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Lessons Learned from Web Personalization Mistakes
Mistakes happen every day and everybody is susceptible to making them. Web personalization is not a new concept. Businesses understand that they need to implement personalization practices for their customers in order to understand them and offer an experience that they expect. It’s no secret that mistakes are bound to be made and whether or not a personalization oversight was a small misfortune or a huge blunder, chances are we’ve all seen them made before.

Lessons Learned from Web Personalization Mistakes

If you’re anything like me, you know how it can feel when you are responsible for making a personalization mistake. Recently, I prepared an email to be sent to OPIN’s newsletter subscribers.

After preparing the email copy and sending myself a test email I felt it was ready to be sent to our subscribers. Moments after sending the message, it was brought to my attention that the field that should have held the subscriber’s name did not populate correctly. 

Instead of seeing their name, prospects saw {{Recipient.FirstName}}. In the grand scheme of things this example of a personalization mistake may seem minor, however, it affects the way that people view your brand. 

Everybody makes these mistakes, even some of the largest companies. Recently, Amazon’s content marketing team sent their email template to part of their database. Personalization mistakes are embarrassing but very avoidable. Let’s review some common mistakes so your organization can provide a positive customer experience without a personalization mishap. 

Inaccurate Data 

Inaccurate data and outdated data both pose a threat to the effectiveness of your personalization efforts. 68% of people will delete emails that are populated with the wrong data and 54% will unsubscribe entirely (fortunately my email didn’t perform that poorly). Accurate data enables personalization by giving your team the information that they need to create content that is relevant for your audience. Ensuring your data is accurate protects the brand of your organization and prevents any mistakes from slipping into your campaigns. Clean, up-to-date data enables effective communication between your business and your customers. Implementing processes within your automation software to ensure clean and accurate data will help to alleviate this problem. 

Personalized Messaging 

Providing your customers and prospects with content that is tailored towards their personal needs and interests is a crucial part of personalization. Your marketing team is always busy creating content to engage prospects and customers. However, efforts will fall short if you are not using the data that you have gathered about behaviours and preferences to provide relevant content. Consumers know that they have options when it is time for them to make a purchasing decision. If you have not been providing them with information that is insightful and useful during their journey, you may be missing out on a sales opportunity. Rather than offering generic content that is not relevant to each prospect and customer, focus on gathering the data that you need to understand behaviours and offer an experience that is unique to individuals across all of your channels. 

An Introduction to Web Personalization

This is where web personalization comes into play. Opposed to offering a one-size-fits-all experience to site visitors, web personalization gives users an experience that has been tailored to their individual preferences. The goal of website personalization is to ultimately create a positive experience for users which will enable your organization to deliver relevant content recommendations,  it provides an opportunity to nurture prospects, generate qualified leads and more conversions

Distribute Relevant Content Recommendations 

Website personalization is the best way for organizations to gain a better understanding of their buyer personas and to gain insights about target demographics, behaviours, and interests. Leveraging user data allows you to offer content to your visitors that will complement each user’s goals while guiding them through a unique customer journey. Providing a more personalized experience aids additional page views and increases the amount of time that is spent on different pages across your site. 

Web personalization enables your team to accumulate valuable insights that then allows them to focus their efforts where they are most needed. As your team begins to determine which content generates the greatest results, they can evaluate the content strategy and continue to create content that resonates well with visitors and engage in conversations that move prospects through the sales cycle.

The Right Content at the Right Time 

74 percent of customers get frustrated when web content has nothing to do with them. Web personalization contributes to your prospects feeling like you understand their individual needs and problems while building trust. Personalized web content allows you to nurture leads and existing customers by using the data that has been gathered to determine who each prospect is, what their purpose is and how they have engaged with your content in the past. 

Web personalization enables you to send your prospects the right content about products and services, at the right time. This can easily be done by integrating marketing automation software with your CRM to deliver automated email campaigns to prospects based on what they have previously engaged with on your site. For example, if a lead fills out a form on your site to download a whitepaper, you can then place them into an email campaign that provides them with additional insights like recent blogs, case studies, and webinars on the subject matter.  

Nurture and Convert Engaged Prospects

Web personalization helps your team gather data about your prospects allowing you to send tailored content that is useful and insightful at multiple touchpoints throughout the customer’s journey. A recent study showed there was a 20 percent increase in sales opportunities that are produced through leads that are nurtured with tailored content. Personalization enables conversation between your organization and the prospect. 

Customers and prospects are expecting personal experiences from the organizations that they are interested in. Web personalization is essential in providing unique experiences to prospects, and existing clients. Your organization will reap the long term benefits of web personalization by investing in a marketing automation software that allows data to be gathered and enables your team to create content that is persona-driven. 

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Julia is a creative and passionate content creator who thrives in a fast-paced, dynamic environment. She uses her background in communications to drive results. Her readiness to take on a challenge and eagerness to contribute and innovate allows her to think differently with a consumer-centric approach.