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experimentation and personalization drive digital growth
6 October 2020

How experimentation and personalization drive digital growth

Reading time
8 minutes
Author
Anne Claire Bellec Kameleoon
Anne-Claire Bellec
Anne-Claire Bellec is Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) at Kameleoon, in charge of the company's marketing strategy. She regularly shares her thoughts on digital on the blog, particularly focussing on the subjects of optimization and personalization and how they can increase online conversions.

In an increasingly digital-first world, delivering an optimized experience is central to engaging, converting and retaining online customers. Experimentation and personalization are key to providing the experience that each and every visitor to your website is looking for - putting it at the heart of digital growth.

1 Sharing insights to inform your digital growth marketing strategy

To help brands successfully embrace personalization and experimentation and to increase conversions and revenues, Kameleoon and leading experimentation agency Widerfunnel teamed up to hold a comprehensive web conference, featuring guest contributions from Forrester, golf brand TaylorMade and Chief Martec.

The webinar aimed to share thought leadership and practical insights to ensure brands thrive in the digital world, focusing on three key areas - delivering ROI, scaling your program and advice on achieving digital growth.

2 Delivering ROI from your experimentation and personalization program

The event kicked-off with an in-depth presentation from Edoardo Zavarella of Forrester, looking at how to quantify and measure the ROI from your experimentation and personalization program.

Using Forrester Consulting’s Total Economic Impact™ (TEI™) methodology, the presentation highlighted how experimentation and personalization deliver a range of quantifiable benefits to brands. Based on a commissioned TEI of Kameleoon, which included in-depth customer interviews and analysis, Forrester Consulting concluded that adopting Kameleoon increased e-commerce sales and revenues, improved engagement and made it easy to scale web personalization. This added up to a ROI of 291%, payback within 3 months and $5.8m of benefits at present value over three years.

This was delivered through:

Increased conversion rates

Clients saw a 15% improvement in conversion rates as they were able to optimize the web visitor experience and personalize interactions toward improving conversion. This led to $5.1m of benefits over three years for the composite organization analyzed by Forrester in the study.

Higher cross-selling rates

Use of Kameleoon enables clients to segment and target their web visitors by their affinity to certain product categories and to personalize the experience around their needs. This drove a 30% increase in cross-sell transactions, with Kameleoon’s behavioral and contextual-based analysis enabling brands to increase the number of successful cross-selling campaigns.

Reduced campaign set-up effort

Deploying Kameleoon significantly reduces the time needed to set up campaigns and promotions and more generally to design web experiences and interactions around the visitor. This led to a 49% reduction in campaign setup effort while increasing marketers’ autonomy through intuitive and user-friendly interfaces.

Improved customer experience

By enabling the delivery of tailored content and messages, Kameleoon allows organizations to provide a relevant, personalized experience, a vital but unquantifiable benefit.

The study definitely showed an increase in CX as well. Improved CX from your website is one of the main assets a company has - happy users of your website become advocates and increase brand value.
Edoardo Zavarella
Edoardo Zavarella
Forrester Consulting, speaking during the webinar

Increased employee experience (EX)

Users feel more empowered as they can make simple changes and adjustments in matters of minutes, hence feeling more reactive and resilient — and more empowered in their work.

TEI of Kameleoon

Source The Total Economic Impact of Kameleoon, commissioned from Forrester Consulting

Enterprises can simply apply the TEI methodology to their own organization to better understand the ROI they can gain from personalization. There’s more on how to achieve this on our ROI microsite.

The solution provides ROI of 291%. A strong, compelling business case that generates $4.3m NPV for the company and payback of 3 months.
Edoardo Zavarella
Edoardo Zavarella
Forrester Consulting, speaking during the webinar

3 Scaling experimentation to accelerate growth

Experimentation expert Chris Goward of Widerfunnel shared his experience and insights on how to develop your program in a manageable, scalable manner. There are five key factors involved in running a successful experimentation program:

  • Process - how people coordinate their efforts
  • Accountability - how the program is measured
  • Culture - the shared beliefs that support experimentation
  • Expertise - the right skills and experience
  • Technology - the right tools to scale

For your program to scale, it needs to balance all of these five PACET® components - otherwise it will cause bottlenecks that hold back growth.

