Is Personalisation Making or Breaking Relationships with Customers?

Why are retailers so interested in personalisation? If done well it can increase sales, build relationships with new and existing customers, and enhance brand loyalty. It is not, however, a perfect science and in some circumstances, personalisation is becoming overly pervasive.

One of the biggest trends in retail right now is big data, and for personalisation to be successful, it needs to be fuelled by a lot of consumer behaviour analysis which can be used to determine which products and services will appeal to individuals. Retailers are seeking to gather data on many different facets of individuals spending patterns, likes, dislikes, relationships, financial status and so on.

The interesting thing about personalisation is that it enables retailers and brands to track shopping behaviors and use predictive analytics to push relevant, individualised content and additional products to the consumer in real-time.

Let us take a couple of examples:

  • You log onto Amazon, and you are automatically shown a number of potential products that Amazon thinks you might like based on prior searches and purchases.
  • You have been browsing for new clothes on the internet, you decide against the purchase and start reading the news. A banner pops up with the product you were looking at earlier.

Some consumers will hardly notice the personalised selling tactics, whilst others will be pleased for the suggestions. There is a third camp of consumers who are fighting back and do not want their personal data to be manipulated to sell to them – they are also, very often, concerned about their online identity and privacy. The privacy concern is why ‘invisible personalisation,’ such as what Certona provides, can help overcome the issues of the ‘annoyed consumer’.

Whilst personalisation is nothing new I am of the opinion that it will continue to be at the forefront of retailer’s strategic plans, and as big data technologies improve, the way in which customers are targeted will become increasingly subtle, intelligent, and nuanced.


To see more around personalisation, you can read the whitepaper here