The Personal Touch: Is personalized marketing the way forward for eCommerce?

When was the last time your eyes didn’t glaze over when opening a generic marketing email? All too often, eCommerce brands fall prey to the one-size-fits-all marketing approach, promoting as many products to as many people as possible with little thought as to what may be of interest to them. As eCommerce continues to rival in-store shopping, new technologies and sophisticated data collection methods have paved the way for creating an altogether more unique and personalized online shopping experience. 

Personalized marketing is definitely the way forward for eCommerce, and here’s why: consumers want brands to understand their needs and reward their loyalty. They want efficiency and ease when shopping online, which is achieved with personalized product recommendations and customized marketing. Research from Epsilon suggests that 80% of customers are more likely to convert when brands offer a personalized experience. It’s clear that personalized marketing in eCommerce is key to improving the customer experience as well as yielding more conversions. 

What’s more, customers have come to expect tailored shopping experiences thanks to highly developed personalization algorithms from the likes of Amazon and Netflix. Customers that love your brand are also willing to share their data to enable an improved personal experience. A study from Accenture showed that 83% of customers were willing to share data for this purpose. So how can this be put into practice to benefit your eCommerce brand?

Image credit: Freepik

Get started with data insights from your customers

When it comes to personalization, data insights are key to understanding customer behaviors and preferences in order to tailor your communications and landing page to their needs. The good news is that your Shopify store has key data that will inform your personalized marketing strategy. How you decide to incorporate the personal touch to your eCommerce store should be based on the following information about your visitors:

  • Their browsing habits e.g most visited product page or keyword search
  • Their purchase history, the value of their purchases, use of discount codes, etc
  • Their location
  • If they’re registered users or guests 
  • Source of referral traffic
  • Their social reach – more on this later! 

There are several aspects of the shopping journey that can be tailored to your customers’ specific needs. You can boost sales on your website with a personalized selection of products on the landing page banner or pop-up. Or increase revenue by cross-selling or up-selling by recommending related products that may interest your customers, such as suggesting other items to complete an outfit or an accessory such as a laptop bag to accompany the initial big-ticket purchase. These examples show effective personalization tactics that can be easily applied within your eCommerce site to great effect. 

Image credit: Zalando


Marketing communications can also be transformed thanks to insights on consumer behavior. One example is creating segmented mailing campaigns letting customers know when the product they were looking for last week is back in stock, or letting them know as soon as items that match their search history are going on sale. The example below from shows tailored communication based on the keyword search ‘Father’s Day Gift’. The possibilities really are endless when it comes to transforming standard marketing mailings to highly tailored campaigns. This strategy of personalizing customer outreach can be taken even further with the addition of social data.

Combine social reach with Shopify data to activate high-value customers

Build on your personalized marketing strategy by combining consumer purchase data with information about your customers’ online social reach to identify your brand’s most influential customers. Those in your client-base with a large social reach are of high-value to your brand thanks to their online sphere of influence. eCommerce brands can leverage data insights on purchase history to create custom-made outreach to their influential customers in order to activate them as part of VIP programs, brand ambassador initiatives, or in their next influencer marketing campaign. 

Image credit: Freepik


This approach can be put into practice thanks to our dedicated eCommerce tool, Upfluence Live Capture, and its Shopify integration that combines users’ eCommerce and social data in one easy to use platform. At a glance, brands can see who their influential customers are, as well as their spending habits. This is particularly interesting for brands, as customers who love your brand (and products) are 7x more likely to accept a free collaboration. 

The next step in your personalization strategy will be to create highly targeted communication for this newly identified cohort of influencers in your customer base. Data from Shopify will reveal the products they buy most often, which they may be willing to promote or review for free on social media as organic influencers. You can also engage your influential customers as ambassadors who will raise awareness of your brand online in exchange for free products or early access to new products for example. These influencers are already loyal customers and share a natural affinity with your brand. With the Upfluence and Shopify integration, you can improve ROI on your influencer marketing campaigns thanks to the higher success rate of personalized outreach and activation. 

All in all, it’s clear that personalization in marketing is the way forward for improving the customer experience, boosting sales, and creating organic influencer campaigns for eCommerce brands.

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