CHICAGO: As the American holiday shopping season approaches, a new survey has found that Amazon is not unbeatable and there are three key strategies that retailers can adopt to attract the gift-buying customer.

Cross-marketing platform Signal questioned 1,500 US consumers on their holiday shopping intentions and revealed that 42% will make Amazon their primary holiday gift destination.

Consumers are drawn to the e-commerce giant because they find it easy (50%), are Prime members (36%), and because they like the product reviews and recommendations (29%).

However, a full 40% reported that they do not intend to use Amazon and plan to shop elsewhere for their holiday gifts this year, which prompted the report to suggest how other retailers could benefit.

"Retailers can raise the stakes by leveraging their extensive customer data from all channels and touchpoints to best Amazon with more intelligent and relevant suggestions," the report said.

"Retailers with physical stores can also consider ways to use those locations as distributed, flexible warehouses for pick up and returns – both of which offer cross-sell and upsell opportunities," it added.

And with 46% of consumers surveyed saying that relevant deals and discounts will motivate them to buy this holiday season, Signal said first-party data would help retailers understand what actions are appropriate to provide relevant assistance to a shoppers in real-time and in support of their goals.

Its third main recommendation is that retailers should not think in channels because consumers now operate across devices, and shop both online and offline, as it suits their needs.

"Consumers don't want to make a choice between the convenience of buying from home and the assurance of handling the product in a store: they want both," the report said.

"By offering options like buy online/pick up in store, free shipping and easy returns, retailers can effectively serve consumers wherever they are shopping."

Data sourced from Signal; additional content by Warc staff