This Time, It’s Personal: How to Customize Your Subscriber Experience to Each Customer
Subscription personalization is essential for today’s ecommerce businesses and applies to two main areas. There’s the point of purchase where a potential customer chooses the subscription they want and enters their payment information, delivery details, etc. And there’s the customer portal, where an existing customer personalizes things like the products they want, shipping frequency, and billing.
Customizing these digital experiences is important, because it reduces two major areas of concern — shopping cart abandonment and customer churn. In this post, we’ll explain why subscription personalization is the way forward and how to personalize the shopping experience.
Why Create Personalized Experiences for Your Subscribers?
In the past, personalization was more of a novelty than a necessity. But these days, there’s an intense need for it. Research has found that 71% of consumers feel frustrated with impersonal online shopping experiences, and 66% say it stops them from making a purchase.
Giving consumers the level of personalization they crave has some serious benefits, including the following.
It Makes Users Feel More Connected to a Brand
Guiding a potential customer through the initial shopping journey is a delicate process. When there are too many hiccups along the way, it can foil what could be a positive relationship. And given the average cart abandonment rate hovers around 70%, it’s an area many subscription companies could improve in.
Subscription personalization is helpful, because it efficiently guides customers through their journey. It assures them that they’ll choose the right subscription that aligns with their specific needs, and that they’ll get the most value. This, in turn, helps establish a strong brand connection right off the bat and sets the stage for a positive relationship.
It Acts as a Unique Value Proposition
Put yourself in a consumer’s shoes when they choose from two brands.
Brand A has a solid offering and seems appealing, but there’s zero personalization. Brand B also has a great offering and checks all the right boxes, but they offer a highly personalized experience.
During the point of purchase, the customer can select products perfectly tailored to their needs, choose their ideal replenishment frequency, and fine-tune other details. And in the customer portal, they can conveniently make changes whenever they need to, with no hassle.
Given the choice, most consumers will choose Brand B, with four out of five customers saying they’re more likely to buy from a company that offers personalized experiences.
It Helps Create Trust
Also, personalization and customization in ecommerce give shoppers confidence that a brand understands their needs, making them feel comfortable during checkout and increasing their lifetime value. As a result, this lays down the foundation for trust and creates a more meaningful subscription experience.
What Does It Mean to Transition to Personalized Shopping Experiences?
Making the shift from traditional ecommerce experiences to a more personalized approach helps the user create a subconscious distinction between brands. And it’s something that can be incredibly powerful in today’s customization-centric age.
Under the traditional model, for example, a weight loss subscription business may simply list all the options a customer can choose from on the checkout page. While that’s better than nothing, this won’t necessarily ensure they choose the optimal subscription based on their unique needs.
With a more personalized approach, however, a brand might ask user-specific questions, such as:
- How many pounds are they hoping to lose?
- Which types of foods do they prefer?
- What their budget is
- What their optimal shipping frequency is
From there, they would recommend subscriptions accordingly to ensure that a shopper gets exactly what they want at the perfect price point.
Or, say a coffee subscription company wanted to personalize the customer portal. With customization, they would give customers the flexibility to make changes to their subscription whenever they want, which could include:
- Changing their subscription plan
- Adjusting the shipping frequency
- Editing the ship date
- Skipping a shipment
Offering this level of personalization allows brands to dramatically boost active subscribers and decrease churn. In fact, crash-free coffee and plant protein company Four Sigmatic used it to increase its number of active subscribers by 50%.
Key Ways to Customize Your Subscriber Experience
Here are some specific options to create a more personalized experience.
Include a Quiz for Product Recommendations
A great starting point for first-time customers is to have them answer a few simple questions to identify which products are best suited for them. Going back to our example of a weight loss subscription business, a quiz might focus on specifics like how much weight they’re looking to lose, what their favorite foods are, and how much they’re willing to spend each month.
Just remember that you don’t want to bombard a customer with questions, because it can do more harm than good. You simply want to find the sweet spot where you have enough information to provide them with the right recommendations, but not overwhelm them.
Suggestion Recommendations Based on User Behavior
When it comes to existing customers, you can use analytics to assess their behavior and provide further recommendations to enhance their experience.
Take Athletic Greens, for instance. Many of their customers initially start with their most popular plan, a Single Subscription, which is the less expensive option. But if a customer showed signs of high engagement and could potentially benefit from a larger quantity of their product, Athletic Greens could suggest a Double Subscription, which offers twice the product and is a better value.
Paying close attention to user behavior like this can help continually refine the customer experience, while also increasing their lifetime value.
Personalization in Live Support
Finally, there are multiple ways to make the live support experience more personalized and, subsequently, more satisfying and engaging. A good starting point is using a pre-chat survey to ask:
- The customer’s name and ID number
- Question or issue
- Department they need to be routed to
Proactive greetings help establish a personal tone and build rapport. Using a real profile photo lets customers know who they’re chatting with. Also, limiting automated, canned responses is important for creating a genuine experience and making a deeper connection.