Many companies spend months planning a successful strategy to efficiently prepare for the two-month shopping sprint every November and December. Mitto wanted to see how top-performing brands strategize during this time of year to provide the best customer experience while maximizing results. Partnering with Demand Metric, we surveyed over 600 marketers and customer support specialists from top-performing brands to gain valuable insights to help your business mitigate stress and find success this holiday season.
And the survey says? Customer support teams anticipate facing massive inquiries this holiday season, and savvy marketers are struggling to make their brands stand out from the competition. Companies need to take an innovative approach to their customer engagement and support strategies.
When analyzing the results of the report, it quickly became apparent that omnichannel communication tactics are essential. Brands implementing a complete and unified omnichannel strategy were three times more likely to report a significant increase in revenue growth over the past year and four times more likely to report significantly loyal customers. Why the increase? Improved flexibility leads to a better shopping experience and deeper brand loyalty.
Improved flexibility equates to deeper brand loyalty
Amidst all the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, it can be difficult for brands to create an amazing customer experience. An important area to focus on is flexibility. Meeting your customers where they are will ensure your brand stands out among a sea of competitors.
According to our findings, businesses implementing a mature omnichannel approach are nearly four times more likely to report unwavering customer loyalty. This loyalty is because omnichannel strategies enable shoppers to connect with brands via their preferred means of communication and on their time. And during the hectic holiday period, the need for flexibility is indispensable.
Flexible communication options don't just benefit consumers; they also help businesses. According to survey results, brands that embrace a mature omnichannel strategy report a 47% higher NPS score and an 8% higher average CSAT score.
Over 90% of participants in our study reported that they believe customer demands will increase or remain the same this holiday season. This demand for a fantastic shopping experience makes it crucial for companies to meet and even exceed customer expectations by optimizing for convenience.
For many consumers, convenience entails learning about a brand's products or services online, seeing inventory availability, receiving real-time feedback about their purchase and delivery status and being able to make a purchase through their preferred digital channel - social, chat or SMS.
Strong communication in uncertain times
Customers are so worried about supply chain shortages and delivery delays putting a damper on their holiday cheer that 51% of Americans started holiday shopping early. On top of that, a whopping 82% of Americans are nervous that supply chain issues will even ruin their life plans, including holiday celebrations.
Allowing shoppers to buy the products they know and love is essential. Brands should prioritize strategies that keep customers up-to-date on available inventory and delivery times, so they're always in the know. Communicating via social channels, SMS and chat apps will give customers the information they want and need in real-time. Not only does meeting your customers where they are ensure shoppers get their hands on the gifts they want, but as our survey found, it also strengthens brand loyalty and boosts customer satisfaction.
Alleviating massive support inquiries
Did Johnny hate that holiday sweater he got for Christmas? He'll probably return it, and he's not alone. Nearly half of millennials are planning to return their holiday gifts. This surge in returns also signifies a rise in customer support inquiries.
Customers want to learn about exchange and return policies right from their mobile devices and send their unwanted gifts back without ever having to go to a store. Our survey results show that brands with a robust omnichannel strategy in place are two times more likely to respond to customers in real-time, providing instant information and gratification.
The bottom line
Our survey results show that solid omnichannel strategies are crucial for success during an unprecedented holiday shopping season. With increasing customer demands and stress skyrocketing for customer service and marketing associates, brands must think outside of the box to offer consumers efficient communications and extraordinary experiences.
Omnichannel communications optimize convenience and flexibility, ease the stress on customer service and marketing teams, and ultimately increase customer satisfaction and brand loyalty. It's a win-win-win situation.
Contact us today to discover more about how Mitto's survey findings and services can benefit your brand this holiday season and beyond.