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M&S adds new personalisation technology to its online customer experience

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Marks & Spencer is using personalisation and analytics technology in its quest to create a more individual customer experience for visitors to its website.

Technology from RichRelevance has been integrated on with the aim of giving more personalised product recommendations to customers browsing the site. The recommendations draw on patterns found in how shoppers use the site, from best-selling lines to items that other customers also viewed or bought.

“Our customers are at the heart of every improvement we make,” said David Walmsley, multichannel development director at Marks & Spencer. “The RichRelevance team has domain expertise in personalisation solutions and that gave us confidence in selecting the company as our partner.”

David Selinger, co-founder and chief executive of RichRelevance, said: “At a time when consumers have an increasingly broad range of options for where and how they shop, adopting a customer-centric strategy — where retail operations are considered from the customer’s perspective — is the best approach. Marks & Spencer have recognised that personalisation is paramount to the customer experience and we’re delighted to work with them on this initiative.”

The news comes soon after it emerged that M&S’ volume of customer feedback had grown by 427% since it added customer reviews into its post-purchase emails.

It added the Bazaarvoice platform in October 2010 in order to allow customers to have online conversations. In March 2011 M&S launched an email campaign to follow up purchases by sending a personalised message that includes a link to the reviews page for that item. The effectiveness of the reviews, says Bazaarvoice, is shown by the 25% rise in the number of visitors to the website who go to the reviews tab.

“An improved product review platform is good for our customers and the business,” said M&S’ Walmsley.

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