Shoppers in the UK will spend £1 in every £4 online this golden quarter, so the pressure is on for retailers.

While the faceless nature of ecommerce has traditionally made it harder for retailers to build customer relationships, its remote nature doesn’t necessarily mean it has to be soulless.

Ecommerce means that retailers are constantly connected to their consumers, and the availability of data insights means that they have a clear view of customer preferences and behaviour.

Connecting with consumers using a more human approach creates a more enjoyable shopping experience. And there are countless opportunities to interact with the customer online.

Etailers can create unique experiences with recommendations or use tools to communicate directly with consumers. Mike Bishop, managing director of Rakuten.co.uk, says: “Creating an experience, rather than allowing the visit to a site to be purely transactional, is a key way to showcase your brand personality online, as well as a chance to build trust.”

The same rules that apply to in-store customer service often apply online. If a customer is disappointed, they want to feel heard and be responded to quickly. Retailers should provide a swift resolution, ensuring the customer receives a personable experience across channels.

For consumers, brand affinity is based on how the brand makes them feel. Bishop says: “Technological advances have come far enough to bring shopping online, but now retailers need to be ensuring they are providing the personal experience that can be achieved in-store.”

By responding to the desire for tailored experiences, retailers can build better long-term relationships with consumers.