Personalisation is essential for multi-channel retailers to be competitive
A recent article in RetailWeek here in UK, “10 Ways to Compete with Amazon” provided wonderful insights as to how retailers can best compete with the “digital Goliath” by leveraging their strengths. The author references Heritage (as in the case of John Lewis), Service (as in the case of Dixons), In-Store Environment and Added Value (as in the case of Marks & Spencer) to name a few. I’d respectfully like to add that there’s a #11 on this list of 10 ways retailers can leverage their strengths and that is taking a page directly from the Amazon playbook: Personalisation. While Amazon (and our very own CEO, David Selinger who led the personalisation effort for the R&D team there) innovated in the space by introducing recommendations, this technology has subsequently and quickly become an essential tool for multi-channel retailers to compete.
Personalisation, when done right, can provide customers with delightful experiences that introduce them to product discovery—essentially replicating the in-store experience like that of a helpful sales person. It’s no coincidence that customer-centric retailers like John Lewis, Marks & Spencer and Dixons (all customers of RichRelevance) have adopted personalisation as a way to extend their superior in-store customer service across multiple channels. House of Fraser (another customer) has gone that one step further by leveraging a loyalty program and recognising their customers across all channels.
Leading retailers like these, that choose to put the customer at the center of their business strategies, are having deeper and more relevant conversations with their consumers. And the ones that are able to connect, and realise the lifetime value of their customers, will be the ones that continue to succeed.
-Darren Hitchcock, VP of the UK/European Region