Javari’s wasted birthright

What gets my goat is when I buy something from an online store that’s got briliant products and brilliant service, a fantastic website and a sign-up form that asks me loads of questions – but which then sends me generic emails I have no interest in whatsoever. I mean, I bought some Merrell trainers from this place, Javari, and now they bombard me with stuff about how kitten heels are the next big thing.

Javari is owned by Amazon, world leaders in relevant recommendations. But Amazon has clearly kept Javari on a very tight budget. The email marketing programme is so, like, yesterday – I couldn’t believe it when such high regard generated by the shopping experience have been so let down by the customer retention programme.

So what should they be doing? Well, for a start, I’m a bloke, buying (what I hope are) cool walking shoes, and I looked at every single Merrell shoe on the site before making my choice. That must tell them something. At least it tells them to relegate the kitten heels to emails I get at weekends or to second place in the content in case I’m the sort who of man who buys shoes for his partner. I wear the same size shoes as I always have, so that might inform tactical sales of remaindered stock and so on. Perhaps they should be sending me news of every new Merrell shoe they get in – Merrell does.

The days of blanket emails to Mr/Mrs AB Sample surely have gone the way of the door drop. Javari ticked all the boxes – indeed, I was looking forward to the emails when I opted in, wondering which agency was doing them. I am so, so disappointed. And that means that although by some miracle I might remember they were cheap and go back if I’m actively shopping, there won’t be any mid-cycle visits to their site, nor serendipitous nudge-driven sneaky sneaker purchases.

Yet we know from long experience that just by maintaining relevant contact using segmented emails, and observing how each segment responds, we can increase ROI by between 25% and 90% straight away and average purchase frequency by 7% in the first year. So why, Javari, why have you ignored your genetic birthright of great customer engagement, and prompted a critique like this? The first you’ve heard of it you say? That’s because you can’t – you’re not listening.