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Overheard: January 2021 Retail Lunch & Learn

We are excited to introduce our “Overheard” blog series, where we’ll help you stay current on the latest news, trends and thoughts from industry peers by bringing you recaps from some of the world’s most engaging and innovative virtual events.

Last week, Loqate participated in a Retail Lunch & Learn roundtable. Co-hosted with our partner CommerceNext, this panel brought together 14 executives from some of the most innovative retailers in the US to discuss the ins, outs, ups, and downs of building a great digital customer journey.

What we learned:

  • Fast fulfillment is a 2021 focus. Everyone at the event had a tough time shipping last holiday season—most used FedEx and UPS. They are already looking at how they can optimize for holiday 2021 so they don’t run into the same issues. The overall sentiment was, “it’s not going to be much different; let’s solve it early.” 
  • Reward loyalty with personalized offers. Many retailers are testing personalized checkout options for customers that are loyal members. For example, loyalty member discounts, faster shipping/free shipping. 
  • Mobile vs. desktop checkout: there’s no clear winner. Attendees agreed that mobile checkout needs to be quick—and the mobile cart conversation rate is higher. However, with a desktop checkout, you can deliver more offers to your customers before they complete the checkout (i.e., up-selling). One attendee, for example, makes decisions by device--iOS is 50% of their traffic on mobile.  
  • Consumers are becoming less tolerant of failed delivery. Attendees were very interested in this stat from our 2020 Loqate Holiday Shopper Insights Report: 57% of consumers said they would avoid using a retailer again if they had a negative delivery experience.
  • Retailers are sticking with same-day shipping. During the holiday, many retailers used same-day delivery vendors like Shiptd or Instacart to serve demanding shoppers. Now that the holiday is over, they are continuing to partner with these vendors as there is still demand, but not as much.  
  • Buy now, pay later is a new fan favorite. This topic came up in the conversation organically—alternative payment service options are a current priority. Afterpay seems to be the US vendor of choice, and Klarna is the primary preference for international businesses. These pay-later services are driving incremental value, and many retailers have seen their average order value (AOV) double when customers use Afterpay.
  • No friction may be too little. How far do you go with removing friction? There are some people who don’t like Amazon’s one-click checkout, as the speed of the process can be an issue if they decide to use a different card, enter a different address, etc. What is the right balance on how frictionless the purchase journey should be? Most attendees agreed that you have to make small tweaks in the journey and measure lift gradually.

Special thanks to our virtual host, Scott Silverman! Stay tuned for more insights from our “Overheard” series.

Interested in learning more about Loqate? Contact us today.

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