"It's great to see that ecommerce is growing at a healthy pace. But that's just the start for marketers. Every day they are faced with a critical decision: where should I focus my efforts to drive the most impact?" said Lucinda Duncalfe, CEO, Monetate. "Monetate is in a unique position to answer that question because we power billions of online shopping experiences and we see which personalization tactics are winning."
Following a steady stream of good news, including recent Internet Retailer analysis that YoY growth was the highest in nearly two years – and the third-best YoY growth since Q1 2014, Monetate's data also shows that global ecommerce revenue was up 13.2 percent YoY in Q2 2016 and sales transactions increased 9.8 percent. Monetate Ecommerce Quarterly report uncovers exactly what is driving the strong Q2 growth.
Analysis includes traditional ecommerce KPIs such as add-to-cart rate, bounce rate, conversions and more for the second quarter of 2016, but also explores the different behavior of new and returning customers across devices.
Returning visitors: the big growth driver
Strong spending from returning visitors drove YoY ecommerce revenue growth during the second quarter. Monetate's data revealed that revenue from returning customers grew a staggering 20.5 percent YoY and sales transactions grew 17.8 percent.
Two notorious conversion underperformers – social and mobile – grew significantly YoY. Social's share of the referring traffic pie grew 40 percent while mobile's share of device traffic grew 39 percent.
New visitors: Revenue drops, but a bright spot with search
In contrast to returning visitors growth in Q2, new visitor performance declined during the second quarter, marked by a 2.5 percent drop in revenue YoY and 4.9 percent decrease in sales transactions YoY. This occurred despite traffic growth by new visitors at 10 percent YoY, the highest percentage tracked to date.
The news isn't all bad for new visitors. When looking at referral channels, new visitors coming through search outperformed their returning peers in Q2 – which wasn't necessarily the case a year ago. Traffic also was up nearly 51 percent among new visitors on mobile devices, an incredible level of growth when considering new visitor traffic from desktop and tablet both fell YoY. Mobile's bounce rate for this customer segment now falls more in line with desktop bounce rate, which during Q2 2016 sat at 43 percent (up 3 percent YoY) while desktop's bounce rate was 39 percent (up 9 percent YoY).
Those that are succeeding to leverage the growth in new visitor traffic are using personalization techniques to improve conversions. One brand featured in the report turned new visitors into customers by increasing the sense of urgency for purchases through a small but impactful change to its product detail pages. By adding a message above the "add to cart" button signaling how many of those items were left for purchase, the iconic motorcycle brand reported conversion rates jumped nearly 23 percent.
Other highlights from the report
Following is a breakdown of other key stats relating to the disparity between returning and existing visitor performance.
- Add-to-cart rate was up 6 percent for returning visitors, while it was down 7.7 percent among existing customers.
- Traffic was up a staggering 34.7 percent among returning visitors.
- Bounce rate was up among both returning and new visitors, at 21.1 percent and and 8.1 percent, respectively.
The EQ analyzes a random sample of more than 7 billion online shopping experiences using "same store" data across each calendar quarter. Averages throughout the EQ are calculated across the entire sample. Key performance indicators, such as average order value and conversion rate, vary by industry and market type. These averages are published only to support the analysis in each release of the EQ, and are not intended to be benchmarks for any ecommerce business.
Monetate is the global leader in providing multi-channel personalization to the world's best brands. Built for speed, the Monetate Platform's easy-to-use interface allows marketers to create, test and deploy an unlimited number of personalized digital experiences with limited need for IT or consulting resources.
With Monetate, marketing is transformed from a world of discrete campaigns to one of always-on, personalized experiences that maximize the lifetime value of each individual customer.
Monetate is used by the world's leading retail brands to grow revenue faster by being faster. Founded in 2008, Monetate influences billions of dollars in revenue every year for world-class companies like QVC, Patagonia, Sur la Table, The North Face and hundreds of other market leaders.
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