Conversion optimization through “smart” targeting

So each and every day we evaluate eCommerce websites at Trinity.  As part of our initial processes, we discuss with potential clients the opportunities that exist relating to usability, UX, and search.  In conducting the conversations, and discussing with retailers the technologies that are being embraced by their organizations, I am extremely surprised that the targeting technologies that are available on the market are not being leveraged by 50mm + online retailers.

What online targeting solutions do is let you tailor a piece of content, messaging, creative, or promotion by a parameter that exists in the users browser.  Ok, that seems more complicated than it really is, lets put it within a real life scenario.

Lets say you are HomeDepot.com and the month in our example is February.  You obviously have stores across the entire USA and a variety of customers to serve.  In this case, a plethora of visitors are going to be coming via the homepage as they do with most large consumer brands.

So lets say you have customers coming from Denver.  Your core messaging and promotions should be tailored to cold weather needs.  You want to show snowblowers, specials on rock salt, a buyers guide on generators, and other content that would provide value to a user who is coming to the site from a cold weather destination.

On the flip side, say a visitor is coming to the site from Miami.  Obviously this user has different needs than the one in Denver.  You want to show this user patio furniture, deck maintenance content, and maybe the latest grills for sale.  In eCommerce, one size does not fit all and content should be rendered in an intelligent manner.

We will explore this topic in much greater detail within a new screencast and position paper, but the options are limitless as it relates to targeting.

You can target by:

Search term

New versus returning

Clickstream milestones

Geographic IP (the example used above)

All of these scenarios allow an eCommerce business to be proactive in conceptualizing a user experience that is in the best possible position to do two things – ATTRACT, PERSUADE, and CONVERT.

With bounce rates at homepages exceeding 35% for most retailers, its obvious users have fleeting attention.  By providing an approach of personalized content, you can capture their interest, and then work to make the sale.  Most of the solutions on the market that optimize in this manner are based off of JavaScript and are usually simplistic to implement and test.

Its a matter of being proactive to “beat your control”.  Whatever your conversion and bounce was last week, it needs to be exceeded to the positive side this week.  This theory of continuous improvement, or stated “Kaizen” by Japanese manufacturing processes, is the best way for your business to take the next step with conversion.

To learn more about conversion optimization and our eCommerce consulting services, contact us when you are ready.

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