Providing tailored product recommendations is a proven way of boosting online sales, with two-thirds of companies (66%) stating that personalisation improves both customer experience and business performance.
Speaking at a Screen Pages ecommerce event recently, Emailvision personalisation director Neil Hamilton ran through some best practice tips for how to create effective homepage product recommendation banners.
The effectiveness of these blocks can be improved using personalisation, whereby the products shown are specifically tailored to the customer based on their past on-site behaviour.
Our new Realities of Personalisation Report, published in association with Monetate, found that just 30% of businesses currently personalise their websites based on a visitor’s previous behaviour, so a majority of businesses are yet to implement the technology.
All ecommerce sites could benefit from having product recommendations, with research showing that they can potentially increase revenue by up to 300%, improve conversions by 150% and help boost the average order value by 50%.
However, the precise format varies from site to site and should be tested to make sure it’s converting the maximum number of customers.
The copywriting needs to fit with the brand identity and it’s also important to strike an emotive chord and pique the customer’s interest.
This isn’t an easy task considering the fact that you generally only have room for about three or four words, but there is still a great deal you can do with the limited space.
Here are some of the most interesting digital marketing stats we've seen this week.
Stats include mobile strategy, desktop use in Australia, personalisation, mobile search, tablet apps, ad targeting, international ecommerce sales and conversion rate optimsation.
For more digital marketing stats, check out our Internet Statistics Compendium.
The explosive growth of transactional and online shopper data means consumers are swamped with information. In just one internet minute, there are now 2m Google search queries, £83,000 in sales on Amazon.co.uk, 100,000 new Tweets and 6m Facebook views.
The retail industry is no exception. Whilst in-store product ranges are limited by the physical constraints of shelf-space, online retailers can display ten times the amount of products on their sites.
This leaves consumers with overwhelming choice. Yet research shows that most products are going un-noticed. As highlighted in a study undertaken by RichRelevance, only 44% of products online are getting attention; leaving 56% bypassed.
Furthermore, just 10% of products on an online retail site garner 75% of page views.
Bringing this back to the in-store metric, this is leaving over half of the shopping aisles in the dark.
Personalisation is widely seen as vital to the success of online businesses, yet new research shows that companies are some way off delivering cross-channel personalised experiences.
The Econsultancy/Monetate Realities of Personalisation Report shows that while 43% of companies currently deliver a personalised experience on desktop this figure falls to just 14% on tablet and 13% on mobile.
For both devices more than half of respondents (54%) stated that they plan to adopt personalisation in the next 12 months, but this needs to be treated with caution as the road to hell is paved with good intentions.
It also means that around a third of businesses have no plans to implement the technology.
Though more than nine out of ten marketers agree that personalisation is critical to their success, almost half of companies lack the necessary technology to properly implement website personalisation.
The findings come from the new Econsultancy/Monetate Realities of Personalisation Report, which found that 47% of companies cite IT roadblocks as a major barrier to adopting or improving website personalisation.
A similar number of respondents (46%) pointed to legacy technology, while 44% cited lack of budget.
In contrast, among respondents from marketing agencies lack of knowledge (54%) and inability to translate data into action (51%) took the first two spots.
Lack of budget and lack of staff are the third and fourth most cited barriers for both companies and agencies surveyed, highlighting the importance of prioritising resources that are often scarce.
The growing importance of delivering a personalised experience online is highlighted in a new Econsultancy and Monetate survey in which 94% of businesses stated that personalisation ‘is critical to current and future success.’
Furthermore, the research found that for two-thirds (66%) of client-side respondents, both improved business performance and customer experience are the main drivers for personalising the website experience.
The Realities of Online Personalisation is based on a survey of more than 1,100 digital and ecommerce professionals working for brands and agencies, carried out in February 2013.
It’s digital marketers’ ultimate prize: consumers fill up the internet with their ideas, preferences and interests. (This is the big, big data, people!)
Turn that into real-time offers on your website, and jackpot! Angels sing. All the web’s kittens dance. And you’re badder than honey badger overnight.
A whole host of technologies have emerged to make this happen. Marketers have no problem finding solutions to personalise their websites.
The core challenge remains: what’s the best way to do personalisation?
While browsing ecommerce sites recently I noticed several examples of retailers that use questionnaires as a way of delivering product recommendations.
It’s not an approach you see that often, as sites more commonly recommend products using features such as ‘Customers who bought this product also bought’ or ‘Popular products’.
But that doesn’t mean questionnaires aren’t an effective tool. In theory, asking customers for their preferences adds an element of personalisation to the shopping experience and makes the recommendations feel more relevant.
This could in turn lead to higher conversions as the customer feels more confident about their product choice.
But does it work in practice? To find out, I tried out product questionnaires on three very different retail sites...
Live chat is still a relatively new customer service channel, though it’s proving to be an increasingly popular method of communicating with brands.
Stats from BoldChat show that more than 65% of US online shoppers have used live chat, up from 50.4% in 2009.
The figure is slightly lower in the UK but still growing at 53%, up from 41% in 2011.
The same research shows that 31% of respondents would be more likely to purchase after a live chat, however this stat should be treated with a decent amount of scepticism, as it’s difficult for people to accurately predict their future purchase behaviour.