The National Retail Federation expects holiday retail sales in November and December to increase up to 4.2 percent over 2018. Total spending is expected to reach between $727.9 billion and $730.7 billion. That’s a lot of new customers, which opens a lot of opportunities to increase customer feedback to boost your reputation, increase sales, and set yourself up for success in 2020 and beyond.
Let’s look at a few ways you can use the busiest time of the year to keep sales strong next year and beyond!
TL;DR: rather watch than read? Join us, Ecwid, and 3M for our webinar on Wednesday, October 23 for tips to increase sales, get more reviews, and find ongoing success!
Put your customer data to work
There’s power in your customer data and shipping data. That information can be used to set up email automation that helps you increase customer feedback substantially. When over 90% of consumers say they read reviews before shopping online, your feedback management is paramount to your success.
One of the most powerful elements of your customer data and shipping data this information can be used to set up automated feedback request campaigns. Data points like who your customer is, what they ordered, and when it arrived can be coupled with your understanding of your product lifecycle to create feedback requests that arrive at just the right time.
For example, let’s say you sell vitamins and supplements. It’s not likely your customer is going to be able to provide substantial feedback the day after they receive their product. So sending an email a day after delivery has a pretty low likelihood to increase customer feedback on that product.
Use your delivery data to automate an email to arrive about a week or two after they’ve received the product, and you’re much more likely to receive feedback. Not only that, the feedback will be much more in-depth and valuable to other potential customers who will be reading reviews and making a purchase decision. You get more reviews and your customers get more value. Everyone wins!
Customers want you to speak to them as if you know them. They’re aware that you have plenty of data about their purchases, preferences, habits, and interests. Personalization is key to success in email marketing and the numbers back that up, but customers want you to go beyond a simple, “Hello, [firstname!]”.
Who are the customers most likely to provide the best feedback on your products? Repeat customers and those who’ve spent the most money with you. Segment that audience into its own list and use their order data to create hyper-personalized emails encouraging them to write you reviews wherever they shop with you.
Butter them up by letting them know how much you appreciate them, then ask them to help others who may also love your products. Make it clear and obvious what you want them to do, then make it easy to do it. Then watch that customer feedback roll in.
Think beyond just reviews
You may notice the email above gives a secondary option: social media. Brand reach is in continual decline as social networks strive to make the experience more about connecting with people. There are still opportunities to increase customer feedback by showing up on your customers’ own timelines, however.
Ask customers to share photos and videos
Unboxing videos were all the rage for a hot minute (Are they still? It was never something I got into.). The reason for that, however, is people love an unveiling of something fun and surprising. You may not be able to encourage your customer to perform a full-on unboxing unless your packaging is something exceptional.
You can encourage them to showcase your products and how they use them in social with photos and videos. Ask them to tag your brand pages and even use a hashtag you’ve created. This opens up the opportunity for user-generated content, or UGC for short. UGC, which also includes reviews, is generally anything that your customers create on their own and it is often highly trusted by their peers. A bonus to this is that you also get to see how customers use your products and can learn more about them to market to them better.
Get permission to share those across your social properties
Many people will be excited to have their content featured on your pages. Once you start receiving a substantial amount, you can turn this into a recurring promotion. Consider a customer of the week/month showcase. This could also encourage others to get in on the fun to be featured themselves.
Feature great customer content in email campaigns
The best part is that this can come full circle. Feature your customers’ content and reviews in email campaigns to showcase how much people love certain products you want to increase sales around. This can not only increase sales but also encourage other customers to share their opinions in hopes of getting featured. It’s another win-win scenario.
All of the above can be done in ShippingEasy. Our powerful shipping platform houses all your shipping and customer order data. Our Customer Marketing solution puts that data to work with high-converting email campaigns that are easy to set up and can run on autopilot.
These are just a couple of ways to increase customer feedback and they should work particularly well as the holiday season begins to ramp up. Want to learn more ways to increase your sales this holiday season and beyond? Attend our webinar at 1 pm CT on October 23. We’ve partnered with Ecwid and 3M to bring you actionable insights to make this your best holiday season yet!