It yields better results and happier customers.

The Natural Evolution of Customer Service

We all know that consumer demand is there in abundance and the huge opportunity to sell products and services continues to expand, thanks to the explosion of digital media. However the shortening attention span of consumers and our inherent nature for flicking rapidly between competing adverts, messages and features, leaves us with two basic questions.

How do we reach our customers, and how do we satisfy their needs and make online shopping an enjoyable experience?

Bring on personalisation. In simple terms, personalisation is targeting the right person at exactly the right time, with a product or service they really want. Personalisation is the natural evolution of customer service as we navigate the many pathways of an ever changing digital world.

Collecting Data to Personalise an Experience

How do we overcome a glut of choices presented to a consumer, hidden behind faceless devices, and achieve personalisation? Collecting and analysing data is key. Every choice and click, every site and page visited, can generate data that can be analysed to tailor products and services that are based on prediction and not reaction, and produce an online shopping experience that is enjoyable and satisfyingly relevant.

Personalisation is seen most clearly with ‘Product Recommendations’ based upon data collected from previous browsing, used to deliver products and services that are similar to, or complement, previous search criteria. Combined with offers and incentives to buy, can yield increased returns.

Customised content can also be delivered instantly when a customer is recognised as the user; and it can go much further – utilising information on your location, and even the time of day you are searching. Using analytics report data, traffic sources can highlight exactly who your potential customers are, by collecting data on site visitors and the different pathways they take. This allows you to target the right customers directly.

Personalisation based on previous browsing history by an individual also gives us the opportunity to engage differently with new and returning customers, and meet their needs accordingly. An extensive consumer study conducted by autopilot, confirmed that we are 4 times more likely to respond if content is personalised. The study also highlighted that 72% of those surveyed were frustrated with generic content.

Whatever your method, personalisation clearly works, engaging consumers for longer, leading to increased conversions.

The Future of Personalisation

The future of personalisation is micro-categorisation – using algorithms to review data from a multitude of users and ingeniously connect it with an individual’s personal taste profile. The more data you gather the more accurate your recommendations can be. The amazing quality about this new process is that it doesn’t result in the bland, same old same old; it makes recommendations that can surprise and excite. This type of personalisation has the ability to expand your taste choice. It would seem that the minute data makes a big difference.

It is clear that best results, as always, remain in the detail.

Personalisation is becoming an expectation, rather than an enhancement of your website.

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