Conversion is the primary reason to personalize website user experience without being creepy. By targeting the right audience, a business is more likely to find worthy prospects and not waste time on a segment of the population that will never be interested their products or services. Higher conversion rates result in more revenue and better retention, and a loyal customer base is marketing gold.
Even in an online environment, customers long for a semblance of human interaction. This not only entails having access to customer data, it also means honing the ability to analyze and use the data at hand. Consider starting with data already at hand, such as purchase records, website analytics, or by implementing social login via sites like Facebook. Only after this data collection, will it be possible to customize user experience with a website.
Be Upfront and Seek User Feedback
Always ensure a site is following applicable privacy laws. Letting customers know what data is being collected about them goes a long way in diminishing the creepiness factor. Many sites bury this on a privacy page, but a banner or widget on the page is a more forthcoming way to get the message across. Studies have shown users are more likely to click on personalized ads when they know their data is being collected. Pay attention to current consumer trends in what is considered okay and not okay when it comes to data collection. For example, around 75% of people polled, still view facial recognition technology as creepy.
Don’t automatically opt users into receiving marketing emails. Allow them to choose the type of information they are interested in receiving and only send carefully timed emails with content they are likely to be receptive to. Too many emails will only result in a message being tuned out. Surveys can also be a great way in seeking feedback, but should be short and to the point to ensure completion.
Use Customer Personas to Customize Content Delivery
Website personalization needs to be relevant, and the decision needs to be made if the goal of the content is to appeal to prospects, retain a customer, or upsell to an existing user. Data collection mentioned in the introduction here can be harnessed to lead to the creation of customer personas. The demographics or firmographics of current customers can be manipulated in an astounding number of ways to pinpoint customer needs.
Customizing content delivery doesn’t mean writing ten different versions of the same article. Experiment with different titles, leads, social media previews, and post photos to increase user engagement. User can also be allowed a degree of customization based on things like location or specific interests.
Implement a Recommendation Engine
A wide variety of recommendation engine software is available. Depending on the needs of a business and its customers, a large amount of results can be filtered into a more manageable size for users. This is an effective way to bring related products to a potential buyer’s attention that they never knew they needed until the variable algorithm has made the association for them.
Anyone who has used Netflix on a regular basis is likely to be impressed by the power of the site’s recommendation engine. Not only does it provide suggested movies within categories frequented by the viewer, a probable rating is given as well. Sites like Goodreads also do an admirable job of recommending books based on user data. Numerous users can also attest to the usefulness of Amazon’s recommendation engine, which generates a lot of sales for the site.
Engage Visitors with a Chatbot
The allure of a chatbot lies in its ability to allow a user to work from within their instant message service of choice to interact with third parties. Rather than closing a messaging service and opening an app, users can now use the likes of Facebook Messenger to message Uber to request a ride. This is a plus for users who prefer sending texts as opposed to filling out form fields to complete requests.
Simply put, people love to talk. A chat interface is quite intuitive and allows for greater customer interaction. Instead of scrolling through a long list of product results, a user can type specifics into the chatbot and explore the customized results from there. While not yet a perfect technology, implementing a chatbot can be a great first step to personalize website experience without being creepy. At times when there seems to be an app for practically everything under the sun, chatbots are eliminating inevitable download fatigue. Chatbots are also cost effective with a 24/7 presence that can help a business grow.
Whether you are ready to start customizing existing content, or in the planning stages of dreaming up a customized domain name, implementing website personalization will go a long way in the success of a business. It’s a process that never ends. Segments of users should be continually revisited to monitor performance.
What tactics have you implemented to personalize website user experience without being creepy?