Personalized management of user experience on a website: Sitefinity CMS capabilities

Tags: ,

Having implemented a number of projects on Sitefinity Digital Design has prepared a series of articles about how the integrated digital tools of this platform help to develop the Internet projects.

In the first article we talked about optimization of conversions, and in this one we’ll cover the topic of content personalization. In future posts, we will discuss some other useful features of Sitefinity, such as:

  • A/B testing
  • Creating profiles for user groups
  • Analytics
  • SEO
  • Trigger e-mail campaigns

Content personalization algorithm

The personalized action logic is aimed to get higher conversion potential, make repeat page visits more likely and build long-term loyalty due to an individual approach to customer journey building, i.e. delivering higher quality and more relevant content for a particular user. Sitefinity personalization module allows to display different versions of content to different audience groups, which are formed based on a wide range of characteristics.

The personalization process is as follows:

Step 1. Audience segmentation

The audience of personalized action is a user segment, which can be described using the following characteristics of anonymous traffic or registered users:

  • Geography:

    • User’s IP address
    • Location
  • Session сharacteristics:

    • Target URL (a page where a user is redirected from external website)
    • Jump URL (URL that redirected him to the page)
    • Time of day (time interval for visiting the website)
    • Duration of a visit (user session)
    • Page visited
    • The query parameter of the visited URL (utm tags for marketing campaigns)
  • User account characteristics (for registered users only)

    • User account fields
    • Its assigned role is Sitefinity CMS (we’ll discuss the Persona module capabilities in a separate article)
    • Purchases made on the website (filters can be set for products/good groups, price, or tags)

Audience segmentation

Thus, based on a search query, you can add a CTA directing to pages relevant to that query. Or show visitors only an announcement of upcoming events, based on the time of visit. Or add a link to products a user was interested in before on a personalized page. Or offer a personal discount if a user is watching a page repeatedly.

Therefore the visitor segments used for personalization in Sitefinity CMS are a mix of demographic and behavioral data. Every user action associated with key touchpoints or passing through the stages of the purchase funnel is identified by Sitefinity Insight and can be used to understand the customer journey context better.

Step 2. Configuring Personalization

Content personalization for the needs of a target segment can be implemented both at the level of the whole page, and also at the level of individual elements as follows:

  • Page templates
  • MVC widgets: Content block, Image, News, Blogs list, Blog posts, Events, List, Card widget
  • Widgets of WebForms: Content block, Image widget
  • Dynamic widgets

For example, for users from different countries, you can personalize the lead form widget in the footer of the page, which contains a field for entering a phone number. Personalization will apply to all pages with a lead form. Or you can add a news and promotions subscription widget to the product page for new users (as in the example in the picture below).

Configuring Personalization

Personalized elements can be combined and widget templates can be reused.

Step 3. Preview

After customizing the segments and personalized pages or individual widgets, make sure that everything works correctly. The personalization preview tool shows how the entire website looks from the perspective of a particular user segment or individual user with certain characteristics. Sitefinity also allows preview of content on any device using mobile device emulators.

Personalization preview

Step 4. Tracking and analysis of results

For each personalized page, Sitefinity Insight automatically generates a report on the results of tracking behavior of users on the website and conversions they make. The report includes the following indicators:

  • Total page views for a selected period, percentage increase compared to a previous period
  • Number of views of personalized versions of a page for a selected period, percentage increase compared to a previous period
  • Percentage ratio of personalized views and total page views
  • A number of views of personalized pages in the context segments for a selected period (according to the settings made in Step 1)
  • Attribution of conversions as a heatmap showing the contribution of the personalized segment to each conversion

Tracking and analysis of results

Once you have got a complete picture based on the collected data, you can improve content personalization, such as creating a more complex set of characteristics, adding or removing segments, and segmenting visitors by a different criterion. Besides, you can change the content itself or its presentation, for example, you can personalize the other part of the page or completely redesign the layout.