As consumers sheltered in place this spring, extended amounts of time at home prompted many to redecorate and take on home improvement projects. Some people tackled projects they couldn’t otherwise get to after a typical in-office work week, while others rushed to visit the websites of online retailers like Room & Board to explore the possibilities of new furniture.
Room & Board is a contemporary furniture brand that offers customers a combination of timeliness and quality pieces. Its steadfast commitment to products, combined with a rich omnichannel CRM program, has created a large and loyal customer base. However, Room & Board found that its ability to personalize communications and content to online visitors was limited, at best, due to the manual processes the team had in place.
Room & Board turned to Kibo’s Monetate solution to better leverage its existing rich customer data and large library of creative assets, ultimately implementing a scalable artificial intelligence (AI)-driven testing, segmentation and personalization program. By employing AI to drive maximum performance across its site, Room & Board ultimately enjoyed an 80 percent higher conversion rate for engaged furniture-seeking customers.
Scalable Personalization as the Primary Goal
With 17 different customer segments, the process of personalization had become cumbersome for Room & Board, limiting the scale at which the retailer could accomplish it. In working with Monetate’s platform, John Schroeder, director of business intelligence for Room & Board, wanted to ensure that his team would be able to easily test and personalize new content, promotions and offers. At the same time, he wanted open-source technology for ongoing customization, and for the setup to be agile enough to test and run new campaigns daily.
“We wanted to be able to leverage our content library and our data in an environment that would set us up for scalable personalization success,” said Schroeder.
The Right Content, Displayed at the Optimal Time
Monetate worked with Room & Board to ingest their rich data warehouse and the retailer’s vast content library, allowing the team to easily pull in customer insights and creative assets for different personalized experiences. No matter what stage of the purchasing funnel or which device they were viewing the website on, Room & Board wanted to offer a seamless and relevant experience to each visitor. The first place that Room & Board applied its new AI capabilities was on the homepage, where it could personalize hero images, individual promotional offers and editorial content.
In the homepage hero image slot, Room & Board used an Individual Fit Experience (IFE) method to deliver three different personalized experiences — the AI decides which content to show each visitor based on everything known about them. This resulted in a 45 percent lift in engagement. From there, Room & Board created unique personalization rules for each homepage slot, resulting in truly curated experiences for each visitor.
Achieving Sophisticated Personalization
Room & Board now has more than 100 personalized experiences running live on its website at any given time, something that the old manual process would have never allowed. Furthermore, prioritizing AI-driven personalization on the Room & Board website has created a positive chain reaction, as engaged visitors then receive even more personalization, driving further engagement and conversion as a result.
Room & Board has been able to increase the scale of its personalization efforts, resulting in dramatic increases in performance across engagement, clicks and conversions. From January 2020 to April 2020, Room & Board achieved a 30 percent lift in click engagements for visitors exposed to personalized experiences. For engaged customers, Room & Board saw an 80 percent higher conversion rate, 109 percent longer time on site, and 10 percent higher average order value.
Monetate also helped ensure that Room & Board maximized the surge in online shoppers that visited its site as people sheltered in place at the outset of the pandemic.
“Responding to products in high demand, we were analyzing our business on a daily, hourly in some cases, and responding with new creative development,” said Schroeder. “We would then push those assets through Monetate to maximize the opportunity that we were seeing at the time. All of that was driven through Monetate.”
Lisa Kalscheur is chief marketing officer at Kibo, a cloud commerce solutions provider.