Everyone has experienced personalisation through retail product recommendations like those from Amazon, but you may not know there are many more personalisation options available than the ‘people who viewed this, also purchased this’ recommendations you will be familiar with from Amazon.
The benefits of personalization based on the 5S benefits of digital marketing identified by Dave Chaffey and PR Smith in their book Digital Marketing Excellence. The first may be obvious, but the others less so:
The most obvious benefit of personalisation is increasing your sales by recommending relevant products and offers through search and merchandising. The potential sales growth may be bigger than you think. They recommend you create a business case based on a spreadsheet model which shows the potential sales increase from new visitors and existing customers as conversion rates and average order values are improved across all page types and channels where you will deploy personalisation.
This refers to using digital media to initiate dialogue. In a retail context, this means encouraging site visitors to share their email addresses and permission to mail them. A common technique is to use a popup or panel on a site offering a great deal on first purchase (for example, a 15% discount). Personalisation services can deliver these messages and be used to tailor them for different types of visitor segment.
Conversion can also be assisted by showing first-time purchasers that you are a trusted brand with a competitive service proposition (for example, by explaining discounts, shipping, and returns). These key brand messages are often delivered by retailers through a run-of-site feature like a site-wide stripe below the navigation, in a footer or a panel elsewhere on the home page. It’s useful to surface or add detail to the proposition on the home page. Different propositions or Unique Selling Points (USPs) may appeal to different customer segments so personalisation enables you to tailor and target those key messages accordingly through your global merchandising zone.
Through the use of PureClarity, the automated element can also reduce costs through time savings based on manual merchandising involving manually setting up product recommendations on home and category pages.
AI can reduce the manual effort since it collects and analyses big data and provides AI recommendations based on previous and current website behaviours, crowd trends and customer segment behaviour. More sophisticated platforms such as PureClarity further enable you to overlay with effective merchandising offers or marketing campaigns and adds an additional level of personalisation into the mix.
AI, especially, can help with the automation of merchandising which delivers the most relevant recommendation to the site visitor or email subscriber at the right time. This also relates to service improvements as personalisation and conversion rate optimisation can also potentially reduce returns by helping the customer select the right product.
This is a softer benefit about adding more ‘pizzazz’ to your brand by adding a ‘wow’ factor for your site visitors. If you’re a lesser-known retail brand it can boost your credibility and visitor confidence through showing that you offer similar recommendation features and campaigns to the well-known retail brands. E-commerce personalisation enables that ‘wow’ factor by providing an engaging online shopping experience which helps to build brand loyalty and lifetime customer value.