Understand the "why” behind the "what” of online customer behavior

With the recent surge in online sales as the holiday shopping season kicks off, you may be wondering why consumers make the choices they do.

 

It’s easy to get visibility into customer behavior at a physical store.

 

Imagine this scenario: You’re a retail store manager and you see customers walking out of your store in frustration, leaving their half-full shopping carts at the door. You look around and notice a major backup in the checkout line. You see that a register is down at one of the checkout counters, causing the backup. You immediately open up a new checkout line and restore service.

 

You can move quickly and decisively because you have clear visibility into the customer experience and the drivers of that experience. You can see both the what and the why of customer behavior.

 

Understanding why online customers behave as they do is a challenge.

 

Now imagine that you’re the manager of an online retail site. Here, your visibility is limited. Web analytics can give you an idea of what is happening. For example, it can tell you the number of customers who are abandoning their shopping carts and leaving your site. It can also tell you what these customers were doing when they left, such as viewing pages in a product catalog or checking out.

 

The problem is that Web analytics solutions don’t give you visibility into why customers are leaving. There could be hundreds of reasons. Maybe they couldn’t get a good view of the product they wanted to buy. Maybe their credit card verification was taking too long. Perhaps they got an indecipherable error message. You can only guess at the cause. So your ability to take swift and appropriate action is limited.

 

How can you increase your visibility to also understand the why of customer behavior?

 

What you need is a digital video recorder trained on every customer who visits your site so you can get an instant replay of every customer’s experience and determine not only how customers behaved but why. Armed with this information, you could rapidly zero in on the causes of problems, and act quickly and decisively. You would also know if the problem is serious enough to be impacting the business significantly and prioritize accordingly.

 

This technical brief details some cool features in Foglight that do just that.