One of the benefits of having a team of specialized sales agents is that they can help create a personalized shopping experience for your clients. They do this by offering targeted recommendations, for example, or by providing information about related items. With the help of smart content, your online sales channel can also offer the same level of personalization.
What Is Smart Content?
Smart content isn’t a recent innovation. Many web stores have been offering smart content, also known as personalized content, for years.
Think, for instance, of being offered product recommendations based on your purchase at checkout, or getting an overview of products that were interesting to other customers who bought the same item. These features, which are nothing new to seasoned online shoppers, are prime examples of relevant and effective personalized content.
From Personal to Smart Content
While these tried and tested types of smart content will surely enhance your web store, there are even more ways to deliver a truly personalized experience, such as:
- Emails containing data relevant for your clients
- Entire web pages tailored to buyer preferences based on browser history
- Personalized messages based on whether someone is a returning or first-time customer, or the lead’s referral source
With so many personalization opportunities, it can be hard to see the forest for the trees. It might even be tempting to write smart content off as not worth the effort. But personalization can benefit all web stores, regardless of business model.
Making Smart Content Work for Your Business Model
Smart content can enhance your online sales channel, whether you sell to consumers, professional buyers, or both.
In B2C web stores, personalized content is mainly directed at driving and increasing sales with cross-selling and upselling. Impulse buying is typical for B2C shoppers, so those techniques work well.
In the B2B world however, shopping behavior is different. Customers do research, buy in larger quantities, and typically need many related items. As such, personalized content serves an additional purpose: assistance. It provides a service that proposes relevant items to your customers, so that they don’t need to waste time looking for the items themselves.
The Added Value of Personalized Content
In an article about psychology and personalized content, Erik Devaney writes that personalized content also gives the impression that the information is not overwhelming and that the client has a measure of control over what they’re looking at and buying. This makes the whole experience more pleasant. Effective and fulfilling shopping experiences can help forge customer loyalty. This is a must for every B2B company.
Seismic and Demand Metric measured the performance of content personalization in the B2B world in a 2016 study. They found that over 60% of the surveyed companies used personalized content. Of that percentage, 80% found it to be more effective than “unpersonalized” content.
Overcoming Smart Content Obstacles
With such great results, why aren’t all companies using smart content to boost their online sales? Frequently cited reasons include not having enough resources, not having the data necessary for personalization, and not having access to the right technology.
If you have an ERP system and integrated web store, you are well on your way to overcoming obstacles with data and technology. All that remains is finding a way to get off to an efficient start with smart content for your online sales channel.
Click through to our infographic to learn three simple steps you can take to enhance your web store with smart content.