5 Product Customization Strategies for Your Sales Team’s Playbook
By now, many online retailers are aware of customers' desire to personalize before they purchase. Once big brands like Nike started offering product customization, online shoppers were hooked.
Reading the customer reviews on Amazon shows that much of the time, the negatives that pop up in product reviews relate to buyers' inability to find exactly what they want. Product customization software allows retailers to provide exactly that. The number of businesses using product customizers is on the rise.
Keeping up with the growing competition may very well depend on:
- What your product customizer can do
- How it stands out
- How effectively you use it to your advantage
Adding these five product customization strategies to your eCommerce sales playbook will help you make more sales, increase customer satisfaction, and give you a head start in your journey to the top.
1. Offer Freedom and Assistance in Equal Measure
While it's still as important as ever that customers don't feel like retailers deserted them to go it alone, shoppers are growing more independent. The ability to create and buy personalized products from online stores like Etsy (which was built on product personalization) turned out to be just what the market wanted.
The customer support/sales team guidance process has fallen out of favor with many customers. On average, B2B customers get more than halfway through the purchase process before interacting directly with anyone at the company.
As for B2C customers, four out of five prefer to find solutions on their own, only calling the customer support team if they have to. In fact, 80% of customers prefer a self-guided buyer's journey online.
By giving your users both options and making it easy for them to shop the way they prefer, you're building trust and customer loyalty.
Doing it by themselves doesn't have to be difficult, either. There are many features that can help make product customization a snap:
- Templates provide a suggested path in a sea of options.
- Conditional logic guides users with simple steps.
- Bulk actions save time by allowing users to change many customized products at once.
- Checkboxes and dropdown menus are an easy-to-use interface to simplify the choices.
2. Use Customization Options to Counter Excuses
Customers have a tendency to talk themselves out of a purchase. You've likely heard customers say things like, "I'm just not sure if it has everything I need," or "Well, if only it came with [Blank], then I'd get it." While these are often honest assessments that product customization could fix, for many, it's merely a defense mechanism.
People don't want to end up regretting their purchase and having to deal with the hassle of returning it. They often fear they'll get stuck with the cost of a product they don't want and be unable to return it or get their money back.
Even worse, they'll still have to go out and find a replacement for the item they needed in the first place, forcing them to pay twice as much.
Shopping online presents an additional complication. They can't see the item in person, feel it, or judge its size as easily. It's only natural to be worried about making a mistake.
However, reminding them of your product customization options can help them get exactly what they want, put their mind at ease, and help you make the sale.
3. Sell Custom Solutions and Expression Instead of Custom Products
Despite how many customers like and enjoy product customization, some people don't see the need for it. Even some proponents of customizable products see customization as something you do for certain products and haven't considered the benefits in other areas.
Stressing the benefits of configuration and customization can show customers the advantages of being able to build their own solution rather than merely buying premade products.
This is great for anyone in B2B sales, as companies often require solutions for specific problems. When they shop for a product, what they often really need is that niche solution.
Your product may not solve 100% of the problem. This is common considering how different businesses and the issues they face are. But offering custom options for your products can be the difference between making a sale or losing out on a new customer.
Many B2C consumers have a similar process. When they want to entertain more but don't have enough seating, for example, the furniture isn't just a product to them. It's a solution to this problem.
However, not all B2C products serve as solutions. Sometimes, people just like the product or the aesthetic. The ability to customize becomes the opportunity for self-expression.
Click here to learn more about the benefits of product customization for sales. You can also explore Threekit's Product Customizer Platform and discover our integrations for eCommerce platforms like WooCommerce (the eCommerce plugin for WordPress), BigCommerce, Magento, Salesforce, and Shopify.
4. Demonstrate the Possibilities in Impactful Ways
Train your sales team to know the software and use it effectively to demonstrate the breadth of possibilities for your products. It helps them use visual storytelling and create a sense of awe.
- Visuals that show a product from every angle
- Images users can spin, zoom in on, and interact with via hotspots
- Real-time changes to product visuals with corresponding pricing updates
- Shareable GIFs of products and features for social media
- Illustrative videos to make functionality clear
- Much more
5. Create Consistency and Heighten the Customer Experience With VR and AR
Using augmented reality (AR) in stores and online connects the experience across channels, creating an exceptional in-store experience. AR allows users to see products in their space or try them on.
More Than Meets the Eye
While shoppers typically think of product configuration and product customization primarily as tools to create their own exclusive products with the add-ons they prefer, that's certainly not all they are. With a comprehensive product customization platform that has a variety of features, it can also be a powerful tool in the hands of salespeople.
Get in touch to learn more about how integrating your ERP, CRM, and CPQ systems with our platform can give your team even more functionality!