RevLifter is a prime example of how quickly an idea can traverse across the world. Founded in London, the tech provider took just a few months to expand into the US and Australia through a combination of easy implementation and impressive results. 

The technology was also helped by e-commerce leaders being willing to bake personalisation and artificial intelligence (AI) into their incentivisation strategies for a competitive edge.

Indeed, Revlifter offers a break from the traditional methods of serving e-commerce offers by using a mix of first and third-party data to target customers on a 1-2-1 level. This allows brands to pick and choose who receives an offer through a bespoke algorithm. The whole purpose is to reduce wastage, improve customer satisfaction and ensure that only the right results are achieved. 

PerformanceIN caught up with Simon Bird, RevLifter’s Co-Founder and CEO, to hear more about the company’s plans for 2021.

RevLifter ended 2020 on a high after raising £3.3 million in Series A funding. What’s changed since then?

Well, it certainly hasn’t been dull. We claimed three International Performance Marketing Awards on the eve of our funding announcement – the same week as the most digital Black Friday on record. Our volumes exceeded all expectations and we carried that momentum into the US holiday season and Christmas in the UK. That was the first 40 days, but consumer spend has barely dropped since, with more retailers having to fine-tune their incentivisation strategies as a result. 

Away from the day-to-day operation, we’ve made significant progress on our goal of building RevLifter’s team for the future. We’ve been staffing up since the tail-end of 2020 and with several major hires scheduled for H1, it’s an exciting time to be a ‘RevLifter’!

One of your goals for 2021 was to expand further into EMEA and APAC while stabilising your position in the UK and US. How are things going? 

It’s strange to think the world is largely static due to COVID-19 but here we are – hitting a sweet spot with our international expansion. 

Pre-2020, our team was racking up thousands of air miles through kick-off meetings and planning sessions. You’d have expected the pandemic to impact things like productivity or resources but it truly is business as usual because we can do everything remotely. 

In terms of individual regions, what we’re seeing is a clear pattern in brands coming to RevLifter with goals in mind, trialing our solutions in the UK and US, seeing the incremental uplift and then exploring ways of rolling us out worldwide. 

We’re hiring new staff to manage the rising demand for hyper-personalisation within several EU countries, and it’s compelling to see the interest in non-traditional partners like ourselves. 

How has Revlifter’s approach to implementation aided the same ambitions?

I think we’re still transitioning from an era where e-commerce technologies required lines and lines of code, which translated to stacks of tickets for the tech department. Then you get the time delays, followed by the vast changes to your website. It was almost like a certain level of advancement came at a cost in the onboarding phase. 

When we started in 2017, our intention was always to build something that was so simple for brands to implement, they could just focus on the good stuff. We like driving instant results, so why make it harder to do? 

RevLifter embodies the plug-and-play ethos. We require no tech assistance and if you’re on an affiliate network, it couldn’t be easier to launch your first campaign and start measuring the incremental effect.

As for your recent successes at the International Performance Marketing Awards and Global Marketing Awards, how have these helped with your international goals?

It’s always useful to bring an award-winning case study to a new brand. That’s been apparent since 2018 when we picked up the Best Performance Marketing Campaign in APAC for Vision Direct AU. Suddenly, you’re getting calls from retailers in the same region but in other sectors, like fashion, telecoms, and grocery, all striving for the common goal of optimising performance. 

Interestingly, we’ve seen a big uptake from the travel sector, which seems to be bubbling under the surface due to the expected boom in a post-COVID world. Hyper-personalised deals have so much potential here as they align with common challenges like cart abandonment, upselling and cross-selling. 

Plus, when considering the sheer competitiveness around products like flights and accommodation, it makes sense for providers to explore ways of launching offers that also protect their margin. Goal-oriented personalisation, where customers are incentivised on the basis of their value to the brand, creates a balanced, sustainable formula for driving sales. 

Do you think markets like the UK and US have been quicker to “get” deals personalisation than others and if so, why? 

Both are mature markets and you’d expect them to be ahead of the curve with any emerging trends. We’ve seen plenty of publisher demographics and strategies making waves in a cluster of markets before gaining momentum in other parts of the world. From our view of the situation, that looks to be the case with deals personalisation too.

Performance marketing also has a network effect that has become more noticeable with the breaking of geographical silos. Global brands, networks, agencies and publishers have reaped the benefits of sharing knowledge, where one team’s success gets passed on to the next market and around the world it goes. RevLifter typically boosts AOV by 10-30% and conversions by 30%. Once we have that result from a mature market, it’s much easier to get switched on somewhere else.

Last year, we saw more retailers using e-commerce to capitalise on the land grab for new customers. It’s created more competition for sales but at no cost to actual spend, which continues to rise. Consumers are now savouring the convenience of heading online for products and services they’d traditionally purchase in-store, and so it’s easier to focus on the opportunity at hand.

Looking at 2021 on the whole, I think we’re going to see a few potentially game-changing ideas entering the performance marketing space. RevLifter started as an idea on a napkin. While that initial lightbulb moment is crucial, you need the time and space to consider how you can put plans into action. Last year gave all of us the chance to stop and reflect, and I’m sure ‘founded in 2020’ will become quite the phrase in the tech world.

Visit RevLifter to see how hyper-personalised offers are helping retailers find, retain and convert their way to e-commerce success.

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