Oleg Lesov

CPO Yespo

Ecommerce benchmarks

Ecommerce During the War: How Consumer Behavior and Communication Strategies Have Changed

On February 24, 2022, the day of russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine, Ukrainian online stores lost on average 82.7% of sessions. However, in March, traffic began to increase.
In this article, we will tell you whether Ukrainian ecommerce managed to return to and surpass the figures of 2021. We’ll reveal how customer behavior and communication strategies of companies have changed and discover trends of market leaders.

What the Study is Based On

The object of the study: ecommerce customers of Yespo, the most popular customer data platform in Ukraine – 610 projects with 23 million customers.
We collected and analyzed data from September 2021 through November 2023.

Dynamics of Online Commerce Recovery in Ukraine

Impact of full-scale war on ecommerce

Despite the full-scale war, online commerce in Ukraine continues to develop. The research adds to the optimism: as early as July 2023, the number of buyers is almost back to 2021 levels.

At the same time, fall numbers exceeded expectations, with online shoppers increasing to 112% in October 2023, up 6% from October 2021.

Black Friday was successful this year and received the same shopping figures as 2021.

How much you can earn with CDP using different direct channels

The development and recovery process of online commerce is closely related to the use of direct communication channels and Customer Data Platform (CDP).

CDP allows companies to earn through omnichannel strategy, specifically reaching out to target audiences through bulk and triggered emails, SMS, mobile and web push, etc. In addition, businesses can easily analyze the results.

To get a better understanding of Customer Data Platform usage, let's compare three groups of Yespo customers over three periods: September 2021, July 2023, and November 2023. Statistically, companies had the following shares of sales from CDP in September 2021:

  1. 20,7% for the top 1% of customers using the platform most often.
  2. 11,9% for the top 10% of customers using CDP fairly frequently.
  3. 3,6% for the top 50% of customers (median) with average performance.

In July 2023, the share of sales from CDP had a more positive trend:

  1. 26,3% for the top 1% of customers.
  2. 14,1% for the top 10% of customers.
  3. 4,2% for the top 50% of customers.

Share of sales from CDP in November 2023:

  1. 21,6% for the top 1% of customers.
  2. 16,5% for the top 10% of customers.
  3. 8,9% for the top 50% of customers.

Yespo's three customer groups over the three periods

I want to utilize the capabilities of CDP

The influence of direct channels is growing. Businesses are relying on them more and more and investing in not only attracting customers but also retaining them. While the share of sales from CDPs for the top 10 percent of customers was 11,9 percent in 2021, it rose to 16,5 percent in 2023. This shows that even in times of war, companies find the resources to implement quality business changes and opportunities to be effective for customers.

In which channels companies send messages

Let's consider each of the direct channels separately and analyse their effectiveness and growth prospects.

Restoring direct channels


In March 2022, the reach of email campaigns dropped significantly, but over the following months, businesses started to actively use this communication channel again. Email rates reached a plateau during the year and remained unchanged for quite some time.

Create a campaign in an email editor with built-in AI

SMS and Viber

In addition to emails, the number of SMS and Viber messages sent also decreased in March 2022. However, subsequently, channel performance has gradually increased:

  • SMS reached the 2021 level in February 2023;
  • Viber has recovered but is still not back to 2021 coverage.

Statistics of coverage by different channels

Mobile push

The mobile push channel is growing dynamically. In July 2023, it overtook email campaigns in terms of website and app conversions, so today it is mobile push messages that are actively generating traffic. This channel is one of the most effective in terms of development rate and potential.

Comparison of the number of transitions

Web push

This channel has not been very popular among customers, but 2023 has introduced a number of innovations that should improve its effectiveness. Perhaps as early as this year, web push will start to grow dynamically.

The Safari browser has allowed websites that are added to the home screen of mobile devices to send web pushes. Now iOS and Android users can receive push messages even if they haven't installed your app. Web push will look the same as mobile push.

It is important:

  • for companies that have encountered certain restrictions in the App Store and don't have their own app;
  • if customers use older devices and can't install your app, you can reach them via web push.

Utilize all direct channels to communicate with customers

Traffic Volume from Different CDP Channels

What's important to a business is predicting how much traffic from CDP channels a company can get and how much it can earn from them.
Let's consider an example of a base of 100,000 customers. Let's turn to the table:

Traffic volume from different CDP channels

1. Median

It's a basic level. If you introduce standard CDP solutions, you'll get 62 conversions from every thousand email contacts within a month.

2. Top 10%

If you use a personalized approach and all the major CDP channels, you can be in the top 10%. Such companies occupy different niches and utilize different methods. The click-through rate for businesses in the top 10% is about 302 per month out of 1,000 contacts.

3. Top 1%

Not every company can make it into the top 1% – the top segment of benchmarking. Getting more than 2,600 conversions is difficult, so this approach utilizes a limited number of Yespo customers with appropriate business models.

Comparison of Performance Across Industries

Consider how the use of direct channels correlates to different industries. The overall median for the email channel is 62 conversions to the website or app from 1,000 contacts per month. However, the lines of business differ considerably from each other. For example, the leading positions are occupied by Fashion and Accessories, in second place – Home and Garden and marketplaces, and in last place – pharmacies and drogeries.

