Personalization lies at the heart of delivering a great user experience. You’ll find this true whether you run a blog or SaaS business.Or whether you operate an e-commerce website. Your visitors will always appreciate getting personal attention from you. No one likes to be cast into a “general” category and treated as “just another user”.
Numerous studies and research from various reliable sources back up this (intense) user desire for personalization:
- 78% of U.S. Internet users said personally relevant content from brands increases their purchase intent. (Marketing Insider Group)
- 79% of consumers say they are only likely to engage with an offer if it has been personalized to reflect previous interactions the consumer has had with the brand. (Marketo)
- Salesforce surveyed more than 7,000 consumers and found that 57% of consumers are willing to share personal data in exchange for personalized offers or discounts.
- 80% of consumers are more likely to make a purchase when brands offer personalized experiences. (Epsilon)
So, your users want it. And they are willing to share their data to receive it, too.
Why Your Business Needs Personalization
What do you get in return? Well, according to McKinsey, personalization reduces acquisition costs by as much as 50%. And it raises revenues by 5-15%. Finally it increases the efficiency of marketing spend by 10-30%.
But website personalization makes sense from an ROI perspective too. Delivering the right content to the right person at the right time increases conversions.
Now 77% of marketers believe real-time personalization is crucial. But 60% of them struggle to personalize content in real-time. Want to do personalization seriously? That’s where this can get tricky. Still, you can get started with some elementary tactics. They will check the appropriacy and effectiveness of personalization for your website before investing too much time, effort, and money. So we’ll look at three quick and easy personalization tactics. They can boost conversions on your website.
But first, understand effective website personalization begins with data collection. You need to have sufficient data about your audience. Or how do you precisely tailor your content to their liking?
Start by collecting basic information. Collect a persons full name, email address, interests, and job title, among other things. How do you do this? Get your visitors to sign up for your exclusive newsletter. Or offer them a free downloadable resource. This could include an ebook as an exchange for this information. There are several ways to go about collecting user data, try to find what works best for you. Such information is essential to design personalized email marketing campaigns, loyalty programs, exclusive content and offers, and so on, which ultimately builds your brand’s following.
Website Personalization Examples
That said, you can apply the personalization tactics discussed here without collecting any user data whatsoever. Let’s dive in.
Website Personalization Based on Location
Customizing your content based on the visitor’s current geographical location is known as geotargeting. This is possible by identifying the visitor’s IP address or device ID, GPS or RFID data (geofencing), and more.
There are many ways geotargeting can help increase your conversions. For example, you may wish to redirect visitors from Japan to a page specifically designed for the Japanese audience. In this case, the currency in the pricing section can be automatically changed to JPY, the language of the content can be translated to Japanese, the background visuals can be altered to appeal to the locals, and so on. Visit some websites in the morning (such as Moz) and you’ll likely be greeted with a warm cup of coffee as the background image.
Furthermore, if you’re into e-commerce, you can retrieve the current weather at shopper’s IP and make product recommendations based on that. So, if it is raining heavily in the shopper’s locality, you can display raincoats and umbrellas instead of, say, summer wear. Also, note that when showcasing any product listing on your e-commerce website, make sure the images are of high resolution with a plain white background. Use tools like AutoClipping to effortlessly clean up the background of your product’s images.
Geographical personalization is fairly easy to implement and can be a powerful way of attracting international audiences, and proving your website’s commitment to them. With its easy-to-use and intuitive website editor, tools like Alter allow you to personalize content in minutes without needing any technical background.
Serving Dynamic Content Based on Traffic Source
The referral source of traffic can tell you a lot about where your visitor is in his/her buyer’s journey or marketing funnel and his/her intent. Accordingly, you must design different landing pages to serve different segments of your funnel.
For instance, visitors landing on your website from a PPC advertisement or a promotional email are likely ready to make a purchase or sign up for your service as the intent is to convert. In other words, the visitors are at the bottom of the funnel. So, you need to design a custom landing page to match their intent. On the other hand, if the visitors are sourced from organic search results, their intent is most likely to learn, not to make a purchase. And so, your landing page has to be informative/educational (with a suitable CTA) instead of pure salesy.
Essentially, you can create a single landing page design, for instance, but customize all of the content based on if someone is visiting from a partner website, email message, or it’s their very first time to your site. Thus, by serving different content to visitors coming from different sources, you can increase the relevance of your messaging, motivate buyers through their buyer’s journey, and ultimately improve the user experience.
Recommended Product and Content Personalization
This is the simplest form of personal attention you can provide to your website visitors. Based on what content or products they’ve already viewed, you can make recommendations to the users as to what they should view next. This will keep them glued to your website and so, the chances of them taking a desirable action (a conversion) increases.
Amazon, Netflix, and YouTube are all perfect examples of this. They spend millions on creating a content matching algorithm that keeps the users hooked. However, for your website, you don’t need a sophisticated algorithm to leverage such a form of personalization.
For instance, it is possible to employ user behavior data to match associated posts on a blog. If somebody liked a post they might like other posts that previous users have read.
An even simpler approach would be to manually identify the relationship between articles using tags or categories. No need to apply a fancy algorithm. This is a nifty way to increase the user’s time on page and reduce bounce rates.
Moreover, on e-commerce websites, personalized product recommendations can also increase revenue by upselling and cross-selling products that fit the user’s interests, as well as by reminding customers about products they’ve browsed previously. In fact, according to research by Monetate, customers who click on a recommended product have a 70% higher purchase rate (at 10.5% versus 6.2%) within that session.
As you can see, all the aforementioned tactics are relatively quick and easy to implement. You don’t need to hire a developer or spend big bucks to start personalizing your website. Once you start noticing positive results with these basic tactics, you should definitely consider investing in user data collection and then leveraging it to heavily personalize your website.
With more and more users craving personalized online experiences, it’s about time you give it to them and boost your conversion rates.