E-commerce has changed a lot since when it started. With the launch of Content Management Systems (CMS) like WordPress and Shopify in 2003 and 2004, running an e-commerce focused business has become easier and easier. Nowadays, with business models heavily focusing on fast marketing and brand awareness, having a competitive store designed to easily convert impressions in sales is a top priority, especially if we’re talking about fast fashion. Let’s analyze how technology is developing within the area, to better prepare for the future of e-commerce.
Website Personalization: What Is That?
The core idea behind personalizing a website is focused on “presenting the right product at the right time” to the potential client (impression). In order to do that, a simple tool runs in the background of the website, presenting a different catalog to each visitor, following his or her preferences based on cookies, analytics, and other data. Companies are moving in this direction because having an automated catalog that is optimized on ROI and Conversions is the top priority for the e-commerce business that wants to scale within a small time frame. Generally, these tools can be integrated with every CMS, from WordPress to Magento, through Shopify eventually.
Does It Work?
Website Personalization definitely boosts the user experience, which eventually translates into more sales, helping to explain why these technologies are emerging with a loud voice. Tangible results, though, are not always guaranteed, especially given the fact that all the data projected are generally presented by split tests and other forms of not-objective data gathering. We can’t say that this type of technology works better than a solid digital marketing campaign because it doesn’t take search engine algorithm, keywords, and such into consideration.
Machine Learning: Will It Kill Marketers?
Definitely not, but it will surely help them. The above-mentioned tools usually work by automatically presenting the right product at the right time, automatically learning which ones are the “best sellers,” confronting reviews, sales, and stock availability. Once again, this process heavily boosts UX, which is something that every e-commerce manager is craving from the start, but in order to properly convert that into sales, a solid keyword research, together with some Pay Per Click (PPC) ads is a must.
What About Mobile?
Many are the startups who are focusing on the matter, especially when it comes to localizing sales and impressions.
For example, some app developers found out that Machine Learning algorithms and apps, combined with a solid local Search Engine Optimization (SEO) campaign, can decrease the waiting time in order to reach page one of Google (which usually takes around 6 months if the process is done properly).
Mobile traffic is currently fluctuating around 56% of the overall e-commerce traffic worldwide, which is why developers and marketers are focusing on mobile more than desktop. SEO, in particular, is properly going in that direction, given the fact that Google recently started to index mobile as a separate matter from desktop traffic.
How Much Does Machine Learning and Automation Cost?
Website Personalization tools are still in a very embryonic phase of development, with many companies generally being on a Startup level, which is the reason why it’s very hard to state the price range. Some of them are very deeply coded and customizable, which naturally will lift the product price, while others are more “consumer friendly” and by having fewer features, are willing to establish themselves as “industry standard.”
Machine Learning is a big focus within the e-commerce industry, which is why many developers and companies are approaching the matter these days. The future will surely be more automation-based, but that won’t kill digital marketing, which is stronger than ever, especially if it’s focusing on creativity and strategic thinking.
About the Author:
Paul Matthews is a Manchester-based business writer who focuses on Android App Development in order to better inform business owners on how to run a successful business. You can usually find him at the local library or browsing Forbes’ latest pieces.