Category Archives: Blog

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Information is everywhere.

The ability to shop online has made it that much easier for merchants to learn about their customers – retailers can analyze shoppers’ purchase histories, look at which items they are viewing, research how much time they spend on each product page and identify what triggers people to buy.

All of this intelligence is incredibly useful for securing that initial purchase, as retailers can craft customer-specific product recommendations and incentives. In fact, one study conducted by the E-tailing Group and MyBuys found that approximately half of customers purchase more from sellers that leverage shopper interests and purchasing patterns to tailor the customer experience across all channels.  Tools such as Fanplayr can help merchants leverage the data and information they collect across multiple channels and turn it into actionable insights and analytics that will help them personalize the shopping experience, offering up relevant item suggestions, promotions and other content. The net result is an improved shopping experience that customers find valuable, while also bolstering revenue generation and loyalty for retailers.

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Managing New Customers Effectively.

Once retailers have put the initiatives in place designed to effectively generate new customers, they need to take it into their own hands to serve and retain them as loyal patrons. The common business notion is that it is much harder to generate new customers than it is to retain existing ones, so keeping shoppers loyal is pivotal for establishing a steady and consistent line of revenue.

Just as information plays a pivotal role for encouraging customers to make the initial purchase, it is also crucial in helping merchants continue to serve customers in the long haul. Using the right eCommerce solution, merchants can deliver an infinitely more valuable omnichannel shopping experience to customers.

         

Create a Consolidated Customer profile

For example, SalesWarp’s omnichannel customer management tool allows sellers to improve their visibility across all channels by consolidating customer information from multiple selling points into a single customer profile. Retailers cannot make tailored, relevant recommendations if they do not have a unified customer profile. Beyond that, disparate profiles also impedes general service – with a customer management tool that unifies customer data across the organization, all associates from sales floor employees to customer service agents can get an in-depth look at the customer and their purchase history, which gives them the knowledge required to serve customers optimally.

Having a consolidated customer profile helps retailers in other ways as well. For example, it can help retailers make better strategic decisions by using regional or demographic trends to decide which items should be stocked in specific locations to satisfy demand. Detailed customer profiles can also help retailers make better decisions in the way they handle orders. For instance, if one customer has had recent issues with service and is at a risk of a loss, merchants can offer them incentives or expedite their orders to ensure prompt arrival.

Knowing all about customers is not only vital to securing sales, but also in the management of loyal shoppers as well.

About the Author: 

Janna Skinner

Marketing Development Manager for SalesWarp, Janna Skinner brings a fresh perspective to the eCommerce and retail

industry from hundreds of conversations with retailers juggling multi channel operations. She is also a frequent publisher to

the SalesWarp site, including blogs, white papers, and infographic content.

You can find her on Twitter @JannaSkinner or LinkedIn linkedin.com/in/jannaskinner

Customer Journey

The recent eTail West Conference was much more than just a physical meeting point for thousands of retailers across different sectors and industries. With many thought leaders and emerging e-commerce entrepreneurs in the crowd, some of the most interesting takeaways were conversations surrounding trends in the realm of content personalization and its future impact on ROI. Discussions on this topic all essentially drew similar conclusions – content personalization itself is changing, from a focus on facilitating efficient omni-channels, to a desire to optimize the customer journey. While the former emphasizes the need to maximize the shopping experience across different mediums, the latter looks at creating an optimal world for onsite engagement.

Recent progress in this field point to the idea that reaching this point is best served by appealing to the potential shopper via targeted and relevant displays. While this trend is fascinating in its own right, the reasons that led to this change are equally significant. In brief, today, the merchant market is demanding more accountability and ROI per e-commerce display effort. This reality is in part the result of retailer frustration born out of losing market share to both large e-commerce players as well as smaller cloud-based services offering unique approaches to the online shopping experience. This group, of which Fanplayr is proudly a part of, has focused efforts on bridging the gap between e-commerce merchants and potential shoppers by presenting highly relevant ads to help maximize conversions. In this way, the smaller players have become more active in the e-commerce space, offering shoppers a smoother customer journey than previously experienced.

