3 Marketing Essentials for Apparel Retailers in 2014

Retail eCommerce is growing by leaps and bounds. We're in a new era of eCommerce, where online retailers are growing faster than their brick and mortar counterparts. In this age, where apparel & accessories sites, according to eMarketer, are increasing sales revenue by 17% year over year and are projected to be a $64.6 industry in 2014, it is more crucial than ever for apparel retailers to take advantage of the following 3 marketing essentials.

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1. Dress (your marketing program) for the weather.

That's right, weather influences consumer purchase behavior. The sooner that apparel retailers recognize this fact, the more readily they'll be able to take advantage of the hottest (pun intended) new technology to the digital equation. Using advanced weather analytics, retailers can look at their past retail data, aligned with localized weather throughout the US and Canada, and understand how purchase behavior and product trends fluctuate based on weather conditions and temperature ranges.

Dressing your marketing program for the weather is key. Your site visitors and customer base is spread over every possible condition. The difference between 10 degree, 40 degree, and 65 degree winter temperatures present a pristine opportunity for better targeting. Come summer, if apparel retailers are only targeting the heat wave, they are missing out on opportunities to create a more relevant experience for all of their site visitors and customers living in areas where it is cooler, or raining.

Weather influences online behavior in both very direct and subtle ways. Through advanced analytics, email triggers, dynamic site content, and more, apparel retailers can leverage weather to better target customers with the right product at the right time.

Looking this good, weather's not just essential, it's in style for the long haul.

2. Personalization never felt so good.

Do you get that warm and fuzzy feeling when you open up an email that shows you the item that you've just been fiending to purchase? We do. In fact, the more personalized experience that an apparel retailer can offer their customers, the happier and more satisfied they will be (not to mention how happy the sales increase will be for the VP of Marketing). Savvy email triggers and automated triggers based off of site activity will help apparel retailers drive a better user experience in 2014.

Didn't your mom ever tell you that being personable was essential? With retail, it definitely is.

3. Justin Timberlake's Hit New Single, "I'm bringing Loyalty Back"

Those that conquer and reward loyalty properly in 2014, will be singing Justin Timberlake all the way to the bank. Whether segmenting customers to develop a VIP group, rewarding top email engagers with special promotions, or providing exclusive content to loyal social followers, loyalty has never been as essential as it is right now.

With so many retail fish in the sea, customers need to feel connected to your brand and feel like your brand truly cares about them. While looking for more than a one night stand with your customer, consider points programs, loyalty clubs with "real" benefits, and making sure that your brand is as personal as possible. If your brand is honest and treats your customers how you'd like to be treated (or better), with a few tweaks, your brand will be the talk of the town.

And, isn't that what's really essential?

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