Clienteling strategies are becoming more central for retail businesses and successfully executing them is not possible without the use of a well integrated clienteling software. In fact, the top clienteling apps are already helping the smartest retailers of all sizes grow sales from key customers while improving the omnichannel shopping experience at the same time.
As clienteling is becoming mainstream and is now table stakes for luxury retail, the number of clienteling apps in the market is increasing too. It is hard to distinguish between these applications by simply seeing their websites or marketing material. So how do you pick a clienteling software that is well suited for your business and well adopted by your in-store associates or virtual sales team?
In this article, we’re going to compare the 5 best clienteling apps available in the market today. After providing you with a short description of each of the tools, we’re also discussing their features compared to one another. We hope this will help you pick the app that is best for your needs.
Top 5 Clienteling Apps in 2023
Before we jump in, you might want to go through this recent post on “Why Investing in a Clienteling App is Worth it for Your Retail Business”
StyleSend is known as one of the best clienteling apps for luxury retail available at the moment. It is very specific: it is aimed at luxury retail, and it is built for associates of lifestyle and fashion retailers. For this reason, it includes features optimized for retailers at this intersection of luxury and fashion.
Before moving on to describe the features that StyleSend can provide, we should highlight the fact that this is also one of the most user-friendly clienteling apps for in-store associates. The mobile apps (iOS and Android) are intuitive, personalizable and can be used from a simple smartphone, iPad or any other tablet. StyleSend, therefore, has a very quick learning curve: it is built to allow anyone, even those who are not tech experts, to use the app for their clienteling strategies.
StyleSend main features
While the list of features that StyleSend offers is much longer, we have tried to compile the most important ones below:
- Secret Assistant: an assistant that nudges you with important client data and preferences at the right time
- Shoppable Looks: allows you to offer personalized inspiration for your clients by creating shoppable looks from your product catalog
- AI Recommendations: using customer data about preferences, behavior, and past purchases, the StyleSend recommendation engine gives associates individualized recommendations to share with their clients
- No-code integration: with Shopify, WooCommerce, Wix and more for retailers, small and big, to get started in less than 10 minutes
- WhatsApp Business API: in-built WhatsApp chat tab running on WhatsApp Business API integration (with multi-agent routing)
- Digital blackbook: jot notes about clients or interactions and also receive important date reminders such as client birthdays and anniversaries
- Appointment scheduling: appointment booking and reminders
- Easy UI: built with a mobile-first vision to be an easy to use clienteling app for in-store associates and using similar design and UX patterns as that of Instagram, Pinterest and other luxury brand apps like Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Chanel, Farfetch, mytheresa etc.
Tulip is a retail clienteling software mainly aimed at providing retail businesses with omnichannel tools. As per their website “Tulip provides a suite of cloud-based solutions that let retailers overcome industry challenges and set a new standard for omnichannel commerce. Partnered with Apple and Salesforce, Tulip equips sophisticated retailers to build connections with customers, fulfill orders, checkout purchases, and optimize operations in order to create the end-to-end experience modern customers expect.”
Omnichannel is an important principle of clienteling as it is currently considered one of the ways to enhance your customers’ shopping experience. Omnichannel shouldn’t be only limited to payment methods: the entire shopping experience should become omnichannel. From product browsing to customer service, customers should be free of navigating your store through multiple and well-integrated channels.
Tulip’s omnichannel features are:
- Checkout anywhere: the feature that allows customers to buy products and checkout through digital payment methods whether they are inside or outside your store
- Customer service: Tulip provides a bunch of communication features that you can use to provide top-quality customer service
- Tulip also provides some omnichannel features to create client profiles that you can use to personalize their shopping experience and your marketing strategies
3. Endear HQ
Endear HQ is a complete retail CRM platform with a clienteling solution among other retail solutions like a Customer Data Platform (CDP) and SMS and email campaigns. Compared to other clienteling platforms in this list – Endear has a wider offering but less focused on clienteling. It provides, however, an umbrella of digital solutions that can help you run your retail marketing strategies.
