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The holidays present a prime window to engage with consumers delivered to you on a silver platter. The trends for the holiday season are overflowing with shoppers bee-lining to the mobile platform to search for the perfect gift, compare prices and complete purchases. And with the number of mobile devices in the world at just over 7.9 billion, surpassing the current world population, new mobile gadgets are demanding the attention of their eager users in the app store at an unprecedented rate.

This Holiday’s Trends

Holiday trends are in, and they show that shoppers will continue to use smartphones this holiday season. With a focus transitioned from traditional foot traffic to the multi-platform approach, numbers show there isn’t time to skip a beat from one platform to another.

  • Digital sales are expected to increase, and consumers are moving towards smaller devices to carry out their online shopping, with mobile shopping up almost 25%.
  • Similar to shoppers, gamers cause massive spikes in downloads, traffic, and in-app purchases over the holidays. Last year they triggered a 106% increase in non-organic installs during the two weeks leading up to Christmas Day
  • 7 in 10 shoppers are undecided on gifts and browse around using their mobile phone
  • More than three-quarters of smartphone shoppers who generally go to the same physical stores are ready and open to new retailers and brands online during the holidays.
  • Videos showcasing gift ideas are leading the trends with 68% of smartphone shoppers turning to YouTube for ideas about what to buy.
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Source: Google/Euromonitor International, “Retail Micro-Moments,” U.S., apparel, consumer electronics, home & Garden mobile shoppers, n=500 for each category, Jun. 2016.

How Consumer’s Navigate Holiday Shopping

Your mobile presence is no longer enough to keep up with the modern consumer, nor are app installs enough to generate new customers. Today’s consumers are far from compliant with settling for the first thing they see. With an overwhelming marketplace flooded with innumerable options, beware that shoppers are shopping around:

  • Gen Z, who now represent the largest U.S. demographic, are heavy mobile users and they’re looking to buy tangible gifts more than experiences.
  • Shoppers are relying on product reviews: Last holiday, reading reviews was one of the top three actions shoppers took while shopping on mobile.
  • When shoppers do buy online, they are looking for free shipping; it was the promotion that shoppers most used last holiday season, more than coupons or discounts.
  • During holiday shopping, digital is only part of the process. 82% of smartphone users turn to their phones while in a store.
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How Your Mobile Platform Is Essential In Capturing and Maintaining The Attention of The Holiday Consumer

Holiday shoppers are mobile this year with 64% of smartphone shoppers turning to mobile search for ideas about what to buy before heading into stores. Without committing to a product, or even a gift idea, consumers are already face to face with your brand when they turn to their smartphone this holiday season.

Strengthen the connection to your brand with holiday shoppers with these 5 steps:

  1. Use data from reputable resources and in-house analytics to storyboard how your brand will be best presented, and relevant, to the largest amount of consumers.
  2. Make your presence known in the app store for all smartphone users with a unique icon and video accompaniment.
  3. Use seasonal themes to grab consumer’s attention. Tweaking your theme for the appropriate holiday can get consumers in the door. Continue to update your themes in real time to stay relevant with the trends.
  4. Holiday competition calls for holiday measures. This is the time to up your game in the expense department and drive traffic your way, and away from your competitors.
  5. Christmas week is the peak. But that doesn’t mean a valley will follow. Ramp up for high traffic Christmas week, followed by a strong effort to keep consumers on your platform well into the New Year.

And while some consumers will abandon apps they saw fit to download and use only during the holiday season, 91% of them would also consider using it again if it met their needs. This means that the holiday craze is the best time to gather information about your users to analyze and turn out a better app for your customers to use for the long haul.

The Mobile Platform is The Essential Link From Holiday Trends Directly To Your Brand

Whether your consumer is a bargain extraordinaire, power shopper or gaming fanatic, the holidays are a crucial time to connect with them. There’s never a bad time to polish your touchpoints and strengthen your customer service. But the holidays are a unique and crucial period when you can’t afford not to. Guide your decisions remembering that every interaction with your brand should be seamless, and an opportunity to build a relationship far past the holiday experience.

Published December 20, 2016
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