We have always wondered why the grocery stores keep essentials like milk at the loneliest corners and chocolates near the billing counter. This good old marketing technique invented by some genius will make your eyes fall into almost every product while you are traversing the rows to reach milk packet, and may result in you picking up something on your way back. But in an era when the world shops ‘pin to car’ from the lavishness of laptop and Smartphone monitors, what tricks these virtual online supermarkets play to make you spend a bit more?
You might be checking out a particular hotel in a city just for it looks. The very next day, while you are reading a newspaper online, there it is! An ad for that same hotel pops up infront of you even with a discount code. Don’t think it’s a coincidence; It’s what online retailers call ‘Retargeting.’ According to Guillaume Lelait, VP of North America at Fetch, a mobile advertising agency, “Clever retargeting uses algorithms to group items together and deliver relevant timely and valuable ads to users who have been tagged as likely to purchase." The algorithm does way more than that. If you are shopping for an outdoor dining set, you may get an ad for a barbeque!
#2 You are special, while your friend is not:
Online stores treat different people differently. Some will offer coupons to a customer, whom they believe is likely to use it. But the same store won’t offer the coupons to another active customer who is likely to buy the product any way. So how do they do it? Answer is simple- prediction! According to Jerry Jao, CEO of Retention Science, a predictive marketing company, “you can predict how a customer is going to behave.” The data scientists pick up clues from your behavior- like you may come to website and spend 2 minutes entirely on a single product, reading the reviews and checking the size, which marks your interest. However, if the same person checks out four different products and quickly browse through the website, the data analysts can be almost sure about the uncertinity of a deal.
#1 What you see depends on where you live
Consider you are living in Miami and the first thing you see while logging into an apparel website would be an advertisement for a swimsuit. But someone who is logging into the same website from another region will be seeing another ad. Online retailers are now exploiting opportunities in location based services. According to Kartik Hosanagar, an associate professor of Internet commerce at the Wharton School, "Brands now have the ability to physically target consumers when they are in close proximity to a store location - reaching users at a time when they are most likely respond to an offer and take immediate action. Also bringing foot traffic into a store becomes even easier when the ad offers a 'map to nearest location' element where you can redeem a coupon or discount."