In recent years, personalization has gained a solid ground in the ecommerce space with an overwhelming response from the customers. According to a recent survey by MarketingCharts.com, 74% of consumers get frustrated when the websites they visit feature content, offers, and ads that don’t match their interests.
The whole idea of personalization gyrates around the central theme of collecting more and more customer information in some direct or indirect form. You can use various methods to segregate customers based on their profile data, past browsing/buying behavior, geolocation information, etc. However, there exists some stigma – okay, a big one – surrounding the collection of customer data online as there is a persistent danger of crossing the friendly zone and intruding their private territories.
Good ecommerce brands necessarily need to know their customers well. Amazon, Walmart, Netflix etc. are some stellar examples of brands using personalization methodology most effectively. So, asking for information directly from the customers is not a bad idea at all. However, it needs to be done innovatively and efficiently. This treasure trove of information can help you create your own personalization plans.
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Let’s explore top 3 ways you can use to extract and use great information about your customers.
Email sign-up and Wish List
A crisp email sign up is a great way to optimize opt-in emails. The less, the better here. The more information you request for, the more intrusive you appear. This may also increase user abandonment.
Wish list is another great method to let your customers know that you genuinely value their opinion. So simply request them to let you know what they wish to see. Customers will be more than willing and happy to share with you their wish list. Their views will help you refine your methodology to display the desired products on their next visit to your ecommerce store. You can then be crafty with your personalization plan hereafter.
Product suggestions tool
You can leverage cookies to know the items that your customers prefer to browse more. You can use this goldmine of data to offer them product suggestions on their next visits. This tactic will help you establish relationship with customers that will last for long. Stitch Fix, a subscription retailer, gets personalization right and offers contextualized shopping experience to customers based on customer’s interests, behaviors and preferences. In the first place, it prompts its users to complete an online style profile that gives the brand an idea about the customer’s fashion sense, price range preferences, color choices, etc. Then they pay for certain selected apparels and accessories that they choose. A dedicated personal stylist (to each customer) chooses five items based on the information provided by the customer. The customer can opt to keep or return those items.
A vast pool of data is essential for identifying trends and the induced scope for improvement. A customer survey is a great feedback mechanism for your marketing strategy. It’s a terrific way to glean meaning intelligence and devise a smart actionable strategy. This prompts many ecommerce merchants to send across lengthy surveys to their customers. They think customers would be enticed to answer such questions, without realizing that this exercise may be counterproductive and customers, on the other hand, end up getting deflated. Only very motivated or disappointed customers will spare their time to fill those giant surveys out.
TargetingMantra is a 500Strong company offering SaaS-based personalization platform to online businesses. The team has previously worked in developing recommendation system for Amazon, Zappos, IMDB. It’s proprietary technology offers 15% increase in conversion rate. The company has offices in India and Silicon Valley and has clients spread across the globe.