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Much ado has been given to planogramming, and for good reason. Retailers have long known that the experience within their stores can greatly affect shopping behaviors. Lighting, music, end caps, and more all affect both the mood and what lands in the shopping cart.

This holds true online, as well. As described by Clicktale in their recent study on the impact of shopper emotions on purchase behavior:

“Emotional stimuli are just as applicable online, with everything from page layouts to search speeds all impacting the moods of customers and, ultimately, the number of items that find their way into the shopping cart.”

To this end, marketers often work tirelessly with UX teams to improve the experience for site visitors. However, shoppers are swayed by a myriad of situational variables that occur well before they ever land on a given online retailer’s site.

Whether the user is smiling in the afterglow of a clickbait featuring cute puppies or is sighing from the frustration of a slow-loading news article, the context of their journey is key.

To influence the journey, marketers need control over the context surrounding their ad placements. Specifically, marketers should be looking for page quality, relevant surrounding content, and overall page sentiment.

  • Technical Page Quality. Pages must load quickly, be free from malware, and otherwise cause no browsing friction. Otherwise, 81% of online shoppers will become stressed if pages load slowly, which is hardly ideal.
  • Relevant Surrounding Content. Looking beyond simplistic keyword indicators, the both the subject matter of a page and its form — whether it’s text heavy, media rich, or laden with user generated content & comments — can affect whether a given ad is relevant and likely to perform.
  • Page Sentiment. Beyond understanding what’s on a given page, it’s also important to understand how the content is being portrayed. To this end, semantic analysis of page content can reveal if the content on a given page is positive or negative toward a particular topic, a key tell for marketers looking to captivate consumers in a particular mood.

When consumers interface with a brand via ads that are in safe, relevant, and pleasant settings, then their journey begins with the proper emotional stimuli to support a conversion.

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