We’re in the midst of what could and should be the biggest online shopping season ever. For the first time Black Friday brought in over $1 billion in online sales. Cyber Monday nearly hit $2 billion; and customers aren’t showing signs of slowing down!
No doubt, eCommerce and online marketing managers will end the year on a high note. But how were the other three quarters? When you look back at 2012 as a whole, did you meet all of your marketing and revenue goals throughout the year? Did you set the correct goals for 2013?
Big data provides a detailed look into your customer base so you can take a more granular approach to growing your online business next year, focusing on improving repeat visits, decreasing bounce rates, increasing natural search traffic, and prolonging customer lifecycles to improve lifetime value.
You already know how to attract new customers to capture the first sale. To truly impact your business next year you have focus on capturing the second – then third – sale.
To do that you have to understand how to engage customers post-purchase and how to re-engage them as time goes by. The longer customers go without buying from you, the less likely they are to make the next purchase. Jim Novo, customer loyalty expert, contributed an article recently discussing how to measure the relative value of your customers and reach out to them with appropriate offers and messages.
Our new Lifecycle Grid was created to provide insight into your customer base and relative value of each customer. The concept is simple and highly effective. Customers are segmented by the number of purchases made and the length of time since their last purchase and highly-relevant emails are deployed automatically as purchase time lags. The messaging and offers received by someone who purchased ten times and whose last purchase was 29 days ago is much different than the email received by someone who only purchased one time over six months ago.
The ability to speak to the different customer segments based on their relative values isn’t new, but it has been extremely difficult until now. As you look to get started, here are a few tips to remember:
- The recency of the last purchase is a good indicator of purchase intent – the longer it has been since the purchase was made, the less likely another sale becomes
- The more purchases a customer has made, the more likely they are to purchase again – and share their good experiences and thoughts with their friends
- It’s important to re-engage shoppers within 60 days of the first sale to prevent them from lapsing
- Customers who have purchased recently and ones that have made several purchases don’t require big discounts to incent them to buy from you again, but customers who haven’t purchased in several months require greater discounts or offers
- It is possible to re-engage customers who haven’t purchased in over a year or two – but watch the bounce rates as you don’t want to continue to send to email addresses that are no longer valid
Focusing on engagement and lifecycle management will prevent customers from defecting, greatly increasing loyalty and revenue. If you’d like to learn more about how it works, visit our website or give us a call at 877.362.4556.