I’ve often thought about how people buy online and how really the only difference is the technology we use to purchase the product or service. The psychology behind the purchase is no different. This article from Business Week got me thinking about how we’ve already begun to notice a shift in e-business from getting new customers, to getting loyal repeat customers (consumers).
When the first supermarkets attracted new customers, didn’t the successful ones keep their customer base loyal to their brand by offering loyalty cards, discounts and upsell’s at every opportunity?
Will the web go the same way? Will we see for instance Amazon and Ebay offering exclusive membership schemes which rack up points per purchase (with points meaning discounts or prizes) in exchange for your information so that they can serve ads to you (and of course charge advertisers a premium)? Isn’t that the way MSN, Google and Yahoo are already trying to go with things like Hotmail, Gmail and active desktops?
Will the next important conversion rate after the initial purchase soon be to sign up as a “gold member”. Å