Personalisation: Customer in the centre of everything

What is True Personalisation?

Customer Experience

The ideal business-customer relationship

No doubt you’ve heard a ton of buzz surrounding “personalisation”. Trouble is, surface level personalisation, like adding name tokens to emails, won’t get you very far with today’s customers. You need true personalisation that evokes what’s best about old-fashioned, in-person retail to succeed. For an example of the ideal business-customer relationship, let’s look no further than the local grocer.

The town grocer and the customer have a history together. They know each other by name.

They are able to make knowledgeable recommendations and provide relevant, up-to-date information about what they have in stock and helpful hints. The relationship is personal.

Digital businesses have historically struggled to make this personal connection, and for a long time, it has frustrated growth across a number of industries: for groceries or fashion retail, for example, where the tactile experience is an important component of making a purchase. It has traditionally presented a major hurdle for, say, a perfume company seeking to expand beyond bricks-and-mortar. 

Now It's Personal

To clear this hurdle and tap into the wider potential of digital commerce, businesses have adopted a number of solutions that fall under the wide umbrella of personalisation.

Here are some points to clarify the term:

  • The term gets thrown around a lot but personalisation is fundamentally the process of tailoring an experience based on information collected from the customer - as in the grocer example.
  • There are two parts to personalisation. The first is learning about a customer's needs and preferences and, the second is using that information to tailor the product, service or merely the interaction with the business for the consumer.
  • The field has advanced a fair distance from where it started. Whereas once a ‘personalised’ approach to e-commerce may have been as simple as including a first name in the address line of a newsletter, advances in processing data have created the possibility of a deeper, more involved relationship with consumers: effective product recommendations based on online and offline purchase history; websites that mould themselves to repeat consumer shopping journeys to offer more relevant information. 
  • Changes in trends and advances in the field, especially around how data is stored and analysed, have given rise to the more refined ‘hyper personalisation': using this advanced data processing to get ahead of the competition. 


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