Monday, 28 November 2011

A Small Town in the UK Talks Multi Channel

A report this morning on the BBC News ( captured here on ) gave a small snap shot of how this year’s Christmas shopping even in Newark, will be multi channel. The report highlights how one estimate puts the number of orders per minute today in the UK at 3,300 with over 25% of all sales this Christmas going on line (Centre for Retail Research), and a fair chunk of that being via Mobile.

In fact, Chris Simpson, chief marketing officer at Kelkoo , said: “Online spending is showing no signs of abating, and is mounting a real challenge to the dominance of the high street which, for third year running, is expected to see a decline. Internet sales across the UK are set to be more important than ever, with consumers spending record amounts online, and online commerce acting as the primary driving force for overall retail growth during the festive season.”

Some of those interviewed in the BBC piece talk about the convenience experience of shopping at how, especially during bad weather, or for those with more pressing duties e.g.: looking after small children. Part of this convenience of course is about being given relevant messages, through email and on the website. Hopefully reflecting the consumer’s demographic profile, as well as their transactional and behavioural profiles. Indeed, as John Lewis is now showing these messages can be given as shoppers walk past the store with their clever use of QR codes

Experience goes all the way though the buying process

But that’s only the beginning. Experience goes all the way though the buying process. Gerry McGovern, one of the great speakers at Fusion this year talks about the importance of Ease of Use in this blog post.

And of course he is spot on. We spend so much advertising money on the message and content that we sometimes forget about the consumer and who they really are. Normal people with children in the room who want feeding, entertaining, nappies changing! These are real Tasks we have to contend with.

Gerry talks about Content. Well we as marketers in this Social World always want to view Content as amazingly tailored emails, entertaining videos that everyone will want to share, photos of our products for us to post.

I would argue that content that makes consumers easier is just as important.

- The Ratings and Reviews content on our website that consumer decision making easier and more confident

- The content of the confirmation email telling consumers that they have bought something and it’s on its way

- The text content from the delivery company confirming that the delivery will take place between 9.34am and 10.34am ( he actually turned up at 9.55am)

And that delivery slot information is important, because as the BBC report highlights, some people actually want to go out into the real world to enjoy the atmosphere of Christmas shopping, and see the products themselves ( as discussed by the CEO of Dixons ) If I know the delivery is taking place at that time, that means time for lunch and some afternoon shopping out in the cold where I’ll probably use my mobile to shop even more!

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