Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Keeping Holiday Customers Coming Back For More

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The holidays are in full swing, with revenue up 6% from last year for the week beginning Black Friday (1). The average e-commerce business acquires almost a quarter of its new customers during the holiday season, and with new customers comes great responsibility…AKA the need for a solid retention net. Research from Bain has shown that increasing retention by 5% can increase profits by 125%. We expect that holiday shoppers are often worth less than non-holiday shoppers due to heavy promotions and gift-giving, and in fact research from RJ Metrics reveals that shoppers acquired during the holidays have a 13% lower lifetime value than the average customer.

What can we do to ensure holiday shoppers are not one and dones?

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Welcome Series Personalization, or Why Paul Rudd is a Long Way Off

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First impressions matter in any relationship. The first date. The first job interview. The first haircut at a salon. Marketers hope to leverage momentum from the first experience towards a second purchase. The one-to-two purchase conversion is the first step in what hopefully turns into a long-lasting, repeat-buying relationship.

The numbers back it up. Two-time buyers are 9 times more likely to repeat than first-time shoppers. Granted, there is some debate around this figure. How much of the 1x-to-2x conversion is ‘nature’ (acquiring great customers) vs ‘nurture’ (an effective welcome series). It’s nearly impossible to tell, but most marketers agree it’s a combination of both.

As a result, the welcome series has become a critical component to every retention marketing game plan. The welcome series — an aptly named (and relatively easy to set up) succession of automated emails that introduce a new customer to a brand— is a great start and a clear improvement to the alternative of doing nothing.

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Merch + Marky: Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now

Inspired by the conversations that often take place in “Monday recap” meetings, Custora’s CEO and Head of Product wrote a power ballad about using customer analytics to bridge the gap between marketing and merchandising teams. The final output: a music video featuring hand-sewn puppets. Merchandising, marketing, and customer analytics: an unexpected love story.