Industry Voices: Certona
MEYAR SHEIK, CEO, CERTONA
Certona is a world leader in personalisation and revenue optimisation for online and multichannel retailers.
Our vision is to intelligently and automatically personalise every individual visitor experience across all channels and touch points including website, email, mobile, in-store, call centre and social networks. Our Resonance® SaaS platform is trusted by over 400 top ecommerce sites, generating over £15bn of online sales in 2011. Resonance provides personalised customer experiences to millions of shoppers worldwide every day. For web sites, email campaigns and remarketing, mobile devices and contact centres, Resonance improves conversions, increases sales, automates merchandising and enhances the customer experience.
What were you doing before Certona – and when did it launch?
For more than a decade I’ve been working in web analytics, personalisation and real-time content optimisation. Prior to co-founding Certona, I was the CMO and COO of the web analytics business WebSideStory, which is now part of Omniture/Adobe. Certona was established in 2004. Since then the team has been focused on applying Certona's innovative, realtime behavioural targeting, optimisation and adaptive personalisation technologies to generate more revenue and higher conversion rates for online retailers and other multichannel businesses.
What is real-time personalisation exactly?
Real-time personalisation collects and uses behavioural data to help online shoppers find what they are looking for faster and more enjoyably. Our Resonance platform is able to understand visitors as fast as they are interacting on a site and can model and tailor the experience to each individual consumer.
What’s the difference between web analytics and predictive analytics?
Web analytics is widely used and looks at what has happened in interactions online, in aggregate, in order to make incremental improvements and create better targeted marketing. Predictive analytics does something similar but in real-time it predicts what will happen and be effective for a particular visitor – and serves it up.
Don’t lots of vendors offer real-time personalisation?
Well, many vendors are offering limited point solutions to certain problems, but what Certona does is very complex and powerful. Our platform can profile a first-time visitor, learn from what that visitor does, and instantly start delivering a personalised omnichannel experience. When visitors return, that learning continues – behaviourally, transactionally and through any other information consumers opt to provide.
Where is personalisation heading?
It is getting more subtle and sophisticated all the time. For some consumers, this will mean being told via a tablet or smartphone about special offers at a valued nearby store in real time. Or it could mean being served up one kind of experience via a tablet because you are at the beach in hot weather – and another when you are back in the city on a rainy workday.
What do customers value most about Certona?
For one thing,the efficacy of our platform and how quantifiable it is in terms of measurable results. Secondly, many value Certona’s long-term approach to any partnership – because we really do want to be partners.
And who are those customers?
We are fortunate to power personalisation for some of the biggest names globally, including household UK names like Staples , Home Depot, Petco, PUMA , New Balance, eBags . Many of the biggest challenges our clients face are challenges we can address for them by driving product development in the right direction.
Is Certona’s platform, Resonance, easy to use?
It is delivered through a software-as-aservice platform, which helps to keep any complexities for users to a minimum but power users can also have plenty of control to achieve their business goals – and it’s a scalable and quantifiable. Our strapline is: personalise anytime anywhere. That’s just how we see the world.