The Power of the Transaction Moment
The return of in-store shopping post-pandemic has reminded customers of the value of a relevant, personalized experience. This convenience is something which e-commerce has struggled to replicate over the years — but it is something that's possible by leveraging first-party data. While we're more accustomed to the use of data in the early to mid-stages of the purchase funnel, there's another moment that's a broadly overlooked opportunity for driving additional relevance and value: the Transaction Moment ™ — the last stage of the purchase journey when consumers are most receptive and most likely to engage with relevant offers.
With an increase in competition and a rise in consumer expectations, it has never been more important than it is now to engage with customers at a one-to-one level. This can help deliver more profit per transaction for retailers, a greater customer experience overall, and act as a differentiator in the market.
The Paradox of Choice
Customers today want choices and enjoy having many options to pick from. In most cases, people view this as a positive. However, retailers’ temptation to offer too many options to consumers can become a deterrent for many shoppers, rather than increasing basket value or upsell attach rates. This is why presenting only the most relevant options is critical. With seemingly endless options available, consumers become overwhelmed, lose interest, and may even decide not to purchase a product at all. What’s more, if they do make a purchase, they’re often less satisfied with their experience. This is more commonly known as the “paradox of choice.”
Engaging With Customers at the Most Relevant Moment
The online world has been overwhelmed with customers constantly being flooded with irrelevant offers, messages and adverts, and often at the wrong time. This results in an obstruction of their user journey as they attempt to shop online. As a result, these offers don’t get customers’ full, undivided attention, yet many online retailers still insist on continuing to bombard customers with the same offers.
Instead, online retailers should focus on engaging with customers during the transaction moment as this is when they're most engaged. While online retailers tend to avoid this point in the customer’s shopping journey for fear of conversion impact, it provides an excellent opportunity to connect with customers and drive more relevance and value for both parties. This is mainly due to the fact that online shoppers are more receptive to relevant offers and upsells, and therefore more likely to engage with such content. By engaging with customers during this moment in a relevant and targeted way, customers are more likely to be satisfied with their overall shopping experience and return to purchase from the retailer in the future.
Leveraging Machine Learning Capabilities
It’s imperative to not only be able to provide offers at the right moment, but to also provide the customer with offers that they're most interested in receiving. To help them do this, retailers can use machine learning technologies to predict a customer’s preferences and use this information to present only relevant offers and recommendations that they're more likely to engage with. By utilizing first-party customer and transactional data, online retailers can ensure that they engage with customers at an individual level.
The Future of E-Commerce
In summary, online retailers often fall into the trap of providing customers with too many options which can become a deterrent and distraction. Their focus should instead be on a different stage of the customer's journey — the Transaction Moment ™. This allows online retailers to connect with customers when they're most engaged, least distracted, and in a buying mindset. Moreover, the online retailers that are already seizing the full potential of the Transaction Moment ™ are generating significantly higher profit for their company while providing their users with a superior and differentiating customer experience.
Tim Crouch is vice president of strategic partnerships at Rokt, a provider of e-commerce technology and software solutions, driving more value per transaction with personalized experiences.
Related story: How Retailers Are Adding Value and Driving Loyalty Through Digital Touchpoints
Tim Crouch heads up Rokt’s strategic partnerships and business development in Europe, working with leading e-commerce partners to maximize user engagement and profit. Prior to Rokt, Tim was scaling VC-backed, high-growth tech companies and sales teams in European and APAC markets, as well as working on a number of strategy consulting projects around market entry, growth strategy, and profitability maximization.