The clock reads 11:15 am at Josephine’s home. “This is the floral skirt I have been looking for to gift my daughter. Let me just order this right away”, she murmurs, but gets distracted by a phone call…Time slips and it’s 11:22 am, but no orders have yet been confirmed on the website. Worse still, Josephine logs out of the site.
As customers, most of us have gone through this phase of online window shopping, when we just browse through various products, sometimes even shortlist a few, reach the payment gateway, and then move out of the site. Why? The reasons could be many, including time-consuming registration process, better options on a competitor’s site, lengthy payment procedure, unexpected shipping charges, complicated website tabs, or unsuitable delivery options. This is where the marketers are presented with a major challenge of getting their visitors back to the website.
While sending emails to existing and potential customers may be one way of targeting the user base, browser push notifications (BPNs) are considered more effective and the least expensive. Not convinced? Here are a few points that will make you think otherwise.
1. Notify visitors about special offers on the product category that they showed interest in – Once a website visitor has opted to receive notifications, you can use BPNs to share special offers and deals, especially for the category of products that they showed interest in while browsing through the site. Not only do you save money in advertising or sending innumerable SMSs, but also, in most cases, end up converting a visitor to a customer. For instance, if Paul was checking out the available 4GB pen drives on your site before he dropped off the page, it is a good idea to send him an instant notification, which reads “8GB pen drives now available at the cost of 4GB! Grab the deal now.” These personalized price-drop messages more often push the users into visiting the site, if not for buying the product.
2. Send limited-period deals – The USPs of a BPN are its low cost and an immediate real-time visibility to the users, which usually results in a spontaneous response from them. Also, the user need not put in any effort in receiving such alerts – no downloading apps, no checking mails; they just need to have an Internet connection. Leveraging on this factor, marketers can send notifications, incentivizing users with time-bound offers and discounts. Such BPNs often lead to a substantial conversion of impulse purchases by the users. For example, a notification that states “Avail flat 50% off on all branded garments. Offer valid from April 12th to 15th”, is sure to bring several shopaholic website users back to the site to check the available stock.
3. Send reminders for recovering abandoned carts – As an ecommerce retailer, whether you like it or not, an abandoned cart is a very normal affair for every website. It may happen because of other competing products that the user may have preferred, or due to the user closing the window abruptly to catch up on some high-priority pending task, or may be just due to indecisiveness. Studies show that almost 67% of the carts are abandoned on an average. Sigh! That’s a discouraging figure, but you can always put in efforts to convert at least a few of them into actual purchases. Shake hands with the budget-friendly BPN and send gentle reminders to your users regarding their abandoned carts. Such BPNs successfully create a sense of urgency or willingness in most users to buy the products in the cart. Unlike email notifications, BPNs cannot be missed by the users as they appear right on their browser. In addition, tailored retargeting campaigns help in better engagement of the users. For instance, a notification saying “Hurry up! The crystal set in your cart is almost gone” may urge the users to revisit the website and recheck the product in their wish list.
4. Send review updates about wish list products – It happens often that first-time visitors are not sure whether to buy a product of their choice from a site they haven’t explored before. This confusion arises due to doubts in their minds related to delivery, payment gateway, and most often, the product quality. A good way to get returning visitors to your site at zero cost is by sending them BPNs, which provide positive reviews for the type of products the user was initially browsing. Imagine a situation where the user is going through the bestsellers of the year, but moved out of the site without buying any. Now think of a notification that reads, “We appreciate your choice of books. The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead just received a 5-star rating from several readers.” This will certainly help convince some of the users who showed interest in books to revisit your site.
5. Recommend additional products– Cross-selling and upselling are two of the most productive and important concepts for any marketer. You need to cross-sell by analyzing the customer’s purchase history and suggesting additional products, which might be of use. In this case, your BPNs need to be highly personalized so that the messages can grab the attention of the user. (Fret not! Personalizing a BPN will not break the bank.) For example, if your customer had bought a hob for his kitchen, you might suggest products like an auto-clean chimney or a dishwasher to furnish his kitchen further. BPNs for upselling are useful when you want to suggest similar products as bought by the user previously. For instance, if the user has picked up a casual dress, send notifications to her of the newly arrived stock of casual garments.
Today, every customer looks for optimum quality products at the cheapest price with the quickest delivery time. They have too many options and on an average, none of the shoppers buying products online spend more than a few minutes to create an opinion about the website and its products. As much as it is a continuous challenge for the online retailers, thanks to BPNs, they have some economical solutions as well. Recent marketing efforts reveal how BPNs often provide more value than an advertisement banner, minus the huge cost factor involved in advertising. In addition, the promptness, non-interfering aspect, customer-friendly approach and extremely segmented notifications give BPNs an edge over the other remarketing channels.