Customers regularly look to digital channels to research and purchase consumer electronics, but brands struggle with owning the conversation and driving conversion on their own sites. While leaders Samsung and Apple set benchmarks for industry peers to aspire to, other brands would be wise to look across industries to adopt best practices. Consumer electronics brands underutilize important assets like guided selling tools and loyalty programs that can guide customers down the purchase funnel and encourage repeat purchase. The brands that built out such assets—combined with coherent direct-to-consumer (DTC) or retailer sales strategies—have earned an early mover advantage in an industry that has much to learn about digital channels.
Apple recently reported the largest year-over-year sales dip in over three years, signaling the next crucial test for the $1 trillion behemoth. Namely, whether a company that defies the laws of gravity in the low-margin hardware business can secure elusive profit in the increasingly “freemium” services business— as exemplified by the staggered launch of Apple Music, News, TV+ and Arcade.
In light of these macro challenges, Apple’s continuing marketing gestalt becomes reliant on its ability to adapt its digital strategy to an evolving distribution footprint (including an expanded presence on Amazon) and match the efforts of its Genius-ranked peers in Gartner L2’s Digital IQ Index Consumer Electronics (including Samsung and Bose) in new areas of priority investment, such as media investments with Amazon, influencer strategy and marketing premium services in a “freemium” environment.