Attracting and Retaining Online Customers in an eCommerce Shoppers’ Market
eCommerce brands have recently been experiencing a downward trend in digital traffic; however, there are some industry statistics that suggest the tide is beginning to turn. Either way, it’s very important that eCommerce brands attract and retain as many online customers as possible. At the Site Speed Summit 2022, a virtual eCommerce event, Kandice Carlson, Head of Global Retail and Marketing at Google Cloud hosted a panel discussion between Kate MacCabe from Our Place, Lexi Montee Busch from Happiest Baby, and Laura Hedric-Butler from Charlotte’s Web focused on maximizing eCommerce site traffic and building customer loyalty.
The Importance of Personalization
Carlson began the conversation by asking the panelists what role personalization played in attracting and retaining online customers. MacCabe, Montee Busch, and Hedrick-Butler all agreed that personalization is key to building customer loyalty and that most online shoppers have come to expect it. However, they all admitted that personalization is complicated. Montee Busch explained the fine line between personalizing an online experience and crossing a line to where shoppers feel like it is overdone, and Maccabe shared that segmentation was an important tool in deciding what products to show shoppers when they visited the Our Place site. Hedrick-Butler reminded attendees about the importance of collecting first person data for use in re-targeting and email campaigns. The entire panel agreed that the goal of personalization was to deliver a relevant, frictionless shopping experience to retain online customers in a competitive environment.
Site Speed Matters
Carlson then switched to topic to eCommerce Site Speed, citing the following stats from the Site Speed Standard, an industry leading data benchmark:
- Over 50% of shoppers bounce when page load times exceed 3 seconds
- Reducing page load times by just 1 second increases conversion rates by 5.6% and reduces bounce rates by nearly 12%.
The panelists immediately began discussing the relationship between 3rd party technologies and site speed, and how both are critical to attracting and retaining online customers. Their brands strike a balance between site functionality and speed with the following approaches:
- MacCabe implemented centralized ownership of 3rd parties to make sure that her team always knows which 3rd parties are running on their site and to ensure there are no overlaps between applications. However, her team takes a “business first” approach when deciding which tech to use on their site because they want to show up well digitally.
- Happiest Baby uses 3rd parties that are vital to the customer experience, but these apps also slow their page load times down. Their solution to this problem was to deploy YOTTAA, which provides them with a 25% improvement in site performance.
- Charlotte’s Web has over 200 integrations on their site. They also use YOTTAA to speed up their page load times by 40% and have visibility and control over all the applications they deploy. The ability to turn off and fine tune each app has been a game changer for their site performance.
The panel also spent time discussing how important customer feedback is in retaining online customers. They spoke about how open communication with their customer service teams gives them a window into what the experience of their customers is like when they visit their sites. The unfiltered feedback is a vital part of their online success.
A Great User Experience
In the end, a great shopper’s journey is what all the panelists are striving to provide. A fast, engaging, and relevant experience is what online shoppers want and brands must meet that expectation to build customer loyalty, improve conversion rates, and increase revenue streams.
If you’d like to watch this panel discussion in full on demand, click HERE.
If you want to make sure your eCommerce site is as fast as it needs to be to retain your customers’ loyalty, get a FREE Site Performance Snapshot HERE.