As traditional brick and mortar retailers venture online to expand their marketing horizons, their next goal is to find an effective way to personalize the online shopping experience for customers.

Online sales have seen a growth rate of 10 times more than offline sales, but with store owners and sales people physically cut out of the equation, how can you offer the same personalized recommendations you would at your physical store?

Marketing automation, while helpful, is a bit too static and impersonal, not to mention boring. What if you could personalize the online shopping experience with interactive content that you’ve come to recognize as a staple of social media?

“I Got Peridot! What Kind Of Gem Are You?”

Quizzes have become a viral sensation over the past few years, if Buzzfeed hasn’t made that obvious already. Marketers are beginning to use quizzes as an effective method of generating leads, segmenting their database and increasing e-commerce sales. And quite frankly, you might want to consider it, too.

I’ve personally been a part of the making of more than 25,000 quizzes at Interact and have learned a lot about what makes an effective piece for generating sales and driving leads. Today, I’ll answer the questions I presented above with five examples that illustrate how you can use quizzes to personalize the online shopping experience and help drive online sales for your company.

1. How Z Gallerie Personalized Their Product Line Through Quizzes

Z Gallerie quizZ Gallerie is a company that provides their customers with creative products procured from all over the world. They attend to both professional and amateur interior designers alike with a strong online presence and locations across the United States. Z Gallerie created the quiz “What is your Z Gallerie Style Personality?” to personalize their product line and to generate leads.

The purpose of Z Gallerie’s quiz is to provide a personalized experience for every potential and current customer that visits their website. After answering several questions, Z Gallerie collects contact information through a lead capture form which allows them to follow up in a personal way with the help of marketing automation.

Z Gallerie quiz

After filling out the lead capture form, Z Gallerie gives you your “Style Personality” with a link to learn more about it. Clicking the link brings you to a personalized page with product recommendations based carefully on the answers you chose on the quiz.

With the help of their personality quiz, Z Gallerie was able to deliver a very personalized shopping experience that brings in a considerable amount of leads per day. This personalized approach keeps customers engaged and allows the brand to suggest products custom-fit for their personal preferences. This gives Z Gallerie an opportunity to establish a connection with customers that can convert them into repeat purchasers in the future.

Here’s how you can deploy this strategy for your brand: Create a quiz with personalized results for each customer so that you can recommend products tailored to their preferences. This can be done by either recommending a single product, or by assigning people a “personality” that corresponds to a group of products. Follow up with marketing automation to keep your customers interested and engaged.

2. How Birchbox Differentiated Their Products Using A Personality Quiz

birch box quizBirchbox specializes in a monthly delivery of personalized product samples along with original content and an exciting online shop. Birchbox created the quiz “Find Your Face Mask Soul Mate in One Minute” to give personalized recommendations on which facemask customer should purchase.

What distinguishes Birchbox’s strategy from Z Gallerie’s is their execution. Although Birchbox practiced the same tactic of creating a quiz that suggests products based on personal preferences, they used theirs to differentiate similar products, most of which were variants of facemasks.

While Birchbox did not use their quiz to generate leads, they used it to place an emphasis on the most suitable face mask for their customers. The quiz made a personal connection with Birchbox’s customers by offering products catered specifically to them. Personalized experiences like this encourage the growth of a relationship between customer and retailer.

Here’s how you can emulate this method: Create a personality quiz with results based on your customer’s personal preferences. From there, recommend the most suitable product, as personalized suggestions convert better than generalized ones.

3. How BioLite Used A Quiz To Raise Awareness And Promote Their Product Line

bio lite quiz

BioLite’s strategy is surprisingly simple. They created a quiz to help raise awareness on power outage and lack-of-power preparedness. After the taking their quiz and getting the results, regardless of how prepared consumers may be, BioLite still recommends products that may be useful in similar situations.

With the use of a lead capture form, BioLite asked quiz-takers if they would like to submit their contact information to receive updates on environmental friendly products and as an entry into their giveaway as an incentive. The form brought in 4,852 leads.

Here’s what you can do to replicate this strategy: Create a quiz that makes people think about situations that would require them to use products that you offer. It will encourage customers to make purchases based on their ability to rationalize the need for said products in various scenarios.

4. How The Elephant Pants Used Quizzes To Fund Their Kickstarter Campaign

elephant pants quiz

Before establishing themselves as the successful company they are today, The Elephant Pants relied on the support of fundraising through a Kickstarter campaign. By creating the quiz “Which Pair of Elephant Pants Are You?” and linking it to their Kickstarter, The Elephant Pants were able to generate enough leads to fund their launch.

Just like the previous examples that we’ve taken a look at so far, The Elephant Pants also used their quiz to deliver personalized results that recommended a particular kind of product to customers—in this case, a specific kind of Elephant Pants.

The Elephant Pants provided a link at the end at the end results the quiz to help fund their Kickstarter. It also opted potential customers in to their email newsletter to keep them updated with any new developments.

By the end of their campaign, The Elephant Pants Kickstarter raised over $8,500 through their quiz, which was enough to help the retail startup to get off the ground.

Here’s how you can recreate this type of success: Create a quiz that recommends possible products that would encourage customers to fund a new product line, or new business altogether. When it takes off, you’ll have already established a loyal customer base from your humble beginnings.

5. How Aaron Brothers Uses Quizzes To Convert Leads Into Local Purchasers

aaron brothers michaels quizAaron Brothers (Michael’s) specializes in offering their customers merchandise in the form of custom framing, art supplies and home decor. With a dedicated focus on art, they created a quiz to generate leads with an emphasis on targeting location.

The quiz, entitled “What’s Your Color?”, is entertaining, shareable content made with the sole purpose of generating leads based on location. Quizzes that categorize quiz-takers into personalities are heavily favored on social media, so the shares are frequent. It’s generated over 500 leads and has been the most successful part of Aaron Brothers’ campaign.

Here’s how you can paint the same picture: Use an entertaining quiz to collect leads earmarked by location so you can sell more seasonal and regionally-favored products offline by suggesting the nearest physical store location.

Many retailers are making the leap to online marketing, but the shopping experience isn’t quite the same as walking into a typical department store. Retailers want to emulate the same personalized customer service that they provide in person, and quizzes help bridge that gap.

Use a personality quiz to create personalized product recommendations as the end result. Or, use the same kind of quiz to differentiate between products or to encourage the funding of a product that’s in development. No matter how you use your quiz for retail, it will still have the innate ability to generate leads for your brand.

So get out there, be creative and make your mark in the world of e-commerce with the Internet’s next irresistible quiz.