Should I personalise my small business website using ‘Dynamic Text Replacement’?


A small business owner’s guide to dynamic text replacement

86% of UK brands are personalising the way they communicate with their customers to some extent.

Personalising the experience which each of your customers has when they visit your website could make them more likely to stay on your website and make a purchasing decision by making your brand and products seem more tailored to their individual needs.

Even those customers who officially fall in to your target market are all subtly different, and in a world which is becoming more and more personalised, surely generic marketing messages are becoming less effective? Perhaps yes, but there is a risk here, 61% of consumers are put off by communications which use incorrect personal details.

So, how can you personalise your website? And is this even the right thing to do for your customers? This blog covers the how… allow me to introduce dynamic text replacement!

What is dynamic text replacement?

Dynamic text replacement is when you set up selected words on your website to change according to a customised URL or from custom variables associated with the IP address of the customer. We’ve included some examples to illustrate each case below.

Dynamic text replacement using customised URLs

You can set up text on a page to change if it is accessed by a specific URL. For a clothing website which has sent out an email newsletter highlighting shirts, customers accessing the web page from the link in the newsletter would see:

“Browse our range of shirts

Whereas normal customers would see:

“Browse our range of clothing

This continues the conversation you’ve started with the email newsletter and plays in to the reason your customer clicked on the email. It also means that other customers visiting your website are not confused by your over-emphasis on shirts.

Dynamic text replacement using custom variables:

Dynamic text replacement can also be set up to pick up information from a customer’s IP address. This can be really impactful. Here are some examples:

Location – each IP address has an associated: Country, region, city and local temperature (in Celsius or Fahrenheit):

It’s -1 today in Gloucester, check out our range of cold weather clothing

Browsing information – each IP address also discloses the device, operating system and browser of the person searching. This is especially useful if you have an app:

Browsing from mobile today? Download our app. (link to app store).

Visit frequency – the number of times the same IP address has viewed the same page and the number of days since they first viewed the content are highly valuable pieces of information. Customers are most comfortable with personalisation when it’s being used to give them a discount on something they would like to purchase. Offering a customer who has looked at your page multiple times a discount code or free delivery is a great way to secure a sale.

“Can’t decide if it’s right for you? Get free delivery and returns today with code FREEDEL25″

Volume of visitors – sharing the number of visitors on a page at any one time is a valuable prompt to give your customers a slight sense of urgency. Highlighting the fact that they are not the only person interested in buying a certain product could encourage them to buy now rather than later:

There are 7 people looking at this product right now!

If you are thinking; this all sounds great, but does it really work and how do I know that using this personal information wouldn’t put my customers off? Don’t worry, next month we will be writing a blog about split (also known as AB) testing which is a way of testing whether marketing customisation like this works or not. In the meantime, keep an eye out for dynamic text when you visit websites and start thinking about which options might work for your business.