Shindigz Uses Personalization Platform to Improve Customer Experience
With a vast array of products, product pages, categories and themes, personalized party products retailer Shindigz was faced with the daunting task of manually merchandising products and providing product recommendations across its four websites, including brands Stumps Party, American Prom and SpiritLine. Shindigz sought a product recommendation platform that integrated data, wisdom of the crowd and click behavior to streamline and automate recommendations across multiple shopping channels.
“With over 36,000 products, we spent a lot of time and energy manually merchandising products on all four of our sites, especially as new items became available,” said Keith Bansemer, director of internet marketing at Shindigz. “Combine this with manually providing product recommendations without data integration, and we knew we needed a platform that would not only enable us to streamline this process across multiple sites and channels, but would also improve the shopping experience by helping customers quickly discover the most relevant products.”
Finding the Best Solution
Based on market performance and breadth of personalization solutions, Shindigz selected iGoDigital’s personalization platform.
“We chose iGoDigital because of its history of handling large amounts of data and the flexibility to cater recommendations logic not just across product pages but also across category, blog and checkout pages as well as in email and cart abandonment triggers,” said Bansemer. “We knew we had an immediate solution that would also grow with the future of our product road map.”
iGoDigital's personalized product recommendation software exposes consumers to relevant and desirable products at multiple interaction points during the shopping experience. The platform analyzes individual shopper behavior and individual product attributes to show the most relevant products in real time to each shopper. Because each tool is powered by iGoDigital's customer intelligence engine, Shindigz can leverage its investment across multiple personalization solutions.
Shindigz went live with iGoDigital's product recommendations in the fall of 2009. The retailer immediately experienced a streamlined solution with improved recommendations, which led to an increase in conversions and sales. Based on the success of the first implementation, Shindigz added recommendations to its Stumps Party, American Prom and SpiritLine brand websites as well.
“We see the tool is getting smarter as recommendations become more refined day-by-day," noted Bansemer. "Within a couple of weeks of implementation, pages were coming together nicely and developing a complete party solution. We saw a dramatic increase in orders, conversion rates were higher than what iGoDigital had said it could provide and 21 percent of the orders included a recommended product.”
After seeing the success that Best Buy and Wal-Mart had with iGoDigital’s guided selling tools, Shindigz began to work with iGoDigital for its Stumps Party site. Offering over 4,000 party favors for large school events, Stumps needed a solution to help its web visitors find the best fit for their event. iGoDigital helped Stumps build a "favor finder" into its site that enables users to enter exactly what price range, theme and personality they're looking for in order to find the favors that would be most ideal.
Shindigz also uses iGoDigital’s post-launch reviews. After Shindigz's site went live with recommendations, iGoDigital’s team tested, refined and innovated to ensure the retailer was able to maximize its return on investment. “Outside of general A/B testing scenarios, we weren’t sure what to do with testing suggestions," recalled Bansemer. "It’s nice to request A/B testing and not have to do anything from our end, but yet still benefit from the data and improvements.”
Already using iGoDigital recommendations within its remarketing messages, Shindigz plans to inject dynamic product recommendations into all marketing and transactional messages. Consumers who receive emails reflecting the context of their most recent site activity open messages more frequently and demonstrate deeper engagement with a retailer’s merchandise, ultimately leading to more purchases and an increase in return visits.
“What’s great is that we’ve already put the model in place," said Bansemer. "Leveraging our investment across multiple personalization solutions is just a matter of flipping the switch. iGoDigital’s platform not only enables us to streamline personalized marketing and transactional messages, but its integration with our email service provider has led to a seamless relationship between both providers and our customers.”