The digital solutions include:
- omnichannel communication features that you can use to connect with your clients and manage your customer service
- personalization features that allow you to, for example, put the right products in front of the right people
- automation features to create client profiles and segmentations
- integrations with some of the most popular retail and ecommerce platforms like Shopify
Just like Tulip, Mercaux is focused on providing omnichannel features for retailers. With Mercaux, you can create an omnichannel and well-integrated environment where the line between the physical and virtual worlds is thinner and thinner. As per the website, “Mercaux is an In-Store Experience, Universal Basket and Checkout Platform”.
The important features of Mercaux are:
- digital fitting room: clients can browse products, scan barcodes, and request different sizes or items, all without leaving the fitting room
- assisted selling: it isn’t only in-store but also online. When clients buy online they are often on their own, while when purchasing in-store they can usually count on the help and advice of an experienced seller. With this feature, you can assist your clients with their sales even online.
- appointment scheduling: appointments are part of a personalized and exclusive shopping experience that you want to provide to your customers. Mercaux provides features that allow your clients to schedule appointments through web channels.
- self-service kiosks: These are installations that allow your clients to be independent inside your store, browsing through the products and buying them without the need for assistance.
Mercaux is also unique because it’s composable: you don’t need to purchase all the features at once. You can combine the different solutions to tailor the platform to your specific needs and budget.
Salesforce needs no introduction as the world’s biggest CRM software. On top of the core CRM, Salesforce also provides different solutions for various use cases. They have solutions available for businesses of all sizes but most of their clients are large enterprise retailers. Hence, the product is expensive and complex.
Salesforce provides a huge resource center with information on how to use their platform but also on what is clienteling and how to implement clienteling strategies in your business.
The interface is clean, but the fact that they have so many solutions can be confusing. To run a comprehensive clienteling strategy, for example, you need – at least – the package dedicated to sales and the one dedicated to customer services. The Customer 360 package is also important as it allows you to personalize every aspect of your client’s journey inside your retail store.
Instead of providing a unique and comprehensive platform, Salesforce provides different solutions that you can combine as you like. They are well-integrated so you can consider Salesforce a composable platform like Mercaux.
Top clienteling apps: direct comparison
As you to dive further, you could see some of the points in this post titled How to Increase Sales with Clienteling and identify the ones important to you.
To help you navigate the world of clienteling software, we thought of providing you with a direct comparison between each of the companies we covered above. All of them are great digital clienteling tools in their own right, but there are certain aspects where some are better than others. You can find out why in this section below.
1- Tulip vs StyleSend
Tulip and StyleSend share some similarities but they also have some important differences. Both platforms have user-friendly interfaces and they allow a quick learning curve. They also provide similar features: checkout anywhere, omnichannel customer communication, 360° customer profiles and others.
So, what are the differences?
Unlike Tulip, StyleSend also provides no-code integrations with other platforms like Shopify, WooCommerce, Wix or Whatsapp Business. When you use different software tools for managing your business, you want them to be integrated, that is, to work together, without having to manually pass from one to another to perform the tasks. You also want the integrations to be no-code, meaning that you can integrate and sync two tools without programming and without the need of writing any code. This can make StyleSend easier to set up and use than Tulip.
The second big difference is that StyleSend is more specific. It is aimed at a precise category of business, which is luxury retail, while Tulip is more general.
Which one to choose?
If you have a luxury retail store, or if you want to provide a luxury and exclusive experience to your customers, StyleSend is the best option between the two because it is specifically built for it.
2- StyleSend vs Endear HQ
StyleSend and Endear HQ might have some features in common, but they are different platforms. In particular, StyleSend is strictly focused on clienteling and, even more specifically, on clienteling for luxury retailers. Endear HQ is designed for clienteling but it’s more generally aimed at providing digital solutions to retail businesses. These solutions can be used to run clienteling programs, but they are also useful for marketing purposes, for example.
Endear is very advanced but it is not as user-friendly as StyleSend. The learning curve, with Endear, can be slow especially if you or your store associates are new to business software tools. StyleSend, on the other hand, is easier to learn and to teach to your store teams and collaborators.
Between Endear and StyleSend, the latter is the more user-friendly and specific for clienteling. It also has the advantage of being built for mobile use: the mobile interface is just as optimized and user-friendly as the desktop one.
