Customer loyalty is largely nonexistent today as ever-fickle shoppers flit from store to store in search of more and better options, leaving retailers scrambling to secure sales.
The solution: personalization. And businesses are slowly starting to realize they have to use data to tailor how they approach each customer.
According to a report published Wednesday by real-time personalization provider Evergage, 91 percent of marketers either use or intend to use personalization for online customer interactions across their desktop and mobile sites as well as web and mobile apps within the next year.
The study, conducted in conjunction with Researchscape International, surveyed 242 B2B and B2C marketers from 22 countries, including the U.S., and found that 49 percent of respondents intend to spend more money tailoring the customer experience over the coming year, with 80 percent of those planning to boost their budgets by more than 10 percent.
“Personalization is an age-old concept, but extending the customized experience to online visitors in real time—based on deep customer analytics—is a new way to ensure each and every interaction with a prospective customer is relevant and engaging,” said Karl Wirth, co-founder and CEO of the Somerville, Massachusetts-based company.
Consumers already expect custom content and an exceptional experience as standard, so it’s no surprise to learn that 51 percent of marketers surveyed have staff dedicated to working on personalization programs. The stats speak for themselves: 86 percent of respondents said they’ve seen increased engagement from personalization, with more than half reporting an upsurge greater than 10 percent.
Furthermore, one-third of those currently employing real-time personalization efforts report increased e-commerce revenues and 73 percent see increased visitor engagement.
To that end, while 42 percent of respondents said they’re not currently using real-time personalization, 78 percent intend to do so this year, citing increased visitor engagement, improved customer experience and increased lead generation as the top reasons why. Inline content (text or images inserted dynamically within the page content) and call-outs (short, explanatory messages) are how they plan to catch the consumer’s eye.
As Wirth put it, “When nearly 90 percent of marketers realize lift from personalization initiatives, it’s clear that those who embrace this strategy will outperform those who do not.”