I spend a lot of time looking at product recommendations in their various iterations and they can add a huge amount of value to the customer experience. However, they can also be a large source of frustration for customers if executed poorly.
Here are my top tips to make sure your product recommendations are helping and not hindering your customers.
1) Use the space wisely
It’s hard sometimes to find a logic that works brilliantly across your entire product range which sometimes means that you will have space for several recommendations but are only showing 1 or 2. This is key marketing real estate which is going to waste.
Solution: Using a fallback data source (or two) on your product recommendations will ensure you’re always making use of the space allocated to them.
2) Never down sell to customers
How often have you been browsing a product only to be recommended a similar product for half the price? Although as a customer I love a bargain, showing lower value products can severely damage your AOV.
Solution: Use a price filter to only show products that are greater than or equal to the product being browsed or only show products within 20% of the current product price.
3) Cut down on repetition
You may have a strong need to push a certain product due to stock build ups or other business reasons but if a customer hasn’t added that product to their cart after the 3rd time of seeing it recommended, are they really likely to do so on the 4th, 5th and 6th times?
Solution: Absolutely continue to push key lines when needed but add a simple rule to prevent overduplication.
4) Don’t encourage uncertainty
You’ve managed to capture the attention of a customer and they’ve added one of your best lines to their basket but the next page they browse shows them 5 alternatives to what they just selected. Indecision sets in and they exit without converting.
Solution: Use dynamic rules to exclude products in the same category as what has already been added to cart. Instead show them complimentary products to encourage conversion and increase AOV.
5) Personalize your recommendations
Although there will always be a place for simpler logics such as similar products or bestsellers, showing all customers the same recommendations can lead to a decrease in engagement with your content.
Solution: Use simple logics for your new customers but use more personalized logics as you gain more of an understanding of a customer’s browsing and buying habits or stick with the simple logics and add filters to show more relevant products within those logics such as bestsellers in each customer’s favorite brands.
Download our Savvy Marketer’s Guide to Product Recommendations for more top tips on delivering product recommendations that enhance the customer experience.