In an increasingly competitive business environment, the profitability and sustainable growth of eCommerce brands are dictated by their ability to optimise customer journeys and reduce acquisition costs. To quote Nate Checketts: “Wholesale is profitable from day one. E-commerce takes longer. Some digital brands never reach profitability because they spend so much money on marketing to acquire customers.”
At the core of this is the concept of friction. It exists in various forms and has a significant, often underestimated, impact on profits. These frictions have created inefficiencies and roadblocks in online and offline businesses, impeding customer engagement and diluting brand value. ‘Funnel frictions’ in customer journeys are the silent assassin of profits. From unidentified customers slipping through the cracks to inefficient ad spending, these frictions create hurdles in establishing profitable relationships with consumers. They lead to disjointed customer experiences, increased costs, lower conversion rates, and ultimately, eroded profits. The ability to identify and address these frictions, therefore, is not just about improving customer experiences but also about securing a brand’s bottom line. In this series, I have elucidated on this often under-recognised challenge and provided an innovative roadmap to solve for these ‘funnel frictions’.
The proposed solutions to the five funnel frictions – Attention Recession, Red Journeys, Dormancy and Churn, Adtech AdWaste, and Identity Gap – are anchored in an in-depth understanding of the digital consumer journey and leverage the power of data and emerging technologies. They form an integrated approach, designed to tackle the root cause of these frictions, leading to not just incremental improvements but also structural shifts in the customer acquisition and retention process.
As part of this approach, brands need to rethink traditional practices and adopt Martech 2.0 strategies. The implementation of Inbox Commerce, Green Journeys, Reactivation Progency, Near-Zero Acquisition Cost, and Anon-to-Known can change the game. But to make this a reality, collaboration with Martech 2.0 vendors becomes crucial. The right partners can provide the necessary technological and strategic expertise to bring these solutions to life, ensuring that they are embedded seamlessly within existing workflows and processes.
Brands that are quick to recognise this opportunity can reap significant benefits. Not only can they cut through the noise of their respective verticals, but they can also create ‘profipolies’ – a state where competitive leadership and deep moats deliver high profitability. By delivering more efficient, personalised, and engaging customer experiences, these brands can create robust connections with their consumers, resulting in higher customer lifetime value and lower acquisition costs. They can turn anonymity into familiarity, inaction into engagement, and costs into investments, thereby unlocking exponential forever profitable growth.
However, the journey to this frictionless future requires a paradigm shift in thought and action. It calls for brands to be bold, to innovate, to disrupt, and to challenge the status quo. It involves embracing the transformative potential of data and technology while keeping customer value at the core of every decision. Above all, it requires a relentless commitment to removing frictions, creating seamless customer journeys, and making every interaction count.
In essence, the frictionless future is not just a goal but a strategic imperative for eCommerce brands. With the solutions proposed in this series, brands have the opportunity to turn friction into function, ushering in an era where every customer interaction is purposeful, every investment is fruitful, and every step taken leads to a profitable future. This is the promise of a frictionless future – a future where eCommerce brands don’t just survive but thrive. The question is, are eCommerce CEOs and CMOs ready to seize it?