Sailthru, the personalised marketing automation technology provider for retailers and publishers, has announced the results of its second annual Retail Personalisation Index, a ranking of the industry's top retail brands according to how well they personalise the customer experience.
Following the inaugural launch in 2017, more than 500 additional companies requested their personalisation scores. As a result, this year's Index has expanded to evaluate 250 brands in industries ranging from fashion and apparel to online marketplaces. However, only the top 100 retailers that demonstrated the most effective personalisation strategies made it onto the list.
"Brands are recognising the need to elevate their personalisation strategies and differentiate themselves from Amazon, providing curated and relevant experiences that can't be found on Amazon's domain," said Neil Lustig, CEO, Sailthru. "We're seeing marked progress from the leaders ranked in this year's Index. Many of the investments in customer experiences made by brands within the past year have catapulted them to the top. We are excited to see more companies use personalisation to stand out—and win—in a crowded marketplace."
For the second year in a row, Sephora topped the list. This year, the brand earned a 13-point increase from last year's score, making it the only company that scored above 90 out of 100 possible points. The top five brands include:
1. Sephora, 92
2. The Body Shop, 84
T-3. Walmart, 81
T-3. Urban Outfitters, 81
5. Ebay, 78
Brands that have publicly committed to improving customer experiences last year, such as The Body Shop and Urban Outfitters, are now seeing tremendous returns on their investments this year as they rose significantly amongst the ranked companies. Both The Body Shop and Urban Outfitters increased their score by more than 30 points compared to last year.
This year's Index proves that personalisation has transcended from a buzzword for marketers to an enterprise-wide priority. Using personalisation to guide its business, JustFab, Fabletics and ShoeDazzle, which are all owned by TechStyle Fashion Group, each ranked in the top 20. TechStyle Fashion Group was the only multi-brand retail enterprise with this performance consistency.
"Our company's mission is to reimagine the fashion business, and we are doing so by integrating data science, personalisation and membership commerce," said Adam Goldenberg, CEO of TechStyle Fashion Group. "We've structured the company to foster innovation across those areas, rather than silo it—a reality that many legacy retail brands are working to outgrow."
Despite the encouraging signs of improvement across the board, even the highest-performing brand has not reached the perfect score of 100. Brands on Sailthru's Index scored a minimum of 47 points. Other brands evaluated that did not make the top 100 scored between seven and 39 points.
Sailthru launched its first Retail Personalisation Index last year in response to market feedback from retailers seeking a better understanding of what personalisation is and which brands are taking innovative approaches. The Index quantifies how leading retailers are curating their customer experience; determines gaps in the approach to personalisation used by top retailers; and examines the relationship between a tailored experience, customer satisfaction, and retention to drive revenue, reduce customer churn, and optimise engagement.
The retail brands reviewed in this year's research were selected based on a number of criteria, such as brand prominence, reputation, and retailer type. Research on the Personalisation Index was conducted between June and August 2018 and scored brands, as selected by Sailthru, on how they personalise the customer experience.