In 2023, Why Are Most Websites Still so Dim-Witted?
Consumers want businesses to understand their needs and offer something relevant. But even as marketing technology continues to evolve, most websites still provide boring, uninformed, static experiences. Here's why.
Consumers aren’t fussy. We want our favourite stores to understand our needs and then direct us to the relevant goods. We want this from a website, just as we do in person. There is ample data to support this: Seventy-one percent of online consumers expect personalised interactions, according to a McKinsey survey.
Indeed, the industry has tried to respond, but not with simple answers. Large tech companies said, “Just give us your user’s data, and we will send back content we think is relevant.” Problem solved, right? Of course not. As we know, vendors did some pretty sketchy things with users’ data, from reselling it to exposing it to bad actors. As a result, laws, regulations, and internal compliance rules emerged to protect people and their data.
This poor stewardship by these enterprise organisations has made the initial request from users (“show me stuff I want to see”) complicated to deliver. It also gave personalisation some baggage it continues to carry.
This contradiction is clear: a majority of customers want personalisation, yet many have concerns about sharing their data. Forty-three percent of e-commerce users surveyed by Capterra prefer “guest checkout,” partially to avoid providing personal data.
Why is it so hard to get to know each other?
So let’s start with the original question posed. In the age of the “Digital Experience Platform” wars, why are online interactions and experiences still so bad? Even with large customers, there is no coherent customer journey. There are only static and boring recommendations, or completely incorrect context: the wrong language, emphasis, or tone.
Just like a store manager doesn’t want a salesperson recommending a houseboat to a customer looking for a hamburger, website owners need a site that is smart enough to make some logical decisions about what to render.
This means addressing the most common barriers to personalisation entry:
- Privacy concerns, like the ones we mentioned, make personalisation too risky for any company without the resources to perform due diligence. All sales pitches aside, you are forfeiting data to vendors who are susceptible to attacks.
- There are modelling and editorial challenges. Marketing teams are busy. Managing personas and segments can become overwhelming.
- Not surprisingly, there are also technical hurdles. Some solutions are slow, some are difficult to administrate, and many are hard to measure.
Getting enough internal buy-in to overcome these challenges is complicated enough, but the fact is that most solutions are six or seven figures per year. Because of this, personalisation has become available only to enterprise companies with large budgets.
How can marketers have smarter websites?
We built Convivial because tools like personalisation should be based on the fundamentals of good customer service. They shouldn’t be a risky, data-collection experiment. The long-term success stories are with companies that have a clear understanding of their customers and care about their interests.
If we create experiences that are simple and engaging, customers emerge happier. Convivial uses dimensions gathered in real-time and prior visits to help guide customers to the right content.
Err on the side of lightweight, simple, and secure. Convivial stores information in the customer’s browser, not in a data centre. So you won’t read about a data breach of our data centre, because we don’t store any personal information.
Build around a framework, so it's extendable. Convivial is a best-of-breed Drupal site, so editor experience, accessibility, and customisation are second to none. It is an agile entry point to delivering powerful content and a customer experience that users will love.
It’s an open-source solution that succeeds where Enterprise SaaS has failed because we put the user, and their trust in you, first. Click here to discuss with a smart website expert.