​Customer loyalty is dead: Personalisation in retail is King

Enhance the shopping experience with VR and AR

Photo: Hamza Butt (Flickr)

Photo: Hamza Butt (Flickr)

It’s no secret that consumers today are exposed to more marketing messages than ever before, many of which go unnoticed. To break through the rabble, marketers need a way to keep their customers engaged.

This year and beyond will bring several innovative trends to the forefront, but underlying it all is the demand from consumers for relevant, personalised communications. In fact, personalisation is no longer a recommendation – it’s a necessity.

So, what can you do to put personalisation – and customers – at the heart of your marketing?

Engage customers early in the purchase journey

Following the success of basket recovery, brands are now looking for other personal communication strategies to help them stand out in the competitive retail landscape. The challenge, however, is understanding customers quickly enough to deliver relevant, insightful content at just the right time.

Marketers are now beginning to move upstream in the shopping lifecycle, creating personalised campaigns that react to browsing behaviour with triggered messages well before an item has been added to a basket. New technology offerings make basket recovery programs more cost-effective, allowing marketers to develop a more complete re-engagement strategy for consumers.

Consumers abandon shopping sessions for many reasons, from getting distracted to starting a new session on another device to taking time to complete an online price comparison. Smart marketers will take advantage of this user activity and leverage the valuable browse data to re-engage the individual with a personalised offer encouraging them to return and complete the purchase.

Enhance the shopping experience with VR and AR

Past attempts to integrate virtual reality (VR) into the shopping experience have been met with mixed results; however, with the rise of augmented reality (AR) apps, particularly in stores, consumers are now reacting favourably to mixed reality shopping.

It won’t be long before we see both technologies come alive, generating valuable ROI for retailers that understand how to use VR and AR to create more personalised and immersive experiences. To determine if this is right for you, look at how the technologies could drive customer engagement with your products, whether online or in the store.

The possibilities for VR and AR are as varied as the stores themselves. Some early adopters allow customers to virtually try on products in several colours and sizes, others display matching accessories and even give the option to order from another store right from the dressing room.

The key to effective mixed reality is to bridge the gap between online and in-store by providing all of the necessary information for both shopping experiences. Offer the in-store customer as many product details as you would online, but also supply valuable data, such as customer feedback on fit and finish for online shoppers. Such comprehensive solutions make a retailer stand out.

Offer a fuss-free checkout experience

As with mixed reality, convenience is critical for a positive customer experience. Consumers want instant gratification, so brands should constantly be looking for ways to provide a seamless and obstacle-free shopping experience.

For example, by enabling payment completion via a fingerprint, Apple Pay removes several steps to online buying. Not only does this make the checkout process more convenient for the customer, it limits the opportunity for hesitation and basket abandonment.

Combining these new payment technologies with a wider variety of fulfillment options (i.e., click and collect, instant delivery, etc.) allows for a personalised shopping experience to suit each consumer’s needs. Finding ways to build on this beyond the first purchase – such as recalling previously selected delivery options – will strengthen both your personalisation capabilities and your customer relationships.

Ultimately, putting the customer first and harnessing the data you collect will lead to a better user experience and a bigger bottom line. Consumer expectations will only continue evolving, and marketers that are better prepared will gain an edge.

Written by Shannon Ingrey, General Manager of Bronto Software

Join the newsletter!


Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags businessretailaugmented realityecommerceVR

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Shannon Ingrey

PC World
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill


I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?