Top 7 Tips to Ensure ROI for Digital Commerce in 2023
The global economy has had a huge impact on digital commerce. As the first peak period post lockdowns, and at a time of global economic instability and rising inflation, consumers were expected to cut back on spending. This was shown in a muted Cyber Weekend than previous years. Our team were keen to explore and share how customers shopped over peak and what they think will be the key to success in 2023.
In previous years, brands had started offers at the beginning of November but this year we saw many brands hold off and start their sales later in the month. App-only discounts were on the rise along with incentives for downloading or purchasing through the same channel. Due to economic factors, shoppers were generally more reserved in their spending online. During peak, we also saw many brands opting to give donations to charitable causes, offer unique products or bundles without a discount or opt out of Black Friday altogether.
Overall, we saw a decline in revenue across the board, but we did notice a sharp uptick in page views and engagement, signalling that shoppers are being much more considered in their purchases. There was a reluctance to pull the trigger until they are sure they have the right product at the right price. This is also a strong indicator that shoppers are researching products online with the intention to shop in-store with lockdowns now over.
In light of a changing market and sentiment, We asked our team of experts across the globe for some of their top predictions on what will drive the best experiences and ROI in 2023.
This year we have seen major investment for Facebook, TikTok and Instagram with the platforms making it easier to complete purchases without leaving the apps. Instagram’s latest shopping capabilities include offering brands to create storefronts that show pre-filled customer details fast-tracking their ability to purchase without having to enter details again on a merchant’s website. This rise of m-commerce is driven by Gen-Z, where product discovery is influenced even more so via social than via Google search.
Mobile should be front and centre
It’s been spoken about for years, but now is when retailers should begin to design for mobile-first experiences as a default. Thinking more around how users are behaving on their mobile devices and how to streamline throughout their online journey. From ensuring refunds are a breeze to styling Product Detail Pages (PDPs) to be more palatable to all age generations this is a trend we’ll see continue to grow.
As shoppers start to become more controlled in their spending, delivering a personalised customer experience and engagement across channels and devices is key. It is that one thing that creates a solid bond between the customers and the brand and turns happy customers into returning ones or existing customers into loyal ones.
Customers must be at the very heart of every interaction. Having a personalised experience from customer service, through a mobile/wearable app, social channels and email marketing.It may sound straightforward, but this actually requires a lot of effort in the background to bring all customer data into a single platform – CRM, CDP or another data lake, and then orchestrate it across channels.
For companies pursuing a robust digital strategy, they should assess where they are in the process currently, what their goals are, and what do they need to adjust based on the changes in the consumer behaviour to drive success. Whether it’s recommending the right products, gamification, access to private sales or exclusive events, this is the way to continue increasing the loyal customer base and revenue.
Whittard of Chelsea offer customers the chance to create an account and build a wish list based based on previous purchases.
Recession Proof Segmentation
With current inflation and interest rate rise we’ll start to see more savvy buyers, those comparing sites and coupon hunters.
Businesses will have to double down on their loyal customer base and lure those who haven’t purchased in a while to ensure they stay top of mind (win back strategies). By leveraging customer data and insights, you can create impactful roadmaps and experimentation programs that drive conversion and retention.
Democratising data is when an organisation makes data accessible to all employees and stakeholders, and educates them on how to work with data, regardless of their technical background. To improve the customer experience for the average user is no longer acceptable. Really there is no such thing as an ‘average’ user. When it comes to segmenting its not about attributes anymore, its about building a profile based on customers’ likes, dislikes, influences and the life experiences that are unique to them to future-proof personalisation efforts. Demographics don’t define who we are; our actions do.
Brands will need to ditch demographics for behaviour-based targeting to remain profitable.
Digital experience will need to become more human, community and content led to build meaningful relationships with customers. Immersive and experiential experiences will continue to gain adoption and become the new normal.
The use of Web3 technologies is becoming more popular across luxury brands (yet slower than expected). Using Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs) to craft unique pieces or provide access to exclusive content or events, digital wearables – there are many opportunities to engage with customers and create new business opportunities.
Digital wallets to secure payment information on customers’ smartphones have risen allowing customers to pay by tapping their phones against a payment screen. These touchless payment options are seamless, since they don’t require people to touch a lot of buttons that other people have already touched, and are more secure than other payment options. There are several benefits for retailers including reducing the time taken to process transactions as well as speeding up the process for the consumer.
In the future, experimentation will be on the same level as SEO where you just have to do it—you won’t be able to build products any other way. Something we have seen with the growth in these services at Tryzens and which will only continue.
Sustainability At Every Stage
The pressure is mounting on retailers to introduce sustainability at every stage of their business and operations. Some high end brands have introduced rental options and recycling options in a bid to reduce waste. However, we have also seen the term ‘Greenwashing’ trending as some brands are actually failing to meet the promises they make to consumers and simply jumping on the bandwagon.
Ethical purchasing: a larger portion of the consumer purchase decision,source of origin, energy consumption / environmental friendliness, ethical production will all form a central part of the consumer consideration and purchase process . Product information will be increasingly important as a result of this.
Orlebar Brown leverage carbon calculators on a product level to indicate the carbon emissions created and offset of items.
Increased Focus On Omnichannel
With lockdowns now firmly in the rear-view mirror, businesses will look to further expand on the tie-ins between digital and physical shopping. As it’s always been, customers are looking for experiences that are seamless across channels. They want to be able to see stock in-store, reserve fitting rooms to try on products, use click and collect services and easily be able to return those items that might not be quite right, with ease.
We’ve seen a number of different tools that allow shoppers to see how the products will look on them or match skin tones for beauty brands. The rise of the virtual showroom is a spin on what bricks and mortar has for online experiences.
TYPO have live in-store look up to enable click and collect or for shoppers to go and view in-person.
Delivering What you Promise
Delivery has become a minefield. What customers want most from brands is speedy delivery with regular updates. With knock on effects still being felt, businesses need to take a close look at how they keep customers informed and leverage all networks to quickly fulfil orders.
We see omnichannel order management being a key part of solving the problem. By implementing an effective OMS system, you can better leverage stock across all locations to quickly fulfil orders. This also has the benefit of providing stock from the closest location and reducing the environmental impact that comes with shipping across long distances.
Using A.I algorithms, companies can analyse data on past delivery patterns and customer behaviour to predict future demand and ensure they have enough capacity to handle it. This can help prevent delays and disruptions in the delivery process, resulting in a better customer experience.
Sweaty Betty have a clear order tracking process that keeps shoppers in the loop on progress.
As the economy fluctuates in 2023 and shoppers become more conservative with spending, you need to ensure that spend is firmly focused on getting the best return. We believe that a focus on the customer will always be paramount and driving decisions based on data while leveraging best-of-breed technology is going to see the best results. We work with businesses across all verticals to help them shape the best solution for their customers, so please reach out with any questions.
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