 

Customer Journey

 

Most interestingly, trends in content personalization have suggested that segmenting displays according to individual behavior and on-site activity has become increasingly difficult. For instance, focusing an e-commerce budget on trying to capture sales from a single user is simply not cost-effective. Given this, the trick (or rather challenge) for retailers is often to find the middle ground between smart, targeted personalization, and understanding and segmenting shoppers into groups on the basis of various attributes. While reaching this optimal level of content personalization will require testing different approaches vis-à-vis customers (including rearranging product formats and menu displays), the resulting effect will not only be easier to manage, but will impact an e-commerce merchant’s ability to optimize conversions. Therefore and quite logically, if merchants are successfully able to present products to a group of shoppers based on their interests, then more conversions and customer satisfaction are expected to result.

Future changes within the e-commerce space will likely continue to focus on accountability and personalization, thus adding multi-dimensions to the retail advertisement space. As part of this, retail and marketing efforts will be spent on improving the shopping experience and site navigation in order to increase sales and help retain customers. For now, e-commerce merchants will need to find the right balance between customer personalization and ROI generation. As it looks now, the answer lies in creating an optimal customer journey over the long run – a difficult task made slightly more approachable given new apps and cloud-based e-commerce technologies.

What are your thoughts regarding this customer journey transformation? Send us your comments and ideas – we’re always interested in learning about new developments and trends in the e-commerce space!

For e-tailers, calculated attempts to reach out to online consumers require strategic thinking. For one thing, knowing which offers to promote and when is a critical part of the e-commerce world. As such, deciding which type of specific call-to-action (CTA) you are aiming to realize should be the go-to first step in order to optimize potential ROI. Simple vector contact, feedback, share, buy, download, register stamps Since each customer has his/her own unique shopping behaviors, a call-to-action should be based on relevant consumer insights, including taking into account the user’s current cart value, past purchase history, time spent on a specific product page, URL browsing history, and many other attributes that can impact your ability to convert. Having data on these and similar factors helps clarify which message or display would be most effective in terms of completing the sales funnel. It is also recommended to contemplate the following questions when attempting to determine the most appropriate call-to-action:

  • Would a sudden discount display be effective here?
  • How can I condition my site visitors to get an offer every time they visit a specific product page?
  • Can I somehow encourage my potential shoppers to sign up for an email list to get continuous offers?
  • Will the presence of an exit-intent display help or hinder conversions?
  • How will potential shoppers perceive the offer, as spam or relevant?

Asking these questions in conjunction with taking a closer look at the user’s cart and past digital footprint will help determine what the most effective CTA will be for your e-commerce sales campaign. For instance, if an online shopper has $500 in cart and they are about to leave your site, perhaps it is better to refrain from presenting a traditional “don’t leave” exit-intent message considering that this cart’s value is quite high. Rather here, you should opt to display a targeted offer to help drive home the sale. The call-to-action, by it’s very nature, is disruptive to the visitor experience. If not carefully considered, the CTA is perceived as a self-serving numbers game that results in the visitor giving up something for free. Often these engagements, though well intentioned in their inception, can cause a great deal of annoyance and in some cases engenders mistrust. Still, the CTA is a fundamental aspect of e-commerce and it is worth paying attention to some of the principals that will help contribute to a more positive shopping experience.

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Here at Fanplayr, we have compiled a list of tips and advice for you to consider prior to adopting a CTA strategy:

  • Look to present a message that will truly drive your customer to react. By using friendly and engaging content, you can cleverly position yourself to help reel in sales. Each CTA should take into account both the medium that you wish to use to present the message, as well as the content itself.
  • Make sure your ‘call’ is clear and displayed appropriately across different mediums, from mobile to web. After all, a message is only as effective as its ability to entice customers to click through and carry on throughout the sales process. In short, make sure the CTA is visible, understandable and is worth paying attention to.
  • Review your product offering to ensure that you have the available resources to support your offer or display. This is especially importance in this highly competitive e-commerce industry, as once your CTA is successful, you will be expected to deliver.
  • Choose a CTA that is based on relevant, targeted, and actionable consumer data. While this implies that your strategy will need to adapt itself to meet the potential shopper’s unique mindset and purchase history, forming an appropriate message vis-à-vis your customers requires flexibility. This can be critical, as understanding what the potential client is doing before injecting a CTA can directly get in the way of a perfectly good, and often seamless sale.
  • Small positives can lead to long-term success. Sometimes a simple CTA with the initial goal of getting a customer to sign up for an email list is good enough… at least for now. From there, take the time to conjure up great content and develop products that will satisfy your consumer base and maximize conversions.
  • Avoid “Spray and Pray of the CTA”. Know your audience and be relevant. For instance, don’t ask for an email address that you already have. Rather, focus your efforts on displaying the most appropriate display based on your e-commerce company needs.
  • Figure out a way for your customers to sense that the message is individually directed towards them. Essentially, try to differentiate your message and be as unique and targeted as possible. Helpful tip: Consider triggering your CTAs in response to a specific visitor action other than his/her simple arrival on your site.
  • Lastly, remember that each CTA has a cost. Too many of these types of messages presented to potential consumers can seriously hinder the shopping experience and hamper your ability to move ahead in the sales process.

