Customer loyalty among online shoppers is faltering with 63% of first-time shoppers with an e-commerce brand failing to return to make a second purchase.
The statistic has been released following a benchmarking study by relationship marketing hub Optimove on the eve of one of the UK’s most exciting fast-fashion etailers Boohoo releasing its interim results. While Boohoo, which also owns PrettyLittleThing and Nasty Gal, is expected to continue along its impressive growth curve, Optimove says etailers need to focus heavily on customer retention to sustain future growth.
“As retail companies like Boohoo and ASOS continue to grow, they will need to keep a firm eye on retaining their existing customers. Customer attitudes have shifted: loyalty is dead, and we are now in the age of ‘value exchange’. Retailers need to focus on offering real value to their customers,” said Optimove EMEA managing director Alon Tvina.
Tvina suggests services and rewards such as pre-orders for new collections, free returns and free shipping, and VIP bonuses will become crucial loyalty drivers and AI will provide the intelligence to allow them to be tailored to the customer. “What is important is that rewards are suited to the customer, and this means retailers will need to get to know what makes each of their customers tick, and market to them on an emotionally-intelligent level,” Tvina said.
“To gain this kind of insight into an international customer base, AI and automation programmes will be vital. By automating campaigns and using AI tools, marketers can make smart observations on which marketing works to boost revenue from each type of customer. In this way, retailers can build a long-term relationship with many of the 63 per cent of customers who only buy once. Retailers need to be able to sort through their customers and learn what makes each individual tick, to keep them coming back,” he said.