Customer Portfolios Shares Luxury, Fashion Retail Holiday Shopping Trends

November 27, 2017

Findings Point to Marketing Payoff for Improved Customer Experience

BOSTON, MA - November 27, 2017 --

Customer Portfolios, a marketing technology leader that uses actionable insights and analytics to increase customer value with targeted and measurable lifecycle marketing, announces the results of its in-depth review of numerous fashion retail and luxury retail clients during the last two holiday shopping periods.

“Our look at fashion and luxury retail shopping trends from 2015 and 2016 led us to some interesting conclusions for marketers in this 2017 holiday shopping season,” said Paul Welsh, VP, Analytics & Product Innovation at Customer Portfolios. “The findings show the importance of placing customers in the center of marketing efforts, creating a customer experience that transcends individual channels to recognize each individual customer lifecycle, then offering and responding on their terms.”

Key Findings (in averages) for 2015-2016 Holiday Shopping Seasons Comparison:

Both Fashion and Luxury Retailers:

  • There is a clear need – and payoff – for continuing to improve the process of retaining and reactivating customers.
  • The top 20% of customers are critically important; they make up more than 50% of revenue during the holiday season. These best customers need to be recognized and cultivated.
  • Black Friday showed an increase in holiday revenue share in 2016 while Cyber Monday remained flat year over year. Unique customer counts are trending up year over year, increasing the need to optimize data capture for year-round engagement.
  • People who appear to be unresponsive to email outside of holiday may respond during the holiday season. Don’t count them out, especially this time of year.
  • Brands have found an optimal communication frequency of one touch per day during the holidays to maximize open and click rates while keeping unsubscribes down.

Luxury Retail

  • Only an average of 4% of revenue came from customers who shopped in the prior holiday, highlighting the need for luxury brands to think about strategies for retaining customers year over year.
  • Unique buyers are down 9% while dollars per transaction is up 12%, indicating that brands are not capturing the fringe lower budget buyers that they have in the past.
  • Dollars per transaction during the holiday were up 32% vs. remainder of the year while units per transaction were flat, indicating customer willingness to be upsold on individual gifts and not assortments.
  • Email volume increased by 76% year over year to align more with fashion retail strategies of daily communication – open and click through rates did not suffer, with both metrics increasing vs. the prior holiday.

Fashion Retail

  • Nearly one in five sales came from customers who bought during the holiday season last year, highlighting the importance of both targeted marketing to past shoppers and data capture of new customers who will drive sales in 2018.
  • 15% of revenue in 2016 came from post-Thanksgiving weekend, vs 7% in 2015.
    • Black Friday drove 8% of revenue vs. 5% prior year
    • Cyber Monday drove 6%, down from 7% prior year
  • Dollars per transaction and units per transaction were down 5% against the prior year and 4% against remainder of the year – but there was a flat spend driven by a slight increase in customers making multiple holiday orders.
  • In 2016, there was a 28% increase in email opens from previously lapsed customers.
  • During the holiday period, the number of customers outside the core demographic nearly doubled, due to the increase in gift purchases.
    • % of men buyers increased by 102% vs. non-holiday period at female-focused brands.
    • % of women buyers increased by 84% vs. non-holiday period at male-focused brands.

“There is no shortage of opportunity to attract, retain and upsell customers no matter what channel they use to engage with the brand,” continued Welsh. “Recognizing and responding individually to them at any touchpoint presents a huge competitive edge for retailers.”

Read here to find out how to use advanced insights and analytics to build profitable, lasting relationships with your customers.

About Customer Portfolios
Customer Portfolios is a marketing technology leader that empowers its global clients to maximize the value of each customer. The company leverages advanced analytics, strategy, marketing automation and execution to uncover actionable insights and execute targeted and measurable Lifecycle Marketing campaigns. The Customer Portfolios team of analytical and marketing experts help companies like Johnston and Murphy, Vera Bradley, Journeys, Harbor One, Subway, Teleflora, Frye, Tourneau, and many more consistently drive revenue growth and increase customer lifetime value. Visit, read our blog and follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn.


Customer Portfolios
Jim McNulty, 508-481-2024