Friday, April 21, 2006

How personalization can boost your sales

How can personalization boost your sales? Personalization is slowly but surely becoming one of the most effective marketing methods on the Internet today. Are you using personalization yet? If not, your profits are sure to suffer soon.

With the recent changes in consumer shopping habits, many companies are adopting sales and marketing strategies that reflect a more personalized approach to servicing their customers.

Why is personalization the latest trend today? Because, similar to traditional retailing, it establishes customer loyalty, which leads to repeat visitors and ultimately, to higher profits. In fact, several studies have shown that Web sites providing personalization are five times more likely to attract repeat visitors than non-customized sites.

A customized approach allows you to get to know your customers in the impersonal online atmosphere and to tailor your offerings to them. It can utilize direct input from the customer, or it can be done without the customer even realizing what's happening.

Here are priceless ways to easily double your sales and profits through the use of personalization:

Personalize the end of your ezine with your subscribers e-mail addresses. If you list the address they're subscribed, as near the remove instructions, it will minimize the number of heated e-mails you receive from frustrated subscribers trying to remove themselves from your list.

Using the names of your subscribers will make your ezine more appealing and more likely to be read first. The subscriber will be impressed that their name is used in the middle of your sales copy. They will have more personal interest in what you are saying. Readers feel like you're talking directly to them and will look forward to your ezine. It is a whole new experience at that point because you are talking to them individually.

Personalize your autoresponder follow-up messages when possible to ensure that your message gets noticed. You think it doesn’t matter? Here’s an example: Picture two separate e-mail messages. One has "Dear Internet marketer" as the opening line. The other has "Dear Mary." Which of those do you think will get trashed? And which do you think will be read?

Use Javascript to enhance your e-commerce website with personalization capabilities. Have you seen the pop-up name boxes used on some websites? That's the Webmaster's clever plan to hold your attention longer by peppering your name throughout their website sales message.

Personalize e-mail messages to webmasters, link partners, and anyone else you communicate with by e-mail. By using their name in the greeting and throughout the message, you'll keep their attention much longer. They'll know that your message was truly intended for them. It also shows that you pay attention to what they have to say and that you recognize them as an important person.

Don't call someone by a nickname unless they first give you permission to do so. Stay safe and call people by their full names unless they ask otherwise.

When using names, email addresses, street addresses, or whatever kind of personalization you decide on be sure to spell it right. You're defeating the purpose of this strong, money-making marketing tool when you address me, (Ms. Major), as "Mr. Majors." Not only that, it's downright tacky. It shows people that you couldn't care less about them or their name, as long as you're making your money!

So, sit up and pay attention. It only takes a few seconds to check to make sure you're getting it right. If you don't have that time, you should think about finding another profession. One that doesn’t require any person-to-person interaction.

When using personalization, don't overdo it. If a reader finds their name throughout your ezine in every other sentence, it becomes unnatural and annoying. Use personalization sparingly, and just enough to be effective. Overuse is worse than not using it at all.

Planning is important when dealing with personalization on the Web. Just as you wouldn't want to waste a retail customer's time with irrelevant products and services, you won't want to waste online viewers' time with time-consuming and ineffective personalization features and functions.

Remember, successful entrepreneurs are very busy people with itchy click fingers! Follow the eight profit-generating personalization tips above to avoid having your e-mail fall victim to the skim or delete bug.

About the author:

Peter Dobler is a 20+ year veteran in the IT business. He is an active Real Estate Investor and a successful Internet business owner. Collect more free software and bonus content for your own web site at

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