The business case for personalization from brands and influencers

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In an Internet Retailer article, Fareeha Ali said that ecommerce represented a 14.3% share of all retail sales in the US last year - up from 12.9% in 2017 - and accounted for a whopping 51.9% of all retail growth. As brands look to capitalize on this growth, 2019 will be a big year in understanding how technology can be used to solve real business challenges.

With the announcement of the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Personalization Engines in the summer of 2018 and increasing interest in personalization at such prestigious events as Shoptalk, we wanted to pull together what brands and experts are saying about personalization within ecommerce.

Make personalization meaningful and relevant

  • Martha Mathers, Managing VP at Gartner, says “Instead of utilizing every piece of customer data available, brands should focus on showing customers you can help them first, then layering in the right balance of data to boost message relevance, without making things too personal.”
  • Brendan Witcher, VP & Principal Analyst at Forrester Research said in an interview with Joe Keenan, the Executive Editor at TotalRetail, that personalization is about “creating those relevant experiences for your customers; If you’re not going to create perceivable value for your customer why would they shop with you?”
  • Ian Rogers, the first-ever chief digital officer of the LVMH group, touched on personalization in an interview with Wired Magazine: “Our customers expect a high level of service and personalization. As long as you're using data to improve their experience and not to sell them out to other interests, people are happy to engage”
  • Brent Adamson, Vice President at Gartner, says “Your consumer needs to, first, perceive personalized messages to be helpful and, second, require as little data as possible in order to achieve this. A consumer should not have to provide over four dimensions of personal data in order to achieve that level of personalization”.

Moving beyond silos - omnichannel personalization

  • Erik Nordstrom said, in a Q&A at this year’s Shoptalk, "Increasingly, it has become impossible to separate [a customer's] digital journey from the physical journey."
  • According to the BRP 2019 customer survey, the customer journey “crisscrosses” multiple channels: Within three years, 75% of retailers plan to use mobile loyalty programs and 77% plan to use mobile apps to identify customers in their stores.
  • Retailers need to pay attention to personalizing the mobile experience: According to quarterly data from the IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index, shoppers spent more money through their smartphones in Q4 2018/19 when accessing UK retail sites than either of the other two major device types – desktop or tablet.
  • Lucy Gibbs, Senior Consultant in Retail Analytics at Capgemini Invent says that: “Smartphones make it is easier than other forms to be truly omnichannel, which is about being where your customers are and therefore are optimally placed for influencing the retail customer journey.”

Personalization is a priority

  • Shopify reported that 75% of consumers prefer brands to personalize messaging, offers, and experiences.
  • According to Salesforce, 84% of customers say that being treated like a person, not a number, is very important to winning their business
  • Retailers are paying attention to this, with RIS reporting that 51% of their surveyed brands prioritizing personalization as an ecommerce strategy this year.
  • "Beauty means different things to different people,” says Dave Kimbell, Chief Merchandising and Marketing Officer of Ulta Beauty, at Shoptalk: “Beauty shoppers don’t buy by price points. They curate by individual needs.”

Conclusion

As more use cases go live and the customer experience continues to be a hot topic of discussion, personalization is being considered a priority strategy for brands across all verticals within retail this year. With Qubit, some of the biggest industry-leading brands are seeing an increase in conversion and retention rates. Here’s what our customers are saying:

  • Grace Choi, Director of Ecommerce at Frederick’s of Hollywood, says that “Personalization has become integral to the way we are perceived as a brand. The techniques we employ are what our visitors have come to expect - relevant messaging throughout the engagement. Qubit allows us to be relevant all the time."
  • Mhairi Wood, Head of Ecommerce at Micro Scooters says: We are seeing an enormous shift in the way our customers are engaging and shopping for new products. Qubit has enabled us to curate experiences across the customer lifecycle, gaining the trust of new visitors and building loyalty with returning customers.
  • Darin Butler, Head of Digital Customer Engagement at Specsavers "We have millions of customers across the world who have come to expect unrivalled customer service and experiences. Therefore, we need technology partners that allow our team to implement and scale our personalization program effectively - Qubit Pro is the perfect partner for that."

No matter where you are on your journey to advanced personalization, Qubit’s family of products can help you get closer to your customers. Click here to find out more.

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