Almost 6 in 10 company marketers agree that the ability to personalize content is fundamental to their online strategy and 54% are committed to providing a personalized web experience, according to a new Econsultancy report [download page] produced in association with Adobe.
The study also looks at the types of data used to personalize the web experience and how these data types contribute to ROI.
The report, based on a survey of more than 700 respondents, roughly half of whom are based in the UK – indicates that the data types most commonly used to personalized the web experience are:
- Personal data (including name, gender and location) – by 65% of company respondents and 70% of agency respondents;
- User preferences (explicit customer preferences, e.g. interests) – by 45% and 48%, respectively;
- Purchase history – by 38% and 43%, respectively; and
- Behavior on web properties – by 33% and 36%, respectively.
While personal data is – unsurprisingly – the most widespread type, it’s personalization based on purchase history that has the biggest ROI impact, according to company marketers.
Asked to rate the ROI impact of personalization based on the various sources of data, almost three-quarters of company respondents said that personalizing based on purchase history has a high impact on ROI. Given that only around 4 in 10 respondents are currently personalizing based on this data, it appears that this is the area with the most opportunity.
Meanwhile, personalization based on user preferences (70%) and web property behavior (68%) also appear to have a high impact on ROI, while most see mobile app behavior and third-party demographic data as having low or no impact.
Turning to the channels through which marketers and agencies are personalizing the digital experience, the report notes that email (78% marketers; 80% agencies) is the most popular, followed by desktop websites (69% and 78%) and mobile websites (36% and 51%). Fewer than one-quarter are personalizing the paid search experience, despite a separate Econsultancy report finding that personalization’s impact on conversion rates is highest for search engine marketing.
Sticking with conversion rates, the study finds that they are the leading metric for analyzing the benefits of personalization, used by 65% of company respondents. Customer acquisition is the second-most used metric, ahead of customer retention.
About the Data: The results are based on an online survey of over 700 client-side (51%) and agency (49%) respondents, carried out in October 2014. The most-represented sectors were retail (17%), charities, government and non-profit (13%) and technology (11%).
Company respondents were most likely to be B2C (44%), with one-third of companies classing themselves as B2B (33%). On the agency side, close to half said they had a B2B focus (45%), with 30% saying that had an equal B2B/B2C focus.
52% of respondents are based in the UK.