Customer experience, today, plays a major differentiating role in increasing brand consideration. A personalized customer experience is what sets a brand apart from its competitors.
Personalization improves customer experience which in turn helps improve customer loyalty and sales. According to Statista research, 90% of US consumers find marketing personalization very appealing. Another PWC research suggests that 50% of customers will walk away from doing business with any brand after one bad experience. These 2 stats are pretty much summing up the story.
It’s little surprise then, that most brands are trying to harness the power of personalization to their benefit. Using personalization, brands have an enormous opportunity to form long-lasting relationships with consumers. But the important question is – how can brands make personalization which is useful and help in increasing customer delight?
How & Where to Personalize?
Personalization doesn’t just end on recommending products based on their previous purchases. It’s about utilizing data and creating a compelling experience that encourages the consumer to buy from you and keep coming back. Here are 4 things brands can do to achieve the highest level of personalization:
Micro-level cohort and segmentation
Consumers today no longer want to be treated with a ‘generic’ strategy. That means just because 2 consumers share the same geography, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they would prefer to buy similar products. Macro-level product recommendations not only are ineffective but also puts the brand in a vapid space. This is primarily because brands fail to increase the level of specificity to a limit where they actually cater to consumer needs. Consumers expect businesses to understand their personal preferences and treat them as individuals.
According to research by Stackla, 80% of the consumers attribute their purchasing decisions to relevant website content. These content could be images, videos, infographics, product recommendations, and many other tiny components that make a big difference. Personalizing these components creates a sense of a customized encapsulated experience for consumers. This chain of personalized content makes users utilize the most of the product/website ensuring an easy and enjoyable shopping experience.
And with the ever-evolving consumer mindset, finding the right content and product that is relevant to consumers is an ever-learning process that brands have to master over time.
Personalization at Scale in Real-time
To make the most out of the personalization efforts, marketers need actionable insights in real-time. Leveraging the power of AI can significantly help marketers in gathering and utilizing those dynamic insights. With the help of AI, brands can analyze huge chunks of data from backend metrics, funnel metrics, third-party analytics, and automate actions that can reduce a lot of downtimes. Not just that, using AI, brands can create chatbots for a 2-way conversation compared to a traditional one-way conversation channel like email, website, or social media. Chatbots can solve the most common consumer queries without them having to wait, at the same time gathers information about them.
For providing a truly personalized and memorable experience, optimizing the complete user journey becomes quintessential. User journey entails all the interaction points a consumer has with the brand at any point in time. It could be your website, product, services, content, and more. Personalizing these components like the landing page, CTA’s, data-backed content recommendations, and more increases user engagement. It opens the door for coming up with personalized recommendations, communication strategies, and more. Analyzing and understanding user journeys helps create a history for each customer. This is also a great way to start predicting the future buying patterns of the customer.
To carry out the above tasks, brands need data. Feedback from customers works as a foundation for building strategies all along. UI/UX testing can help you understand the mind of your consumer and build websites, apps, and products that are personalized and delight your customer with its UI and UX Testing help in getting feedback directly from customers on what they find difficult or confusing in your UI & UX. Let’s break things down to explain how UI/UX testing can help build better experiences:
Website evaluation test refers to the overall assessment of the website based on its design and functionality. A website that is easy to navigate and provides users with the right information to help them use features easily or find products with ease, is bound to increase usage and conversion and retain more users. A good design signature coupled with easy-to-understand actions is a must for a business to have an impactful impression among its target audience. A website evaluation test entails having users visit the website and provide feedback on their experience as they navigate the site and attempt to use its features. This test provides pointed feedback on how to improve usage and help customers be at ease on the site.
System Usability Test is a quick and efficient way to evaluate the usability of your products and designs. It is one of the most tried and tested ways of gathering statistically valid data and giving your website a clear and reasonably precise score. A set of users are asked 10 questions based on their recent experience with the project. Based on the answers, a score is generated which is representative of how usable the website is.
Prototype Evaluation research is a common research design that entails carrying out a structured assessment of the product features from a consumer’s perspective. The goal of conducting most prototype evaluation research is to extract meaningful information from the audience and provide valuable insights to stakeholders. The research entails carrying out qualitative and quantitative methods of gathering data that can be easier to analyze and create strategies. These methods include observation, tests, and surveys.
A user journey is a path or a timeline of user actions that a user may take when using a particular website. User journeys are used in conceptualizing website design to identify the different ways enabling the user to achieve their goal as quickly and easily as possible. Understanding the users’ journey allows brands to understand several important factors that shape the overall impression users would walk away with.
Before launching a product in the market, it’s crucial to determine its acceptability among your target audience. Concept Validation is a powerful market research methodology that enables brands to check that. It enables brands to gain tangible insights about the product and its features from the user’s perspective.
The earlier a concept validation research is done, the more flexibility brands have to create and personalize products to meet customer expectations. The concept validation test is carried out by an exhaustive assessment of the concept based on different parameters. These parameters are – concept idea, quality, its value for money, desirability, need of the product.
Concept testing is an invaluable tool for brands trying to break into a new market segment or improve existing products to gain more market share.
The Power of Personalization
Personalization is the power that can enable businesses to get ahead of their competitors. And in today’s ever-evolving digital marketplace, the personalized customer experience can work as a brand differentiator by enabling them to break through the noise and foster meaningful customer relationships.