True customer data-based identification, across devices and email accounts, is now essential- and device-specific cookies simply aren’t good enough. Rob Massa, General Manager for BounceX EMEA, explains why retailers want to give their New Year’s marketing push laser-like focus, effective identification is the one challenge they need to crack.
In the last five years, the cost of acquiring new ecommerce customers has increased by over 50%. That’s why reducing the customer acquisition costs and proving the ROI of marketing efforts are two of the most commonly cited priorities among ecommerce companies.
But how can you validate marketing efforts, prove ROI, or even effectively personalise content if you don’t know who you’re talking to online? Many retailers are still failing to overcome this. But, if you want to give your New Year’s marketing push laser-like focus, effective identification is the one challenge you need to crack.
What is true identification?
Put simply true identification means having first-party data that links together all of the devices your prospects shop with—such as mobile, desktop, laptop, and tablet. To make things slightly more complex, this data must also stay intact across browsers and sessions. With this data, you’ll be able to more accurately identify each site visit and match them to users who have opted in to your marketing efforts. But this identification isn’t always easy to achieve.
One surefire way to identify more than half your traffic is to employ well-timed email capture techniques. These can include offering prospects things like a 50% discount or exclusive access to products in return for their email. The key to success here is to carefully examine the behavioral data associated with each prospect in order to craft the right email-capture messaging for them.
For example, maybe they’ve looked at a specific product multiple times without converting. If this is the case, a modest incentive like free shipping or a promo code may be enough to convince them to give their email. Similarly, if they’ve clicked on an ad for a product or product range, offer them an opportunity to opt-in for exclusive deals and/or content around those products.
This double whammy of identification and strategic acquisition enables you to spend your ad budget more effectively as you develop a better view of your customer and target them across every internet-enabled device they use to shop. But, once they’ve opted in, they’ll be expecting VIP treatment. To avoid snuffing out their excitement, you’ll need to avoid emails with spammy or irrelevant content.
Unleash triggered email
One of the best ways to avoid spamming your prospects and customers is to use triggered emails, which feature content based on the specific actions a user took on your site.
For example, triggered emails can alert the customer if there are price reductions on products they have previously browsed or placed in their basket without buying. Maybe these items are selling fast and stock levels are low or stock-outs have just been replenished.
This is all about giving your customers a value proposition that naturally capitalises on the organic urgency and scarcity in your feed, without forcing you to rain discounts down upon your customers.
Behaviour-triggered email campaigns like these should be monitored and tailored, first to ensure they’re achieving the desired effect and secondly, so they adapt as customers’ behaviour patterns change.
What makes your customers tick?
Successful marketeers will examine every trend that instigates a spike in email open rates or a decrease in conversion. They will A/B test subject lines, imagery, content, cadence, and more so that they will know (without guessing) what makes their customers happy enough to click, engage, and eventually purchase.
Peak trading is, of course, the time retailers need identification and triggered email to be honed to perfection. Whether it’s the New Year sales, Black Friday, Christmas, or even Easter, consumers are primed and prepped for a barrage of emails and discounts. While it may seem counterintuitive, your customers want to be engaged during peak trading, that’s why engagement numbers go through the roof because people are actively on the lookout for the best deals.
For brands, this means you can increase the number of sends without worrying about stressing out or over-communicating with your customers. However, it’s important to remember that with an aggressive strategy comes great responsibility, so be sure to be organized and do a dry run of the most important send days like Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
It doesn’t matter how sophisticated your marketing plan may be, true customer data-based identification, across devices and email accounts, is essential—and device-specific cookies simply aren’t good enough. Identification unlocks the full potential of strategic customer acquisition and triggered email, taking your ecommerce marketing game to a whole new level. Once retailers start this journey, they wonder how the ever worked without it.
By Rob Massa