3- StyleSend vs Mercaux
Mercaux is a complex and composable platform. You can keep it simple by limiting the number of solutions you put together, but it would be limiting. For small and medium-sized retail businesses, StyleSend would be preferable because it provides a simple system that includes all the advanced features you need.
Mercaux, being composable makes it flexible, isn’t aimed at any specific type of business or sector. StyleSend is instead aimed at luxury retailers. If you are running a luxury retail store, StyleSend would be the preferable option.
StyleSend is also easier to set up and learn. Generally speaking, Mercaux is more complex than StyleSend. It could be suitable for big and diverse businesses, but it would be too complex and expensive for smaller retail businesses and boutiques.
4- StyleSend vs Salesforce Clienteling
Salesforce, the company, is a cloud-based Customer Relationship Management (CRM) platform that enables businesses to manage customer data, sales operations, and marketing campaigns. It provides various features, and tools businesses can use to improve customer relationships, including customer segmentation, customer data management, and customer support. Salesforce also offers a variety of integrations with third-party applications and services, making it a powerful and versatile CRM platform.
Unlike StyleSend, Salesforce is built for only those companies using the Salesforce CRM. While the Salesforce clienteling app has a clean interface, its structure is complex. Instead of providing you with a unique platform that includes all the different features that you might need (like StyleSend does), it provides separate different solutions you need to pay for. You need to pick the different solutions and integrate them, creating a personalized tool that you can use for your business. Salesforce apps for retailers are built keeping in mind enterprise size retailers (think Fortune 500 companies).
With StyleSend you have a specialized digital clienteling tool that can run on top of any ERP or CRM not just on Salesforce. Clear choice, isn’t it?
Which is the most affordable clienteling app?
You might want to checkout this post on the “Changing Luxury Shopping Experience Trends in 2023.”
You need to pick your clienteling app carefully even if it is an investment. Clienteling platforms have a cost and you need to take this aspect under consideration when choosing the clienteling application for your business.
Getting started with a clienteling solution is easy but switching out is hard and expensive. This is why you must analyze all aspects including the costs before you make a decision. Most clienteling tools have a straightforward SaaS pricing model where retailers using the tool pay a monthly or annual subscription fee per user or per store. For large enterprises, where integration can be complex and a few weeks long, there is generally a one-time upfront integration or setup fees.
Coming to the pricing comparison of the clienteling apps we covered above, StyleSend wins hands down yet again. Built keeping in mind luxury retailers of all sizes, StyleSend works on a high volume, low margin strategy. As users of the StyleSend platform increase, the revenue increases whereas costs remain at a similar level. This allows StyleSend to offer extremely competitive pricing which is the best in the market.
In particular, StyleSend provides three different plans:
- Starter plan: it allows 2 members to use the platform and manage up to 500 clients. It costs $59.99 per month.
- Growth plan: it allows access to up to 10 members, and it also allows you to manage up to 5000 clients. It costs $99.99 per month.
- Enterprise plan: if the needs of your luxury retail business are larger than the offerings in the above plans, you can upgrade to the Enterprise plan. The price is custom according to your needs.
You can view complete pricing here.
As we’ve seen, there are a lot of different clienteling apps in the market. They may look similar but they have many important differences. It’s important that you are aware of them before you choose the clienteling app you’re going to use for your clienteling programs.
StyleSend is the only clienteling app specifically built for luxury retailers and it’s also the most user-friendly, especially when it comes to mobile app use. Other clienteling platforms like Tulip or Mercaux are great too but StyleSend wins if you are comparing apps for a multi-brand fashion and lifestyle luxury store.
Hope our picks and reviews of the top clienteling apps and softwares was useful for you. Thank you for patience in reading till here!
If you’re unsure about your clienteling strategy, you can schedule a demo with our clienteling experts to brainstorm with.
If you’ve done your research and are ready to implement clienteling for your business, you can visit the appropriate page to get started: Clienteling App for Small Retailers or Clienteling App for Enterprise Retailers.
Some of the images used are from Unsplash and Pexels– we love you!