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PREDICTIONS 2020 Two views on personalisation in the coming decade

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We’re running a series of predictions around how ecommerce and multichannel retail might develop in the year ahead. Today we have two contrasting views on the use of personalisation

Personalisation will evolve to be more individualised and real-time

While personalisation has been segment-driven in the past, in 2020 the technology will be used to create more contextually relevant experiences for the shopper, from the offer to the products and content, even how the content is displayed. Machine learning will play a bigger role in personalisation initiatives next year as it allows brands to analyse and action large amounts of data in milliseconds, regardless of whether it’s coming from a laptop or smartphone. 

“The more contextually relevant experiences brands deliver the more they will command the attention of the shopper, increasing the LVT and share of wallet from that customer. In this context, personalization will make the CMS, and data and ecommerce platforms more effective. Customer-centricity will be fully realised because machine learning models will actually understand each customer individually, giving retailers the ability to send relevant emails to that customer if they haven’t visited their website recently or have outstanding wishlist items, for example.”

Graham Cooke, chief executive and co-founder of marketing personalisation technology provider Qubit

Eight in 10 marketers will abandon personalisation by 2025

By 2025, 80% of marketers who have invested in personalisation will abandon their efforts due to lack of return on investment, the perils of customer data management or both, according to analysts at Gartner. Its research suggests that 27% of marketers believe data is the key obstacle to personalisation — revealing their weaknesses in data collection, integration and protection.

“Personal data has long been the fuel that fires marketing at every stage of the customer journey, and the drive to find new forms of fuel and devise new ways to leverage them seems to be boundless. However, this quest has failed to meet marketers’ ambitions and, in some cases, has backfired, as consumers both directly and indirectly reject brands’ overtures.

“Consumers have developed an increasingly jaundiced eye toward marketers’ efforts to embrace them. Their increasingly cluttered email inboxes and mobile phone notification centres may lead them to ignore even the most carefully personalised and contextualised message. Marketers must really adopt the basics when it comes to test and learn before investing in personalisation technology and new tactics.”

Charles Golvin is senior director analyst in the Gartner for Marketers practice

Image: Fotolia

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