All in all, the world of CTAs is one that requires e-commerce merchants and marketers to constantly research, test, and analyze the most appropriate messages to display to potential consumers. While this requires both time and effort, these messages can go a long way in bringing in more leads and ultimately driving conversions.

Have other actionable tips and suggestions? Let us know!

An e-commerce merchant is constantly engaged in spotting the triggers involved in closing a sale. However, often or not, some of the most revealing data comes from identifying those pain points that deter shoppers from completing an online purchase.

Sales problem

While this may at first seem like a clear approach, shopping behavior is a complex topic involving various components. Common focal points include focusing on ways to understand the motives behind an online visitor’s click on product A vs. product B, time spent on cart before converting or abandoning, different activity based on exposure to promotions and offers, and the ever pressing question of whether pricing should be restructured.

With so many parameters to consider, it becomes increasingly difficult to identify the main pain points involved in the sales process. Add to this the need for e-commerce merchants to collect real-time marketing data on the unique behavior of online customers and you find yourself in need of creative options to better position yourself for customer acquisition, retention, and satisfaction.

Thankfully, there are ways to help reduce shopping frustration, uncertainty, and other deterring factors impacting your ability to raise your conversion rate.

Below are 5 of our favorites:

1. Don’t underestimate the power of re-wording extra charges: From rewording discounts to slightly altering the online purchasing experience, there are many small adjustment e-commerce merchants can make in order to optimize the experience for potential consumers. For instance, rather than just mentioning that a $4.00 surcharge will be added to your order, consider including an encouraging adjective such as small or minor in order to reduce its importance.

2. Determine appropriate language based on specific user behavior: Pictures may be worth a thousand words, but don’t underestimate the power of words in the sales industry. Pay attention to how you word displays in terms of positive, neutral, or negative language. This is especially relevant when trying to sell a product online, where the visual message can have a tremendous affect on your ability to close a sale. For instance, plan on drafting clever product descriptions based on user activity to further engage buyers versus referring to standard templates. Test these out to see how effective they are in terms of influencing shopping behavior.

3. Online shoppers want something tangible: Using monetary figures rather than a percentage sign when displaying targeted offers online has psychological roots – people want something they can easily comprehend and base their decisions on. Moreover, they are looking for relevant and personalized offers. E-commerce merchants should look towards simplifying the purchasing process in order to facilitate more opportunities for quick conversions. Reducing the need for savings calculations is a great starting point for the price-conscious consumer.

4. Reframing subscriptions and offers: As mentioned, visually appealing to your customer base can be an incredibly effective method for converting. This philosophy also applies to monetary figures, from monthly subscriptions to discounts and offers. Apply A/B testing techniques to analyze how your online users respond to the presented display and pivot accordingly to maximize your ability to bring them closer to complete a purchase. After all, the discount you’re considering offering your customer base is defined by your ability to make the offer as attractive as possible.

5. Get rid of unexpected charges: Facing a last second unexpected charge a moment prior to cart checkout can be a frequent frustrating experience for online shoppers. In fact, it may even cost you a sale. At this point in the sales process, your customers are rather eager to complete a purchase. Since acquiring new customers is challenging enough, these ‘hot leads’ are worth investing a little more thought in. Think about ways to include these additional chargers (if essential) earlier on in the sales funnel, of course with minimal risk of an early bounce rate.

