After the holiday and holiday returns rush, are you thinking about ways you can shake up your eCommerce business in 2021 and maximize sales? Maybe introducing a product personalization offering on certain items or categories on your website is just what you’re looking for.
Good unique selling points are both easy to apply to your business and a great way to reward customers’ faith in you (and keep them eager for more).
In this article, we’ll outline the key benefits of product personalization to help you add this excellent USP to your eCommerce store.
It appeals to the gift market
The gift market is one of the most lucrative in eCommerce.
While online shopping has become almost routine, many of us will still dedicate time to finding the right gift for a special occasion.
It’s not just during Christmas either. People all across the world are looking to make birthdays, anniversaries, and graduations extra special with a gift they couldn’t just pick up anywhere.
That sense of specialness and exclusivity is a big reason why product personalization is key to thriving in the gift market. You won’t just pick up regular customers, but will also make your brand more appealing to the millions of shoppers looking to mark special occasions.
Best of all, personalizing products is simple and adds more value to the gift than its price tag can manage alone. So much of life is complex, even gift-giving. Often, you have to jump through hoops with overseas sellers, traverse complex websites and learn about niches to find the right gift. As a result, more and more consumers are realizing that being able to add a personal and meaningful touch to something the “giftee” already enjoys is a simple way to make a gift more appealing.
It differentiates your eCommerce business
A great USP should fit with (and lift) your business, not the other way around.
Having a product personalization offering will enable your business to stand out from the generic noise of online retailers. If 2020 taught e-tailers anything, it’s that competition is fierce and having a unique offering is vital to survival.
With the right solution to support your vision, rather than worrying about the maintenance and upkeep of the technology, your business can shift its focus on being strategic. The ease of integrating it into both your website and eCommerce ecosystem is one of its most impressive attributes as a USP.
It’s an investment that pays for itself
The idea of adding a personal touch to your product categories might seem like a huge undertaking, but it really isn’t.
Implementing new software, creating products and themes for personalization, and marketing your new offering can require some upfront costs and labor, but ultimately these pay for themselves.
By adding a reasonable premium for personalization, which consumers are readily willing to pay, businesses can quickly recoup the initial costs of their investment. Businesses can also expect to see positive impacts on their profit margins as inventory costs, marketing costs, and customer acquisition costs begin to reduce over time.
User-generated personalized products themselves become great material for your web design and social media, meaning you have to put less time and resources into developing content for those platforms.
In fact, the entire process drives growth and profitability. The most commonly mentioned business benefits by companies across retail, manufacturing, and printing is a sharper competitive edge, higher revenues, and better margins.
It offers customer insights
Detailed customer insight is becoming ever more important to eCommerce stores, as the rule of retail becomes less about bringing in new customers every day, and more about turning customers into repeat buyers.
Adding the benefit of product personalization immediately gives you more insight into your customers’ preferences and buying habits than a typical purchase, or even market research, ever could.
By analyzing what they’re adding to their product you can get a better understanding of who they’re buying for. This allows you to create curated content — such as, emails and ads that appeal to parents buying for children, husband’s buying for wives, or colleagues purchasing secret Santa gifts. You can even use this data to push for a repeat purchase a year later.
This simple information, coupled with a targeted follow-up program, can give you a great idea of who your store is presently appealing to. Leading eCommerce store builders such as Shopify and BigCommerce feature competent analytics programs out of the box which can be built upon to deliver more dynamic data through the use of plugins (as this BigCommerce review details). Armed with these insights, you can begin to lean into niche markets or make necessary tweaks to your content and website that will bring in new audiences that you desire.
Better knowledge of your customers is more than when they buy and what device they’re using. Sometimes the best data isn’t numbers-based at all.
It builds customer loyalty
Customer loyalty is a priceless commodity in eCommerce.
With so many options out there for shoppers, being able to secure the loyalty of customers and to ensure they’re not only coming back for more but also recommend your store to all their family and friends is priceless.
While product personalization may seem like an insignificant addition to your offerings, it can be the difference between a regular gift and one that cements a special occasion for the customer. Coupling this with world-class customer service and fast delivery times can create a scenario where the customer comes back to you for personalized gifts again and again.
When customers act upon this loyalty and leave a positive review on your site or on Google, it can be a significant boost for both the visibility and perception of your business.
Finally, that loyalty will be harder for other brands to steal away. By personalizing products you’re offering something they can’t easily match, especially if you focus on the quality of your service. It shifts the battlegrounds away from merely products and prices.
All those benefits and we didn’t even need to mention that personalization boosts sales!
A great USP is hard to find, especially in a world where eCommerce stores are trying to innovate every day. If you’ve already got a good customer base and products that sell well, product personalization stands as one of the best new offerings that eCommerce store owners can add to their products year front. From there, the opportunities are endless – you can add new products, explore new markets, and so much more.
We are pleased to have a guest blogger for this post, Rodney Laws. Rodney is an eCommerce expert with over a decade of experience in building online businesses. Check out his reviews on EcommercePlatforms.io and you’ll find practical tips that you can use to build the best online store for your business. Connect with him on Twitter @EcomPlatformsior.