Shoppers generating the highest lifetime sales value are…
Customers that browse across multiple digital environments hold the highest conversion rates — and lifetime value.
Omnichannel consumers continue to shift between devices, environments and walled gardens, or services restricted to digital members, when making a purchase decision. Based on this purchase behavior, multi-screen mobile shoppers are generating the highest lifetime value in terms of sales, according to “Global Commerce Review for Q1 of 2018,” a report from Criteo.
According to data, omnichannel consumers represent a mere 7% of all customers. Yet, omnichannel consumers are responsible for 27% of all sales.
This customer segment is being driven by mobile shoppers. In addition to making purchases while on-the-go, these customers are active across all browsing environments. However, mobile transactions are no longer confined only to mobile websites.
Apps account for over two-thirds (70%) of mobile e-commerce transactions in North America, for retailers with a shopping app. This trend extends across most world regions, as in-app sales dominate.
Almost half (47%) of all consumers in North America prefer purchasing via app, compared to mobile Web (20%) or desktop (33%). In North America, the conversion rate on shopping apps is more than three-times higher than on mobile Web. Globally, in-app transactions have increased by 22% year-over-year.
“Retailers must prioritize and optimize shopping apps, or risk leaving money and revenue opportunities on the table, as mobile transactions are no longer confined to mobile websites only,” according to the study.
Retailers need a mobility strategy going forward, especially as the mobile market continues to mature. The number of sales transactions on smartphone devices grew 22.5% year-over-year, while tablet and desktop usage declined.
The health/beauty and sporting goods industries comprised the highest share of mobile sales at 44% and 43% respectively, beating out other categories such as fashion/luxury, flowers and gifts, and home wares.
With every transaction, these omnichannel customers also share “digital fingerprints” that present an opportunity for retailers to re-engage them on future visits. Matching this online data with offline information is key to unlocking shopper intent and purchasing power, the study said.
For example, omnichannel data is key to optimizing marketing efforts. Retailers that combine offline and online data can apply over four-times as much sales data to inform their marketing strategies.
“[There are] continuing shifts from desktop to mobile shopping, as well as from retailer websites to apps. Today’s shopper is on-the-go and researching across multiple screens, requiring a cohesive, data-driven approach to intersect and influence buying decisions,” said Jonathan Opdyke, chief strategy officer, Criteo. “For retailers with physical stores, app adoption and improved data infrastructure are opening new horizons in omnichannel marketing, with online and offline blending into a seamless and measurable shopping journey.”
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TechBytes: Cloud computing trendspotting
Constantly feeling the pressure to innovate, more retailers are reaching for the cloud to stay on their game. As adoption accelerates, so are retailers’ expectations, making companies eager for new cloud-based innovations.
The following trends, gleaned during the recent Oracle Industry Connect conference in New York, reveal how platforms are evolving and what brands can expect from the next wave of cloud computing:
Increased growth of applications that extend the value of IoT
There are already 7 billion smart devices, and volume will grow to 50 billion devices in five years, according to Douglas Suriano, senior VP and general manager of Oracle communications global business unit.
To harness the rising amount of customer data flowing between these devices, from smartphones and tablets to wearables and appliances, retailers need solutions that can quickly process this information and apply it to customer-facing operations. While many companies already rely on the cloud to access data-driven applications, including artificial intelligence, machine learning and voice recognition, the next wave of cloud-based solutions will focus on evolving “intelligent” solutions, such as blockchain, biometrics, sentiment analysis and robotics. These applications will keep companies on the cutting edge, and improve how they engage customers.
Integration of “connected” applications within cloud platforms
As IoT experiences increasingly become a priority for retailers, they need easy access to supportive, data-rich applications. However, there are challenges to leveraging these solutions. In addition to not wanting to manage hardware and software on-premise, “these solutions are expensive,” said Luis Malave, VP of applications for Lucky Brand. “Retailers can’t spend trillions of dollars on systems, but we still need to be prepared for the changing connected landscape.”
As cloud providers begin marketing these solutions as standard components within their platforms, retailers will have immediate access to applications — especially solutions that can strengthen the customer experience, such as voice, AR and VR, and machine learning. An all-inclusive platform also eliminates the cost of software licenses or bolstering IT teams with dedicated data scientists.
Evolution of autonomous, “self-healing” platforms
The cloud is synonymous for automatically sharing application updates, upgrades and new functionality with users as soon as they are available.
To ensure these updates are secure, cloud providers will begin embedding self-diagnostic databases and machine learning tools designed to monitor and diagnose the health and security of all applications available on the platform. If an anomaly or an outage is detected, the database can run a software patch to repair the issue, a move that ensures the security and integrity of the business application for all users.
Monetized loyalty applications
Consumers expect more personalized experiences and access to information from social influencers — two factors that are taking a toll on traditional loyalty programs. As a result, retailers are reaching for the cloud in search of new, more flexible loyalty models.
Overall, retailers need to move away from mass discounts and promotions and instead adopt programs that reward specific shopping behavior. From subscription-based memberships to rewarding customers for sharing experiences on social media, loyalty programs will become more meaningful and personalized and retailers will find it easier to engage with customers.
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