Behavioral targeting is the science of establishing the profile of a specific user or different segments of online users and using the data to create for them a more personalized experience.
The advantages of personalization through behavioral targeting
For marketers, this is an extremely important technique, because it enables them to better understand customers and to develop campaigns, offers and content that correspond to what these people and potential customers actually search and want.
Photo source: Snowpeak
For customers, this is an opportunity for an enhanced shopping experience. Finding products easier on a site, getting personalized offers and coupons or just discovering new products that they might like, are some of the positive things a customer could enjoy on a website. While some reluctance towards giving private data still exists, this can be fixed by providing an opt-out option for visitors who are sensitive to this issue.
How is consumer behavior studied?
It’s a marketer’s dream to understand the diversity of consumer personality, expectancies and consequently the products and the offers they prefer.
After all, a very important condition for persuasive communication is to send tailored messages for each type of audience. Being an interactive medium, internet has this advantage: it can get instant feedback, and then match in real time segments of users with messages, offers and products specially designed for them.
To establish the online profile of a consumer you can put together data about:
- session behavior (page views, site search keywords, the content he reads by topic or theme )
- browsing history (visited pages, searched information)
- purchase history (has he bought before or is he a new visitor, how much has he spend the last time he visited the site and on what type of products)
- data entries in forms
- data from surveys
- the device he is using (mobile, tablet, is he an Android or an iPhone user, a Mac or Window user)
- location (based on IP): country, city
To gather data you can use tracking and analytics software, eye tracking software, website optimizing software.
Once you have imagined the profile of your users per segments, you can pass to the next important step: personalization.
How do you personalize online experiences based on consumer behavior?
Personalization means treating each visitor differently and engaging in a more complex interaction than the classical one: static e-shop – visitor. If you have the technique to read visitors’ intentions on real-time why not respond to these intentions?
- recommendation engines that display products based on the visitor’s navigation patterns
- targeted e-mail campaigns
- personalized onsite search
- dynamic landing pages that show more relevant information to the user
- personalized interactions with the visitors (banners, pop-ups), displayed on key moments: on landing page, on exit
And a few reasons for using personalization:
- it’s great for cross-sells and up-sales
- it helps you reengage customers that abandoned the cart
- makes customers feel more familiar with the website
- it helps you regain the users attention when they want to leave the site
All of the above will ultimately lead to the fulfillment of any e-commerce site’s objective: sell more and obtain a nice ROI.
In marketing one of the first things you learn about targeting is that an audience is made up of individuals, each one with its own traits and needs. Online personalization manages to something that’s very hard to do on other channels: it speaks to the customer as an individual. So, if you have an online store don’t miss the opportunity personalization offers you!