Delivering the benefits outlined in the Total Economic Impact study is really achievable if you have the right strategy in place. Having a customer-obsessed mindset is one of the most important parts of building a high-performance business.
Chris Goward, Widerfunnel
Chris Goward
CEO, WiderFunnel

Scaling experimentation to drive growth

In this example the limiting factor is Expertise which prevents scaling. After overcoming this, the next constraint is Process. Until you can get all five factors to balance, you won’t be able to unleash the full power of experimentation. Therefore start by analyzing your maturity on the PACET components and identifying where you need to improve first.

Look at what the constraints are, identify them and compare your environment with successful high-growth organizations. Then see what you can do to overcome them (such as training) - follow a structured process and make sure you talk to leaders
Chris Goward, Widerfunnel
Chris Goward
CEO, Widerfunnel

A mixed method approach to experimentation

Achieving success isn’t about focusing on a single research methodology - what you need is to take a mixed approach that brings together behavioral (what people do), attitudinal (what people say), quantitative and qualitative methods to triangulate data and gain deeper insights.

A mixed method approach to experimentation

Evaluating your program

Make sure you pick the right metrics for your business, choosing between productivity metrics (such as number of experiments launched over a specific time period), quality metrics (for example, the percentage of experiments that produced actionable results), and impact metrics (how business KPIs have been affected). Proper evaluation is critical to scaling your program, highlighting success and therefore unlocking future experimentation expansion.

4 How to achieve digital growth

To help brands turn their digital strategies into action, we assembled an expert panel to answer questions from participants:

  • Chris Goward, Widerfunnel
  • Edoardo Zavarella, Forrester
  • Brandon Maskell, TaylorMade Golf
  • Jean-René Boidron, Kameleoon
  • Scott Brinker, Chief Martec

Here’s a flavor of the topics that they covered………

What processes did you go through to start and scale your experimentation?

Brandon from TaylorMade emphasised the importance of creating a framework and getting buy-in from senior management, which he has worked on since he joined the company 18 months ago.

We initially focused on how to establish the process of experimentation internally. We started by creating a playbook - a document that outlined everything we did from a testing perspective, from research practices to tools, prioritization hypotheses, and looking at testing process and analysis.
Brandon Maskell
Brandon Maskell
Digital Optimization Manager, TaylorMade Golf

He also explained that it is vital to establish risk tolerance for experimentation - everyone across the organization needs to understand and agree what you are going to classify as a winner.

Following this the next thing he looked at was making a business case for additional budget to scale up the program. As part of this TaylorMade brought in external resources from Widerfunnel to educate internal teams.

Through testing we found that features that had previously been added to the site were actually costing us money - this shows the importance of having a testing process for every change you make to your site.
Brandon Maskell
Brandon Maskell
Digital Optimization Manager, TaylorMade Golf

How can you gain executive level support?

Focussing on business metrics and impact is crucial, and take a staged approach, advised Jean-René Boidron.

When you improve conversions that leads to management support. Most customers start with A/B testing as they want to improve the experience for all users, leading to higher conversions. A second step that drives additional uplift is then to add personalization through delivering relevant and tailored content and messages to certain segments. Focusing on conversion rates drives the whole company.
Jean-René Boidron
Jean-René Boidron
CEO, Kameleoon

Edoardo Zavarella added to this, emphasizing the importance of using tools such as the TEI to model the potential benefits for your business.

Are there quick wins you can use to justify investment?

The panel shared a variety of approaches to this key issue.

I’ve always looked down the funnel to find these - as it is a lot easier to reconcile revenue improvements further down the funnel. So we looked at the cart page, initially removing distractions. We stripped away everything unnecessary for a customer to move forward and focused experiments on the checkout box, which delivered real results.

