Instrumented Interconnecteds Intelligent

Jill Puleri, Global Retail Leader, IBM

By Jill Puleri

As October draws to a close, consumers are breaking out their notepads and starting to compile their holiday gift lists. For their part, retailers are fine-tuning in-store and online workshops for Thanksgiving Day – the unofficial kickoff to the online holiday shopping season.

And as Turkey Day draws nearer the questions are starting to mount: will the iPad maintain dominance as the tablet of choice for mobile shoppers? What type of impact can we expect from websites, like Pinterest? And, for most retailers, what are consumers prepared to spend?

These are questions we will be monitoring closely, as November 22 approaches. However, for those seeking answers now about what we might expect from the upcoming shopping season, the recent third quarter provides some interesting insight.  

To examine Q3 we turned to our IBM Retail Online Index, which integrates factual marketplace data from the IBM Data Analytics Benchmark with insights from the IBM Social Sentiment Index, an advanced analytics and natural language processing tool that analyzes large volumes of social media data to assess public sentiment. The combination of these two tools provides the most accurate and immediate snap shot of the state of the online retail market.

According to the latest Index, Q3 brought renewed growth with overall sales increasing by 3.1 percent over the second quarter. This news comes on the heels of a report from the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Census Bureau which reported that sales for September were up 1.1 percent over August, yet another indication that consumers are preparing to spend.

When it comes to segments that stood out over this period, two maintained strong sales that we fully expect will continue through this holiday season:

  • Home goods: Online sales of home goods grew by 8.9 percent
  • Department stores: Online sales grew by 3.9 percent

To gain additional consumer insights into the quarter we conducted a sentiment analysis focused on departments in order to determine some factors that might be driving their success. What we found is that positive sentiment towards these retailers remains strong at 35.4 percent, three times that of negative sentiment for the second straight quarter. This positive sentiment was driven by three factors:

Advertisements:  Positive sentiment around ads grew to 21.3 percent, more than twice the amount of negative sentiment, with consumers not just watching ads but doing so with interest, referring to them as “catchy” and “stylish,” and sharing this feedback with friends on social networks.

  • Advertisements:  Positive sentiment around ads grew to 21.3 percent, more than twice the amount of negative sentiment, with consumers not just watching ads but doing so with interest, referring to them as “catchy” and “stylish,” and sharing this feedback with friends on social networks. 
  • Multi-Channel Experience: Departments stores continued to meet the customer’s multi-channel needs, with positive sentiment around the in-store experience reaching 22.8 percent while online topped out at 24.3 percent, both more than double the negative sentiment.
  • Online Coupons: Consumers voiced growing enthusiasm around the advantages delivered through online coupons.
  • Convenience: Whether in-store or online, convenience was critical. According the Index positive sentiment around convenience reached an astounding 67.3 percent, more than six times that on the negative side.

As we all begin to check off the days until the holiday marathon begins, many questions will remain unanswered. However, we can extrapolate from this data that consumers are preparing to shop in droves and retailers who deliver a convenient and integrated shopping experience that spans both in-store and online will be the ones best positioned to cash in. That is, once shoppers push aside their turkey and cranberry sauce.

Bookmark and Share

Previous post

Next post

January 2, 2016
9:57 am

I’d like to follow you if that would be okay.

Posted by: free small wooden sailboat plans
April 17, 2015
12:40 pm

holidays is about buying things :)

just write in a note and start choosing the important thing

Posted by: Kaos DTG Jogja
April 12, 2015
9:11 am

I do agree with all the ideas you have introduced for your post.
They’re really convincing and can certainly work.
Still, the posts are very brief for newbies.
Could you please prolong them a little from next time?

Thank you for the post.

Posted by: drakensang andermant farming
April 7, 2015
1:45 am

Hello to every body, it’s my first pay a quick visit of this
blog; this weblog consists of amazing and genuinely fine stuff in support of readers.

Posted by: age of conan unchained overview and recent content
April 7, 2015
1:09 am

In fact no matter if someone doesn’t know after that its up to other people that they will help, so here it occurs.

Posted by: Miracle Box gamescampus Team
March 30, 2015
10:56 am

naturally like your web site but you have to test the spelling on quite a few of your posts.

A number of them are rife with spelling issues and I find it very troublesome to inform
the truth nevertheless I will surely come back again.

Posted by: earn artix points free
March 23, 2015
10:47 am

There is certainly a lot to know about this issue.

I love all of the points you made.

Posted by: hack de tokens cam4
March 19, 2015
3:15 pm

I do not even understand how I finished up right here,
however I thought this submit was great. I don’t
recognise who you’re however certainly you’re going to a well-known blogger in the event you aren’t already.

Posted by: habbo Queen badge
August 23, 2014
5:11 pm

have been exploring for a little for any high quality articles or weblog posts on this kind of house

Posted by: Weight Destroyer Review
August 18, 2014
9:10 pm

It’s going to be finish of mine day, except before ending I am reading this great piece of writing to increase my know-how.

Posted by: Rodrigo
July 21, 2014
2:15 pm

really this is what i’m looking for this holiday seasobn

Posted by:
July 11, 2014
11:58 am

Thanks for sharing superb informations

Posted by: mi40x download
March 29, 2014
5:28 am

This site is known as a stroll-by means of for all of the info you wanted about this and didn

Posted by: Telecharger Pokemon X et Y
March 7, 2014
7:40 am

After exploring a number of the articles on your blog, I truly like your technique of writing
a blog. I book marked it to my bookmark website list and will be checking back in the near future.
Please visit my website as well and tell me how you feel.

Posted by: Organo Gold
4 Trackbacks
December 14, 2012
9:44 am

[...] times zones of the United States, as employees log on during their lunch hours, clicking onto their favorite retail [...]

Posted by: Cyber Monday to be a Record Setter « A Smarter Planet Blog
December 13, 2012
9:03 am

[...] on a simplified platform ensures accurate product information is shared. It also allows multichannel retailers to populate their sales media (i.e., social channels and mobile devices) with data that is in a [...]

Posted by: Financing – The Key to Unlocking New Opportunities « A Smarter Planet Blog
December 13, 2012
9:03 am

[...] latest IBM Retail Online Index for Q3, which was released last month, showed renewed growth with overall online sales increasing [...]

Posted by: A Smarter Commerce Countdown to Holiday Shopping « A Smarter Planet Blog
October 30, 2012
3:13 am

[...] online consumer purchasing increases as the holiday season nears. However, IBM’s latest  Online Retail Index, comprised of roughly 500 online retailers in the U.S., projects tremendous growth in mobile sales [...]

Posted by: IBM predicts mobile consumer spending spree
Post a Comment