Promotion and loyalty predictions for 2022

Marketing
Jan 21, 2022
Henry Bewicke
Content Writer
5
Min to read

With businesses implementing strategies for digital transformation, VC funding reaching record levels in 2021, and a rebound in consumer activity post-pandemic, 2022 is set to be an exciting year.

What better time to take a look at trends for the coming year. Read on to find out our top four promotions, loyalty and ecommerce predictions for 2022.

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1. A zero/first party data boom

After a series of false starts, it looks like Google is set to finally end support for the third party cookie in late 2023. But the preparation for this new normal should already be top of mind. Third party cookies allow businesses to track users across sites and serve them with personalized and retargeted ads. The death of the third party cookie will have a big impact on digital advertising, and a significant knock on effect on ecommerce. Combine that with Apple’s updated privacy protections and it’s no surprise businesses are looking ahead for new ways to learn more about their customers.

One field that’s garnering lots of attention is zero/first party data, i.e. data that’s volunteered straight from the customer. There’s a slight distinction between first- and zero-party data — in the sense that zero party data is provided by the customer directly (when they tell you their communication and brand preferences, or answer quizzes or surveys), while first party data is collected through their interactions with your business (on-site activity and behaviors).

This data can provide businesses with invaluable insights about customer behavior without having to rely on cookies. Businesses like Spotify are famous for their clever use of zero- and first-party data to improve their services. Spotify uses a combination of surveys (zero party) and data about listening history (first party) to improve their algorithms and song recommendations. But this approach isn’t suitable for all businesses.

One of the most effective ways ecommerce brands can collect zero and first party data is via loyalty programs. They offer consumers a reliable, secure way to share information about themselves, their shopping preferences and their favorite products. In return, brands can offer their customers special personalized promotions and custom content while they shop online. The benefit of this paradigm is that it is a mutually beneficial arrangement — brands learn about their customers to offer them a better, more tailored experience.

Expect to see many more businesses investing in loyalty programs and other sources of customer data as they look for ways to foster better relationships.

2. From personalization-first to personalization-everywhere

Customer experience (CX) and personalization have become top priorities for consumers in the post-pandemic, digital first commerce environment, and the majority of businesses are playing catch up when it comes to meeting CX expectations.

According to Zendesk, 75% of customers will spend more if it means buying from a company with good customer experience. More satisfied customers mean higher retention rates and even reduced customer acquisition spend, so investing in CX pays dividends on multiple fronts. 

When it comes to improving customer experience, personalization is one of the most effective strategies a business can implement. According to Epsilon, 80% of consumers are more likely to shop with a brand if it offers personalization, while 90% find personalization appealing.

The options for personalization are extensive thanks to modern headless enterprise software, and many businesses are implementing personalized experiences at every step of the customer journey. This includes everything from personalized in-app notifications, to tailored on-site content and fully personalized promotions that perfectly match customer preferences.

According to Mordor Intelligence, the CX management market is set to hit $27.13 billion by 2026.

With so many businesses now paying attention to CX and personalization, investing in these features is now the bare minimum to be in the game, rather than setting yourself apart from the crowd. We’re increasingly seeing personalization-first mindsets being replaced by a ‘personalize everywhere’ mindset.

3. Brands move towards Web3

Web3 is a vision of the third era of the internet that uses blockchain and crypto as a foundation for all online activity. People will be able to shop online using cryptocurrency, maintain their own unique online identity that’s verified and secured by blockchain, and communicate with friends via peer-to-peer channels.

Web3 sees itself a fully decentralized version of the internet we know today, and it will usher in a new era of security and privacy online. But there’s a fundamental disagreement about the viability of the Web3 project.

At the moment, most Web3 investment is coming from venture capitalists. Some argue that they have a vested interest in publicizing the benefits of the decentralized internet and glossing over some of the trickier technical challenges which are yet to be resolved. There’s doubt that a fully decentralized internet can actually be achieved as true decentralization requires a network of independent nodes spread across the world. Anything else is simply another version of the internet we know today disguised as Web3.

Regardless of the final form Web3 will take, businesses are already preparing themselves for a new era of ecommerce and a blockchain-powered internet. Many retailers are now welcoming crypto payment, while others are minting their own NFTs for use in the metaverse.

4. Headless continues to rise

Headless software and headless commerce are set to continue their impressive rise in 2022. Headless software has become one of the driving forces behind the post-pandemic digital transformation, thanks to the benefits it offers over conventional enterprise software. Customer journeys are becoming more complex, and omnichannel sales strategies will be key to meeting consumers where they are.

Loyalty programs and promotion strategies provide a method for connecting online and offline channels. The ability to reward people for in-store purchases — or for actions taken online — provides brands with a valuable mechanism for increasing engagement by increasing the number of touchpoints with loyal customers.

If you’re not already thinking about how to give customers a unified branded experience, from TikTok to your webstore, then investigating a headless system is time well spent.

It offers businesses increased flexibility, greater scalability and superior customizability across all backend processes. As expectations around customer experience, ease of use and accessibility increase, headless software will become essential for all businesses looking to sell to customers online.

You can learn more about headless software in our ebook, ‘Headless Commerce & Microservices Explained’.

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Headless Commerce & Microservices Explained
Why headless systems beat monolithic systems
Hypothetical business scenario to compare headless and monolithic systems
Four-step guide on choosing the right microservices for your business
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Headless Commerce & Microservices Explained
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Why headless systems beat monolithic systems
Hypothetical business scenario to compare headless and monolithic systems
Four-step guide on choosing the right microservices for your business
Download Your Talon.One Loyalty Playbook
Loyalty Playbook Cover
Best Practices for loyalty programs
How to gain a competitive advantage
Your definitive guide to loyal customers