This is a Guest Blogging Article contributed by Deeksha Bahl at Loopclub
For years innumerable, brick and mortar has hired the most amiable and driven individuals as store assistants. They were then groomed and trained for their role, the primary purpose of which was to not just ensure the completion of sale cycles, but to provide the kind of service and experience to the customers that would keep them coming back.
And to amplify conversions. They would do it with a smile on their face and a hop in their feet catering to the many whims and fancies of the customers, in the most empathetic and responsive manner. 73% of customers fall in love with a brand and remain loyal because of friendly customer service reps.
From finding sizes to colors, to designs, catering to personal preferences and choices, and even handling tantrums, these reps would provide the utmost personalized service.
And while doing all this, they would upsell and cross-sell various other products. And forge brand loyalists. According to Hubspot, 93% of customers are likely to make repeat purchases with companies who offer excellent customer service.
Running an eCommerce store, while having an enormous set of advantages, limits the scope of customer service. A factor that is not only a key differentiator, but also a critical element in boosting conversions.
This is where Personalized Recommendations by LoopClub come in.
I. Why Personalized Recommendations
One of the most delightful experiences of shopping is service. The more customized, the better.
91% of consumers are more likely to shop with brands who provide relevant offers and recommendations, whereas 74% of online consumers get frustrated with content that has nothing to do with their interests.
And unlike brick and mortar, there are no sales reps guiding and managing customers on a Shopify store.
Hence the need to improvise. Good customer experience is a competitive advantage on an ecommerce platform, one that begs to be leveraged.
There is a need for a solution that serves visitors on Shopify stores in a manner that would as closely resemble that of having a personal shopper at the visitor’s beck and call.
Personalized Recommendations will add that edge to an eCommerce website. Apart from providing a stellar user experience, a virtual shopping assistant, in the form of Personalized Recommendations unique to each customer that uses visitor data to cater to individual preferences, will drive further conversions.
But how does it do that?
II. Upsells and Cross-Sells Products
The most basic way Personalized Recommendations can improve conversions and boost sales is by upselling and cross-selling products.
Salesforce found that 73% of customers expect companies to understand their needs and expectations. A feat that can be achieved leveraging the power of AI to understand the customer and provide personalized upselling and cross-selling recommendations. But what does upsell and cross-sell even mean?
Upsell is a sales methodology applied that encourages customers to purchase an upgraded version, or a product of higher value, as compared to the one they are trying to purchase.
On the other hand, cross-selling is simply offering a related product that is complementary to the one being purchased. For example, a customer looking to purchase a shampoo can be shown relevant recommendations for complementary conditioners.
Using Personalized Recommendations, a Shopify store can provide the semblance of a sales rep by showcasing products that would effectively increase the cart value by way of upselling and cross selling. Like we see here how a wellness brand uses Personalized Recommendations by LoopClub to upsell its products.
With 80% of consumers more likely to make a purchase when offered personalized experiences, offering personalized recommendations can prove to be one of the most effective practices a Shopify store can adopt to boost sales and conversions.
III. Impacts Average Order Value78% of consumers say that personally relevant content increases their purchase intent for a brand's products and services. Is it any surprise then that a data-driven approach with Personalized Recommendations would boost the average order value?
A poster brand here uses Personalized Recommendations by LoopClub to increase its average order value by bundling complementary posters with the one being ordered by the customer.When a customer is shown recommendations based on their personal preferences, especially packaged together as a set, they are more likely to be attracted to them, evoking a response, and even leading to amplified conversions.
50% of consumers say that they would pay more for products and services from brands that do a good job of providing personally relevant content.
When a customer is nearing completion of their transaction, a set of recommendations that would result in an enhanced product experience will seamlessly engage the customer and manage to convert more into sales within the same transaction. Not showing bundled recommendations is a wasted opportunity, one that all Shopify stores need to embrace to boost their sales and conversions.
IV. Improves User Experience
Good product is what gets a customer through the door, but converting them into loyal and returning customers? That takes a good customer experience. According to a study by PWC, 73% of all people consider customer experience an important factor in their purchasing decisions. What sales reps are to brick and mortar, Personalized Recommendations are to eCommerce. Maybe even more.
With Personalized Recommendations, users are not only provided with the most personalized experience, but they are also catered to irrespective of the time or day. Websites are overwhelmed with user data, and yet, most times have little or no way to extract any real value from it.
Tools providing Personalized Recommendations powered by AI are customer-centric and entirely reliant on data. They will know about customer needs and preferences even before the customers do.
Not only does this improve customer satisfaction, it also encourages conversions.
More importantly, it secures a long-term customer, directly impacting customer lifetime value (CLV).
A study by Bain showed that companies with a customer experience mindset drive revenue 4-8% above their market.
A well-curated and efficiently presented showcase of products, derived from user data and buyer personas, helps Shopify customers discover products they’d be more interested in rather than being overwhelmed by sheer number and unreliability. This essentially smoothens the shopping experience, in turn, aiding conversions and securing loyal customers.
V. Brand Evangelism
Customer experience drives over two-thirds of customer loyalty, outperforming brand and price combined, according to Gartner. Good user experience facilitates conversions, and even boosts sales.
More importantly, it propagates customer loyalty. And even more importantly, it breeds evangelism. When we like something, we tell others about it. According to Esteban Kolsky, 72% of customers will share a positive experience with 6 or more people. Good user experience will not limit its impact to direct conversions. Many times, positive customer experience will become an indirect marketing channel for the brand.
While we ensure good user experience, we are, in turn, creating brand evangelists. Apart from earning brand loyalty encouraging users to buy more and stick around longer, good customer experience will lead them to promote the brand.
Happy customers spread the word.
And this will effectively escalate sales and boost conversions.
V. Boosts On-Site EngagementThe most innovative, future-looking companies are investing in truly understanding customers via customer data platforms (53%) and real-time decision engines (45%), according to Pega. And for good reason.
Data will drive conversions, and it will also boost on-site customer engagement. Any marketer worth their salt knows the importance of engagement. And data-driven Personalized Recommendations hold tremendous potential to boost customer engagement.
72% of consumers in 2019 only engaged with marketing messages that were customized to their specific interests. Disconnected user experience would lead to higher bounce rates and reduced page sessions. The less time a user spends on a Shopify store, the less likely they are to convert. And even lesser the chance of them returning.
In the same way, when a user is engaged on a website, spending more time on it and browsing through various products, they are also more likely to come back.
Econsultancy, with Adobe, found that implementing AI and machine learning (ML) is a high priority for the bulk of customer experience leaders and large companies. Among them, 36% of customer experience leaders are already using such technologies, while 28% plan to invest in them in 2020.
Among large organizations (with annual revenues above US$181 million), 33% are already using AI/ML and 39% plan to invest in them presently.
Industry leaders have recognized the importance of adopting technologies that will help enhance website customer experience. For qualitative purposes, sure, but for the quantitative benefits of it as will. An AI-powered solution to improve user experience on a Shopify store will not only help the users but also the website by augmenting their sales and conversions.