October 17, 2018
How to stand out from the noise of holiday shopping

Every year, shoppers are bombarded by retailer holiday marketing emails, digital promotions and in-store exclusives. There are more options than ever before when it comes to shopping, either in-store or online. So retailers need to think about what will make them stand out in a way where Amazon can’t compete.

For the likes of REI, that means touting its annual #OptOutside campaign on Black Friday, which urges customers to get outside and enjoy nature instead of partaking in the shopping bonanza. This year, over 60 major retailers have confirmed they will close their doors on Thanksgiving Day — a day that mass merchants like Target, Walmart and Amazon can’t afford to cede.

Smaller and specialty retailers, however, have an opportunity to connect with shoppers’ needs on a deeper level, personalizing shopper experiences as well as items purchased as gifts. For online retailers, testing out physical holiday pop-ups is another way to test how customers are engaging with the brand at an especially busy time of year. Furniture brand Wayfair and CPG disruptorBrandless have both announced in recent weeks plans to roll out pop-up locations this fall.

Whether it’s a new store concept, store associates with holiday expertise or personalized recommendations, retailers this year should plan to do something that sets them a cut above the rest in the eyes of consumers.

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