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Moments of truth: Holiday sales advice from Adobe and Adyen

From Black Friday to Cyber Monday, Singles Day to Christmas holidays, how should retailers prepare for peak season shopping? Adobe’s Regional Head of Growth and Adyen’s VP of Product unpack the trends and checkout optimizations integral to success.

September 7, 2022
 ·  5 minutes
Moments of truth: Holiday sales advice from Adobe and Adyen

Peak season is without a doubt a key moment of truth for retailers around the world. From operational efficiency and checkout optimization to customer service and loyalty, it simultaneously exposes businesses' strengths and weaknesses in the space of a few thrilling, chaotic, intense weeks. So how should retailers prepare?

Nicholas Kontopoulos, Regional Head of Growth Marketing atAdobe and Martine de Visscher, VP of Product Mid-Market at Adyen give their insights into the latest ecommerce trends, post-pandemic customer expectations, and the often underestimated link between payments and revenue optimization.

The era of personalized, channel-less shopping

Consumer habits and attitudes are changing in ways many retailers weren’t expecting. According to Adobe’s Digital Trends 2022 report, half of retailers report existing customers are now demonstrating surprising new buying behaviors, from the amount purchased to new product interests.

Loyalty is fragile. Convenience reigns. Retailers are discovering whole swathes of customers previously unknown to them as locked-down shoppers move online at record-breaking rates.

But what’s really changed is the death of the channel.

“Having an omnichannel strategy is becoming critical as consumer demand shifts," says Nicholas. "Customers no longer follow a linear customer journey, with linear touch points, but operate dynamically in how they go about discovering solutions to a problem they are looking to solve.”

It’s important to consider the cumulative experience you are offering customers across multiple touchpoints and channels over time to support a more dynamic customer journey. If the experience isn’t seamless, personalized, and consistent, it’s all too easy to switch to a competitor with a tap of a finger.

“Retailers need to prepare for anything and everything, both online and offline,” says Nicholas. “If your stores are unable to open, your online channels must be ready to accept increased sales season volumes.”

“From a consistent and speedy checkout experience for customers to shopper authentication and fraud prevention, the state of your payments setup can be incredibly influential during sales season.”

Martine de VisscherVP of Product Mid-Market, Adyen

Staying agile during sales season: the overlooked role of payments

Payments play a key role in businesses’ ability to adapt and scale, especially during the mad rush of sales season.

“Being able to offer frictionless shopping experiences such as Buy Online, Pick Up In Store or endless aisles will be necessary to provide convenience to the consumers that are entering this holiday period with a different mindset,” says Martine.

Just as a single channel approach won’t suffice, trying to apply the same strategy to a range of different markets will leave your customers jumping ship - or cart. Don’t make the mistake of using identical campaigns across different markets, especially post-pandemic. The type of social activity, attitudes, and interests can vary wildly between regions.

Take APAC as an example: thetop commerce goal for executives in Asia is enabling digital customer acquisition (35%), compared to Australia and New Zealand, where personalization is the focus (33%). 

“Keep up with social shopping trends in each individual market,” says Nicholas. “This will allow you to create targeted messages, amplify your campaigns and boost holiday sales. By using deep conversational insights, you can ensure your next holiday campaigns resonate with your audience.”

This is another area where payments can help, says Martine. When done right, your payments setup has the potential to unlock a wealth of data insights, with which you can power an even stronger customer experience.

Thanks to the capabilities of Adobe Commerce and Adyen, French luxury brandZadig&Voltairehas accelerated its international expansion through strengthening its ecommerce capabilities and localizing payment methods to suit target markets, from SOFORT in Germany, to WeChat Pay in China.

With a two-step checkout system, Zadig&Voltaire was also able to decrease cart abandonment and thusincrease its conversion rate by 72%on mobile.

"What often gets overlooked are things like payments, things like shipping," says Nicholas, "and these areas are absolutely critical in terms of the customer experience."

“As a customer, maybe you're not consciously thinking ‘This is an amazing payment gateway,’ but the role payments plays is really critical. It all comes back to those key moments of truth for the customer and understanding what those are.”

Nicholas KontopoulosRegional Head of Growth Marketing, Adobe

Powering your customer journey with consolidated insights

“Ensure the systems that power your commerce channels are integrated, so your company has visibility across multiple channels, over the entire consumer shopping journey,” says Nicholas.

Having all your sales channels - online, in app, and in store - connected through aunified payments platformunlocks a range of benefits. Martine highlights two in particular:

“Unifying your payments across all channels creates a more seamless, consistent customer experience - think saved payments preferences and card authentication. But it also gives you a wealth of data insights and a holistic view of your customers’ behaviors and preferences,” she says.

You can leverage this data to inform your holiday sales preparation, from optimizing online promotions and loyalty programs to improving personalization and adapting to suit new markets.

With consolidated payments data, Zadig&Voltaire benefit from a 360° view of their customers. This allows the retailer to unify and personalize its customer journey, offer services such as buy online, return in store, and easily launch products at the same time across every channel.

Of course, any captured data must be protected, secure, andPCI compliant, which is where strategic partnerships can play a key role in your business.

“Security of information when making payments is absolutely critical to customers and businesses alike,” says Nicholas. “Which is why having such great partners like Adyen in our ecosystem is such a critical component of our own go-to-market, and how we engage our customers.”

“It’s really important to make sure that the people you're partnering with, who form part of your customer experience ecosystem, are really considered in terms of the role that they're going to play.”

When the unexpected brings new possibility

A new playing field means new opportunities. And what better time to capitalize on those opportunities than the holiday sales season? It’s a chance to consolidate what you’ve learned, refine your strategy, and hit it out of the proverbial retail park.

This is your moment of truth: now is the time to prepare and optimize. To help you get started, Nicholas and Martine have provided an additional checkout optimization checklist to download, share, and implement:

Optimizing holiday sales: Your 6-point checklist

Give your customers the most stable, personalized experience possible this sales season.

Download now

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