Brand loyalty, particularly among millennials, is on the rise, and it should come as no surprise to anyone paying attention to the research. An Inc. article revealed findings from a pair of studies in 2015 that pointed to millennials as the most brand-loyal generation with more than half saying they were either “extremely or quite loyal” to their preferred brands.
There is a big transitional shift in retail that we see well underway, and it is the millennials moving to the preference of buying directly from the brand. They have a high degree of brand advocacy.
For example: Apple started all this. Millennial consumers are in this mindset of buying direct. You don’t buy an Apple computer from Best Buy. You go to the Apple Store because you trust that they are the experts.
Seeing brand loyalty as an opportunity, many well-known companies are focusing efforts on growing direct-to-consumer (DTC) sales. Nike, for instance, is projecting to more than double its DTC sales from $6.6 billion in 2015 to $16 billion in 2020 through its e-commerce sites and branded brick-and-mortar stores.
A PYMNTS.com article reported results of a survey that said 88% of consumers prefer buying from brands over third-party retailers, and 82% expect to have the option of doing so. These figures highlight the need for brands to establish well-developed, fully functional e-commerce presences.
While some brands may be reluctant to establish direct relationships with customers for fear of alienating the third-party channels they sell through, it is important for brands and manufacturers to build loyalty through a highly differentiated e-commerce approach.
2017 is a pivot point where brands must realize if they don’t sell directly to consumers, they are not going to survive. If you don’t have a direct relationship with your consumer and own your customer and sell the right way to your customer, then you’re probably not going to be in business a few years from now.
This is where a solid digital marketing and data analytics strategy comes into play, and where Chic Insights can help.