Posted on 9/7/2017 in Business and Strategy
By Jeannine Szymczak
The term “customer experience” has become a bit of a marketing buzzword. However, unlike a lot of the jargon that you might come across in the realm of digital marketing, this one is pretty important to your bottom line.
The definition of a conversion will differ from business to business – but no matter how you measure success, a poor customer experience on your website will leave people frustrated and turning to your competitors.
The best way to ensure that your customers (and potential customers) are having a positive experience on your website is to make sure that it’s easy to use, intuitive, and gives them content that they are interested in. There are a lot of different third-party tools (Personyze, Optimizely, RichRelevance, etc.) that you can use to achieve this. Additionally, some of the CMS platforms we specialize in here at Wakefly like Kentico (Kentico EMS) and Sitecore (Sitecore Experience) offer versions of their CMS that have a ton of web personalization features baked right into the platform so you can manage everything in one place.
Below we’ll explore 5 of the ways that you can use personalization on your website to give your customers a simple and engaging website experience.
Targeted Banners and Calls to Action
You can learn a lot about your customers based on their behavior on the web. By leveraging one of the web personalization tools above, you can begin tracking and monitoring what types of content your users are browsing. Then, armed with this knowledge, you can tailor the banner images and Calls to Action (CTA) to the topics that they are most interested in. Online behavior can be used to segment your users into different persona groups. Then you can set up specific areas of your site to show different content based on which persona is viewing that page. For example, if you are a clothing company and you have tracked that a particular user has been viewing the children’s clothing section multiple times lately, you may want to change the homepage banner image that they see to something displaying children's clothes and include a promo CTA that specifically highlights an upcoming sale on children’s fashions.
Site Personalization Based on Prior Search or Referring URL
Just like in the previous example where we tailored content shown based on a user’s behavior, this method would allow us to update the content that a user sees when they land on the page based on where they came from previously or what they were searching for. In the same example of the clothing store above, if the user was searching “winter coats” in Google and clicked on a search result for your clothing company website, even if the page they are landing on is your homepage, we could make sure that the content about winter coats is featured prominently. This will make them that much more likely to explore the coats on your site. They can jump right in from when they first land on the site and don't have to spend a lot of time trying to navigate to find the info they need.
This is another behavior-based way that we can improve the content that is being served up to maximize engagement. Whether it’s based on previous purchase history or simply browsing history, we can display recommendations for other products or content that the user would be interested in and we can set particular logic around how to determine what is displayed. For example, if a user purchased the winter coat from the previous example, we might want to recommend some related items for them like gloves, boots, scarves, etc. that would make sense to purchase in conjunction with their coat. In a non-e-commerce setting, you might want to recommend blog articles that relate to the topic they seem to be interested in given their recent activity on the site.
Marketing Automation Tied to Buyer’s Journey
Marketing automation is a great way to nurture your leads and grow them into conversions. By following your customers along their buyer’s journey and sending them appropriate and relevant messages along the way, you can stay top of mind and when they are ready to buy, they will hopefully come back to your site to make their purchase. An example here might be that you were able to track that a user has visited the same product page on your site a few times in the past week, but has not made a purchase. You can set up a marketing automation workflow that will send out messages based on a series of rules, timing, and behaviors to follow up with them. For example, if a user visits a product page 2 times or more within 3 days and does not purchase, send them an email enticing them with a 10% off first purchase email 2 more days later. Additionally, if that doesn’t result in a purchase, send them an email in the future if that product goes on sale.
Similar to the example above, this is a way that you can track and reach out to customers about incomplete transactions and get a second chance at that conversion by reminding (and perhaps also incentivizing) them to come back. This could be handled via follow up emails sent a specified number of days after something was added to their cart, but checkout was not complete. The email could be a simple reminder to let them know that the products are still in their cart and find out if they are still interested. You never know if they just got distracted and forgot to come back. Another method is to use a pop-up as they are trying to click away and offer them a discount code to encourage them to complete the purchase. Lastly, you could leverage remarketing so that they can continue to see ads for your product as they visit other sites around the web. All of these methods will keep your products visible and give you additional chances for conversion.
These are just a few of the ways that you can tailor your customers’ digital experience to really give them what they want and keep them happy and coming back to your company. Websites that provide a more personalized experience are more likely to have increased user engagement, better customer loyalty, and increased conversions.
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