It’s official – travel is back. After two years of lockdowns and travel bans, the world is opening up again. People are finally able to don their swimming costumes and shell-ebrate the good times!
Why is this relevant for your ecommerce store? Well, with holiday plans, comes holiday shopping. Whether it’s sunglasses, sandals or a new suitcase – most people see a holiday as the perfect time to refresh their wardrobe and treat themselves.
And this is even more likely to be the case this year, as consumers haven’t touched those holiday wardrobes in a good while. Shopping lists will be long, and that’s before you consider all the holiday essentials such as sun cream, after sun, travel shampoos, and so on and so forth…
But with every opportunity, there comes a challenge. In this case, there are three.
So, how can you tackle these challenges and make sure you’re fully ready to cash in on summer travel? Read on to find out.
Today, conscious consumerism continues to be hot on the agenda. 90% of millennials will buy from a brand if they believe their social and environmental claims. And they will absolutely boycott brands that are found guilty of “greenwashing”. This shift in behavior will apply to holiday shopping as well.
This gives you a great opportunity to attract new customers through emotional connections. You can stand out from all the other stores selling similar products to you by showing shoppers that you’re emotionally aligned with them, and by telling them the story of your brand values.
The most powerful thing you can do is give shoppers the chance to support the causes they care about, just by shopping with your brand. For example, dog food brands offering loyalty program members the chance to redeem points for charitable donations to dog shelters. When brands use their loyalty programs to reflect the values they claim to live by, it resonates with customers and helps to differentiate from competitors.
The best way to make sure that customers think of you first when they do their holiday shopping is to make them feel recognized as an individual. Your most valuable customers should be getting a first class experience, and if you’re not sure what that looks like then here are some ideas:
Foster long-term relationships by turning your holiday shoppers into a community of customers. If you do this effectively, your customers will return and engage with your brand over and over again – even when they’re not making a purchase.
One of our favourite examples of building a great customer community is Australian skincare brand, Esmi Skin Minerals. They have a similar tiered approach to Skinnydip, but the difference is that their top tier is actually locked – customers can’t see what benefits they’ll get until they reach the elusive black tier, and this just motivates them to try and get there.
Once shoppers become part of the final tier, they become even more of an insider, with the ability to contribute to product discussions and focus groups. This top tier then becomes its own customer community, where shoppers can interact with other customers who share the same interests and want to talk about similar products.
– Sha Foster-Ho, Head of Acquisition @ Esmi Skin Minerals
Another benefit of growing your customer community is that you’ll create more brand advocates. Their reviews and recommendations are the most powerful ammunition for convincing new shoppers to spend with you.
You could easily encourage referrals or reviews by incentivizing these actions with loyalty points to reward your advocates. And don’t be shy about asking your community members to interact with your brand on social media!
Incentivize their likes, shares and follows with points, and you’ll soon find that you’re expanding your reach organically. You could even try a holiday hashtag competition to start the conversation.
The return of summer travel is an amazing opportunity to build connections with new customers while delighting your existing ones. Make sure you give yourself the best chance of retaining your holiday shoppers once those post holiday blues start to sink in. Implement the tactics above, and dedicate some time to planning your approach before the holidays hit.
To learn more about how you can build valuable relationships with your customers, enroll in our (totally free) LoyaltyLion Academy.
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