Another example is using scarcity, with a countdown timer for people buying custom clubs made from multiple components. The timer message let people know that they needed to order soon, otherwise we couldn’t guarantee that all the components would be available. This saw great results and was quick to deploy.
Brandon Maskell
Brandon Maskell
Digital Optimization Manager, TaylorMade Golf
Think in terms of a framework that will answer your question in a robust way - so put in place a framework for prioritization. Look at the impact an experiment can have on the business and rank your ideas accordingly - you can then start with those that have the biggest impact.
Chris Goward, Widerfunnel
Chris Goward
CEO, Widerfunnel

How do you educate senior leadership and take a more strategic approach to testing?

Take the time to help them understand the process - and explain the benefits in terms that fit with their business metrics.

In my case education is key. Senior execs are super-busy and what I’ve found is that while they may know the term optimization, they don’t necessarily know the nuances or understand the statistical theories behind testing. Take the time to walk them through the process from start to finish and just reassure them that you are covering everything. Once they see there is a reason behind how you do things they are a lot more willing to support the process.
Brandon Maskell
Brandon Maskell
Digital Optimization Manager, TaylorMade Golf

What is a hesitant visitor?

Uniquely Kameleoon provides a propensity score for every visitor, showing how likely they are to convert. This enables brands to focus their efforts:

A visitor with a high propensity score will buy anyway so you don’t need to take action, while likewise someone with a low score is not worth chasing. By identifying hesitant users and targeting them, such as with discounts, many brands are increasing their conversion rates.
 Jean-René Boidron
Jean-René Boidron
CEO, Kameleoon

How do you move from an increase in conversion rates during a specific test to measure the annualized impact without figures looking inflated? How do you measure cumulative increases?

Chris Goward pointed out the importance of applying statistical rigor and bearing in mind that multiple experiments incrementally add to results.

You need to focus on the actual ROI of the program. Calculate the conversion rate by looking at its importance to the customer journey - what proportion of visitors does that experience touch? Then scale back the impact of the test to that proportion. We’ve run A/A/B tests that show multiple winning experiments do deliver cumulative results - they provide additional impact. The benefits don’t degrade as you do more experiments.
Chris Goward, Widerfunnel
Chris Goward
CEO, Widerfunnel

Final thoughts on experimentation and personalization ROI

We are getting into an age where data is more and more relevant and being able to prove your claims is more and more important. So education within companies in this area is vital
Edoardo Zavarella
Edoardo Zavarella
Forrester Consulting, speaking during the webinar
Think about what I call the Earn vs. Learn dilemma. As a practitioner you understand that you will have a lot of tests that don’t win but benefit you through insights that can be applied to future experiments. However, when it comes to executives they are focused on running a business and making money, so bear that in mind when reporting on your experiments.
Brandon Maskell
Brandon Maskell
Digital Optimization Manager, TaylorMade Golf
You need quick wins to convince management but you must take a long-term perspective to get real benefits. You will only get real ROI from having a long-term perspective and vision.
Jean-René Boidron
Jean-René Boidron
CEO, Kameleoon
If you test the wrong way and aren’t confident in your results you can be optimizing in the wrong direction very fast. The only thing worse than a losing test is a winning test that’s actually incorrect. So make sure your instrumentation is correct, that you are testing the right metrics that are impactful for the business and that your tool is not actually harming your results. For example flicker can slow down performance and hurt results. It’s therefore really important to look at the backend of a tool and kick the tyres of it to really understand what it does.
Chris Goward
Chris Goward
CEO, Widerfunnel

Thanks again to our panellists. Learn more by watching the full 1 hour web conference - simply click here to access the recording.

 


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Anne Claire Bellec Kameleoon
Anne-Claire Bellec
Anne-Claire Bellec is Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) at Kameleoon, in charge of the company's marketing strategy. She regularly shares her thoughts on digital on the blog, particularly focussing on the subjects of optimization and personalization and how they can increase online conversions.
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