The Reinventing Retail podcast, produced by Infor, recently featured True Fit’s CEO, William R. Adler. He was joined by Reinventing Retail’s hosts, Josh Calixto and Matt Gunn to discuss True Fit’s mission to ‘Give Customers What They Want’ through personalization. Through the changing landscape of the retail industry, data is essential in creating personalized experiences that drive conversion and reduces returns.
When a customer browses a particular retailer’s website, the retailer is able to track every move of the customer during their session on the site. Yet, when the customer leaves the site and goes to another retailer’s site, there is no way for the original retailer to gain the same insights and shopping behaviors once the customer leaves. True Fit is bringing all of the fashion buying behavior across the industry together, in an anonymized database that defines consumer behavior by numbers. Customer shopping behaviors combined with consumer data from over 100 million registered users and product and tech data from over 17,000 brands allows retailers to see the bigger picture of their customer’s preferences across all retailer and brand websites.
Help Consumers Shop with Confidence
The online shopping experience has become, at times, daunting. Many customers feel confused or become frustrated when having to deal with large inventories or varying size charts defined by each individual retailer. Using data to understand - and recommend - a consumer’s preferences can greatly resolve the discrepancies and confusion and simplify the online shopping experience for consumers.
“We solve that hesitation, we are a translation layer at that moment for the consumer. So, instead of trying to decipher a size chart, or, what most people do is buy the medium and the large and then return one, we solve that, just by simply saying you should get this size and here is an image of how it is going to fit on you, personally. This builds confidence, and the consumer suddenly feels no hesitation. Conversion rates go up and return rates go down, [the consumer] buys the item and are happy,” said Adler.
Using Data to Predict Consumer Behaviors
Retailers and brands across the industry have effectively prioritized data as a means of understanding their consumers. Now, this data can offer another important use in helping retailers personalize products from the design stage, to reduce overstock of products or customer returns.
“What we are doing now is two things - one is making that data layer available to all those other providers so that the emails, and the search results and the ads are better, which is helping everyone. We have the ability to have all of this data in one place now, so the second thing we are able to do is work with merchandisers, and planning, assortment and product development people to show them “here’s what people are buying and why”, and “you’re designing it this way, but here’s what’s actually on the site and here’s how they are actually wearing it, and here’s the white space, here’s the opportunity,” said Adler.
By allowing retailers and brands to gain comprehensive insights of customer data in combination with product and performance data, retailers can identify business opportunities and prioritize personalization across the consumer’s entire shopping journey.
Maintain Creativity while Increasing Customer Satisfaction
The use of data allows retailers to understand which product designs and details have the highest conversion rates among consumers. In doing so, retailers can better design products and pieces, without compromising the creative vision of designers and merchandisers.
“Analytics is very important, but retailing is and art and a science, and we don’t want to go too far and remove the touch [of designers]. The reason why fashion is so incredible is that it is an art, it is a creative form. You want to stabilize and maintain all the creativity that people have when they are designing, and the inspiration people have when they develop new things. At the same time, just give them insights to do so in a way thatputs more items on people’s backs, than say boxes shipping back and forth, because that’s not good for anybody.”
By tapping into valuable data, retailers can be sure to give each and every customer exactly what they want. Proper data analysis leads retailers to experience reduced return rates, increased conversion rates, and reduced inconveniences that arise for customers (and retailers!) when having to return products. By recommending the right product the first time, customers can shop with confidence and become loyal to the brands who cater towards their preferences.
To listen to the full episode, click here