There was a time that personalization was more of an aspiration than a reality. Most retailers didn’t have the data, business processes or tools to deliver a personalized shopping experience. Personalization was largely site-based and, in its simplest form, leveraged customer demographics and purchase history to inform the next purchase.
In earlier stages, personalization was often mistaken for different advances in customization or segmentation. As personalization matures, so have its applications across the marketing ecosystem. Advanced-level data sources, including third-party data, have enhanced retailers’ ability to deliver personalized messages. Tools and algorithms have also evolved to enable a more progressed form of personalization across search, display, email, site, mobile and paid social.
Yet, for all these advances, the human element is still missing.