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The Official Oracle Commerce Cloud Blog

The Wonder of Promotions

Brenna Johnson
Senior Product Strategist

Having a good promotions strategy is key to the success of
any online retailer. Targeted promotions and discounts definitely get conversions
up, inventory moving, and increase new customer acquisition. Tuning the dials
just slightly can mean big results (or big failures) when it comes to a promotions
strategy. But one thing’s certain – promotions are loved and expected by consumers which makes them a
powerful tool, one that is expected to generate $18 billion in the next 3
years. But balancing promotions management, agility, and margin protection can
be tricky.

Aside from having a complete digital promotion calendar
(which may include offline promotions if retailers have brick and mortar
stores) and revenue goals per promotion, the ability to execute quickly (like
slipping in an unplanned holiday promo for an extra boost) is what will keep
some retailers a step ahead of their competition.

Having the right promotions management tools is key. They
need to be intuitive, flexible, and allow merchants to be nimble. There also has to be prebuilt promotions, the
ability to quickly create customized promotions, and access to many different
types of promotions -- as different promotions achieve different goals.

For instance, your typical flat rate discount is a basic
promotion (which can be applied site-wide, to a specific category, or even a
specific brand), which is a great umbrella strategy for making loyalists happy
and for acquiring new customers. There’s also bundling (like Buy One Get One)
which is great for reducing inventory. A
powerful promotion strategy (especially when protecting margins) is discount
thresholds – like spend $X more and get 10% off and/or free shipping. Many retailers are using this strategy to
ensure repeat buyers, like “spend $100, get $50 off your next $100
purchase.” Deals like this make
consumers open their wallets and get retailers excited about building a
(somewhat) predictable pipeline.

Aside from the promotions management capabilities outlined
above, there are unique features that Oracle can deliver. Incorporating (and
automating) promotions with merchandising and personalization strategies is the
goal of many retailers – and something that can be done today with the Oracle Commerce
platform.

Being able to segment customers based on their profiles and
have this segmentation drive both targeted promotions and real-time onsite
merchandising is a game changer. Retailers can target specific segments (“budget-conscious
mothers living in Northern California”) and have promotions targeted
specifically to certain people or behaviors (i.e.: price bands, shopping cart
thresholds, preferred brands, etc.). This
can be delivered via email or dynamically in a live shopping experience. And of
course, it’s all published to mobile and social channels as well from a central
toolset.

This is where we see promotions going; not traditional blanketed
messages at set times of the year, but the flexibility to balance the needs of
the business with the needs of the customer to deliver dynamic promotions and
merchandising strategies that adapt and deliver results.

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