Conversion Rate Optimisation, Customer Journey Optimisation

What should personalisation look like in 2020

 March 12, 2020

By  Will

If you’re tired of hearing that personalisation is going to be THE thing to dominate marketing in 2020, then I’ve got some bad news for you: you will hear a lot more about this because it’s true.

There was once a time when marketers could only dream about taking an individual approach that’s also well-timed and contextually relevant to the customer. But as the AI technology continues to amaze us all and countless Martech platforms & tools spring up like mushrooms after rain, you have an opportunity to turn this dream into a reality.

And given that 63% of consumers find brands that continue to rely on the old-fashioned strategy of blasting generic ad messages repeatedly extremely annoying, it shouldn’t be a matter of trying to differentiate yourself from your competitors but as a way to meet the market demand.

The big problem with marketing as it exists today is that 95% of your visitors will never convert into a customer. That number, while horrific to see, it’s not necessarily a reflection of the message you want to convey but the simple fact that it doesn’t resonate with most visitors.

Personalisation won’t convert every single of your visitors but it will help you convert more of them. And even a 10% increase in your conversions equals a decent revenue boost.

So, what are the 2020 personalisation absolute must-haves for brands? 

Personalising your website

Your website. The forefront of your store. Often the first thing your customers see. 

But people are different. They all have different needs and motivators to visit your website, so treating them as a part of a larger group and showing them general content that does not cater to their individual needs, is not a strategy – it’s you hoping that it will encourage them to buy.

Whereas showing visitors content on your website that is related to their past behaviour, demographics, buying patterns (and a tonne of other data), you greatly increase the chance of the conversion taking place. According to “The Clear Path to Personalization” report, 40% of survey respondents said that adding personalised elements on their websites and adopting personalised marketing tactics helped boost their sales and average order value.

There are many ways you can personalise the experience for your customers, starting at product recommendations, content adaptation or website popups – the opportunities are endless. But make no mistake – while it might seem like a great thing to do, whatever strategy you choose for your site should be relevant to your brand and above all, useful to your customers.

Let’s take a look at a few brands that are taking their personalisation game to the next level:


Well of course I had to mention Netflix. Netflix is like God to us marketers.

You’re probably already familiar how their personalisation works: they fill up your home screen with movie & TV series recommendations based on what you watched previously.

But did you also know that they even customise the movies’ thumbnail image so you’re seeing actors you recognise?

Source: ABTasty


Personalisation can be as advanced as you want it to be – Very has even taken the current weather conditions into consideration when personalising their homepage (and it reportedly increased revenue by £5m!).

Source: InternetRetailing


Imagine an ecommerce store you visit frequently that is always showing you a first-time buyer offer. It would be pretty annoying, right?

It sounds so basic but your website should be showing a different type of offers to those visiting for the first time and those who visited in the past.

Source: Barilliance

I could be here all day, showing you more examples. But hopefully, you get the idea – there are hundreds of ways you can customise the experience for your visitors.

Personalising your email marketing

Your personalisation strategy doesn’t have to end its course as soon as visitors leave your website – in fact, it shouldn’t.

While you do need to work a little harder to capture their email address, email personalisation doesn’t need to be insanely complicated to resonate with recipients. Saying that though, it’s about more than inserting someone’s name into your emails. Pure360 research found that 92 % of consumers are unlikely to engage with marketing that addresses them by name.

The best part of this is that once you automate the process, that’s it – all the work is done. With smart segmentation and tags, creating workflows is where your involvement ends. Most email marketing software providers have really easy ways of letting you segment your database.

Here are a few brands that do it right:


Mixbook uses their order confirmation email to display product recommendations for future shopping endeavours:

Source: OptinMonster


Sending follow-up emails is one of the best ways to recover those abandoned carts or even prompt users to complete the purchase when they were just browsing.

Source: CampaignMonitor

Look beyond the obvious 

Each visitor interacts with businesses in a multitude of ways and truly powerful personalisation looks beyond who you are to what you are trying to achieve right now. Your website, email marketing and ads are the obvious places to start; but, it’s only a start.

Your ultimate personalisation goal should be to create an omnichannel experience for each and every user that interacts with your brand.


Will is a Customer Journey Marketing consultant, specialising in CRO, CRM and Customer Experience. Will has over 7 years experience working across a range of consumer facing businesses and has worked for huge brands such as MyVoucherCodes, Europcar, JackpotJoy, Virgin Games and Virgin Bet.


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