Retail Social Media
Retail is changing in ways never imagined. It has always been a multi-channel business, with many ways to sell products through stores, catalogues, telemarketing and websites. Now add the dimensions of Facebook, Twitter, Groupon, mobile apps, and it becomes increasingly difficult for retailers to make strategic investments that correspond to the channel which returns best on each investment.
The Online-Offline Relationship
Consider what happens when a catalog drops and stores in the nearby market have an increase in sales. Even though the investment was largely made to drive sales through the catalog, there is a retail lift. In addition, merchandise presented on the web often serves as a pre-shopping list for consumers planning a day of shopping at the mall. Many times the web serves as a huge price comparison chart and the sale actually goes to a competitor.
Leveraging Social Data Integration
Retail is a business where geographic and time boundaries have been eliminated. With broad and “safe” return policies customers are happy to buy from unfamiliar sources. So how do retailers leverage social media to improve their awareness, their likeability, their sales? By listening, learning and engaging. Harnessing the wealth of consumer opinion, reactions, recommendations and preferences, then integrating them with existing forms of business data and metrics (CRM systems, web analytics, etc.) to understand and interact with consumers in far more productive ways.
Social media is every bit as dynamic as retail. It has the power to be a predictive indicator of what consumers want, need and might purchase, as well as an influence in what they feel is a reasonable price. Using Visible Intelligence®, our customers monitor and analyze social conversations to understand the “needs of the moment” to inform in-store merchandising and POS promotions. They engage customers in the channel of their choice, not having to bring the customer to a whole new channel and risk losing the opportunity.
Using social media to inform, influence, predict, sell and service ensures a far more effective retail outcome.
Want to Learn More?
To watch a Webinar about social media and retail integration, click here.
To see how Home Depot used social media to be more responsive and drive sales, click here.