Consumer Confidence Over the Holidays
With Thanksgiving and Christmas fast approaching, ecommerce websites should be focusing their resources into maintaining consumer confidence. This is primarily due to delivery and quality scores negatively affecting consumer sentiment over this time, as more people turn to the internet for their holiday shopping.
The National Retail Federation reported that 46.1% of holiday shopping was done online in 2015, a percentage that has steadily increased over the past decade. The federation also reported that over 90% of both men and women shoppers ordered with the “free shipping” option.
At first glance these numbers may seem unsurprising, and also welcoming for ecommerce websites, although with the increased traffic and orders over this period it can be hard to keep up with customer demand and guaranteed arrival time.
Authentic consumer confidence and ingrained brand recognition is an uphill battle for most ecommerce sites. The hardest thing about consumer confidence is that it’s fickle. It can take years to develop, yet overnight you could be back to square one.
Minimising factors that could negatively affect consumer confidence is crucial for the holiday period. These factors include quality, delivery and service.
Every great brand starts with a quality product. Ensuring that the product/s sold over the holiday period are up to standard, should be top priority for any ecommerce site. Maintaining quality is not exclusive to the manufacturing and distributing sites either. As an online retailer, it’s up to the ecommerce site to maintain quality while the product/s are in transit and also the accurate predictability of delivery.
In 2014, Voxware released research highlighting how late or inaccurate deliveries impact a consumers’ future decision to shop with a retailer online. The results showed 69% of shoppers are much less or less likely to shop with an ecommerce store for future purchases if an item is not delivered within two days of the date promised.
Heading into the holiday season, retailers should analyze their consumer sentiment and assess the customer relationship management (CRM) systems they already have in place. Having a clear reading of consumer sentiment before this time will allow sites to analyze sentiment during and after this period. Having a solid CRM system will ensure service and accuracy of delivery promises, as well as manage relationships if something does go awry.
Let’s hope it’s a happy holidays, for online retailers and consumers alike!