Personalised commerce drives higher ROI for retailers

Half of retailers that personalise across the entire customer lifecycle earn 300% ROI or more, but EMEA still lags behind North America.


Brands that prioritise personalisation across the entire customer lifecycle achieve significantly higher ROI than their counterparts, with more than a third (38%) likely to earn 400% ROI or more.

This is one of the key findings from the fourth annual personalisation survey by cloud commerce provider Kibo, which also found that 70% of companies that use advanced personalisation – personalisation that delivers multiple personalised experiences across the customer journey – earn 200% ROI or more as a result.

However, marketers in EMEA remain somewhat on the back foot in implementation, with only 20% using advanced personalisation across the entire customer lifecycle, compared to 34% of North American marketers. A quarter (26%) of EMEA marketers are utilising personalisation technology only on marketing channels, and just one in 10 are implementing it as part of the shopping and purchase experience.

Changing behaviours

Those that offer personalised commerce are not only more likely to achieve the highest ROI, but are also the retailers that are best positioned to quickly pivot the business to changing customer behaviours. Anguish brought on by the COVID-19 global pandemics means this flexibility will be crucial, as retailers scramble to adapt to changes in shopping, fulfilment, and communications.

Lisa Kalscheur, CMO at Kibo, said: “We’ve already seen a record drop in UK retail sales in March – with clothing stores in particular seeing sales slump by minus 34.8% in March – highlighting that now, more than ever, there is a need to deliver seamless, efficient, yet meaningful experiences to customers. Personalised commerce prioritises a one-to-one customer experience across every touchpoint including shopping, fulfillment and marketing channels, and those that personalise across as many touchpoints as possible are more likely to achieve 300% ROI or more.”

More than half of retailers (56%) find that they get the most return from personalised messaging, personalised mobile app or website content (47%), and personalised product recommendations (45%). Implementing these features allows for a wide range of flexibility giving retailers the freedom to personalise everything from location to past shopping behaviours to recent search keywords or origination channels.

Boutique mother and baby brand, Jojo Maman Bébé, worked with Kibo to use a wide variety of additional data inputs including weather, screen size, and customer status to create a highly personalised homepage experience, quickly moving customers to the section of the site that mattered most for them at that time. With this advanced personalisation, the company saw a 60% increase in homepage interaction and a 25% increase in overall conversion, with new customer conversion rates increasing by 25% as well.

Kalschuer added: “This research shows a holistic personalised commerce approach earns retailers significantly higher ROI than personalisation in only marketing or only shopping channels. The good news is that overall we are seeing more personalisation, and more advanced personalisation strategies, which is a sign that many more retailers will reach higher ROI in the near term.”

Having the end-to-end personalisation and agility needed to deliver for customers is vital, according to Kibo, particularly as retailers work through the inevitable downturn in coming months. The firm believes that communicating with customers and delivering personalised service will continue to be valuable, and will sustain its value over time. Every retailer will learn from looking back at 2020, identifying the weak links that were strained the most in the process, Kalschuer added.

A total of 400 respondents participated in the research study, which was compiled with the help of WBR Research. Participants represent a diverse set of online revenue contribution, with half of the participants headquartered throghout Europe and half in North America.

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