Success in the eCommerce market place means staying on trend with the latest developments and strategies that will keep your Magento eCommerce business competitive and aligned with consumer expectations.
In this first of three articles, we introduce a very powerful aspect of online retailing in 2015, namely personalisation. What may have seemed like a passing fad just a year or two ago is becoming a mainstream protocol for eCommerce businesses like yours, who really mean business.
So what is personalisation? It’s the modern virtual equivalent of walking into your physical corner shop, being recognised, warmly welcomed and served as the real-life person you are. Back in the days before the internet was the place to shop, it was a comforting feeling to find familiar faces recognising each other and knowing from memory, experience and great salesmanship what your needs and preferences are likely to be.
When people first started purchasing online, eCommerce stores had no option but to treat each new customer as just any potential sales unit, without knowing if they had purchased there ever before, whether they had stumbled in the door by accident, if they had just come in out of the rain or whether they had a lorry outside ready to snap up your entire stock. Consequently, the whole sales experience was different. There was little scope for upselling or making commercial use of brand loyalty and tracking buying behaviours. Strategies to improve word of mouth advertising were very hit and miss.
Now it’s different. With modern technology you not only have the option but nowadays almost the business obligation, to personalise how you offer your products and services. This involves things like recognising frequent and infrequent customers, rewarding repeat orders, streamlining checkout experiences and offering alternatives and extended choices that your individual customer might be interested in. It’s not just a case of assuming males or females are going to buy skirts or trousers either. It’s about really understanding the trends and unique characteristics of people, and finding commercially-beneficial ways to meet their needs.
In our next part, we’ll look at how and why to personalise. But here’s some homework in the meantime. Next time you’re shopping online, look around for signs they know it’s you and not the guy next door.