How Will Customization Benefit Online Retailers?
retailciooutlook

How Will Customization Benefit Online Retailers?

By Retail CIO Outlook | Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Implement product customization to present personalized products and services to the customers catering to their needs and desires.

FREMONT, CA: In this era, online retail has become a buzzword with all the brick and mortar stores finding their positions in the online platform. There are millions of online storefronts for every product. Each of the retailers wishes to stay distinguished from others through their offerings. All of them are battling to gain more recognition, attention, and customer loyalty. There arises competition among the retailers concerning the best products, customer service, and trends. Of all the practices followed by the retailers, customization occupies a unique place as it is specially designed for the customers.

The generic approach of mass production has become outdated such that the customers prefer custom-built products, like vehicles, bags, and more. Such customization will be enabled by artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning algorithms. They curate products and other offerings based on customer data allowing easy selection.

Customization Gains Momentum in Online Retail

As many companies are providing similar products, it crops up the “white noise” effect, making it difficult for customers to make choices between the products that look practically similar. Some brands have taken product customization one step ahead by granting buyers the liberty to design a unique, wholly personalized item that will be built to order. Offering customers the option to customize their own product is an easy way to gain an edge in the competition.

Customer Loyalty at the Center

In the world of online retail, customers quickly lookup prices with different competitors and instantaneously shop at stores from all over the world. However, they can be easily satisfied by giving them the option to customize the product that provides them with a more meaningful sense of investment and invoke a strong sense of ownership. This, in turn, gains greater attention to companies through word-of-mouth marketing.

AI and Machine learning

Each time when a customer explores a product, he/she leaves data revealing their shopping preferences. Marketers can leverage AI and machine learning algorithms to gain insights from such data and elevate their sales. Involving customers in the design process empowers retailers to learn their customers on a personal level. Integrating personalization tools into the content management system allows collecting valuable information about the users. Also, the rise of big data is providing many ways to present personalized products and services.

However, some barriers deter many online retailers from adopting customization in their marketing.

Lack of Demographic Knowledge

If a retailer wishes to offer hyper-personalized products, it is mandatory to know about the demographics. And if customers are involved in designing their own products, retailers should know the various options which the customers can control. Thorough market research will help achieve this.

Lack of Suitable Tech Platform

Although it is not easy to design and implement tech, it provides a seamless experience. The online retailers should have their own website, app, or other interfaces for customers to engage them at a personal level.

Scalability

Scalability is one of the reasons why mass-marketing and generic product developments have been simplified. While designing 100 identical products for 100 individuals, things get challenging. Fortunately, better manufacturing tech is mitigating those problems.

The competition is on the rise, with each retailer moving to an online platform. No longer, the traditional methods followed in online marketing will save the retailers. It is not necessary to implement all the options available in this attempt. It is recommended that businesses start with something simple that will suit them, like sending personalized notifications. Companies that shifted to online retail have found success by delivering more personal experiences. All that is needed is to add more customization tools to enhance customers’ personalized experience.

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