7 Fast Personalization Techniques with Sitecore XP
Sitecore is one of the most powerful content management systems available. Sitecore offers a nearly endless array of marketing opportunities for businesses — and implementing it often isn’t cheap. Now that you’ve got your company’s new Sitecore-powered website up and running, it’s time to begin earning a return on your investment.
Today, we’re going to examine how the personalization features of the Sitecore Experience Platform can help your business achieve its goals and quickly recoup the expense of implementing your new CMS.
1. Personalized Landing Pages for Marketing Campaigns
Your organization has earned much of its success up to this point through effective advertising. Your marketers perform the research necessary to find profitable search keywords and design eye-catching ads for search engines and social media. If you’re sending prospects to landing pages without accounting for campaigns or traffic sources, though, you’re missing out on an opportunity to increase conversions.
With Sitecore, it’s easy to implement a simple personalization scheme for your marketing. What would you change about a landing page if you knew whether the visitor arrived at your website from Google or Facebook? Sitecore allows you to create multiple landing pages for the same campaign. Sitecore automatically detects a prospect’s traffic source and shows the personalized landing page. Over time, you can increase the complexity of your website’s personalized content by taking other details such as location or company affiliation into account.
2. Personalization for Organic Social Media Content
When you post content on your company’s social media pages, it’s likely that you almost always link to your website. Linking to your website is how you turn social media into a consistent source of inbound traffic. It’s likely that you also link to the same page on your website from posts on multiple social networks simultaneously. You can use Sitecore to personalize the content that website visitors see based on the social media websites that they view before clicking through to your site.
3. Geographic Personalization
Does your company offer products or services to customers anywhere in the world? You can use Sitecore to personalize your website’s home page to display geographically relevant content — even if the products or services that you offer do not differ by region. Suppose your company is a clothing seller based in the United States. These examples illustrate a few of the possibilities:
- Your website sells clothing for all seasons. It is July, so your website’s default home page displays images of bathing suits and swim trunks. In Australia, though, July is the coldest month of the year. Your website should display cold weather gear to Australian visitors in July.
- Your website’s default sidebar displays a message telling visitors that you offer free shipping to customers in the United States — but that information isn’t relevant to an overseas visitor. For visitors from other nations, you can use.
- Sitecore to replace the sidebar message with a message explaining that your company ships worldwide.
- Use Sitecore to detect a customer’s city and time zone. Customize your product pages with a message such as “Order before 5:00 PM for delivery by Thursday.”
4. Personalization for Email Landing Pages
Landing pages for advertisements and email marketing campaigns should not be the same. An advertisement is a short message designed to pique a potential customer’s interest. The landing page needs to inform the customer further, gently guiding him or her toward completing a target action. When someone reads an email and clicks through to your website, though, that person is already informed and ready to complete the action. The landing page should make it easy for the visitor to convert immediately. Use Sitecore to detect email campaign visitors and remove distractions from landing pages to increase conversions.
5. Landing Page Personalization for Organic Search Visitors
If you’ve done a good job when creating your website’s landing pages, you’ve created strong keyword-focused content capable of standing out on search engine results pages. If a visitor arrives on a landing page from Google’s organic search results rather than a paid advertisement, you can use Sitecore to modify the page’s content in subtle ways to more closely match the visitor’s search intent. For example, you could modify the page’s headline or body text to incorporate the search keywords that the visitor most likely used to find the page.
6. Personalization for Repeat Visitors
Sitecore automatically tracks the actions of all website visitors. If a website visitor hasn’t provided personal information yet, Sitecore saves the interaction data in an anonymous profile. If a visitor has purchased a product or completed a form, though, then Sitecore knows who that person is. You can use that information to create a more deeply personalized experience.
These are a few of the ways in which you can use Sitecore to personalize your website for repeat visitors:
- Your company sells software, and you know from a visitor’s browsing history that he is looking for an accounting solution for small businesses. When that person visits your website, Sitecore can automatically display a sidebar banner inviting him to download a trial version of your accounting package.
- Your company sells supplies for building and remodeling. A visitor has viewed the pages for toilets, shower fixtures and tile in your online store. Sitecore can assume that the visitor is considering remodeling his bathroom and automatically display a banner leading to a featured article about the most popular bathroom remodeling trends.
- Your company sells services to other businesses. A visitor has submitted a form to request a quote from your company, but he hasn’t purchased anything yet. Sitecore can automatically offer that person a discount when he visits your website again.
7. Reduce Form Abandonment
Particularly for B2B companies, it can be difficult to quote a price to a potential customer without a thorough understanding of that person’s needs. If your company sells to other businesses, it’s likely that your website has fairly long forms. The more information that you have about a potential customer, the easier it’ll become to close the deal. The longer a form is, though, the more likely it becomes that people will leave the website before completing a form.
If a potential customer leaves your website without completing a form, Sitecore doesn’t know who that person is yet — but Sitecore does have his or her IP address. The next time that person visits your website, Sitecore can reduce the complexity of your forms by asking for his or her email address only. You’ll have less information about the prospect, but less information is better than none.
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