How to Choose the Right Product Recommendation Strategy for Your Shopify Store

how to choose a product recommendation strategy

Picture this: You’re in your favorite clothing store, trying on a beautiful dress. Suddenly, the store representative recommends a pair of heels that would go perfectly with that dress.

Or you just visited Amazon and noticed it has lined up all the products related to your past browsing history.

If either of these cases sounds familiar to you, you have experienced product recommendations.

Product recommendations are a powerful conversion tool for ecommerce businesses. They have the capability to increase the average order value by 369%, boost conversions by 33%, and improve cart abandonment by up to 4.35%.

However, when it comes to choosing the right product recommendation strategy for your store, there is no size fits all.

A strategy that works great for a clothing store might not work for a tech store. So, it’s crucial to choose a strategy that aligns best with your business type, the kind of customers it attracts, and their behavioral and browsing patterns.

While an excellent strategy can take your revenue to another level, a poorly executed one can irritate shoppers and disrupt the conversion flow.

This blog post will walk you through six different steps to choose the right recommendation strategy for your Shopify store so you can improve revenue, relevance, and experience for each visitor.

Six Steps to Choose the Right Recommendation Strategy

Understand the Different Types of Product Recommendation Widgets

Placing the right product recommendation widget on your website is crucial for increased conversion rates, average order value, and positive upsell and cross-sell experiences across your store.

These widgets are tailored by an AI-powered engine and help put across relevant products before your visitors, based on data like gender, location, recently viewed items, purchase history, shopping patterns, etc.

With Wiser, you can set up nine different types of recommendation widgets on your Shopify store. Plus, it also shows you which recommendations are performing well.

Understand how these widgets work, test them out, and see which one yields the best results.

  1. Recently viewed products: It allows customers to revisit the products they looked at quickly in the past by using their browsing history. This reminds them of items they forgot to add, increasing their average order value.
  2. Frequently bought together: It displays the products which were purchased together by other customers. This is a great way to nudge the shoppers to add more items to their cart, increasing sales.
  3. New arrivals: It allows you to promote newly arrived products that aren’t popular on your Shopify store yet. This way, shoppers get to know what new collection you have. And, your regular shoppers can add these items to their cart before completing the purchase.
  4. Trending products: With this widget, you can display the trending products in the same category on your store. These are items that have the highest conversion rates and ratings based on customer reviews.
  5. Related products: This widget shows the products similar to the product the customer is already viewing. It displays items from the same product types, collections, and tags to provide a positive browsing experience to your shoppers.
  6. Cart page recommendations: This widget displays the items related to the products already added to the shopper’s cart so that they can add more relevant items they’re interested in. This not only increases their average order value but also helps you generate more revenue.
  7. Thank you page recommendations: Displaying product recommendations on the thank you page allows you to cross-sell products related to what the customer has already bought. Since shoppers are interested in such items, it increases your chances of bagging more sales.
  8. Inspired by browsing history: It recommends products to your customers, from the different categories/ collections, based on their browsing patterns.
  9. Pop-up recommendations: It allows you to display recommendations within pop-ups based on the shopper’s preferences or browsing history. This is a great way to re-engage shoppers who might have lost interest and increase click-through rates.

Read more about the types of product recommendation widgets here

Identify Your Goals

Before you decide what product recommendations you want to display on your Shopify store, identify what goal(s) you wish to achieve from them.

Each recommendation works differently, so the goals they help you achieve are different too. Here are some of the objectives you can focus on when choosing a recommendation strategy.

  • Reduce bounce rate by nudging visitors to explore more products and stay on the website for longer.
  • Improve product discoverability by showing more items in the recommendation widgets, such as frequently bought together items, new arrivals, trending products, and so on.
  • Boost conversions by getting shoppers to find more items on the website. This will make them add more items to their cart and improve the user experience, raising the average order value.
  • Upsell products by getting shoppers to know higher-priced items related to the products they have already purchased or added to their cart.
  • Cross-sell products by getting shoppers to explore complimentary items that will make them add more items to the cart. This not only increases the average order value but also prevents customers from buying something they can’t use immediately.

product recommendations results

Understand Your Store Visitors

Understanding the mindset of your visitors is the holy grail of Shopify store owners.

