How to Help Clients Effectively Segment Content On Their Websites
No two customers are the same. And because no business will have a completely homogeneous customer base, it’s important to segment content on their website in a way that will communicate most effectively with the different subsets of their customer population.
Personalization is becoming an increasingly critical element in user experience. In fact, according to Marketo, 51 percent of consumers expect that, by 2020, businesses will understand their needs and present tailored offers before reaching out. If every prospect or customer on your client’s website is being presented with the same information, they’re not going to feel that personal touch.
So what can you do to help clients effectively segment content on their website in a way that gives them the best shot at impressing visitors with a personalized approach? We’ll cover all the basics here.
Create Customer Profiles
The first step to segmenting content is understanding who your client’s customers are and what segments make most sense for their business. You can choose to segment customers based on a variety of factors (demographics, actions, interactions, where they are in the customer journey).
The best way to decide how to segment is to look at your client’s existing customers. How do they behave? What are their attributes? Do customers with certain attributes behave in a certain way that differs from other customers? CRMs can be helpful in the process of analyzing customer data and creating these profiles.
For example, if your client owns a clothing store, perhaps they sell men’s, women’s, and children’s attire. They’ll likely want to segment their population by age and gender. If they have both an online and brick and mortar presence, then they might also segment by location— dividing up those customers who are near the physical store, and those who will only be online shoppers.
Build Customized Landing Pages
Once you understand how you want to define the various segments of your client’s customer base, you can begin to create content that is unique for each segment.
Landing pages are a great place to start. They’re exactly what they sound like: the page a visitor lands on when they go to a website. It’s possible to customize landing pages based on where a visitor is coming from.
Let’s go back to the clothing store example. Rather than having every link send visitors to a generic home page, you can build landing pages that speak specifically to various segments of their prospect and customer base. So, a Facebook ad for women’s party dresses will lead to a landing page featuring a deal on holiday party cocktail dresses.
Rather than driving all traffic to a home page and making a visitor search and click through for the information they’ll find most relevant, you can eliminate those extra steps and take them right to the page that contains the content they want.
What better way to demonstrate a deep understanding of customers’ wants and needs from the first interaction than to greet them with relevant information from the second they visit your client’s site?
Allow Segments to Self-Select
For those visitors who don’t come through a landing page, you can still create a homepage for your client that caters to their different audiences. Allowing users to self-select the segment that best fits their needs is a great way to tailor content from your homepage.
Let’s go back to the clothing store example. If they sell men’s, women’s, and children’s clothing, build a homepage that presents those three options and asks them to select their preference. From there, they’ll be taken to the information that’s most relevant to their needs. If a visitor is looking for children’s shoes, they don’t want to sift through men’s pants and women’s tops to find them.
Self-selection is a great way to give users the agency to identify the content that’s most relevant to them. It’s then up to you to make sure that you’ve divided up the content in a way that aligns correctly with the label you’ve given to a segment. For example, if you put teen’s clothing under the tab for men’s or women’s, users will likely get confused and frustrated, thinking that they’d find that under children’s wear.
Create Hub Pages
I’ve been recently advocating for the creation of hub pages for your content. Many business owners have taken the concept of content creation to heart. They’ve been diligently blogging about topics that are relevant to their customers, but once the post goes live, it slips into obscurity on their blog.
Hub pages allow you to organize posts around a given area of interest. Let’s say your client is a contractor specializing in residential renovations. They might have one hub page centered around kitchen renovations, one about budgeting and financing projects, and one around outdoor projects.
The kitchen renovation hub page would contain articles like “Are Custom Cabinets Worth It?,” “Selecting the Countertop That Fits Best With Your Lifestyle,” and “How Long Should a Kitchen Renovation Really Take?” These hub pages allow you to put those blog posts to good use, create a centralized place for all of your client’s relevant information, and demonstrate their expertise in that given area.
Segmenting content is the key to providing visitors with a more customized experience when they visit your client’s website. Customers are looking to work with businesses who demonstrate a high level of expertise and understanding of their needs from their very first interaction, and customization is the key to making a great first impression. Creating appropriate segments and meeting them where they are with the most relevant information will help your clients stand out and win business.
If you liked this post, check out our Small Business Guide to Website Design.