Predictive Analytics Improve Your eCommerce Marketing

Predictive analytics use a customer’s purchasing habits to create a profile or shopping persona, which tells you a great deal about who they are, what they like, and what sort of products they’re likely interested in. The better a merchant understands a customer’s behavior, the better he will be able to predict what she wants and needs. Here are five ways predictive analytics that can help you with your marketing.

Customer Engagement

The way a visitor engages with your site or store can tell you a great deal about her actual level of interest. If a customer is looking at your online newsletter, did she engage with a discount on a specific item? If so, you can assume she’ll be interested in the future discounts on similar items.

One such case: An education portal used by a third of college bound high-school seniors used a predictive system to more accurately match promotional offers to their existing traffic. The result was a 25% increase in response rate, which translated into an estimated $1 million of additional ad revenue.

Better Marketing Campaigns

Predictive analytics is great for your marketing campaigns. You can gauge your customers’ path to purchase, but then what? Base your next course of actions on the predictive analytics.

For instance: You can create more personalized email strategies, implement automation, and track what people truly care about. Use this to your advantage to create more targeted marketing campaigns across all channels.

Better Retargeting

Just as retargeting uses actual customer behavior to suggest what exact advertising and products you should display to which users, so too can predictive analytics provide the same suggestions.

Retargeting requires a high-level view of your customers. Once you acquire the data that supports such a high-level view, you can use that behavioral information predictively to retarget across all social media channels and email.

Be sure to take a look at our blog posts on using retargeting via a variety of channels.

Lower Marketing Budget

Everyone, everywhere, all the time, is looking for ways to make ad spend more efficient. According to a recent study, “companies spent 10.2% on average of their annual revenue on overall marketing.”

Predictive analytics gives you much better insight into your customers, lessening the amount of money that you spend on marketing that has a low probability of being successful. It can also give you an idea which channels will be most effective for particular groups of shoppers, enabling you to better and more cost-effectively find them.

Real-Time Decision Making

Much of predictive analytics is based on customers’ historical data, data that has been collected and aggregated over time. There’s a slightly different, more powerful methodology, one that uses streaming data of real-time behavior to make real-time predictions and decisions. This method can be extremely valuable in particularly fast-paced retail environments.

For instance, if you notice that a certain product page in your store is suddenly generating a high rate of bounces, you can quickly modify the page, using what you learn to predictively keep the same thing from happening on other pages. If suddenly, you see that a shopper is lingering over your shipping costs, and you know that that behavior leads to a very high probability of cart abandonment, you can automatically decide to offer that shopper free shipping.

You’re Collecting It; Use it!

In the normal course of business for your eCommerce store, you’re collecting a great deal of data, mostly for use in retargeting and maybe refining your messaging. But if you want to supercharge the value you receive from this data you should focus on its predictive power. As you can see above, it can lead you to greater marketing success.

If you have any thoughts about predictive analytics that you’d like to share, let us know in our comments section!

Originally published at on December 15, 2016