It’s no secret that customers are favouring shorter, more engaging online experiences. In 2020, DoorDash made its public debut with one of the biggest IPOs of the year, and other delivery services have followed suit. Customer expectation is at an all-time high, and research suggests that the average attention span is as short as eight seconds. So we are in an age where convenience and time have trumped previously crucial metrics to become key purchase influencers.
In our recent webinar – Optimising sales in an attention deficit era – we invited an expert panel featuring, Oliver Lees – Head of Data at Space48, Tobias Sjodin – Commercial Director at Metapic, Maria Evrenos – Global Content Manager at Wavemaker and Mark Tucker – Senior Account Executive at Mapp Digital – chaired by our COO and co-founder, Satish Jayakumar – to discuss exactly this! In this blog, we unpack some of the key insights discussed.
Delivering quicker & more engaging experiences online
Mark Tucker from Mapp Digital kickstarted the conversation by highlighting the importance of utilising your customer data to deliver more relevant experiences online. Sharing the example of showing first-order pop-ups to returning customers on-site, Mark emphasised the damage irrelevancy can have on conversion rates.
“We’re moving into a world where the source of traffic defines your website experience. Businesses need to think about the channels in which their customers are entering their site and leverage this information to better optimise advertising strategies and on-site experiences.”
Growing trends within ecommerce audiences
With the influencer marketing industry set to reach $16.4bn by the end of this year, Tobias Sjodin from Metapic emphasised how partnerships are an effective way to deliver authentic brand discovery. He explained that brand trust is high with influencers due to the community element of their following. So businesses looking to drive brand visibility should capitalise on this by strategically working with influencers that match their brand identity.
Taking Ryanair’s recent TikTok success as an example, Maria Evrenos from Wavemaker highlighted how partnerships can be a good way for businesses to delve into areas outside of their expertise.
“Culture moves so fast that we all have to adapt as quickly as we can. TikTok has become such a big part of a marketing strategy, so partnerships are a really good way to help brands take their marketing to a place that resonates with its target audience.”
What are the challenges to changing strategies?
We know the growth of short-form ‘snackable’ content across platforms like TikTok is taking the e-commerce industry by storm. It is unsurprising that businesses looking to stay ahead need to be making more agile changes to their strategy in order to stay ahead. But what are the challenges faced when doing so?
Oliver Lees from Space48 explained that many businesses are happy in their comfort zones, so the real challenge is getting buy-in for anything that expands beyond business-as-usual. He goes on to suggest that brands need to question whether they are still marketing where their audiences are and shift focus to suit this.
“Plaforms like TikTok are provoking change to help businesses cater to time-centric customers, and it’s up to businesses to seize this. Customers may not want to come to your site anymore, so commerce needs to go wherever the customer is.”
Maria also highlighted the dilemma of where to place priority when bringing in the urgency, and how brand trust is an issue that is causing attention exodus in customers.
“Marketplaces that drive convenience like Uber and Deliveroo also eat into profit margins, which is challenging for smaller businesses. So whilst you need to go where customers are, you also can’t lose sight of who your customers are, and provide experiences that cater to both, whilst giving your maximum ROI.”
Delivering content that makes customers stop & think
Last year, Google’s Core Web Vitals update caused many businesses to make pivotal changes to their website. So the speed at which content is delivered has become a crucial part of online experiences.
Oliver explained that in order to deliver content experiences at a speed that resonates with your customers, you need to trust your data.
“A brand website is a goldmine for crucial first-party data that can shape the way in which you engage with customers. Trusting the data is key for weaving speed with brand identity.”
Maria also emphasised that whilst speed is important, there are different ways to consider this. Relating back to TikTok, she highlighted that this is the only social platform to introduce an advert in-app that encourages users to take a break if they have used the platform for several hours.
“It’s no longer about sending short messages but rather about getting the right message across. TikTok has proven that if customers get that instant gratification from your content then they’re willing to stick around for hours.”
Maria went on to explain that we don’t have to think about the content as eight-second work, but rather focus on landing core messages as quickly and succinctly as possible.
Positive on-site strategies that power convenience
As our panellists continued to highlight the importance of powering speed and convenience, we explored the positive trends they’ve seen in doing so.
Oliver highlighted the importance of technology in helping businesses drive higher average-order-value and get more from their customers at any one time.
“AOV is very important to businesses nowadays because we want to get as much as possible from customers at one time. Technology is allowing businesses to deliver more convenient experiences that help customers get to a decision faster without having to abandon the site/platform, whilst also giving the customer tools to help make their decisions.”
Oliver went on to mention the Increasingly AI-powered product bundles as an example of technology helping retailers to power shopper convenience and drive higher AOV.
What will the customer journey look like in the future?
With viral TikToks causing products to sell out in minutes, and Amazon Prime allowing customers to spend more in favour of convenience, the traditional purchase journey is not as linear as it once was. So what does the future look like?
Mark suggested customers will expect more 1-2-1 experiences and businesses will need to leverage data to do this. He also suggests that we are moving towards an era of more considered purchasing, so “brands will need to look at their data to identify the sweet spots of when and where they can engage with their customers for maximum conversions.”
Maria mentioned that with the development of things like the metaverse, live streaming and emerging platforms, we are almost coming full circle towards traditional shopping methods. “We used to purchase things from shopping channels, but the future could be purchasing things from the metaverse – or live streaming.” Maria also suggested looking towards platforms in Asia to pick up growing commerce trends “where addressability is getting smarter by the day.”