Balancing personalized experiences and consumer privacy has become incredibly complex.. As a result, retailers are constantly looking for ways to engage, retarget, and personalize consumer experiences while complying with the ever-growing list of privacy laws.
One study showed that consumers were more open to explore beyond their usual products during the pandemic, with up to 75% trying new categories and 40% switching to new brands.
To help you navigate this tricky situation, we've put together some tips on how to tread the fine line between providing the personalized experience consumers crave and safeguarding your customers’ privacy. This balance is a delicate one that retailers must learn to strike if they hope to remain competitive.
The difference between personalization and privacy
E-commerce personalization should be all about delivering something relevant to your users. Try to also make it something they will relate to, as this will help build a strong connection with them. In turn, it will also start the process of forming a successful relationship. In the modern digital age, personalized and relevant content is essential if you want to keep your consumers engaged and interested in your products and services. However, this approach doesn't mean you should resort to over-tracking and collecting your users' personally identifiable information.
Instead, focus on understanding user intent to create relevant content that meets their needs. This approach allows you to deliver an exceptional experience without compromising your customers' privacy. As a bonus, you'll ensure they follow through with their purchase after abandoning their shopping cart.
Collect relevant data only
While data is essential for personalization, only collect the data you need to create a personalized experience. Businesses should avoid accumulating too much data or data that customers are not willing to share, as this can damage trust and discourage future engagement.
To strike the right balance, businesses should focus on collecting the most relevant data to the customer journey. This data might include basic demographic information, purchase history, and browsing behavior. By collecting only the necessary data, you can create personalized experiences that feel relevant and valuable to customers without compromising their privacy.
Personalize the experience for brand-new customers
As online traffic grows, most visitors remain anonymous, limiting the potential for personalization in the retail industry. However, there are ways to address this challenge. Consumers will often move on to the next best solution if they don't receive a personalized experience. Therefore, it is important to strategically navigate these changing times and not lose the opportunity to serve your customers.
Personalization is about providing a relatable experience to the user on a session-by-session basis. Losing that first opportunity to engage your visitors is not an option. Try using quizzes or surveys for first-time visitors. By asking questions and gathering consent-based reference data, you can gain valuable insights into your customers' wants and needs without invading their privacy.
By capturing the user and understanding their intent through consent-based reference data, you can obtain valuable customer data while respecting their privacy. When creating these strategies, consider that many new customers use their mobile devices to access your content, so you should account for a mobile app marketing option.
Machine-Learning and AI tech can help understand consumer behavior
To provide an exceptional customer experience, it is crucial to gather customer data based on their consent. Focus on omnichannel approaches that track visitors and consumers without compromising their privacy. There are conversational AI tools that can lessen the work of your team in this regard.
Personalization means delivering what customers want at the right moment; this strategy doesn't necessarily involve collecting and tracking their personal information. It's essential to remember that Gen Z consumers are particularly cautious about sharing their identities.
Aim to collect customer first-party data, ensuring it is based on their consent, then use it to personalize the customer experience. Find influencers people trust to communicate your message, then target your chosen audience with relevant content, offers, or products. It's essential to recognize that different customers have different preferences; some might respond to discounts, while others might appreciate informative content or product knowledge. A lightweight solution that helps to convert customers within the session is the way to go.
Communicate data policies clearly
To continue building trust with customers while encouraging them to share their data, you must communicate your data and privacy policies clearly and transparently. This transparency includes clearly explaining how you will use their data, who you’ll share it with, and how you will protect it.
To achieve this clarity, you should provide options for customers to opt out of data sharing and have their data deleted. We also recommend displaying security badges on your website to show customers that you protect their data and privacy. By breaking down their privacy policies in an easy-to-understand manner using FAQ-style language and infographics, you can help customers feel more comfortable sharing their data.
Branding and building trust
Everything you do is a branding exercise, even down to the Amazon Custom Shortlinks you use. Educate your team on the importance of privacy in creating a positive customer experience across every business element.
With the constantly evolving landscape of data privacy laws, it's important to stay informed and up to date on the regulations in the countries and territories where you do business. This approach ensures you are always compliant and avoid legal issues that could damage your reputation.
Supercharge your E-commerce advertising
Happy customers equal good business, and toggling the line between personalization and privacy with the tips above is one of the many ways you can ensure it. We also recommend harnessing the power of MarinOne Insights to identify opportunities in your digital marketing programs automatically. Work smarter, not harder, with our expert help.