Tracking the online customer journey for luxury ecommerce

Luxury ecommerce analytics on the customer journey

Today I’m excited to be participating in the Innovation Meets Fashion event in Lugano, Switzerland. As an increasing amount of luxury and fashion retail moves online, high-end brands are finding it complicated to track the complete customer journey.

In many cases, difficulties in tracking customers through to eventual purchase are holding back investment in the digital experience and online marketing. But it doesn’t have to be this way.

We’ve found a straightforward correlation in ecommerce between the average ticket price of the item being purchased and the number of web pages or sessions before that purchase is made. Simply put, customers spend longer considering big ticket items than they do with smaller ticket items and impulse purchases.

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Luxury retail involves many touch points with the brand across your websites, social sites and physical stores. The problem is that the longer than online customer journey, the harder it is to get consistent data on which top-of-funnel experiences are leading to purchasing.

So first the bad news: since many potential customers browse anonymously, perfect ecommerce tracking across a long online and offline journey is not possible. Tracking browsers based on first-party cookies (such as Google Analytics) will fail when customers use multiple devices, clear their cookies or browse in-app (such as from Facebook).

Yet there are three ways we have seen retailers selling high value items increase the reliability of their online behavioural data.

1. Track online shopping behaviour in detail

Understanding whether customers browse certain products, view the detail of product variants and even add-to-cart is a good proxy for seeing which campaigns eventually convert. Does your brand have a good understanding of how each marketing channel influences browsing behaviour, after the landing page but before the checkout?

Tip: You can now access more granular reporting in Google Analytics 4 by using Explorations to create custom reports. See new terms and how to build reports in our GA4 Glossary Guide.

2. Offer a good reason to get customers to login before buying

VIP offers, registering for events and discounts all offer a good way of getting customers to login from different devices. With the correct analytics setup, this login information can be used (without infringing the users’ privacy) to link together different interactions they make across multiple devices

3. Make the most of your email list

Even without having a login before purchase, customers clicking through links in a marketing email can allow the same stitching together of sessions. This means that if a customer visits a link from their mobile device, and on another week from their home laptop, these two devices can be linked as belonging to the same email – and therefore the same person.

Luxury online retail involves a complex journey. Littledata is here to make your tracking and reporting both easy and accurate. Sign up today to get started with our complete analytics suite, and feel free to reach out to our Google Analytics consultants with questions about best practices for luxury ecommerce. Your success is our success!

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