1. Data & Insights

Economy Got You Down? These Strategies Can Help Your Business Stay Resilient

Businesses are facing strong economic headwinds this year. To help weather the twin storms of inflation and an unpredictable supply chain, leaders are adopting new tactics to stay resilient. These days, their strategies are focused on data and automation. 

We surveyed 4,000 commerce leaders and analyzed data from 1 billion buyers to find out how businesses are succeeding in a shifting market where teams are asked to do more with less. Our new State of Commerce report shows that the right strategies for ecommerce data and automation can help brands thrive in the current economic climate. Want to optimize your business processes and prepare for the future? Here’s how.

Use data to optimize the customer journey

The key to operational excellence is to collect the right ecommerce data at the right moments. You can use the insights to create more efficient, personalized shopping experiences. Data can help optimize every step of the journey, from storefront search to checkout to order management. Those relevant product recommendations that make customers feel understood and increase average order value? They’re powered by data. What about breezy purchase experiences like one-click checkout? Also powered by data. 

Digital leaders — organizations that consider digital commerce key to their success — know data strategies for personalization and automation are critical. In fact, they’re 1.7 times more likely than their less technologically savvy peers to effectively use data to personalize commerce experiences. They’re also 1.6 times more likely to successfully use data to automate processes. 

The average company runs 976 different applications. That’s a lot of data flowing in.

Personalized commerce experiences are no longer a nice-to-have. In fact, 56% of customers expect offers to always be personalized. With so much hinging on customer data, it’s critical to upgrade your approach now to prepare for the future. The shift to greater privacy regulations and a cookieless internet is imminent, and getting a jumpstart will help bolster your success.

Personalize at scale with automated, intelligent, and real-time tools

After you develop a strategy for collecting customer data, know where to look for actionable insights and how to scale. To get started, invest in the right tools for end-to-end automation, artificial intelligence (AI), and real-time engagement. 

The average company runs 976 different applications. That’s a lot of data flowing in from a lot of different channels. To harmonize it all, make sure the information funnels to one unified platform where it can be used as a single source of truth. This ensures that the right ecommerce data fuels features like predictive intelligence, personalized offers, and targeted campaigns. Ultimately, you can deliver intelligent commerce everywhere and create VIP shopping experiences that feel like magic for every customer. 

With unified data, you can implement automation flows for every business process. You can also use AI to personalize experiences across every channel. For example, AI tools can move customers into different funnels and campaigns based on their real-time shopping behavior. Since customer needs and expectations change regularly, it’s also important to invest in tools that provide updated insights in real-time. The result? Customers get a more personalized buying journey. Your business gains detailed insights that can help inform future commerce strategy and marketing decisions. 

Cultivate an exceptional customer and employee experience

Survey respondents across industries and regions named budget constraints one of their biggest challenges, and process automation one of their top priorities. It’s no wonder: Automation helps cut costs while exceeding customer expectations for faster, smarter service. Internally, automation can take over manual, repetitive activities and free up employees for more creative, fulfilling work.

Automation demand surged in more than 90% of companies in 2022.

Along with AI, digital leaders are using automation tools to create exceptional customer experiences at every stage of the journey. Chatbots, AI-powered product recommendations, and automated marketing messages can all increase engagement and conversions. In fact, digital leaders are over four times more likely to be effective at automating processes than their counterparts.

These automation tools can also greatly improve the employee experience — so much so that business teams are demanding them. New Salesforce research shows that automation demand surged in more than 90% of companies in 2022. By automating routine service requests like returns and order tracking, using AI to streamline merchandising tasks, and automating data entry, your employees can spend their time solving more complex issues and adding more value to customer experiences. And that leads to happier, more productive employees.

Look to the future: Invest in ecommerce data and automation

Leading brands use data and automation to not only improve business operations, but also foster better experiences for customers and employees. Investing in the right solutions for ecommerce data management and automation will only become more critical as new channels, trends, and technologies emerge. 

Whether you’re looking to speed up your operations today or position your organization for lucrative gains down the road, effective data management and automation are key factors that will set your business apart. 

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