Linking direct channels to industries

Does this mean that a pharmacy website or app will get less traffic from email campaigns than other industries' resources anyway? If we analyse the niches in more detail, we will see that some pharmacies have rates significantly higher than the median value. The same is true for other industries.

The diagram illustrates more about the maturity of the different areas. For example, companies in the Fashion & Accessories segment historically started using direct channels earlier. Their strategies are often based on active communication with customers, which is why these businesses were among the first to use email as a marketing tool and achieve great results.

How Often to Send Messages

Statistically, companies in the top 10% send 10 emails per month to one contact. If we compare this value with the averages, we see that the median is 3 emails per month.

However, we are primarily interested in the businesses that are most successful in attracting traffic to their website through email campaigns. Almost all of them send between 4 and 12 emails. There are also companies that reach out to their customers with emails up to 20 times a month, but this usually doesn't translate to an increase in traffic.

After comparing the results of email campaigns, it appears that the optimal strategy is to send 4 to 12 emails per month to one contact.

Attracting traffic to the website using email campaigns

A similar strategy can be followed when sending mobile pushes. The only statistical difference is that you'll get more conversions to the app thanks to a single message than you will with a single email.

It should be noted that the chart illustrates the big picture and averages trends. There are companies that send much more or less emails to customers, for example, because of the specifics of the business. This strategy may be the right one, too.

Bulk and Triggered Campaigns: Website Conversions and CTRs

Bulk and triggered campaigns are equally important, but let's turn to statistics to better understand the metrics.

According to Yespo, bulk spontaneous emails generate more traffic than triggered emails, but the CTRs between the two differ by almost 10 times. For example, the CTR of bulk email campaigns is 0,02%, while that of triggered emails is 0,21%. So, you will get 10 times more conversions per triggered email than one bulk email.

Statistics of bulk and trigger campaigns

For mobile push messaging, personalization and properly built conversations are essential. The effectiveness of bulk mobile push is insignificant – CTR is only 0,05%. Much more traffic is generated by using triggered campaigns – CTR 0,47%.

In other channels, the dynamic has insignificant differences: CTR of bulk campaigns in Viber is 0,16%, triggered – 0,11%, CTR of web push bulk campaigns is 0,02%, triggered – 0,23%.

How to Get into the Leadership Segment: Trends

Consider the vivid and inspiring example of one of Yespo's CDP customers. Despite the crisis in Ukraine, the company is almost every month in the top 10% of our best customers, leading in terms of revenue from direct channels (all transitions to the website) and personalization (product recommendations, widgets, etc.).

The growth of business positions began in March 2022, which is after the full-scale invasion. The company decided to make a change in its strategy and turned to us for help.

Today, one-third of sales of this business is provided by direct channels: it has a high Retention rate and increases CLV, meaning it gets more revenue per attracted customer. The company's overall margins have also gotten much better since the change.

Dynamics of the company's development

What exactly led to such rapid development?


First and foremost, we focused on personalizing the business:

  • installed widgets on the website;
  • implemented (and improved) product recommendations on the mobile and desktop versions of the website;
  • personalized messaging: almost all triggers were segmented and tailored to specific customer groups.

Mobile application and mobile version of the website

Our experience shows that not all companies develop or fully utilize the potential of a mobile app, depriving themselves of some of the traffic.

Our customer turned this tool into a full-fledged marketing channel and also optimized the mobile version of the website, as a significant number of people use smartphones to make purchases and communicate with the brand.

Trigger communications

Another feature of the platform that helped the company get into the top 10% was the customization of conversations and workflows, which are the foundation of marketing automation. Triggers allow for the fastest possible response to an event – customers open and read such messages almost immediately, which is the key to success for a company.

Segment your audience and personalize your messages


Despite the full-scale invasion and the associated crisis in many areas of business, the dynamics of online commerce in Ukraine are gradually returning to normal. In July 2023, the number of buyers nearly reached the 2021 level, and the October 2023 numbers exceeded those recorded in October 2021.

Businesses are actively using direct channels, but this leads to different results in different industries. For example, the leading positions in terms of the number of conversions to the website or application from email campaigns are occupied by the Fashion and Accessories segment, the second place – Home and Garden and marketplaces, and the last place – Pharmacies and Drogeries. This trend is related to the maturity of industries and the uneven development of industries.

Many companies use different types of email campaigns and mobile push, but bulk messaging generates more traffic, and triggered messaging has a higher CTR.

Our customers' experience shows that the optimal strategy is to send 4 to 12 emails and mobile pushes per month. However, this approach is not universal: some businesses, by their very nature, need to send much more or fewer messages to customers.

All the above trends confirm the resilience and adaptability of businesses to difficult conditions. Even in difficult times, companies find ways to engage new channels of communication with customers, implement business changes, and deliver strong results.

To ensure dynamic development and get into the segment of market leaders, they develop omnichannel strategies, pay attention to personalization and trigger communications with customers, use mobile applications, and adapt mobile versions of the website.

All of this can be implemented together with Yespo's CDP. Schedule a consultation, and we'll tell you how our solutions can help your business.

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Oleg Lesov

CPO Yespo

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