Every customer who walks into a retail store is unique. They have a unique background, unique personality, likes and dislikes, tastes, and a certain approach to shopping. They also have a unique reason for coming to the store. Sometimes it’s to buy a specific product or browse for a good deal. Other times it’s just to explore for the joy of shopping. Understanding the customer’s persona, preferences, goals, and the context of their visit enables retailers to sell more effectively and sell more. A real-time understanding of the customer during every visit will help retailers’ employees build stronger relationships and create customers who love the brand and love the retailer’s store.
This simple “personalized experience” concept is at the heart of our new partnership with smarterHQ. Together, we are using technology to gather and organize information about the customer and empower the store associate to use that information when selling and servicing customers. The problems we are trying to solve are obvious… How can sales associate add more value to the shopper’s store visit? How can they save the shopper time? How can they have a more intelligent conversation and not frustrate the customer? How can they delight the customer and turn them into a loyal customer?
Understanding the customer is the answer and personalization technology is the enabler. Our partner, smarterHQ captures online activity, browsing history, wishlists, and shopping cart contents. This is downloaded into the Tulip Retail cloud and made available to store associates via the Tulip Mobile Associate App. Using the mobile app, associates access this info along with what they’ve gathered in the store, i.e. previous purchases, preferences, and personal notes they keep in the Tulip Blackbook.
The result: the sales associate is able to engage and delight customers with a shopping experience that dynamically offers the right merchandise and a rich experience the customer is most likely to want.
So to summarize, the “personalized experience” process is simple.
- Recognize who the customer is when they walk in
- Understand their personal preferences, recent activity, past purchases
- Understand the context of their visit and why they’re there
- Using those specific customer insights, recommend the right products, say the right things, delight the customer
- Turn the shopper into a buyer
- Turn the buyer into a loyal customer who loves the brand and the in-store experience
Done right, a personalized experience will deliver the following benefits:
- Increased conversion rates. Improving the relevance of recommendations and offers increases the customer’s likelihood to buy.
- Increased order sizes. More relevant cross-sells and up-sells increase the probability of the customer purchasing more than one product.
- Greater customer loyalty. Presenting personally relevant content and giving each individual a satisfying experience will save them time, create convenience, foster trust, and motivate repeat visits.
- Enhanced lifetime customer value. Improving loyalty and increasing order sizes combine to enhance the lifetime value of customers.
- Reduced operating expenses. Delivering the right information and advice enables customers to complete transactions in less time and move on to the next customer.
- Greater customer insights. Customer information and intelligence captured in the personalization process can be leveraged across all channels to make every interaction more relevant and fulfilling.