What do your visitors like? What influences their buying behavior?

Do the shoppers visit your website, explore a few items, and leave? Do they add products to their cart but leave without making the purchase?

The goal here is to study how they interact with your website and identify the possible reasons why they are bouncing off your website without making any purchase.

A good way to do this is by looking into your Google Analytics data to study the details about your visitors—where they came from, which links they clicked on, what pages they stayed for longer than others, and so on.

This helps you identify your high drop-off pages and leaky funnels from which these visitors leave your store. This will also inform the pages on which you can plug product recommendations so that shoppers stay longer on the website and make bigger purchases.

For example, if visitors are leaving from the cart page, showing them recommendations within a pop-up before they leave can encourage them to give it another thought and explore more items your store has to offer.

Let’s take another example. Suppose the shopper arrived on your store searching for a specific item but left without checking out the other products. In this case, displaying trending products, new arrivals, and related products widgets can help them find products they might be interested in and boost your sales without much effort.

types of online shoppers


Identify Buyer Motivations

Showing recommendations is a great way to get visitors to explore more products on your website. But sometimes, it takes more than just showing them related items.

Identifying the motivations behind your customers’ decisions, how they interact with your website, and where they are in their buying journey is crucial for an effective product recommendation strategy.

For example, if you know your visitors are influenced by what others are doing, you can display ‘top selling’ or ‘frequently bought together’ items as product recommendations.

Further, if you know they tend to check reviews before making a purchase, you can display reviews of the recommended products right below them.

Create Your Customer Segments

Once you understand your store visitors and their motivations, it’s time to identify core customer segments and tailor experiences based on how many times they visited your store, what type of products they tend to buy (limited edition or discounted products), where they came from on your website, and so on.

For example, visitors that browse multiple products on a store each week should be treated differently than first-time visitors who came on your website via a social media ad.

This is an excellent way that allows Shopify stores to target the right shoppers with the right recommendations.

The goal here is to be able to A/B test your recommendations strategy. For example, for repeated customers, displaying top-selling, trending, related product recommendations can be the best choice.

Similarly, showing discounted or on-sale recommendations to price-sensitive buyers can help you sell more stock and increase revenue.

Choose the Right Recommendation App

If you own a Shopify store and aren’t using any product recommendation app, you need to think again.

These apps use a set of algorithms to recommend relevant products to your visitors. They do this by collecting data, such as browsing history, location, gender, purchase intent, and so on.

Thankfully, there are tons of product recommendation apps available which you can deploy on your Shopify store. However, not just any tool will do.

You must find an app that comes loaded with all the features essential for implementing an effective recommendation strategy.

Here are some factors you can consider:

Type of business

When it comes to product recommendation apps, what is suitable for a clothing store might not be good for home decor stores.

While some apps might work seamlessly across all industries, others are best suited for a specific type of business.

Check the features thoroughly to know what tool best aligns with the type of your business. Further, you can even spy on your competitors to see what app they use.


Next, it’s crucial to know if your product recommendation app has features you need to get more eyeballs and increase conversions. You can find this information on the website of the recommendation tool.

Some of the essential features are A/B testing capabilities, a reliable support team, and different types of recommendation widgets.

Compatibility with your Shopify store

When choosing the right recommendation app, ask yourself these questions to determine if the recommendation app you want works well with your ecommerce website.

  • Is it easy to install?
  • Is it compatible with your Shopify theme?
  • Does it integrate with the ecommerce platform you use, for example, Shopify?


Pricing may vary with each recommendation app. So, select the tool that aligns with your budget and offers you full value for your money. Fortunately, many tools come with free trials or money-back guarantees so that you can try out their features before committing to one.

Summing Up

A product recommendation strategy is the backbone of ecommerce stores that want to deliver a personalized experience to their customers. However, these strategies differ greatly from one another, and choosing the right one is crucial to improve user experience and boost revenue.

To find the strategy most suitable for your store, experiment with different options available. You can also look at what strategy other Shopify stores selling similar products as yours are using. This will help you see the impact of different recommendation strategies and how their buyers interact with them.

If you want to know more about how different businesses deployed different recommendation strategies on their stores and got insane results, check out these case studies to explore more.

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