Utilizing Product Customization to Boost Your Ecommerce Customer Retention

Ever wondered how to keep a visitor engaged on your Shopify store, or better yet, keep them coming back?

While customer retention rates vary for Shopify stores, the average customer retention rate for ecommerce is around 30%, meaning for 100 customers, only 1/3 of them will return to make another purchase!

The secret to capturing and holding new customers, and transforming them into loyal repeat customers lies in product customization — providing a personalized and interactive shopping experience that adapts to each visitor, offering dynamically changing and unique product options based on their preferences and needs.

In this article, we’ll explore how implementing product customization tools such as LimeSpot can improve your website’s conversion rates and customer retention, but also increase average order value (AOV) and customer dwell time.

Why customer retention is important in ecommerce

Customer retention in ecommerce refers to the strategies used by store merchants to encourage customers to continue shopping from their online store.

Because retaining an existing customer is five times cheaper and more profitable than acquiring a new one, most Shopify stores’ success depends on customer retention.

Typically, these strategies are used to promote customer retention:

What product customization looks like on a Shopify store

Does your Shopify store’s website look exactly the same for every customer visiting your store? If so, you’re missing out on product customization's power to improve sales and promote customer retention.

Ideally, each of your customers will have their own unique homepage and shopping experience using algorithms that can display the most relevant and interesting products for that person — similar to how YouTube promotes videos related to previous videos you’ve watched. 

Let’s illustrate the real-world example of two different customers browsing a Shopify store selling natural skincare products that use LimeSpot.

Customer A, Emma, has sensitive skin and is a fan of natural skincare products. She previously purchased organic aloe vera from the store. With LimeSpot’s data-driven personalization, Emma sees product recommendations tailored to her preferences on her next visit.

Customer B, Jack, has previously purchased anti-acne products and green tea skincare solutions. LimeSpot identifies these preferences and accordingly suggests products like tea tree oil on the website’s homepage the next time he visits. Partnering with a full service Shopify Plus agency can help you achieve this level of customization, making each customer's visit uniquely tailored to their preferences and expectations.

How customer data is used for product personalization 

LimeSpot brings the power of smart algorithms and data-driven decisions to Shopify stores, providing the ability to personalize an entire ecommerce platform.

The magic lies in LimeSpot’s ability to learn from each customer’s browsing patterns, clicks, and previous purchase history. It then uses this data to offer real-time individualized product recommendations. This translates into a new, unique shopping experience for each visitor to your Shopify store, including new visitors and returning customers. 

For example, consider a Shopify store that sells organic coffee. With LimeSpot, a customer who often purchases dark roast blends might receive suggestions for similar profiles, such as a new dark roast that had just been restocked. Or think of a customer who prefers decaf, who will see a completely different set of recommendations, guiding them to only decaf coffees they might enjoy.

4 steps for incorporating LimeSpot’s product customization into your Shopify store

Let’s take a deeper dive into setting up LimeSpot product customization on your Shopify store:

Step 1

Download LimeSpot and integrate the app into your Shopify store. This process is straightforward and LimeSpot offers excellent customer support.

Step 2

Allow LimeSpot to analyze your product catalog and customer behavior data. It will then use this information to understand and predict customer preferences. 

Step 3

Create personalized experiences. Use LimeSpot’s “Personalizer” to curate custom collections, related product suggestions, and upsell/cross-sell opportunities.

Step 4

Continually update and refine. LimeSpot’s smart algorithms will continuously learn and refine recommendations based on ongoing customer interactions.

3 guidelines for creating compelling, personalized product offerings

Follow these guidelines for creating personalized product recommendations that will boost customer retention and your average order value (AOV):

1. Know your audience

First, understand the preferences, behaviors, and needs of your customers. 

Consider a Shopify store selling natural, organic foods. If LimeSpot’s algorithm detects a group of customers who buy gluten-free products, it’s an indicator of a “preference.”

The store can then offer gluten-free recipe books, suggest new gluten-free products, or provide cooking tips for gluten-free cooking.

This kind of personalized attention creates a better shopping experience and cultivates customer loyalty.

2. Show relevance

Showing “relevant” products is the key to delivering a positive personalized shopping experience.

Let’s use the example of a Shopify store specializing in natural fabric homeware. A customer exploring cotton bed linens could be shown related items like cotton pillowcases or matching cotton drapes, to create a matching set.

Upselling could involve recommending a high-thread-count version of the cotton sheets they’re viewing, to offer a “premium upgrade.” 

Cross-selling might involve suggesting a natural fabric softener that’s suitable for cotton linens.

This kind of relevance will increase the chances of your customer adding more items to their cart and gives them a more satisfying and productive shopping experience.

3. Keep it dynamic

Have you ever been browsing YouTube, clicked on a new video, and then noticed your algorithm changed to show you new related videos on your homepage? That’s an example of a “dynamic” website that updates in real-time to show you more relevant content.

The same thing happens on ecommerce websites.

Using LimeSpot, Shopify merchants can add these customization algorithms to update their website dynamically, showing only the most relevant and interesting products to every individual customer who visits your store.

How to personalize ecommerce website for first-time visitors with no purchase history

For first-time visitors who don’t have a browsing or purchasing history, LimeSpot uses a combination of these strategies to provide an engaging and personalized visit:

  • Showcasing trending products that are popular among all users
  • Recommending products based on their similarity to other products previously viewed during a session
  • Tracking which items are clicked on and how long a visitor stays on a page to adapt product recommendations on the first visit
  • Contextual data, such as location, time of day, and device type

Download LimeSpot for ecommerce product customization 

Product customization, when powered by data-driven tools like LimeSpot, can become your secret weapon for boosting customer retention on your Shopify store.

By offering personalized shopping experiences, you’ll heighten customer engagement and loyalty, and see an improvement in customer lifetime value.

Shopify merchants who use LimeSpot typically see a 12-28% average revenue increase, a 5% average order size increase, and a 2-5x conversion rate improvement!

Download your free two-week trial of LimeSpot today to unlock the product customization potential of your Shopify store.

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