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Company spotlight: Certona

What does your company do?

Certona empowers retailers and brands to create one-to-one personalised shopping experiences across all digital retail channels. Certona pioneered the use of patented machine learning and predictive algorithms, empowering retailers to deliver real-time profiling of individual shoppers across the omnichannel landscape. Within three or four clicks on a site, our personalisation platform can accurately predict shopper intent and the next best action for the shopper to deliver the most relevant, in-the-moment retail experience. As a result, our clients experience a significant increase in customer engagement, conversions and sales.

We focus on putting the individual shopper at the centre of the universe and enabling them to browse and shop anytime, anywhere

Meyar Sheik, CEO & Co-founder, Certona

What is your USP?

What makes Certona different is our sole focus on real-time profiling of the individual shopper and their unique traits. Most providers only focus on segmentation and wisdom of the crowd but with Certona, retailers can ingest shopper behaviour and combine it with previous history and contextual data (location, time of day, weather, referral source), then serve up the most relevant experience within seconds to a segment of one. Most other providers will ingest that data in ‘real time’ but may take hours to model it and render the experience. Certona also offers our clients a support partnership model that is unmatched in the market.

How would you describe your company’s vision?

We focus on putting the individual shopper at the centre of the universe and enabling them to browse and shop any time, anywhere, with each shopper having a highly personalised and contextually relevant experience.

What are you doing currently in the ecommerce/multichannel market?

Certona currently offers a robust suite of omnichannel personalisation solutions that empower retailers to transform the way they engage with their customers. Certona improves the shopping experience with data-driven solutions for search and discovery, content engagement, product recommendations, mobile, in-store, email and contact centre personalisation. In 2015, Certona drove 11% of our clients’ revenue. By creating a unified, hyper-personalised omnichannel experience, we enable retailers to create the ultimate individualised shopping experience.

What new functionality does your latest version give to retailers?

Our latest release provides cutting-edge product discovery solutions, such as advanced search capabilities with predictive search term suggestions and visual product recommendations. Certona also offers clients a Product Finder and Gift Finder solution that presents a series of lifestyle questions, resulting in the best product recommendations based on their explicit interests and preferences. This tool not only allows the consumer to efficiently find products that best meet their interest, but it also allows retailers to build robust shopper profiles to personalise the overall customer experience for that specific shopper.

What is your market positioning and what gap are you filling among the UK competition? How does this compare to your competitors?

We’re all about empowering merchandisers and optimising online merchandising. What’s unique about Certona versus our competition is the blending of the art and science approaches to digital shopping experiences. The art of merchandising relays on professional insights and intuition but by marrying that with the science of data-driven insights, predictive modelling and anticipatory targeting, retailers can create relevant, personalised consumer experiences while meeting business initiatives. Another differentiator is our high-touch partnership and client support model. We match every client with a dedicated account manager who actively analyses performance, suggest testing and optimisation strategies as well as building a roadmap to omnichannel personalisation success. Our team has expertise in all verticals and is passionate about helping clients to maximise ROI. We’re not a set-and-forget black box solution. Exceptional client support is part of the reason Certona has a 95% client renewal rate and why we have been chosen as a Top Personalisation Provider by the IR500 Guide the last eight years.

Who are your customers?

Certona’s powers individualised customer experiences for over 500 top ecommerce websites across 47 countries. Our platform currently delivers 40bn personalised experiences per month and generated $4bn in client revenue in 2015. A few of our valued customers include Pier 1, GameStop, Uniqlo, Petco, Forever 21 and Puma.

What do you see as challenges in the coming year and what are you doing to meet those challenges?

The digital commerce industry is experiencing rapid growth due to ever-increasing consumer demand. One thing Certona can help retailers do better is understand consumer behaviour, preferences and interests in a more holistic, unified fashion. By connecting consumer behaviour data across channels, retailers can take advantage of the mobile shopping momentum to bridge convenience through click to collect. By leveraging physical stores, retailers can deliver convenience and easier fulfilment to shoppers.

Customer case study – Farfetch

With a large catalogue that represents over 100,000 products, global fashion community Farfetch wanted to expose more product variety and provide a better shopping experience by delivering personalised recommendations on

Automated, predictive personalisation was key to this endeavour, while also allowing Farfetch the flexibility to address merchandising goals specific to their business model.

These included exposing the available product variety via and protecting boutique adjacencies to ensure that recommendations made sense from both a brand and boutique perspective, as well as the customer perspective.

Certona worked closely with Farfetch to implement personalisation that would support the complexities of their unique business model. Through a series of A/B tests and best practices guidance, an optimal strategy was created for balancing automated personalised recommendations leveraging Certona’s predictive behavioural technology with business rules that aligned with Farfetch merchandising goals.

Following Certona’s best practice guidance and optimisation techniques, personalisation performance has significantly improved in terms of shoppers interacting and purchasing recommended products.

Farfetch saw:

  • 125% increase in conversion
  • 10% increase in average order value
  • 28% increase in items per order

Farfetch continues to work with Certona on further optimising the experience throughout the site as well personalising email campaigns.

Certona – IN BRIEF

Delivering personalised customer experiences for the world’s top brands, Certona is the omnichannel personalisation leader. Trusted by more than 500 top ecommerce websites in more than 70 countries, Certona’s personalisation platform increases engagement and conversions.

The company’s Personalised Experience Management platform, powered by the Certona Predictive Cloud, increases engagement and conversions by leveraging one-to-one behavioural profiling, Big Data insights, and real-time predictive analytics to present individualised content, promotional offers and product recommendations across all customer touchpoints.

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