While these are only a few suggested methods to consider in reducing paint points during the sales process, we have found them to be great ways to increase/retain your customer base and meet the growing demands of the increasingly cautious online shopper.

Test some of these methods out and let us know how they impact your sales funnel. Have other ideas? Let us know in the comments section below.

Online shopping

Even if everything seems to be in place, from a quality marketing team and a well-put together pricing strategy, to an experienced in-house graphic designer and a flawless tech support team, your e-commerce shop has likely struggled to respond adequately to shopping cart abandonment. Fortunately, you are likely in good company, as your competitors are often also feeling this burden. This reality suggests that this issue isn’t that simple. Instead of feeling hopeless or betting on lucky site visitors with a ferocious appetite to shop, we should realize that there are multiple components involved in choosing whether or not to actually carry out with the checkout process. In fact, we can observe this type of user behavior as a function of multiple dimensions, ones that require taking measurable steps to understand what the cart itself contained, including identifying its actual items, price value, the number of specific items, certain brand types, and categories of items. Ultimately, your goal should be to determine a certain threshold whereby you can consider your cart in danger of abandonment. From there, you can more adequately take the steps needed to turn the tables around.

Online shopping

Let’s break this down even further. One practice that is key in preventing cart abandonment is to determine which carts are in danger of being abandoned. Crucial to this understanding is being able to characterize the attributes of successful conversions with respect to both the total value of the cart and the first and last add-to-cart event. The value of the cart provides us with significant insights, as we can reason that a higher value cart often involves a longer process from inception to conversion. Moreover, you can in fact correlate value-in-cart to time-since-last-add-to-cart. In doing so, you can create a table that maps cart value to average and max time-to-conversion. This can inform e-commerce merchants of when a cart is in danger of being abandoned, which in turn enables them to take appropriate steps to proactively respond, such as presenting a highly relevant offer to site visitors in order to prevent the abandonment from occurring in the first place.

Even with early preparation, shopping card abandonment is an all too familiar side effect of highly curious buyers, mixed in with what they feel are unpredictable fees and a general predisposition that they can find better offers on other sites. This reality, while alarming, only suggests that e-commerce shop owners should seek clever and measurable ways to address the issue.

Here we will briefly explore 4 simple strategies online retailers can undertake to help secure more conversions by recapturing unfulfilled sales resulting from abandoned shopping carts:

1. Make clever use of autoresponders:

Whether potential shoppers are no more than just that – potential, every unique user visiting your site can benefit from a short, but effective reminder. Supplement this email follow-up with a segmented-based offer to loop in your buyer. You’ll be impressed with how this small of an effort can help convert leads. Companies such as GetResponse are experts in autoresponder technology. Take a look at their offerings and try it out on your customer base. Pro Tip: No one enjoys spam, not even once in a while. Take the time to prepare an engaging email to those shoppers that you have observed are in need of a little ‘push to close’.

2. Conduct effective A/B testing:

Identifying the rationale behind customer behavior is a grueling task, one often highlighted by unpredictability. A logical solution is therefore to break down user behavior by simultaneously testing different features and displays that will assist in revealing what specifically triggers shopping cart abandonment. For instance, asking whether certain visual designs or technical displays can contribute to a more positive shopping experience for buyers is a great starting point. These and similar questions are frequently best explored via A/B testing platforms. Thankfully, there are multiple options to incorporate this strategy as part of your strategic sales optimization arsenal so go on and get going!

3. Consider free shipping:

Some will call it daring, while others may be quick to dismiss. However, exploring options such as free shipping may be just the tipping point e-commerce merchants are in need of. Considering that “most research indicates that the #1 reason people abandon their carts is ‘unexpected costs’ like shipping, taxes & fees”, this might be one of the roots of the problem. Pro Tip: With your pricing strategy documents within easy reach, take the time to carefully plan whether or not rethinking your shipping strategy can help you convert those hesitant shoppers.

