How to Leverage Content Personalization to Drive Sales

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Have you ever browsed the web and were interrupted by irrelevant pop-us and offers? Did it ruin your experience? If yes, then you’re not alone. Research by Janrain shows that 74% of users get frustrated with websites when content and offers have nothing to do with their interests.

Content personalization is a great way to tackle this and similar issues.

“Your brand is not what you sell.” – John Iwata

Instead of sending pushy and superficial marketing messages for masses, personalization presents an opportunity to foster a bond between your brand and customers. It enables you to keep the conversation going, appeal directly to the customer and cultivate meaningful relationships to the point where clients are convinced that they won’t find a better alternative.

This is especially relevant for brands and agencies that want to win over younger audiences like Generation Z and millennials, who are unforgiving for brands with subpar UX. Swaying them means dedicating more attention, delivering more delightful moments and adding more layers of personalization.

Thus, web personalization is an excellent way to stand out from the competition.

If you leverage it the right way, you can expect the following advantages:

– Upgraded customer experience and more satisfaction.

– Higher revenue.

– A sense of consistency through different communication channels.

– Increased brand loyalty.

– Positive word of mouth.

What is web personalization?

“We need to stop interrupting what people are interested in and be what people are interested in.” – Craig Davis

Web personalization in action. Source: Pipz.

Website personalization is the process of creating tailored experiences for your website visitors.

It makes use of data, analysis and automation technology to deliver individualized content to particular segments of customers. The goal of content personalization is to engage customers on a deeper level by treating everyone according to their wishes and needs.

In brief, the process of website personalization consists of five stages:

– You gather as much customer data as possible.

– You analyze the data to create accurate and realistic buyer personas.

– You map out your web content to the interests and needs of your buyer personas.

– Create more personalized content.

– Morph your entire web experience based on user behavior.

– Naturally, it sounds easier said than done.

How effective is web personalization?

“If we have 4.5 million customers, we shouldn’t have one store. We should have 4.5 million stores.” – Jeff Bezos

Ideal Drape Makers is an Australian shop for custom made curtains, blinds and shutters. Several years ago they launched online with the help of BigCommerce.

Using BigCommerce’s powerful segmentation capabilities to offer personalized coupons, discounts, and automatic geo-currency display has helped business to experience massive growth. Ideal Drape Makers owner Nancy Vamvakes sees these features as instrumental in the company’s recent 41% rise in revenue and 318% increase in conversion rate.

In a case study interview with BigCommerce, Vamvakes had this to say:

We offer quantity discounts for just about everyone using the cart-level discounts on the back end, and we use Customer Groups to set up various discounts for different groups of customers. That’s been working very successfully.”

Savvy use of personalization and working together with BigCommerce has helped Ideal Drape Makers to offer more relevant deals and form meaningful relationships that became the catalyst for their ecommerce success.

In another case study, Bunting worked together with At Home In The Country to implement personalized product recommendations. It resulted in a…

– 13% increase in revenue.

– 5% more product views.

– 3% longer average site visits.

– 5% growth in conversions.

According to VentureBeat, 87% of the businesses that implemented website personalization witnessed at least a 5% increase in most important performance indicators. 39% of them experienced an increase of at least 20% in their most important metrics.

There’s no one size fits all approach for web personalization. However, the general tendency is that it helps businesses to sell more.

Go beyond basic personalization tactics

“You are competing with every piece of content ever made for every person’s attention. You need to be entertaining. Don’t outsmart. Out entertain.” – Dolf van den Brink

2018 Trends in Personalization Survey Report by Evergage states that 98% of marketers agree that personalization helps to advance customer relationships. 77% admit using email personalizations, and 52% personalize their websites.

Yet, the most interesting finding is that 69% think that marketers aren’t getting the personalization right.

Let’s have a look at what they do.

The most popular methods to convey personalized web experiences include pop-up messages, inline content, information bars, call-outs, inline edits and survey questions.

Source: Evergage.

Those features don’t sound sexy, do they?

It’s the default.

If you want to deliver stellar personalization experiences, you’ll need more than that. Personalization is driven by big data, which means that marketers have many more original options for segmenting their audiences.

For instance, website development platform Duda gets it right. It delivers game-changing tools when it comes to easy and scalable personalization. At its core is a rule-based personalization engine that renders conversion-oriented design elements, widgets, and different calls-to-action based on visitor’s device, location, time of the day, visit count or even campaign tags. Imagine how much more personal an interaction would get if you utilize most of these functions.

Converto landing page made with Duda. Source: Duda’s Get Inspired section.

Whether you’re an agency, individual or business owner, it’s time to unleash the power of personalization on your websites at scale.

How to get it right

“A lot of times, people don’t know what they want until you show it to them.” – Steve Jobs

The most common challenges with content personalization are:

– Finding technology that fits you.

– Allocating enough time and business resources.

– Troubles with linking data to a single unified customer profile.

– Executing smart segmentation across different channels.

Personalization is a tricky thing. On the one hand, you might feel like you’re not doing enough. On the other, there’s always a risk to overdo it.

Let’s be clear here: you don’t want to come across as pushy and creepy. There are three simple rules to avoid it:

1. Be subtle and intuitive. Strive to be relevant instead of overwhelming.

2. Be timely and pay attention to context. Know your customer well and deliver the experience at the right time.

3. Data, data, data. Always collect your customer behavior data, analyze it and put it to good use. Be upfront about what data you’re collecting and for what purpose. Studies show that 77% of customers would trust businesses more if they explained how and why their information is being used.

Here are some areas where personalization works best:

– In-store recommendations.

– Personalized forms that don’t ask info which you already know.

– Low stock alerts

– Improved search results and past searches.

– Displaying favorite goods and most relevant services.

– Preserving cart call-outs or count-downs.

– Automated and personalized discount offers.

Personalization is all about creating custom content that pushes the boundaries and resonates with your clients. Look for new ways and always test your results.

The better personalized experiences you deliver, the more customers will recognize you as a superior service that was made just for them.

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