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February 17, 2015 | Press Release

New Data from Monetate Reveals Personalization was Key for Top Ecommerce Performers During 2014 Holiday Shopping Season

Latest Ecommerce Quarterly Report (EQ4 2014) shows Monetate customers outperformed industry averages in four key areas

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. – Monetate, the leading provider of multichannel personalization to the world’s best brands, announced today the release of its latest global Ecommerce Quarterly report (EQ4 2014). The data shows that personalized customer experiences helped power the industry to a record-breaking holiday shopping season, with more than $51 billion in revenue, a 7.7 percent year-over-year growth, according to the National Retail Federation.

In the report, Monetate breaks down exactly how its customers powered personalized online shopping experiences for consumers, dramatically outperforming the industry average in four key areas.

Optimizing Conversion RatesQ4 2014 saw the highest reported conversion rates among the last five quarters – 6.4 percent for Monetate customers, and 2.8 percent for the industry average overall. This increase in conversion rates indicates that browsers are turning into buyers more frequently, but the marked difference between Monetate customer results and the industry average shows that shoppers respond to highly personalized experiences. Examples include:

  • A luxury clothing brand targeted existing customers visiting its site with VIP messages and promotions, and carried that language throughout the site with a VIP promotion banner posted on every page the customer visited. This helped the brand achieve a 6.7 percent conversion rate.
  • In an effort to sell more NFL-related calendars and merchandise, one of the largest direct-to-consumer stationary sites targeted customers in specific markets who had previously searched for an NFL-related term and served them products related to their hometown team. The experience was a complete win, with an average conversion rate of 13.1 percent.

Beating Bounce Rates

Monetate customers experienced an average bounce rate of 19.9 percent in Q4 2014, well below the industry average of 30.2 percent. Bounce rate is a key metric in determining how well brands are able to keep customers on their websites, and here’s how two Monetate customers stood out:

  • An apparel and home goods catalog company was experiencing the normally high bounce rates that come with Pinterest-referred traffic (nearly 60 percent). During the holiday shopping season, the brand promoted a one-time discount off all Pinterest visitors’ purchases, which resulted in bounce rates dropping to 29 percent.
  • A global consumer telecommunications brand focused on ensuring that the expressed interests of new and existing customers were reflected on its landing page and drove  bounce rates down as low as 4 percent.

Dominating Add-to-Cart Rates

For Q4, the industry average add-to-cart rate was 8.4 percent, a significant increase over the rate of 8.0 percent in the same period in 2013. The Monetate customers that aced add-to-cart rates outperformed the industry by more than 12 percent, at 20.4 percent. For example, a lifestyle apparel retailer sought to re-engage dormant shoppers by offering “lightboxes” – a tactic which allows marketers to display content as an overlay over the main page content – with free shipping codes. The codes were triggered based on average length-of-stay on the site. The result? A 68 percent add-to-cart rate.

Decreasing Cart-Abandonment Rates

Perhaps the most frequent challenge retailers have is abandoned carts, and in Q4 2014 they experienced nearly flat abandoned cart rates of 66 percent. However, Monetate customers saw abandoned cart rates of 43.6 percent, nearly 20 percent lower than the rest of the industry.

How did Monetate customers do it? A sporting goods brand, for example, learned that its tablet customers behaved differently at checkout than desktop customers, so it served them a less distracting checkout page without the footer, online chat and social media links found on its desktop page. These simple changes resulted in a reduced cart abandonment rate of just 23.3 percent.

“It’s evident that personalized, curated experiences across multiple channels continue to be a driving factor for successful retail brands,” said Lucinda Duncalfe, CEO, Monetate. “Consumers expect more personal experiences across every touchpoint that reflect how they’ve interacted with a brand in the past. We’re seeing that the brands who are driving faster to meet that expectation are enjoying tremendous ROI, and leaving their less customer-focused competitors in the dust.”

Download a free copy of the Monetate Ecommerce Quarterly report (EQ4 2014) here.

Methodology

The EQ analyzes a random sample of more than 7 billion online shopping experiences using “same store” data across each calendar quarter. Averages throughout the EQ are calculated across the entire sample. Key performance indicators, such as average order value and conversion rate, vary by industry and market type. These averages are published only to support the analysis in each release of the EQ, and are not intended to be benchmarks for any ecommerce business.


About Monetate

Monetate, the global leader in personalization software for consumer-facing brands, enables marketers to create truly individual experiences that surprise and delight every customer, increasing engagement and improving performance.

Monetate’s approach to personalization starts with the understanding that each individual is unique, and instantly chooses the best interaction for each one. Unlike testing, which identifies the best choice for everyone, or segmentation, which defines the best choice for a group of people, Monetate’s 1-to-1 personalization engine reflects the full diversity of human beings and creates an experience for each one, in each moment.

In order to deliver true 1-to-1 experiences, Monetate’s platform is:

  • Independent, so you can use any best of breed solution in your marketing stack and not be tied to one vendor’s offerings;
  • Open, so marketers can use all of their data wherever it sits, push a decision to any touchpoint and pull the results back into their data/analytics infrastructure;
  • Real-time, to enable interactions based on a customer’s in-session behavioral and event data that get their attention in increasingly narrow buying windows; and
  • Bionic, giving the creative marketer the power to manage a machine learning engine and operate at 1-to-1 scale, for real.

Founded in 2008, with offices in the U.S. and Europe, Monetate is used by leading brands around the world and influences billions of dollars in revenue every year for QVC, Newegg Inc., J. Crew Group Inc., The North Face, and hundreds of other market leaders.

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