6 Questions to Ask Before Selecting a Personalization Vendor

Your team has explored all options for improving conversion optimization. You’ve identified that a website personalization tool is the best option for streamlining your customers’ digital experiences. But how do you choose a personalization vendor that will help you get the impact you are planning for? We’ve put together a list of questions to ask […]

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Your team has explored all options for improving conversion optimization. You’ve identified that a website personalization tool is the best option for streamlining your customers’ digital experiences. But how do you choose a personalization vendor that will help you get the impact you are planning for?

We’ve put together a list of questions to ask your website personalization vendors to evaluate how well they fit with your strategy.

Does this vendor specialize in my industry?

Sure, every vendor wants to help you, but are they really built to? There are a few ways specialization benefits you: the tool with have the right set of features, the team will have the right set of experience, and the ecosystem (data options, tech connections, agency relationships, etc.) will fit your needs. If your industry does not fall within a vendor’s specialization, evaluate how much of their time and attention they will spend to learn your needs and act on them.

How does the solution personalize for first-time visitors?

This is a big one! Log into your website analytics platform right now. Look at your first-time vs repeat visitors. Which number is bigger? A good personalization vendor has both the data and the methodology to identify anonymous visitors. Listen closely to the attributes they list (hint: it should go beyond geography, industry, or account) and the approach they take for identifying as much of your anonymous audience as possible.

What is the vendor’s approach to personalization?

Let’s face it: you’re not looking into personalization for the sake of personalizing…or at least you shouldn’t be. We recommend looking for vendors that take an outcome-based approach. For example, you might be looking to grow traffic to targeted sections of your website, increase form submissions, or boost inbound contact requests. Have your goal in mind and ask how your vendor plans to support you in reaching it. Remember, strategy comes from people, not platforms.

What is the total cost of investing in this solution?

Vendors differ by what they include in the quoted price. Here is the laundry list of items to consider: platform access, data connections, technical support, initial implementation, training, strategy development, reporting, ongoing management, and ongoing strategy optimization. Be sure to ask about the scope, limits and in-house availability of these items.

How does this solution fit with the rest of our tech stack?

No technology is an island. Understand the flow of information and actions between this vendor and the rest of your stack. You are not looking for a vendor that connects with everything, just with the things that are necessary to meet your goal. If a vendor doesn’t connect with a technology you think is relevant, talk with the vendor about why you think this connection is relevant to your goal and ask if there are other ways to meet this need.

How long does it take to get started?

This question is fairly straightforward; however, make sure to clarify what “get started” means. Does it include time to configure the software, set a strategy, launch a campaign, and report on results? For example, with Bound, you could turn on your first campaign in less than 15 minutes. But do you really want to start fiddling with your number one marketing asset without an informed strategy? We didn’t think so.

We hope you find these questions and considerations for choosing a personalization vendor to be useful. If Bound isn’t already on your personalization vendor shortlist, please request a consultation to see if we are a fit.

The post 6 Questions to Ask Before Selecting a Personalization Vendor appeared first on Bound.

The Fundamentals of Website Personalization Strategy [Part 6 of 6]

Welcome to our six-part series on building a successful website personalization strategy. This is the final post in the series. Want the full picture? Start from the beginning! In the last post, we discussed tactics, the final planning stage of your personalization strategy. In this post, we talk about the testing, measuring, and learning necessary […]

The post The Fundamentals of Website Personalization Strategy [Part 6 of 6] appeared first on Bound.

Welcome to our six-part series on building a successful website personalization strategy. This is the final post in the series. Want the full picture? Start from the beginning!

In the last post, we discussed tactics, the final planning stage of your personalization strategy. In this post, we talk about the testing, measuring, and learning necessary to optimize a website personalization strategy.

Personalization is in the website optimization category for a reason: optimization is a process—it’s never done. If you think about it, all of marketing is a process. How often marketers revisit each element varies, but nothing we do—from updating nurture series to account prioritization—is every really done. In reality, website personalization, like marketing, is an iterative process requiring constant optimization towards a success metric.

How often should you optimize web personalization? We encourage customers to think of two main types of personalization programs: always-on and conversion-based.

Always-on personalization programs are the strategic messaging for your website. For example, a marketer might choose to personalize their homepage hero for target industries or company sizes. Because always-on personalization plays might not point directly to a point of conversion, we encourage marketers to measure success based on website engagement metrics like bounce rate, time on site, and click-through rate. After some initial testing and calibration, the customer might choose to revisit these messages only as often as they update personas, campaign themes, or positioning. On average, customers choose to update strategic messaging on an annual basis.

Conversion-based personalization programs support a specific marketing program. For example, a marketer might choose to serve a fly-in promoting a whitepaper to target prospects who have not yet viewed that asset. Much like marketers use channels like paid media, social, email, and direct mail to support a program, conversion-based website personalization should be used to support specific marketing goals like event registrations, resource downloads, contact us requests, or cross-sell inquiries. On average, customers choose to update conversion-based personalization plans every three months, which tends to align with quarterly marketing goals and planning cycles.

