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The Importance of Digital Personalization in Ecommerce

In this increasingly digital world, the role of digital personalization has become more and more important in ecommerce. Digital personalization is nothing new. In fact, you probably experience it in your everyday life. When you watch Netflix and it recommends shows based on what you’ve watched. Spotify suggests playlists you would enjoy. Or when you’re served up an ad for those surround sound speakers you’ve been eyeballing.

With that… 

What is digital personalization?

In a marketing context, online personalization means understanding who your customers are and what they want so you can better cater to them. That means learning about everything from your customers’ shopping habits and purchase history, to their browsing patterns and in-store preferences – and everything in between. 

Knowing as much as possible about your customers helps ensure they have a better overall experience with your brand. How? It allows you to customize product recommendations, upsells, cross-sells, and even make recommendations when the product they’re looking for isn’t available. 

digital personalization

Think of it like having a digital concierge for your ecommerce site. Over time, you’ll learn all about your customers’ wants, and you can tailor their online experience specifically to them. Who wouldn’t want that? 

But digital personalization goes beyond just a customer’s favorite dress or electronics brand. You can customize the messaging they receive, the items you promote, the sales you offer, and much more. 

What are the results?

For some context, an Accenture survey revealed that 91% of shoppers are more likely to buy from brands that provide relevant offers and remember them. And, 83% of respondents said they would share data if it meant a more personalized experience. 

Consider also the effects of the pandemic. With so many restrictions, shoppers were left with little choice but to turn to ecommerce for non-essentials. 

Digital Commerce 360 highlights that online retail sales increased 32.4% year-over-year in 2020 ($791.7B) and are up 39% in the first quarter of 2021, which is estimated to have accelerated ecommerce by two whole years ahead of previous predictions. 

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What are the benefits of digital personalization?

Increasing sales is obviously the first thing on any ecommerce merchandiser’s mind, and digital personalization serves this up in spades. But there isn’t a direct path from personalization to sales. In fact, one can argue that it’s the following benefits of digital personalization that lead to increased sales.

  1. Better customer experience: It stands to reason that we all love to be catered to. The more a brand knows us and the more custom recommendations they can make as we interact with their brand, the better our overall experience with that brand will be.
  2. Better brand engagement: When a customer is happy with a company, they will spend more time engaging with their brand. Whether that is on their website, social media, via emails, or in a brick-and-mortar store. 
  3. Better customer loyalty: More engagement means customers are more likely to make repeat purchases, and can even mean increased average order value (AOV) and improved customer lifetime value (CLV). 

By offering a better customer experience, improving how customers engage with your brand, and creating natural customer loyalty, your sales will start to rise as well. 

Why you should focus on digital personalization

From a merchant’s perspective, digital personalization is all about giving your customers (and prospects) more of what they want so they can click that check-out button faster.  From a customer’s perspective, digital personalization means brands know you better and can tailor your shopping experience to your unique needs. When executed effectively and respectfully, everyone wins. Ready to get started? Request a Searchspring demo to learn how you can deliver more personalized shopping experiences on your store.