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4. Use exit-intent displays wisely:

We know that the e-commerce world is one of constantly looking for ways to keep shoppers interested enough in your products to complete a purchase. Yet, since not all shoppers have the same mind-set and wallet size, consider the use of segmented exit-intent campaigns based on users’ behavioral insights to appropriately reach out to them for a last attempt to close on a deal. Additionally, considering that online consumers all leave a digital footprint regardless of previous purchase history (ex. URL history, time spent on a specific webpage, etc.), this strategy essentially utilizes informative as well as actionable data to help convert leads.

These strategies are all geared towards optimizing the sales process for e-commerce merchants. While shopping cart abandonment is clearly a significant issue, you can feel confident knowing that by properly equipping yourself with relevant and measurable consumer insights, you are successfully positioning yourself to reduce lost leads.

Have you implemented these strategies before? Have other suggestions or feedback? Please let us know by writing to us.

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It’s a tale as old as time, well at least in the e-commerce space – it costs more to acquire new customers than to retain loyal ones. Unfortunately, most companies spent much of their efforts on trying to attract new ones and to close deals as quickly as possible using exit-intent strategies. This desire for immediate conversions is often what fuels merchant decisions. At Fanplayr, we prefer more comprehensive solutions based on segmenting unique consumer behaviors. More specifically, we look to focus our energies and resources on trying to understand the behaviors of shoppers that demonstrate a level of intent to purchase, but for some reason leave your e-commerce shop.

A combination of this philosophy and our insights into consumer knowledge has allowed us to design an exit-intent feature based on behavioral targeting and segmentation. The addition of this feature now leaves merchants with ample opportunities to specifically target consumers with attractive and relevant offers, ideal conditions for facilitating more conversions.

While there are many factors that hint at shopping intent, it helps to review specific segmented attributes of behavior tracking to identify consumer intent. See the image below for a sample list:

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These and other variables provide insightful data on potential consumers, whether they are curious newcomers or returning shoppers with an impressive purchase history. The main benefit of this approach revolves around the notion that not all consumers are alike, and therefore, should not be treated as such with generic exposure to pop-ups and uniform offers designed to keep visitors from leaving. For instance, it will be very helpful for merchants to be able to first identify a visitor’s average cart amount and then, react with a relevant offer based on that knowledge.

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With this in mind, we are excited to announce that our exit-intent feature will not only provide a last attempt to close on a deal (‘push to close’), but together with an array of targeted features and segmentation options, will provide you with a closer look into the behavior of your potential and current consumers, thus allowing you to reach out to them via more personalized and relevant exit-intent incentives.

With this launch, effective segmentation-based exit-intent strategy is now part of our comprehensive portfolio of highly targeted e-commerce features. This will allow us to both further meet the needs and growing demands of our client base. We are confident that this feature, in combination with those that collect, analyze and segment consumer insights based on digital footprints and support the display of data-driven targeted offers, will help e-commerce merchants capitalize on the potential of ‘hot leads’ and convert more consumers at optimal points during the sales process.

All in all, exit-intent alone does not drive business and help raise your conversion rate. Rather, e-commerce merchants should look to adopt more consumer behavior-driven approaches to more appropriately reach out to shoppers in real-time. The trick will be to determine how to make the best use of behavioral information as part of your exit-intent strategy in order to convert more users.

For a closer look into how our segmentation-based exit-intent feature works, click here.

Have other ideas on how to effectively use exit-intent to lure in customers? We love to learn so please let us know in the comments section

E-Commerce has grown out of its diapers. In what is still considered a relatively new field, one largely dominated by major players of the 1990s, namely Ebay and Amazon, these powerhouses have now found themselves in a new, fast-growing marketplace. These and other companies, including India’s Flipkart and Snapdeal, understand the need for looking for ways to incorporate cloud-based e-commerce services to help facilitate more effective relationships between merchants and customers. The numbers themselves don’t lie – In 2014 alone, “Over $3.1 billion was pumped into 46 deals in the ecommerce space…”. This staggering amount suggests that 2015 is on target to become a lucrative period for many companies and startups operating within this industry.

The reasons behind these corporate acquisitions are abundant, as the potential for such services has and will continue to increase exponentially. If we look at the retail industry as an example, according to Internet Retailer, US-based e-commerce “…retail sales are expected to grow from $263 billion in 2013 to $414 billion in 2018.” In dollar growth terms, this rise translates into a nearly 60% growth rate. The chart below from Statista helps visualize some of this data:

 

Source: http://www.statista.com/graphic/1/272391/us-retail-e-commerce-sales-forecast.jpg

Additionally, this growth rate has moved online retail sales ahead of in-store retail purchases, thus marking a significant change in the way customers make buying decisions.