Be warned! Most marketers want to do everything at once. Our customers find the most success getting up-and-running quickly with one to two conversion-based programs while they take more time to build out always-on personalization programs. Over time, our most advanced customers are able to successfully run multiple conversion-based programs at a time.

What solution are you optimizing towards? Understanding your audience? Increasing conversions? Expanding accounts? With the goal in mind, execute on steps one through four of the website personalization strategy and then iterate. Below are the steps to maximize and optimize web personalization strategy.

Optimize Web Personalization to Results

  • Review audience insights – Have the target personas changed? What’s the biggest segment of the website audience that is not getting personalization?
  • Review conversion-based program success – Did the stated programs meet their goals in the given time period? How much success was attributable to personalization programs?
  • Review audience health – What percent of each target audience converted? Did engagement metrics improve, hold steady, or decline?
  • Review content feedback – What is the most popular content topic by audience? What content type performed best?
  • Review organizational goals – Did what are the upcoming marketing goals? Do your personalization programs need to chance to support them?

website personalization strategy optimization

Web personalization, like marketing, is a process. It takes a plan, discipline, and dedication to optimize. It takes technology, data, and expertise to be successful. The personalization experts at Bound partner with innovative marketing organizations to guide strategy and optimize web personalization to meet their marketing goals.

If you’re interested in seeing if website personalization is right for you, request a personalization consultation today.

Download the eBook The Fundamentals of a Successful Website Personalization Strategy: The Focus Required to Earn Results to learn more!

The post The Fundamentals of Website Personalization Strategy [Part 6 of 6] appeared first on Bound.

The Fundamentals of Website Personalization Strategy [Part 5 of 6]

Welcome to our six-part series on building a successful website personalization strategy. We will publish a new post each week. Sign up for our newsletter to get updates! In the last post, we determined which data sources feed personalization plays. Next, we’ll describe how to develop personalization tactics that best engage your prospects. Personalization tactics are simply […]

The post The Fundamentals of Website Personalization Strategy [Part 5 of 6] appeared first on Bound.

Welcome to our six-part series on building a successful website personalization strategy. We will publish a new post each week. Sign up for our newsletter to get updates!

In the last post, we determined which data sources feed personalization plays. Next, we’ll describe how to develop personalization tactics that best engage your prospects.

Personalization tactics are simply the delivery vehicles for your personalization messages. The three main categories of tactics are embedded, overlay, and redirect.

Embedded tactics are the subtlest delivery of personalization. These tactics, including text modification and graphic replacement, present your webpage with more tailored text or relevant images. Personalization with embedded tactics will feel most natural to your visitor – like your product or service was built for them.

Overlay tactics are the most attention-getting delivery of personalization. These tactics, including fly-ins, banners, and modals, are served on top of the webpage, in addition to on-page messaging. Personalization with overlay tactics is most effective for prompting action from a visitor.

Redirects are the most assertive delivery of personalization. This tactic confidently declares, “We know who you are and what you need.” Personalization with redirects is excellent for directing visitors to account hubs, microsites, and webpages for well-defined lines of business.

How will you deliver the perfect message when your target audience visits your site?

Personalization Tactics

  • Text modification – Tailor text on your website including copy, headlines, and buttons. For example, show a light CTA for a first-time visitor and a more aggressive CTA for a repeat visitor.
  • Graphic replacement – Swap out one or more graphics on a page to help engage a visitor. For example, change the hero image to a factory when manufacturing visitors arrive on the homepage.
  • Fly-ins – Slide in a small content block with an image, text and/or CTA. For example, serve a link to the next piece of content in that buyer’s journey.
  • Banners – Drop down a full-page-width bar with informative or time-sensitive text. For example, remind webinar registrants of the upcoming webinar.
  • Modals – Interrupt a visitor with centralized window that requires an action or acknowledgement before continuing. For example, deliver an important product alert only to product users.
  • Redirect – Simply redirect the web visitor to a more relevant webpage. For example, redirect automotive homepage visitors to your existing automotive solutions page.
  • Triggered Live Chat – An interactive chat session triggered for a specific audience with a tailored message. For example, “Would you like to speak with our Healthcare IT experts?”

Congratulations, you’ve finally built a personalization strategy! Are you ready to begin executing? Hang on. There’s one final step in evaluating your results and iterating towards success which we’ll address in the next post!

Tactics for website personalization

About the personalization strategy series

In this multi-part blog series, we’ll break down each of these five critical elements to building a website personalization strategy. In the next post, we’ll talk through determining which personalization tactics are right for your business challenges.

Download the eBook The Fundamentals of a Successful Website Personalization Strategy: The Focus Required to Earn Results to learn more!

The post The Fundamentals of Website Personalization Strategy [Part 5 of 6] appeared first on Bound.