Personalization has become a must-have tool in retailers’ marketing arsenals.
Whether it’s product recommendations, tailored emails or customized content, personalization can help retailers create more relevant and memorable shopping experiences.
In light of our annual personalization feature being published on the RTP web site, the editors shared recent examples of personalization they found to be the most impactful. Their thoughts are below:
Debbie Hauss, Editor-In-Chief: I have to say that Amazon does an excellent job of making recommendations based on my past purchases and interests. Even better, I am not bombarded with emails from Amazon pushing certain products or prodding me to initiate a new purchase. It’s a good balance of making relevant suggestions without being overly intrusive or overbearing. I think a lot of other retailers could benefit from a more targeted, well-thought-out approach to personalization techniques.
Alicia Fiorletta, Senior Editor: I always love when retailers try to reignite engagement with consumers after they haven’t completed a purchase in a while. For example, Little Black Bag, a social shopping site, sometimes sends me reminder emails with a fun subject line like: “We miss you!” It piques my interest and encourages me to see what new products are available. Sephora also sends me updates on my loyalty points, sends personalized deals and coupons based on my spending and the free products I can get by redeeming my Beauty Insider points. Although I may not be ready to turn in my points just yet, it’s always good to know that the retailer is paying attention and is excited to reward me for my loyalty. (But I’m sure the fact I usually end up buying a few more things doesn’t hurt, either!)
Kim Zimmermann, Managing Editor: Proflowers.com has done a great job of personalization and reminding me about specific events. A while back I got an email reminding me of my sister’s anniversary and making specific recommendations about what to send. It’s a small thing, but inspires me to use them over other options when sending flowers.
Glenn Taylor, Associate Editor: From what I’ve experienced, The Home Depot is excellent in catering to the shopper, especially given the fact that its inventory consists of a seemingly unlimited amount of items. The recommendation engine has definitely based itself on previous purchasing and search history, and the front page immediately gears itself toward the closest retail store in the area. In doing this (I believe through IP tracking), the site has featured more relevant products available on my area, inspiring a faster purchasing and checkout process.
Brian Anderson, Associate Editor: Spending my Easter holiday purchasing flowers for family members gave me a great customer experience with BloomNation, a site that connects you with local florists. One feature has the florist take a picture of the arrangement you purchased prior to shipping, guaranteeing that you are receiving exactly what you wanted. Such a simple interaction made the shopping experience that much better, and also made it memorable enough for me to continue shopping with them for other holidays.