Initial Order Volume Reveals Future Behavior of Shoppers

Recent research from Optimove reveals that 62 percent of customers will never place a second order from an Internet retailer, and only 16 percent will make more than three orders.

Repeat customers are obviously important to the success of an ecommerce enterprise as it is less expensive to retain than acquire. There is an endless list of reasons why shoppers won't return (poor product quality, bad service, etc.), but is it possible to predict this behavior? Based on its research of over 1 million ecommerce transactions, Optimove believes it is.

The company found that one factor that can be used to determine whether a first-time customer is likely to become a repeat customer is the number of items purchased in their first order. What Optimove discovered was that the more items customers purchased in their first order, the more likely they were to place a second order in the future. While 50 percent of shoppers purchased just on item during their first order, shoppers who purchased two or three items were 36 percent more likely to place a second order than purchasing less.

Optimove, a customer retention automation platform that uses predictive micro-segmentation technology, provided a few recommendations on how to increase the number of items in a customer's first order including making personalized recommendations, offering impulse items, discounts, gamifying the purchasing experience and encouraging social sharing.