Hyperpersonalization is the Future: What Retailers Must Understand About the CX Imperative
The modern consumer experience is rapidly evolving from one that was built upon the transactional process of shopping to one that’s rooted in deep, ongoing and enriching relationships.
Previously, all that was required of e-commerce companies was an online shopping experience that allowed consumers to browse and purchase with ease, with some acknowledgment of their previous purchases and potential interests. Today, consumers expect a relationship-based experience that's built upon their unique individual journey with your brand.
Thus, to succeed in today’s e-commerce landscape, organizations must consider one essential question: What experiences should I be offering to my customers?
In other words, customers expect hyperpersonalization. Segmented personalization — which is serving customers content and experiences based on the categories into which they’ve been grouped — is now considered subpar. And you won’t get ahead that way.
Hyperpersonalization is the new expectation. Customers insist retailers engage with them as individuals based on real-time shifts and changes in what they want, need and appreciate. It's the foundation of building long-lasting relationships with your customers and is the most critical imperative for success.
Why E-Commerce Success Requires Hyperpersonalization
The shift towards hyperpersonalization is being driven by both consumer expectations and bottom-line realities. Seven in 10 consumers expect companies to offer personalized interactions, and even more (76 percent) get frustrated when they don’t.
Prior to the pandemic, consumers may have put up with these frustrations, but no longer. The pandemic drove sweeping changes in purchasing behavior, with three-quarters of consumers switching brands and products. In return for delivering the personalization consumers expect, businesses will enjoy customer loyalty and can avoid wasting resources on trying to acquire the same customers again and again.
Fortunately, hyperpersonalization can cement customer loyalty and supercharge conversion rates. In fact, businesses that implement hyperpersonalization techniques can see an increase in their conversion rates of up to 400 percent. Hyperpersonalization allows brands to achieve the type of success that otherwise wouldn’t have been possible — and it's achieved with no incremental spend or effort.
In the imminent future, hyper-personalization will become a key indicator predicting which e-commerce brands might expect to enjoy overwhelming success and which will lag behind. This is especially true given the unprecedented shift in loyalties driven by the COVID-19 pandemic. The average e-commerce business loses 90 percent of its users within the first three months, putting all those customer acquisition efforts — and costs — to waste. Companies have to prioritize user retention to keep themselves profitable, and hyperpersonalization is the way to do so.
A 3-Step Road Map to Hyperpersonalization
E-commerce businesses will need three key elements to succeed in the new world:
1. Intelligent Data Layer
Most e-commerce companies today collect and store a tremendous amount of data. The problem is they’re not using it. This leads to the creation of a "dumb" data layer, where data is stored but not used. Instead, they continue sending the same message to customers across the board without considering what they need on an individual basis — which is exactly what's required to retain customers and boost revenue.
What brands need is an intelligent data layer that allows them to utilize this data on a real-time basis to provide compelling and hyperpersonalized experiences to consumers. Being able to leverage this data in real time, on an individual basis, allows brands to respond with content and offers that are relevant to a specific user at that exact moment — leading to higher retention rates and revenues.
2. Internet Scale
Scale cannot be an afterthought. It has to be the very foundation of your personalization strategy. By definition, hyperpersonalization is about creating these delightful experiences for millions of users in real time, multiple times during the day.
With the rising costs of customer acquisition, scale is imperative. The companies that succeed don’t succeed simply because they're doing something dramatically better than everyone else. It's because they understand that it’s a numbers game. They succeed because they're able to leverage scale and produce a 4x, 5x or 10x outcome based on the same capital investment that everyone else is making.
E-commerce companies are built to scale, but they need the right tools and the right mindset to do so. With the help of an intelligent data layer and the right technology, e-commerce companies can successfully deliver hyperpersonalized interactions across millions of customers, each with their own individual customer journey. That’s what drives scale.
3. Jump-Start Technology
In today’s fast-changing world, e-commerce businesses need the right expertise to move them forward, powered by the right solutions. Speed is a competitive factor, and it separates the ones that will succeed from the ones that will be left behind.
Once a business implements hyperpersonalization, it creates conversion lifts that grow and compound over time. The businesses that start using hyperpersonalization today will already be ahead of those that don't. And as the years go on, the gap between the brands that have adopted hyperpersonalization, and those that haven’t, will only grow
For successful adoption, e-commerce companies need a ready-made technological toolkit that allows them to jump-start their user retention and hyperpersonalization efforts. Seek out solutions that offer it all: cross-channel messaging, journey orchestration, behavior analytics, action upon real-time data, and campaign and customer lifecycle optimization. These are the solutions that can deliver strategic and measurable outcomes for you today, not tomorrow.
Looking Toward the Horizon
The need for hyperpersonalization becomes even more critical as we approach the metaverse. The metaverse will be a seamless experience that makes it easier for shoppers to find exactly what they want, exactly when they want it — i.e., a hyperpersonalized digital experience. The metaverse will enable brands to customize the customer experience at scale to reach more shoppers than ever before.
However, in order to be ready for the metaverse tomorrow, brands must be ready for today. Prepare and implement hyperpersonalization now. Tomorrow is too late.
Abhishek Gupta leads customer success, technical account management, and customer support at CleverTap, a SaaS based customer lifecycle management and mobile marketing company.
Abhishek leads customer success, technical account management, and customer support at CleverTap. A seasoned business leader, Abhishek brings two decades of experience leading SaaS and Internet businesses and delivering strong retention and high growth while building A+ talent teams. Abhishek strives to put customers at the heart of everything he does to ensure they achieve their strategic business outcomes. He’s also passionate about all things product, including strategy, use cases, value propositions, design, and implementation. Prior to CleverTap, Abhishek held leadership roles with Sprinklr, Trilogy, and Ignite Technologies. Abhishek and his family live in Bangalore. He enjoys reading and loves to trek when he can find time.