Spiking holiday sales means more socializing for retailers, reveals study

Retailers Sephora and Amazon are leaders when it comes to social media engagement and are examples retailers need to follow given the expected holiday sales boost this year.

"As retail brands seek to garner attention from consumers during the holiday rush, it is crucial for them to engage, listen and respond to customers on social media. In fact, Twitter found that customers are willing to spend up to 20 percent more with a brand if that brand responds to their social media activities," states an announcement regarding Lithium Technologies' State of Social Engagement study that assessed retail brand activity across social platforms.

Overall, the study notes the retail industry did well in consumer engagement, offering product information, providing content and promotional linking.

But retailers would be wise to strive for even better results given the National Retail Federation expects holiday sales to hit $656 billion this year.

Findings from the study include (for infographic click here):

  • Amazon and Sephora were at the top of the rankings with the highest engagement on online communities, strong visual storytelling, appropriate use of each social channel and content integration across channels
  • Target performed well in co-creating content with influencers.
  • All eight brands surveyed leveraged Instagram for visual storytelling, with The North Face and Sephora doing so most successfully.
  • The majority of the eight retail brands surveyed focused their content on converting, persuading and support. Sephora and Target both had the most “convert” content – defined as linking to a microsite where the consumer can make a purchase or learn where to buy.

"With the holiday rush right around the corner, it’s a crucial time for retail brands to ramp up their social strategy," said Katy Keim, CMO of Lithium Technologies. "The results of our study show that the brands responding to customers quickly and creating personalized experiences on social to guide their purchases do well in boosting customer satisfaction, loyalty and ultimately, sales."

Topics: Consumer Behavior, Marketing, Social Media

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