Nearly three quarters (74%) of ecommerce sites have now adopted website personalisation,as eCommerce marketers adapt to the new normal post-COVID.
Marketing tech company Yieldify has commissioned original research examining the impact of the crisis on 400 business leaders across the UK and the US and their personalization strategies.
The percentage of persomnalised ecommerce websites is expected to reach over 90% by the end of 2021 and retention is the key driver for most eCommerce business leaders (59%).
The COVID-19 pandemic saw eCommerce make 10 years’ worth of growth in a 90-day period. But rather than pause their personalization efforts in the face of change, eCommerce teams have learned the lessons of ‘black swan’ events of the past and are moving ahead with ambitious plans for the next year.
The shift in consumer behavior underlying the boom means that personalization is now being deployed more for retention (59%), rather than acquisition (45%) or conversion (55%), purposes.
For eCommerce teams, scaling personalization comes with the key obstacles of lack of resource (37%) and restrictive personalization tools (36%).
Rather than be fazed by the prospect of increasing privacy restrictions, most eCommerce marketers are optimistic (79%) about how their personalization programs will benefit from them.
The report, “Personalization after COVID-19”, investigated eCommerce use of personalization technologies following the industry’s recent growth. Based on research conducted with over 400 US and UK eCommerce leaders in July of this year, it found that in terms of personalization, websites are leagues ahead of channels such as SMS (42% personalized) and mobile app (56% personalized).
The research also found that post-COVID, the motivation for adopting personalization sits firmly with retention, cited by 59% of eCommerce leaders as their top reason for pursuing a website personalization strategy. This was ahead of both conversion (55%) and acquisition (45%), reflecting the shift in priorities as eCommerce sites experience more traffic than ever as a result of COVID-19.
Waleed Al-Atraqchi, Chief Executive Officer at Yieldify, commented: “Times of change can cause many businesses to lose sight of long-term innovation in favor of immediate fire-fighting – this report shows that for the eCommerce industry, this is certainly not the case. Instead, we’re seeing an industry that understands the importance of sustainable growth and the pathway to get there.”
In addition to showing the eCommerce industry’s drive for personalization, the report also highlighted the challenges it faces in fulfilling those ambitions. The biggest issue was one of resource, with 37% citing a ‘lack of expertise’ as their main impediment, followed by the limited functionality of tools (36%) and a lack of time (35%).
The report also explored where the eCommerce industry is heading next with regards to personalization, finding the market at a surprising level of readiness for incoming increases to privacy and data restrictions. 85% expressed a good level of understanding of what’s to come, with 79% of those surveyed actually expecting new privacy regulations to have a positive impact on their personalization programs.
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