If you attended the Internet Retailer Conference & Expo (IRCE) last week, you probably heard a lot about the importance of omnichannel retailing. For the last two years, the word ‘omnichannel’ has become entrenched in the minds and budgets of retailers of all sizes. And earlier this month, the latest piece of research on the subject was released, courtesy of Capgemini Consulting and GS1 US. The report, titled “Are You Ready? How to Create an Always-On, Always-Open Shopping Experience: A View from Retail Leaders on the Industry Imperatives and Needed Standards,” explores how far retailers have come in their omnichannel efforts and where they need to go in 2014 and beyond.
One of the four key areas that the report highlights is predictive customer analytics. From the report (emphasis added):
Consumers are increasingly sharing valuable information through social data, product reviews, and online visits and purchases. Leading retailers are using predictive analytics to gain deeper insight into customer behaviors, trends and the forces of loyalty and purchase. Retailers that take advantage of sophisticated algorithms and data-mining activities—which analyze current social data, product reviews and historical facts to track shopping patterns—have a greater ability to create an individual shopping experience based on rich information sources.
On this blog, we talk a lot about using the data you already have to create individual, personalized experiences for your shoppers. But the secret to our retail clients’ success is not just the data – it’s the combination of data with advanced predictive analytics. This combination enables retailers to offer personal communications and experiences for each customer, not segments of customers. According to the report, “this piece of the omnichannel puzzle represents the greatest opportunity for retailers…to gain a better understanding of and relationship with the consumer.”
So which retailers are leading the way in creating these individual shopping experiences that Capgemini and GSI US detail in the report? In our opinion, there are a few standouts such as Burberry, which integrates the digital and store experiences by using tablets during the in-store assisted sale. By integrating with the luxury retailer’s loyalty program and social media feeds, Burberry arms sales associates with the information needed to make tailored suggestions to each customer based on their existing wardrobe.
Another example is The Children’s Place, who co-presented with our CEO last week at IRCE, sharing how they are able to beat the competition through personalized communications with their customers. Amy Larson, VP Digital at the Children’s Place, discussed how mining data from all touchpoints has supported the creation of personalized content that has driven “significant incremental revenue” and up to “50% increase in engagement.” By working with CQuotient, The Children’s Place can now harness the power of all the data customers provide, layer it with advanced predictive analytics and build personalized campaigns that keep messaging consistent across channels.
These retailers understand that putting omnichannel initiatives into action through data utilization and predictive analytics enables them to remain competitive and meet evolving customer demands.
Do you have examples of retailers implementing omnichannel personalization through the use of data and analytics? We’d love to hear from you in the comments below.