These days, companies across virtually every vertical are complimenting their services with a heavy dose of personalization. And it’s for good reason, too, as offering a personalized customer experience is a proven technique for increasing conversion rates, boosting customer loyalty, and growing profit margins.
We’re all familiar with the more common instances of personalization, such as customized product recommendations used by online stores like Amazon. But thanks to developments in technology and a growing recognition of the power of personalization, a wide range of industries, including retail, healthcare, travel and food, are jumping on the personalization bandwagon. Thus, we are pretty much guaranteed to come face-to-face with some form of personalization wherever we browse.
Let’s have a look at some of the more innovative examples of personalization from these four industries:
Consumers of all types and across all verticals are met with an overabundance of options when it comes to making purchases. In order to win over the hearts (and pockets) of customers, ecommerce stores should differentiate themselves, their products and their selling methods. A combination of understanding that each consumer differs in their needs, buying triggers and desires, and using personalization techniques accordingly, is the most effective way to do just that.
There are plenty of wearable technologies that are being developed that cater to each person’s individual needs and emotions. Emil + Aris, for example, designed a smart coat with heat technology, so the wearer can adjust the warmth level as he/she wishes.
Google’s Project Jacquard developed a way to integrate touch and gesture responsivity into a variety of items, such as clothing and furniture, thanks to conductive yarn. Together with Levi’s, they developed a jacket with wearable technology for the commuter community. They understood that urban commuters on bicycles have unique needs, and they set out to answer those needs with a jacket that can help them answer/block phone calls, get voice directions, listen to music, etc. – all while riding safely through the city.
But not all personalization methods need to be related to wearable technology. Adidas, for example, offers a service called miadidas through which customers can create and order their own personalized pair of sneakers online.
Adidas understood and catered to their customers’ innate desire for individuality and gave them this opportunity to create custom sneakers as a vehicle for self-expression. Starting with a blank shoe, customers can choose the model, colors, and material, to match their individual wishes.
Against a huge range of sneakers available online, Adidas has managed to offer the customer something exclusive – the ability to make a product that exactly matches their lifestyle, personality, needs, and wants. With choice in the customer’s own hands, satisfaction is virtually guaranteed.
Relying on a one-size-fits-all approach is far from ideal when it comes to providing healthcare services. Every individual has a unique history, situation, and set of genes that will influence their response to medications and treatments. In order to personalize treatments for diseases, such as cancer, companies in the healthcare industry are beginning to perform testing, including genetic profiling, so that they can take these factors into account.
For example, Ambry Genetics is a company that offers a wide array of genetic tests. Some of these tests are designed to identify mutations that increase the likelihood of cancer and other diseases. They also perform diagnostic genetic tests. Armed with knowledge of a patient’s genetic information, doctors can provide a personalized plan of action, including targeted treatments with a higher chance of success.
But personalization is not only relevant for cancer treatment in the healthcare industry. Nutritional advice can also be tailor-made to every individual. Deciding to cut out food groups or reduce calorie intake is something that can be done with knowledge and forethought. In this vein, scientists are working to develop an algorithm that will use patient data to prescribe personalized diets.
Telemedicine is another form of personalized healthcare, whereby patients can access healthcare services remotely. Recently, there has been an emergence of mobile apps that allow patients to interact directly with doctors through video or online chat. In the area of mental health, patients can use apps such as TalkSpace to receive one-on-one, message-based therapy from professionally licensed therapists.
More than ever before, travelers expect a personalized experience when it comes to booking vacations online. The travel industry is responding to this with a plethora of personalized booking services. Many online booking engines take previous trips, budget, and reasons for travel into account to provide tailored search results.
The online travel industry is a competitive market, where price comparison sites are commonly used to find the cheapest deals on flights and hotels. Personalization draws customer attention away from finding the lowest prices, and towards an appreciation of better services and real value.
Booking.com’s Destination Finder service, for example, allows travelers to search for vacation destinations based on their interests. Searching for “shark diving” results in a list of nearly 2,000 recommended destinations, paired with endorsements by travelers.
They even include a dedicated selection of endorsements from residents of the user’s own home country. Chief Product Officer David Vismans says that Booking.com aims to connect travelers with possibilities that “perfectly match their personality, desires, and ambitions.”
There are an ever-increasing number of food options available these days. You can easily use a food ordering app to order any cuisine with the touch of a button. In wake of this trend, restaurants and grocery retailers are rushing to maintain a competitive edge by adopting personalization techniques.
Online grocery retailers can suggest relevant products and provide tailored rewards or coupons based on a customer’s past shopping habits.
Furthermore, grocers can share relevant tips, advice, and details of sales or events based on personal behavioral patterns.
Restaurants are also using personalized rewards programs to increase sales and build customer loyalty. International coffeehouse chain Starbucks recently updated their rewards system, whereby customers collect stars for personalized rewards. The Starbucks app uses customer data including purchase history, preferences, the local weather, and account information, to offer incentives and unique offers through the app and via email. Customers who hardly visit will be offered increased stars for any purchase they make.
Gone are the days of cookie-cutter marketing. Personalization is a growing trend that is taking over the world, with customized products and services appearing in nearly every industry. Whichever vertical you work in, you can also take advantage of this trend to drive more conversions, increase customer satisfaction, and meet your KPIs.
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