How Retailers can Maximize Holiday Sales with Location Intelligence

The holiday season is a magical time for consumers and retailers alike. The joy of gift-giving, the festive atmosphere, and the rush of holiday shopping create a unique opportunity for retailers to connect with their audiences. However, retailers who don’t leverage the power of location intelligence risk missing out on significant opportunities and leaving money on the table. Location intelligence is not just about knowing where your customers are, it’s about understanding their behavior, reaching them effectively, and measuring the impact of your advertising to maximize campaign results. Luckily, all of this (and more) is possible with Foursquare’s comprehensive suite of Audience, Proximity, and Attribution solutions.

The Importance of Location Intelligence for Retailers

During the holiday season, consumer behavior is at its most dynamic. According to the National Retail Federation (NRF), core retail sales during the 2023 holiday season reached a record high of $964.4 billion. From now through the end of the year, people are constantly searching for the perfect gifts, whether they’re shopping online, browsing for new trinket ideas on their mobile devices, or purchasing items in stores. But how can you cut through the noise and engage in meaningful moments throughout the funnel to drive conversions? This is where location intelligence becomes invaluable. By understanding the lifestyle and day-to-day engagements of potential consumers, you can target, reach, and measure advertising efforts more effectively.

Location data is also a powerful indicator of consumer intent. When a shopper visits a store, it’s a clear sign of interest in their products or services. In fact, Foursquare data shows a 20%+ uptick in traffic to specialty stores over the holidays compared to the rest of the year. By analyzing these patterns, retailers can gain insights into consumer preferences and tailor their marketing strategies accordingly. 

For example, if you want to reach those looking to expand their sneaker collection, you can target shoe lovers who have been seen shopping at sneaker-specific retailers over the past three months. These individuals are likely to browse for deals during the holiday season and during Black Friday. Additionally, by incorporating their online behavior into their holiday segmentation strategy, retailers can further refine their targeting to ensure they are reaching highly interested consumers. This combined approach of location plus online interest can increase the likelihood of driving sales while also building brand loyalty among a dedicated customer base. 


Understanding the Full Consumer Journey

It’s no secret that the consumer journey has become increasingly complex, especially during the holidays. For instance, consider the rise of showrooming, where shoppers visit stores to view products in-person before making the purchase online. To navigate this complexity, retailers need to have the right tools in place to measure the entire consumer journey. This is where Foursquare’s omnichannel measurement solution, Foursquare Attribution, can be incredibly valuable. This solution allows businesses to make decisions in real time by helping them understand their customer’s path to purchase. It also provides them with accurate, granular metrics that offer insight into the efficiency of their media investments across all channels.

Understanding where, when, and how consumers are shopping is particularly critical during key tentpole moments like Black Friday, when consumer spending is at an all-time high and brands are fighting tooth and nail for share of wallet. The stakes are high – according to the NRF, more than 200 million people shopped online and in-store during the 5-day holiday weekend around Black Friday in 2023, spending an average of $321.41 on holiday-related purchases. So how can retailers cut through the noise  and capitalize on increased spending?  With in-depth insights and a holistic view of customer behavior, retailers who leverage location intelligence will have a distinct competitive edge when it comes to boosting holiday sales.  


Reaching Your Audience: Key Targeting Strategies

This holiday season, it’s important to note that there are only 27 days between Thanksgiving and Christmas, making it the shortest holiday season since 2019. To capitalize on this condensed period, retailers must implement effective targeting strategies and get started now. With Foursquare Audience, marketers can drive customer acquisition, re-engagement, competitive conquesting, and cross-channel retargeting, to name a few. For example, with customer acquisition, you can find new holiday shoppers who have visited your competitive set or category, but have not recently made a visit to your brand, indicating that they may be interested in your products.

Retailers can also influence the path to purchase by targeting customers based on their proximity to stores or specific events using Foursquare Proximity. To give a few examples, targeting shoppers attending a holiday concert, festival, or a performance like the Nutcracker can drive foot traffic to nearby stores, ultimately increasing sales at these locations. Brands use Proximity to reach consumers at or near malls where they have stores to stay top-of-mind as they do last-minute shopping and drive visits to their chain. Lastly, retailers can competitive conquest by targeting customers who are currently visiting competitors’ stores and offering compelling reasons to switch.


Measuring Holiday Campaigns

To ensure the effectiveness of holiday campaigns, it’s crucial to measure their impact accurately. This involves analyzing performance by channel, geo, creative messaging, audience, and tactic, all of which can be achieved when leveraging our measurement solution, Foursquare Attribution.

Consider a hypothetical case study of a retailer’s holiday campaign. By using location intelligence, the retailer can track how many customers visited their stores after seeing an online ad, which ads drove the most traffic, and whether mobile or desktop ads were more effective. For instance, the retailer might find that ads promoting last-minute gift ideas performed exceptionally well, leading to an increase in in-store visits and online purchases.

In speaking of Foursquare Attribution, an independent digital partner recently shared:

This level of insight is indispensable for holiday preparation, especially since it spans across multiple months and requires advanced strategic planning. 


Get Started Today

As the holiday season quickly approaches, retailers must embrace the power of location intelligence to stand out in a crowded market. By understanding consumer behavior, implementing effective targeting strategies, and measuring campaign performance, retailers can make the most of this lucrative time of year. Ready to unwrap the full potential of your holiday campaigns? Take the next step by speaking to a location expert about how location intelligence can transform your holiday marketing efforts.

Let’s light up your
holiday campaign today

Reviewed by: Maya Bitton

More on ad tech

Marketers, take note: Foursquare is now integrated with Unified ID 2.0

Learn More

iOS 14, fragmenting digital identity, and the future of high-impact targeting.

Learn More

How to: Target ads to the people most likely to drive lift

Learn More

Let us show you how you can take advantage of Attribution,Audience,Proximity

Click here to arrange a meeting