Retailers need to rethink their personalization strategy. As online adoption begins to slow and retailer loyalty declines, it’s important for businesses to know what to do. We spoke to Graham Ralls, product manager at preezie, about changing shopping expectations, the case for hyper-personalization and the looming issue of privacy.
I think it’s safe to say that we have entered a new world. What do you think will be the longer-term changes in consumer behavior that result from the current state of the world?
“It’s much more about being specific about customer needs. They don’t want to play the guessing game. Granted, they don’t want to browse through tons of products in order to find something that truly meets their needs.
“It’s really about trying to engage with a brand with a person on the other end of the line. It’s very hard to do online, so I think we’re going to see a lot more of that trend in reaching out to people, making genuine contact, and being smarter because of it. It’s about having an enjoyable, rich experience all the way through to delivery,” he said. declared.
For the preezie team, personalization is about data and volume. “People aren’t shy about telling you about themselves, as long as you do it the right way,” Ralls continued.
Looking at 2019 in a pre-pandemic landscape and today, how has personalization changed?
“Before everything was shut down, people had a relationship with online, where they knew they could always go to a store to back up what they thought they were browsing online. They always knew it was going to be there, so there was a more casual relationship with online [channels]. But as soon as you stop it, [retailers] have to get a lot smarter about personalization,” he said.
Ralls explained that there had been a knee-jerk reaction to store closures in 2020, with retailers asking for personal data such as email addresses and sending out incentives such as promo codes to capture new audiences online, which has become “very obvious” to consumers.
“Everyone is continuously discounting, and there’s no more loyalty,” he said. “The experience has become very inciting. I mean, you wait a week and you get another promo code again. Things have changed because of that, and [retailers] have to be smarter, because consumers are smarter.
Meaningful personalization. Preezie is famous in the retail scene for its hyper-personalized experience. Could you please explain the difference between personalization and hyper-personalization?
“It all starts with understanding what you need to know about your customers and what you want to do with that data,” Ralls said. Knowing certain aspects of the consumer’s day, like how long it takes them to get ready in the morning or what beauty items they use in their daily routine, takes the guesswork out of retailers.
“Things that you would normally discover in-store with a sales assistant, now you can do them online, and it works,” Ralls explained. “So hyper-personalization is on the lower level; it sounds really manual and hard to do, at scale, but it’s not. It’s the next level, and it just makes sense. .
What can be the downsides of a hyper-personalized experience as a result of a privacy-conscious buyer? Where do you draw the line?
“It’s all about balance. If an in-store salesperson asked this question to try to give you a better experience, you could definitely replace that online experience,” he told Power Retail. Also, consumers do not have to answer these questions if they find them too intrusive. However, to better understand the consumer and how they operate, retailers need to get down to a “human” level.
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