Rajneesh Kumar
Rajneesh Kumar 20 April 2018

Retail Personalization Platforms: The Holy Grail of Meaningful Customer Experiences

Imagine this: you want to purchase a product, any product. What's the next likely thing you'd do? Check it out on the Internet to know what it's like, find out its features, price, in short— wrap your head around it, at your convenience. And you'll do all that not because you're an internet geek. You'll do that because it's the best and perhaps the easiest way to understand what you're buying, in the least amount of time, with zero assistance from any of your human counterparts.

But wait, take a pause. This doesn't mean you'll place an online order immediately after your research. You might, but not necessarily. You may also head out to the next brick and mortar store for a closer look.

This, largely, is the buying behavior of today’s customers. And that's where the need for an eCommerce product management software arises for retailers. Because, catching up in a competitive retail landscape only means one thing—offering a great omni-channel experience through a retail personalization platform. If you're a retailer, here's what you should be concerned with, in a 24/7 shopping milieu.

Personalization Affects Revenue—Directly:

A product information management solution for retail isn't just about creating a better looking business website or a smoother UI. It is certainly all that, but it contributes to your business far more. It makes a difference to your bottom-line, and not just marginally. In fact, according to McKinsey & Company, personalization has the ability to raise revenues from 5% to15%, cut down acquisition costs up to 50%, while boosting the efficacy of your marketing expenditure by 30%.

At the same time, lack of personalization can cost you dearly. Bad customer experience can make an irreparable dent on your retail and brand revenues. Retail, as a business, has started to depend on creating one-on-one relationships with the customer. And that's where the revenue really lies.  

Personalization Enables Agile Retail:

Frictionless shopping is what's desired by today's customers. Analyzing how your omni-channel touchpoints are working to create a seamless experience for customers, decides how much success you'll achieve in retail. In other words, the experience should be in sync with the ever evolving requirements of the customers gathered from various interactions with them, on every touch point.

Compelling, relevant experiences in real time is the need of the hour as customers demand instant gratification.

Retailers must must up the ante in order to innovate quickly, securely, rapidly, and efficiently. A sound omni-channel eCommerce platform can offer the kind of innovation, today's modern retailing demands.   

Consistency and Immediacy: Twin Pillars of Omni-Channel Success:

Shoppers don't have the patience to understand the technological constraints that restrict the retailers to not have information about them on all channels. However, they can effortlessly connect the dots between online, mobile or brick and mortar stores. Not finding their latest activity over a smartphone session coincide with an in-store experience, is no short of annoying for them. Omni-channel retailing in this day and age works in real-time. Consumers need seamless, easiest, and personalized shopping experience on a device- they like to use.

The chances for finding takers for an experience that compromises consistency and immediacy, is next to nil. Challenges in retailing are all about matching up with the standards of today's shoppers.

Smarter Associates for a Smart Service:

Another piece of the puzzle that contributes to a personalized service is 'smarter associates'. Retailers need to enable customer-facing personnel with cutting-edge digital technologies so they can deliver the best possible service. This gives retail associates power to access cross channel product details, customer data, and information from nearly every customer interaction.

In an ideal state, when a customer speaks to a representative or enters into a store, the retail rep must know the customer history, including items viewed, purchases, returns, from the time they've started engaging with the brand.

Retailers deploying open source content management applications to equip their associates, makes the tapping of customer journey much easier.

Wrapping Up:

While customer experience, consistency and real time buying are the real advantages of an omni-channel experience, it makes several other valuable contributions. For instance, it makes a great deal of data available to enterprises, to help in strategic decision making.

Enterprises eternally aim to achieve the ideal state in business, typically speaking: optimal usage of resources, avoiding uncertainty, investing carefully, while maximizing the revenue.

The data that emerges out of scrutinizing your customer behavior, concerns and buying patterns, can make a whole lot of difference, when it comes to making sound judgements.

The post originally published on Pimcore Blog.

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