Personalisation - the 2020 battleground
In the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal and countless well-publicised data breaches by large companies, we have never been more conscious of privacy concerns surrounding how our personal data is collected and used.
And yet for all that, the door remains surprisingly open for personalisation in commerce - an activity which requires the mining and processing of our private data in fine granular detail. A RedPoint Global survey of more than 3,000 consumers in the US, UK and Canada found that 63% of consumers expect a personalised experience, while a separate report showed that 90% of customers are willing to share their data for a more valuable and simpler shopping experience.
Needless to say, the power of personalisation shouldn't be lost on anyone, and there are numerous examples of personalisation reaping positive results. One such example is Disney using personalised deep learning models with real time user interactions to make their guests feel understood and well served, resulting in, among other things, increased engagement and an increase in revenue as consumers end up purchasing products they had not planned on buying.
With 80% of consumers more likely to purchase a product following a personalised experience, and 47% of consumers likely to go to Amazon if brands don't provide relevant suggestions, the stakes couldn't be higher for those competing for consumer attention; and as Amazon grows, it's not just retailers who are feeling the competition. Amazon's increase in ad spend is not only significant in its own right, it has been consistently reducing Google's own share of the market, and it has consequently joined retailers in evolving and diversifying its modus operandi in response.
Last year there was a significant response from Google, as it released its new Shopping platform in the French and US markets, with more markets to follow throughout 2020.
The end goal for Google to extend its Shopping Actions retailer partnering programme that "allows retailers to show their products across various Google surfaces enabling a fast, simple and secure purchasing experience for users. The program uses a shareable list, universal shopping cart, and instant checkout with saved payment credentials, allowing customers to easily turn browsing into buying." The phrase "various Google surfaces" is significant when you consider you can now purchase from Google Assistant in France!
Google wants to create a self-contained and personalised shopping ecosystem to rival Amazon and move away from the price-comparison-redirection solution it was, to allow consumers to purchase items from multiple retailers in a single Google Shopping cart.
Figure 1: The new Google Shopping UX in France. Source: Business Insider France
Google has rolled out personalised product recommendations, pricing alerts and local stock searches, adding an off-line element, all as part of a new experience giving consumers the personalisation they desperately crave. The goal is to retain those customers and generate more revenue from them.
This change will also of course benefit retailers, who will not only make the most of the tried and tested personalisation and recommendation engines that power Google's existing products (and will no doubt only improve as Google has a vested interest in staying ahead of the game), they will also reap the rewards from the ease of purchasing in the new Google Shopping platform.
The new Google Shopping experience is a step forward for Google, and the retailers that make use of it, as it looks to push back against Amazon's surging growth. It has never been more important to accelerate personalisation plans within your business, and because of this ensure your product data and tracking data is accurate and future ready - the future being now.
We're here to help
Wunderman Thompson Commerce offers a range of services for your Shopping and Personalisation requirements. Our experts in Feed Management and Insights and Analytics live and breathe data, and are ready to maximise your sales on Google Shopping, onsite through personalisation and across other key channels.