Most notably, e-commerce companies have been making progress in helping to bridge the gap between merchants and consumers. This is predominately the result of a broader trend in the natural evolution of e-commerce, one synonymous with smarter engagement between all parties involved in transactions, and with less dependence on intermediaries. This trend means good news for both shoppers and merchants out there, as the adoption of such products and cloud-based services implies more competitive prices and less dominance by a few large players.

Adding to this e-commerce transition towards more direct relationships between buyers and sellers is the prevalence of real-time deals and similar targeted offers being displayed on consumer screens across a variety of platforms and mediums. This is just another indication of the growing ad tech space. Investors have understood the dependence of brand marketers on these types of platforms, and this year should provide much clarity into new deals and potential M&A opportunities. With spending on digital advertising channels expected to double in the next few years, the value of ad impressions has the potential to elevate relationships within the e-commerce space. This will most likely be the case between buyer and seller, as there is a growing number of cloud-based e-commerce technologies specifically designed to provide the most relevant and personalized deals and offers to digital consumers. Such opportunities have the potential to turn e-commerce marketers into highly relevant advertisers, with the underlying goals of pleasing customers and increasing total revenue via targeted conversions.

                                                                                   E commerce design

 

As such, investors are already discussing attractive investment opportunities within the realm of personalized digital advertising, where technologies now have the potential to identify ‘hot’ prospects using real-time marketing strategies and on that basis, present relevant offers to maximize their conversion rates. Of course, such advancements in technologies are already (and will continue to be) supplemented by the ability to close deals across a range of different platforms, with a strong emphasis on mobile.

All in all, 2015 should be an interesting year. It will be exciting to watch how the ad tech space will influence both brand marketers and investors operating within the e-commerce industry. Consumers will have the best seat in the house, as their purchase history and onsite activity will force brands and technologies to meet their growing demands for quality products.

Want to learn more about how Fanplayr fits in with this rising AdTech ecosystem? Click here for a demo.

The relationship between merchant and buyer has evolved into a more complex and dynamic exchange, more specifically one that requires sellers to adopt behavior-driven targeting strategies to maximize conversion rates.

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Often in the rising world of e-commerce, the browsing behavior of each visitor can offer retailers clues as to which emotions drive specific onsite engagement. This is particularly the case when the merchant can both view and measure the historical context of each visit. For instance, vital information can be revealed by examining a range of different activities, from data on the number of page views, to the amount of time spent viewing a shopping cart.

In the case of online stores that enjoy a high repeat purchasing history due to consistent sales from such items ranging from dietary supplements to specialty apparel, the digital footprint of those site visitors gives retailers important insights that may well lead to tangible leads and eventually, to actual conversions. Meanwhile, a first time prospect without a prior purchase history, is unlikely to be considered a serious shopper.

However, in the case that a new user does make his/her first purchase on the site, the merchant is then very well positioned to establish itself as the primary  supplier of specific items similar to that user’s recent purchase. This positioning can help reel in more regular, repeat purchases. Therefore, it is  vital for merchants to explore methods that will help them identify new potential repeat customers. Capitalizing on such opportunities requires adopting an aggressive strategy that examines user browsing activity in real-time. This could be in the form of presenting a one-time offer that recognizes both the level of caution displayed by the prospective buyer, but simultaneously appeals to the expressed interest reflected by his/her behavior.  At Fanplayr, we refer to this as segmenting and targeting, with these strategies producing significant results:

Segmentation

Segmentation essentially tries to understand and classify the emotions behind each engagement, all while minimally impacting the user experience and without requiring explicit revelations or onsite registration. Data that underpins visitor segments are well known to most online merchants and include the following attributes among others:

  • Number of page views
  • Time on site
  • Page views per second
  • Source of visit
  • On site url history
  • Value in cart
  • Item/brand in cart
  • Time of day, day of week
  • Geographical location
  • Bought X number of items in the past Y days
  • Received X number of discounts in the past Y days

These attributes can be derived from the first visitor’s page view activity and are updated with each subsequent page view as each visitor navigates throughout the shopping site. As these values change during the visitor session, the visit itself is regularly evaluated and re-evaluated to determine which, if any, segments the visitor qualifies for. In this way, the data collected within each visit that comprises the basis for which segments are defined and visits are evaluated, is determined to be actionable.

