How to Create Irresistible Retail Digital Experiences for the Holiday Season

Creating a digital retail experience your customers will love requires understanding their preferences and behaviors. Learn how first-party data can help you.

digital retail experience

With the days getting shorter and the weather trending colder, that can only mean one thing: the holiday shopping season is upon us! Retailers looking to beat the ever-growing competition need to provide consumers with a seamless, irresistible digital retail experience — especially as inflation concerns make shoppers even more fickle with their spending habits.

We already know that holiday spending is trending downward this year due to macroeconomic factors. Nearly 60% of consumers report they’ll be cutting back on non-food spending this holiday season. However, Adobe is still predicting a 2.5% increase in online sales this year to total just over $210B in revenue. 

Moreover, consumer excitement around holiday spending is rebounding for the first time since the pandemic. McKinsey reports that 55% of their survey respondents are eager to make the yuletide gay this holiday shopping season — up from just one-third of respondents last year. These figures represent a lucrative opportunity for savvy retailers to capitalize on. 

Rethinking your digital retail experience

Because competition is fierce and economic factors are impacting spending habits, retailers must rethink their shopping experience to avoid consumers’ naughty lists this holiday season. Specifically, retailers should be reevaluating their customer journey mapping and user experiences to drive personalization at scale while avoiding breaking the bank.

Since many retailers are shifting their business models toward e-commerce in order to meet customers where they’re spending their time and money, the focus should be on improving the digital retail experience this holiday season. That all starts by leveraging first-party data.

What is first-party data?

Personalized, comprehensive retail digital experiences that satisfy customers and keep them returning for more greatly depend on first-party data. Traditionally, retailers relied on third-party data to create customer and user experiences.

Third-party data is typically stitched together from various sources (public demographics, academic, governmental, etc.) and shared, bought, and sold in data marketplaces or exchanges. By design, this makes third-party data expensive and generally inaccurate. Rather, retailers should be cozying up to first-party data this holiday season.

First-party data is unified data that comes directly from your customers and is securely extracted from the content within your communications channels. These include but are not limited to emails, applications, website traffic, and social media.

The caveat with first-party data is that it can be challenging and time-consuming to access. That’s why most retailers view first-party data as lumps of coal rather than the veritable goldmine it can be when leveraged properly. However, tools such as third-party APIs are great for helping retailers access first-party data quickly. Integrating these APIs into sales solutions like a CRM can help retailers make sense of this data and unify it in one place.

Push your retail digital experience to the next level by reading our blog “3 Ways to Increase CRM Adoption and Build a Better User Experience

Leveraging first-party data to improve retail digital experiences

Utilizing first-party data is crucial for retailers looking to improve their customer experience. It offers a direct look into how customers are holistically interacting with your brand. This includes data around:

  • App usage
  • Website traffic
  • Past purchases and receipts
  • Customer support tickets
  • Purchasing behavior

Arming yourself with first-party data empowers retailers to better understand customer behavior and preferences, including what they’re purchasing and why they’re purchasing it. With this invaluable insight into the mindset of individual customers, retailers can:

  • Drive better, more personalized customer experiences that cater to your customers’ buying behaviors
  • Boost engagement and customer satisfaction levels with real-time order updates and delivery notifications
  • Optimize messaging and ad targeting with sales data while measuring its effectiveness in multiple touch points across your customer journey
  • Access calendars and harness modern scheduling capabilities to coordinate deliveries, support inquiries, curbside pickups, and more

By accessing and structuring first-party data, retailers can create frictionless, unified digital retail experiences that will make this holiday shopping season merry and bright for customers. And with solutions like an email API and calendar API, you’ll be able to avoid the complexities of leveraging first-party data to start creating experiences customers will flock to.

To learn more about transforming first-party data into valuable customer insights and winning digital retail experiences, pour yourself a warm cup of cocoa and explore our e-commerce solutions today.

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