In the Age of Personalization, Do We Still Need User Personas? (Spoilers: Yes!)
though personalization has long been touted as the silver bullet that would
send engagement and sales through the roof by, essentially, providing a Web
experience for an audience of one, it’s not living up to the hype for everyone.
According to a recent study, of the 45% of integrated marketers who’ve tried to
personalize their home pages, just over one-third think their
efforts are paying off.
may fall flat if integrated marketers skip their due diligence and don’t create
robust user personas, those fleshed-out profiles of your hypothetical users.
The best user personas cover not only age, profession, lifestyle, and
geography, but past purchasing behaviors and attitudes toward your category and
product – for example, what they know about your product and what might be
holding them back from using it more often. Either used alone or as the
backbone of web personalization, user personas can help create a seamlessly customer-centered
experience. Here’s when, where, and why they continue to be crucial.
Guiding UX and Design
personas help make your web experience more intuitive by supporting each step
of the customer journey. One of the obvious shortcomings of the data collected
for personalization is that even if it can tell us who, how many, or where, it
still can’t tell us why: why people only spend 20 seconds on a page or why 71% of our shoppers abandon their
carts. With the qualitative insights user personas yield, you can make
better decisions about design and UX/UI, such as how prominent to make customer
reviews and feedback, whether to use a static image or a carousel, or if you
want to put customer service in the header or the footer.
not enough to know that your visitors might fall into the categories of ‘new
mothers’ or ‘retirees’: before integrated marketers set parameters and write rules
for personalization, they should have a deeply nuanced understanding of what
motivates each segment of their audience. User personas will help you make
decisions about how and when to serve up specific content and even what kind of
offers would work best.
having a set of well-researched user personas will help you create even more
relevant and insightful content. You don’t need to write 100 variations of your
copy, but user personas make it easier to create content that strikes the right
tone and feels tailored to a reader’s needs and interests. Without personas,
you’re only guessing at what your audience wants.
Sound Like You?
If your personalization efforts aren’t working as hard as they should be or you
want to revisit user personas, let’s talk! PIP offers a wide array of web design, content
strategy, and content creation services. Whether you’re looking to fine-tune an
existing site or you need an experienced partner to help you build a new
website from the ground up, we can help you create an interactive experience
that will turn users into customers!