Black Friday 2021 will fall on the 26th of November, with businesses around the globe looking to welcome visitors back to their stores with all-time low prices for desired goods and services.
Due to the global pandemic, Black Friday 2020 was more or less exclusively online, which meant many customers were unable to go out and hunt for bargains themselves. Data insights from the November 2020 US market, show that in-store foot traffic on Black Friday fell by 52.1% compared with the previous year. Respectively, online spending only grew by 21.6% over the same period.
By comparing the loss vs gain statistics it’s clear to see consumers enjoy being able to purchase items there and then.
The first challenge. How will businesses keep customers safe in-store?
This year for Black Friday, businesses will be able to see customers in-store once again, which is great! However, no consumer will have forgotten that not so long ago, visiting a physical store or any other public venue came with the potential risk of contracting the virus. Not only to their own health but also to their friends and family post-visit.
So, despite the eagerness of wanting to visit physical stores again, global consumers will feel the need to balance their FOMO & bargain hunting, against the potential risk of visiting a busy physical store and mixing with large crowds.
Ensuring a safe environment for everyone without compromising the in-store experience is easier said than done. But by tracking some key metrics, businesses can transform the visitor experience and safety offering.
The second challenge. Businesses don’t know who their offline customers are, and can’t engage with them.
One benefit that Black Friday 2020 brought when the vast majority of spending was online, was that businesses were able to collect vast amounts of data and insights around customers. While businesses will be eager to see the return of customers to physical stores on Black Friday and across the holiday season, they will have no way to engage with or understand their customers’ behavior in a way that they can do online.
What are the issues businesses are facing?
- In the dark of who their customers are and can’t influence customers pre-purchase
- Are pre-covid customers the same target audience?
- Are customers coming from the same places?
- What are their interests?
By gaining insight on the issues faced in venue spaces, businesses can begin to make calculated decisions, backed by data, just like they would online (for example, an eCommerce site). Not only do businesses gain a new level of consumer insight, but they are also able to generate a new, self-sufficient, marketing channel.
There are several solutions available to ensure customers feel safe, and brands are satisfied during Black Friday and the holiday season. Each solution provides its own pools of useful insights to help businesses make more informed decisions.
WiFi solutions: Gain invaluable data on in-store customers, segment the data based on buyer personas, and market directly back to them!
Captive portal for data collection via a bespoke access journey
The first point of contact for in-store visitors when getting online is a fully customizable and branded access journey. This access journey is a businesses best opportunity to promote in-store products and services right when consumers are intent on making a purchase.
It also allows businesses to collect customer contact information and grow their CRM database.
Access journeys are also customizable from a demographic perspective meaning messages and images can be tailored to best fit specific customer segments. With the addition of WiFi analytics venues will be able to create detailed customer profiles and begin to understand how they behave in-store.
WiFi Analytics to understand target audiences, as well as in-store and purchasing behavior
After collecting all of the valuable information directly from customers, what are businesses supposed to do with it? The first-hand data collected is highly valuable to businesses that are looking to build customer profiles, grow loyalty schemes, or boost return visits. These insights together are the key for businesses to better understand who their target audiences are.
Aligning this data with point of sales and loyalty scheme insights such as product purchases and frequency of visits, businesses will unlock a new level of information that can be used to personalize and deliver timely communications with customers to encourage repeat purchases in-store. By using all of these factors together businesses can aim to increase the lifetime value of each customer.
Marketing automation with Logic Flow
Reviews, surveys, and promotions can increase engagement and depth of understanding for businesses. By using collected data to reach out directly to customers, businesses can gain a greater understanding of their customer’s interests and use constructive feedback to continually improve their venue experience. This experience can be further improved with timely and relevant messages to influence purchase decisions and make visitors aware of current promotions.
Purple’s system can integrate with leading CRM and Marketing automation tools meaning the entire process can be created to best suit business needs.
WiFi Advertisements and Revenue Sharing
Purple customers can advertise directly to their customers via the WiFi access journey through a variety of mediums such as still images, interstitial videos, and even promotions for mobile apps.
Additionally, for some Purple customers, the data they collect can be highly valuable for non-competing brands looking to create highly targeted marketing campaigns. By outsourcing advertising space to these brands, businesses can generate a new revenue stream at virtually no extra cost. AND WE DO ALL THE WORK!
Sensors solutions: Uncover in-store behaviors, optimize venue layouts, and increase visitor engagement
With many regions across the globe having removed restrictions around the movement of people and how businesses can operate, shopping safety is an element that could remain highly influential regarding consumer behavior.
Sensors provide businesses with an automated process that constantly updates a digital display for consumers internal and external of the venue, which allows them to make decisions on entry, based on their comfort levels.
Occupancy management: Keep staff and customers safe
Knowing how many visitors are inside a venue and keeping track of their movements is a near-impossible task without the assistance of technology. This can become increasingly difficult for large venues which contain multiple entry points, routes, and floors. Sensors provide businesses with an automated process that constantly updates a digital display for consumers internal and external of the venue, which allows them to make decisions on entry, based on their comfort levels.
Businesses can also display occupancy numbers within venues to encourage visitors to look at other areas of their venue to increase dwell time, and promote other product lines visitors may not be aware of
Additionally, occupancy management allows for pre-set figures to be determined in regard to venue size and capacity meaning management can be alerted as and when foot traffic increases and brings the number of people within the venue to near the maximum.
Location analytics: Venue insight to improve layouts, understand the flow of visitors, and reduce risks in high dwell areas
With customers already being informed of the current occupancy level within a venue, there is an additional step that can be taken by brands to ensure their in-store experience is also safe. Location analytics is a revolutionary tool for businesses to make insightful decisions about their venues, just as if they would if they were an eCommerce site.
Sensors enable a venue to understand how visitors are moving around such as the entrances and exits, most popular aisles and routes, and for many stores’ dwell time. For the retail space, in particular, dwell time (especially around points of sale) can be a highly influential factor for consumers.
For many customers, in-store assistance can play a vital role in levels of satisfaction. Businesses can optimize their staffing levels to the estimated number of customers. This knowledge can become vital to internal processes and cost savings for businesses.
During seasonal periods these insights become even more important as consumers with high intent know what they’re looking for.