenue of 21 percent compared to 2012. 

How will your store fair this year? Everyday can’t be Cyber Monday, but having the right tools in place to help you tap customer insights to drive success during the holidays.  

About Kelly Schmalz Evans
As an expert in email and social marketing strategies with a background in eCommerce, Kelly brings more than seven years of experience in cross-channel and automated marketing campaigns for fortune 500 clients and innovative retail brands. As Springbot’s Marketing Manager, she generates eCommerce marketing focused content, including customer success stories, industry related press releases, white papers and contributes to multiple industry blogs, including Springbot’s eCommerce Marketing Blog.

About Springbot
Springbot delivers an eCommerce marketing platform to small and medium businesses (SMBs). Founded in 2012, Springbot is a Gold Industry Partner of Magento, an eBay company, and has combined the power of marketing automation and marketing analytics to deliver its Marketing Robotics™ service. Their SaaS offering integrates and makes simple the data, content and multi-channel marketing tools (social, online, email, etc.) eCommerce SMBs need to drive more traffic, conversions and overall revenue. Springbot helps eCommerce SMBs grow their revenue by taking smarter, data-driven marketing actions. For more information, visit www.springbot.com. You can also check out FreeDemographicSnapshot.com to get a sample report of your store’s demographic data.