There are two main kinds of shoppers: those who shop with a mission in mind of what they’re looking for, and those without. The former will have done their research, shortlisted the best option, and maybe even checked out online. Easy peasy. Today, we’ll be talking about the latter. Leading brands will explore and implement different methods across platforms to spark interest in potential buyers who aren’t actively seeking their products.
This is what we call: Discovery Commerce.
Keep reading to discover what it is and what top retailers (like yours!) should be doing to stay top of mind for your shoppers and inspire them to make purchases.
Discovery Commerce is a strategy that guides consumers to explore new products and brands rather than simply enabling transactions for familiar, repeat items. It aims to craft an immersive, personalized shopping journey that fosters exploration and the spontaneous discovery of new products.
In the current digital retail landscape, this helps retailers differentiate themselves in a sea of products and an over-saturated marketplace. This increases engagement, promotes brand loyalty, and encourages repeat business from your shoppers, old and new.
3 key elements include:
Personalization: Use buyer data to tailor product recommendations based on consumers’ profiles and preferences, and past shopping history. Themed collections and targeted content that resonate with a user’s specific interests will be much more successful in converting browsers to buyers.
Storytelling: Don’t just push out content to your entire shopper database; take the buyer data that you collect and tell a cohesive brand story. Integrate content – including blog posts, videos, product reviews, and user-generated content across social media channels – to tell a story about your brand and why shoppers should choose you over your competitors. This social proof will build a strong connection among your buyers to discover new products and make repeat purchases.
Gamification: Think outside of the box! Engage with your shoppers by incorporating fun elements – such as personalized or seasonal quizzes, monthly contests, or themed experiences and brand collaborations – to make the overall shopping experience enjoyable every single time. Consider newer technologies including augmented reality (AR) to enhance the discovery process even further by allowing shoppers to visualize your product or even do virtual try-ons before they make an online purchase.
Now that we know what it is, why do retailers need it?
Broadly speaking, it’s a great way to unlock new opportunities in the competitive landscape and give you a serious competitive advantage by setting new trends and establishing yourself as a leader in the market. We know it can be difficult to attract new buyers, especially those who aren’t shopping for anything in particular or haven’t even heard of your brand yet. So, what benefits do you gain?
Differentiation: This is an excellent way to stand out in a crowded marketplace and differentiate yourself as a leader. You’ll be one step ahead of competitors who may rely solely on traditional e-commerce approaches or attract the first type of shopper that we mentioned. Encouraging product discovery will lead to an increase in sales as well. Your customers will feel inspired to make impulsive purchases, add complementary items to their cart, or explore your entire catalog more thoroughly.
Cross-Selling and Upselling: Cross-selling to shoppers in the discovery phase is an excellent way to broaden your reach. For example, customers may be looking for shirts for a specific occasion and your algorithm can promote complementary products such as accessories or jewelry. Upselling is another technique aimed at persuading customers to make a larger sale by upgrading their chosen item or other add-ons. Both strategies can be used in tandem in discovery commerce to boost revenue.
Customer Engagement and Retention: Stay top of mind for your shoppers by curating personalized, fresh content that is tailored to their preferences and shopper profile. This plays a huge factor in creating a deeper connection with your shoppers, reducing churn, and inspiring them to become long-term advocates for your brand within their communities (Did you know word-of-mouth marketing drives $6 trillion in annual global spending and is responsible for 13% of all sales?!). Finally, tap into the power of social media – monitor trends as they come, adapt your social strategy and product offerings accordingly, and leverage influencer or affiliate marketing channels and user-generated content to expand your reach across the globe.