Did you know that nearly 50% of all new retail product searches start on Amazon? That's according to a study by market research firm Survata.
So if our prospects and customers are interacting less and less with real humans and more and more with search engines and digital apps, what steps can we take to personalise their online experience?
This is where smart content comes in.
Smart content enables you to create, and alter, the content displayed in a module to suit the specific needs or characteristics of your viewers.
And as the online marketing platform HubSpot explains, there are multiple criteria that you can choose from to personalise, and heighten, your customer's experience - from smart forms and CTAs to smart text on your emails, landing pages and website pages.
Do you sell into multiple countries? Then the ability to be able to display content based on where your prospect live and work could be hugely beneficial.
Do your customers tend to view content on the go rather than sat at their desks? Then being able to accurately segment your content to work on different device types (mobile, tablet, laptop) will be a key advantage.
Is your contact a first-time enquirer, a Marketing Qualified Lead (MQL) or a repeat customer? Understanding the life-cycle stage of your buyers will ensure you're showing them the content that's most relevant for their needs.
As HubSpot also emphasises, knowing when not to use smart content is also just as important to ensuring a positive user experience. Using it in a blog post for example is definitely not considered to be best practice as it can be misleading to your RSS readers and negatively impact on your SEO.
Personalisation in an analogue world existed when the guy at the video store knew your name. As we move into an increasingly connected and switched-on digital age, personalisation is a powerful tool where a company knows what you want to buy before you’ve even thought about it. While basic personalisation is relatively easy to achieve – an email with a first name will just about do the trick, great personalisation – where you show up at the right time, in the right place, to the right person and say the right thing – is a little tougher to do.