Thinking

How mastering the basics can enable you to deliver a personalised, digital experience online and in store

Personalisation is no longer a novelty but an essential.

Personalisation is no longer a novelty but an essential. In fact, 63 percent of customers expect personalisation as a standard of service. Customers want personalisation across multiple touchpoints within their shopping journey, to empower them to spend their time and money based on their preferences. 

Successful personalisation can be highly valuable to retailers as it increases both customer loyalty and revenue as well as gaining a competitive advantage. To take it to the next level requires leveraging your customer data to create one-to-one personalisation for individuals.

Delivering personalised experiences

When done right, personalisation can drive customer loyalty. 44% of customers say they will become repeat buyers after receiving a personalised experience. A personalised loyalty program that targets members with relevant perks can help increase loyalty. Utilise existing customer data to inform your loyalty program, transform it based on evolving customer needs, and ensure that customers loyalty points and offers are synchronised across all platforms to offer a truly omnichannel experience.

Personalised experiences can lift retailers' revenues by 5–15%, of which personalised recommendations can play a central part. “Items you might like” and “frequently bought together” works wonders for Amazon as well as many other online retailers encouraging customers to make those additional impulse purchases. Data quality and volume are key to training algorithms; if retailers are planning on implementing them, they must ensure they are collecting quality customer data.

Move away from a one-size fits all marketing approach to personalised marketing that targets individuals and offers relevant products and promotions. Retailers are capitalising on personalised homepages; with personalised discounts for first time shoppers, JoJo Maman Bébé offered incentives for new visitors and saw a 9% uplift in new visitor conversion. By leveraging your customer data to personalise your customer engagement, retailers can improve conversion rates.

Connecting digital with physical stores can drive personalisation and build emotional brand connections. Burberry recently opened a social retail store in China, designed for customers to interact with its products in person and on social media. Burberry stores also connect with customer online channels whereby customers can see live stock counts and find it in store or have it shipped directly. Retailers must still provide a different in-store experience to online; equipping staff with the right technology and data to engage with customers is central to a personalised customer experience.

How to make this level of personalisation possible?

To achieve successful personalisation across your customer journey, your retail business needs to take a holistic approach. Here are some top tips on how to master the fundamentals:

  • Obtain a single customer view. A single customer view (SCV) (you can read more on this here) contains all of your customer data and consolidates it into a centralised database. This enables retailers to understand customer behaviours across multiple channels, touchpoints, and value triggers. Without a SCV, your business risks producing a fragmented and even irrelevant customer experience. 
    • We recommend understanding the customer journey and identifying the points of interaction and opportunities for value triggers. Identify the data and systems involved and teams and departments required to deliver personalisation. 
  • The right data management. Whilst it is important to collect as much data as possible on your customers, personalisation will only be effective if it is fed with accurate data. Less data that is more accurate is more valuable than having masses of incomplete, poor quality data. Focus attention on collection and curating relevant data for your personalisation priorities. Obtaining quality data requires having the right tools and processes to intelligently synthesise it.
    • We recommend defining your personalisation goals and identifying and prioritising use cases. Next, establish your organisation's data requirements and conduct a data audit to understand your data quality and gaps. This should be followed by defining your data strategy and roadmap. 
  • Centralised systems and integrated processes. Where possible, avoid having different systems for different business units and processes. A good CRM system can handle different processes for different products rather than having separate systems for different product lines. Your systems should be able to efficiently share customer data across teams within your retail business to enable consistently good CX and support personalised experiences across all channels. 
    • We recommend prioritising customer journeys and creating a backlog of processes and system improvements that will have the most significant positive impact on your CX. 

The key to taking personalisation to the next level is ensuring you take a holistic approach that enables a single view of your customer through collating quality data that is able to effectively move between systems, departments and processes to deliver one-to-one personalised experiences for your customers.