Targeting

Targeting is the action taken when a given visit qualifies as a segment. Once you as a retailer understand the emotions driving the engagement, you are best equipped to launch a  call-to-action (CTA) that directly relates to that specific emotion. Such actions include: displaying a personalized message that provides a link to a product page (area of intent), a solicitation to register for a promotion or newsletter, and most effectively, an offer or set of offers that improves the price of certain items solely for this respective cohort. Again, these actions can directly translate into increased conversions. The following are good practices for effective targeting:

  1. Visibility: The call to action must have a relevant audience. Segmentation should group together cohorts of similar interest, but neither be too restrictive or too “narrow” that no one qualifies in the segment. In order to generate redemptions, segments must generate user traffic.
  2. Exclusivity: Visitors need to know that the offer is intended for them, and them alone. More specifically, the offer should effectively draw attention to itself, while not distracting the visitor via peripheral messages that are more generic in nature, what is often referred to as “bells and whistles”.
  3. Responsiveness: It is considered positive for the visitor to establish a connection between the offer and some of their onsite activity. This engagement could be as simple as a page view, adding an item to the cart, or slowing down their pageview per minute rate. If the visitor sees an offer that seems to be in a response to their activity, this promotion will more likely grab their attention as it creates a sense of dialogue between the merchant and customer.
  4. Improved Experience: Visitors need to feel that their actions are rewarded, that they have an earned stake in an enhanced shopping experience just from simply navigating the site. For example, an offer can enhance the visitor’s experience by providing options that are exclusive to that visitor. If two offers are collected with different minimum purchase requirements, the visitor can chose the most advantageous offer that fits his or her budget. However, there is no guarantee that those same offers will be presented in subsequent visits.
  5. Conversion Facilitation: Last but surely not least, effective targeting implies the ability for ecommerce retailers to increase their visitors’ conversion rates. Ideally, the mechanics of receiving and redeeming an offer should facilitate conversion and not inhibit it. As a rule, promote offers only when they are necessary and then kindly get out of the way of the buying process.

A/B Testing

Among its advantages, segmenting and targeting results can also be easily measured. Fanplayr includes simple analytics features wherein the merchant can decide how much segmented traffic will be subject to targeting and how much will be held as control, i.e. they aren’t exposed to an offer. This method, also known as A/B testing, produces results that are subject to the effectiveness of the varying segments. The screenshot below is of a recent campaign we ran on behalf of a leading and well-known online furniture and fixtures store. Note the 25.54% improvement in total net revenue, an 11.44% bump in the conversion rate, and a 12.65% bump in average order value (AOV). Impressive, right?

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We understand the e-commerce philosophy that not all visitors are created equal. Some are there with a clear intent to make a purchase, with the potential for every extra onsite action to deter the buyer. However, there are plenty of curious shoppers out there in the need of a little push, and the type and magnitude of that engagement largely depends on the state of mind of each visitor. Additionally, the behavioral targeting strategies introduced above should look to align the interest of the merchant with that of the potential buyer. It is really possible to pinpoint the emotions that trigger people’s responsiveness to an offer. More importantly, the fundamental purpose of segmenting and targeting is to understand a visitor’s purchase intent and interest, and to align offers according to the purpose of each visit. Thus, the technique acts in the interests of both merchant and visitor alike.

Want to learn more about how Fanplayr can help you run a more profitable e-commerce site? Click here to request a demo.

 

Question Marks

No matter how much traffic your site gets, what really matters is conversions. Convert neutral traffic – people who haven’t decided whether to buy or not – by investing in analyzing and incentivizing them to buy. Increasing conversions is more financially beneficial than driving more traffic. Instead of accepting your current conversion rate, focus on increases of 18% or more using the Fanplayr methods described in this All Business article below:

http://experts.allbusiness.com/convert-neutral-traffic/19643/#.VIdFnWTF-Ad