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Interactive Marketing Trends for Retailers

According to Furniture Today, retailers around the country are reporting a significant increase in foot traffic. However, as consumers continue to take their shopping experience online, retailers must adapt their marketing strategy to increase their market share across both retail opportunities.

Blending innovative technologies with an experienced in-store staff creates a hybrid brick-and-mortar buying journey like no other, which is the basis of interactive marketing. By generating an interactive experience that fits in the digital and physical space alike, retailers can best meet their consumers’ needs — no matter where they choose to shop.

To better understand the role of interactive marketing in today’s retail marketplace, let’s take a look at some current trends retailers are using to stay ahead.

What is interactive marketing?

Interactive marketing is an experiential marketing approach that uses advertisements, videos, social media, and other formats to generate a two-way relationship between a brand and their consumers.

This type of interactive marketing is now being used in a variety of new ways, with modern technology driving innovation for retailers across the sector.

What is dynamic product advertising?

Dynamic product advertising is an invaluable tool in the home furnishings industry. Dynamic product ads automatically promote your inventory to consumers who have expressed interest in your website or elsewhere on the internet. By using previous shopper interactions to personalize ads, these interactive advertisements create a personalized experience for shoppers even after they leave your site.

With Dynamic Product Ads, retailers can retarget visitors who have been to their websites but did not complete a purchase. Retailers can create personalized campaigns for website users, showing shoppers the products they previously viewed on the retailer’s website while they scroll through social media or other sites. These ads can also be used to highlight other related products that may better fit a consumer’s needs.

This ad personalization will generate higher consumer awareness and will also increase the chance of them returning to the website — converting them into a sale. The benefit of these dynamic product ads is that you minimize the number of lost conversions by continuing to appeal to a consumer’s initial interest, even after they leave the site.

Understanding dynamic retargeting

Dynamic retargeting creates unique and personal messaging for consumers, as retailers can create a personalized ad for each person with the furnishings products they’ve viewed on their website.

In most instances, this involves machine learning technology that analyzes individual behaviors to figure out which creative elements will entice an individual to return and make a purchase. This retail marketing trend tends to be the solution that gets the most attention. The ads remind customers of your products and increase the likelihood of a website visitor returning to your website to buy something.

Dynamic remarketing ads in Google

Google’s dynamic remarketing can track the merchandise your customers view, then generate ads to repeatedly show them those exact products or suggest similar products. Google Analytics can provide you with information that’ll help you choose your dynamic remarketing audiences.

To get started, link your AdWords account with your Google Merchant Account. This is necessary to provide a product feed. To link your account, follow these steps:

Create a feed for your dynamic display ads

Advertisers in a variety of industries can use dynamic ads to customize the message they want to put in front of users. Using dynamic feeds for products or services can be a great way to reconnect with consumers and showcase items or pages that are familiar to your previous visitors. By tailoring messaging directly to perceived customer needs, retailers can boost the experiential value of each ad and increase their chances of two-way interactions.

Using AR to enhance the shopping experience

Especially in the furniture world, shoppers want to know what products will look like in their current space. AR, or augmented reality, layers digital elements on top of real-world settings to provide a clear picture of what a product will look like once they bring it home. This interactive marketing tool allows consumers to visualize their surroundings in a new way and takes the guesswork out of product placement in their homes.

By removing the guesswork, augmented reality shopping has generated serious disruption in the way consumers interact with home furnishings.

Product visualization through augmented reality

Considering the high level of customization furniture retailers face in their sales process, AR can be a winning strategy for new customers by providing a “try before you buy” experience. Not only does AR provide an overall better experience for customers, but the stats show several improvements in sales performance as well.

According to “The Impact of Augmented Reality in Retail”:

AR navigation in-store

With the ongoing return of in-store shopping, retailers are looking to bring the interactive digital nature of AR into the brick-and-mortar experience. Utilizing custom design tools, consumers can accurately relay to the retailers exactly what they want, in the design they want.

Stores are becoming smarter, as retailers provide more immersive and personal shopping experiences to their customers through AR technology. In-store AR navigation uses mobile apps to navigate users within the brick-and-mortar establishment, taking the consumer on the best routes through the store. This two-pronged approach to AR also motivates the consumer to spend more time with the app and the brand, resulting in deeper customer engagement while gaining insights into customer data.

Interactive social commerce

One of the more popular interactive marketing trends in the industry is social commerce. This trend involves creating shoppable ads and posts on social media, which are slightly different from the ordinary posts from everyday users.

Right now, social commerce is available on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest. The immediate benefits of this marketing tactic include turning the shopping experience into an interactive journey for the consumer, building a retainable base, and leveraging the built-in metrics these three social platforms already provide.

Building social shops

The latest iteration of social commerce is to build a shop or set up links specifically designed to be used on your social media channel.

Consider the ‘Swipe Up’ option on Instagram Stories as an example — you see an ad/post you’re interested in, swipe up, and you can visit the seller’s website without leaving Instagram. Whether this be a dedicated Instagram shop or an in-app link to a brand’s mobile website, you can make the purchase, close the window, and go right back to where you left off. This method of selling allows the consumer to engage directly with your product listings without breaking the flow of their social media usage.

The effectiveness of this tactic is hard to deny. With 70% of consumers using Instagram to find their next purchase and 43% of consumers being more likely to buy after seeing a product on social media, this tactic is a must-have in a modern retail strategy.

The social eCommerce experience

Following brands on social media used to be more for inspiration than shopping. But now, these interactive marketing tools are used for research, shopping, and contacting retailers for help and questions about products.

Here are several ways retailers can implement social commerce into their marketing strategies:

As social media evolves, the social eCommerce experience continues to expand and morph. Due to the flexible nature of social media, new tactics can emerge as necessary to fit ever-evolving consumer needs.

Consumer-based marketing with MicroD

The interactive marketing trends impacting retailers today are consumer-experience centric, with human-focused tactics playing more of a role than ever in today’s retail landscape. Capitalizing on them early by blending new technology with the industrial knowledge of your brick-and-mortar experience is the key to gaining a bigger piece of an increasingly scalable market share.

MicroD from Revalize is an omnichannel digital marketing tool designed especially for furniture retailers that can help you put these trends into action. From local SEO to pay-per-click advertising, MicroD has the digital marketing solutions to fit your business’s evolving strategy.

To get started on the next phase of your marketing journey, get a free consultation and build a plan that works for you and your consumers alike.

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