While attending Sitecore Symposium 2017 in Las Vegas last month, I attended several presentations on personalization as part of the digital experience. Having led our internal planning and construction of Quisitive’s Sitecore Marketing Enablement Services, we knew that many of our clients needed help with enabling the foundational marketing features and functionality in Sitecore to take advantage of their investment as more than just a content management system.  What we have been noticing, but became obvious at Sitecore Symposium was that the majority of companies utilizing Sitecore are in the same position, they want to use Sitecore as a full experience platform for immediate optimization and eventual content personalization but don’t know where and how to start.  At Quisitive we have a solution to this problem…marketing strategists and technologists who collaborate with our clients to teach them how to enable the building blocks in Sitecore to increase both visitor understanding and engagement, and identify and quantify the digital interactions that drive real value.  In this way, our clients can realize immediate benefits while taking a step closer to the ultimate goal of personalization.

Enabling visitor understanding starts with collecting individualized data and using the Experience Profile functionality in Sitecore to capture visitor interactions is the best way to build customer intelligence.  Experience Profile collects explicit and implicit information as well as online behaviors for both unknown and known visitors of your digital properties so that you can mine this data for key insights that will inform content optimization and subsequent personalization of that content. Visitors can also be pattern matched based on their online behavior to defined digital profiles for further identification and targeting opportunities.

Visitor engagement is also important and starts with enabling the campaign functionality in Sitecore to track both attribution and subsequent visitor pathing through your website after arriving from various channels that support your digital marketing campaigns.  By capturing this information, you can better understand the contextual experience for different visitors so that you can present each visitor with content that matches their expectations and continues to drive engagement with your brand.  Because content is so important to hold visitor interest and attention, enabling the correct content profiling and tagging configurations in Sitecore will allow you to score consumed content and identify candidates for testing.  Through A/B or multivariate testing in Sitecore you can in turn optimize the experience and increase engagement for your visitors.

Finally, Sitecore is extremely powerful in identifying the digital interactions that drive real value rather than just simple visitation metrics.  This is accomplished through identifying the online events and goals that lead to conversions which are important for your business, and then attaching a numeric scale to those interactions so that Sitecore can calculate relative importance for each and every visitor.  With this information, you can optimize the experience for visitors that are generating value through their interactions and change the experience for visitors who are not converting on your site.

Enabling visitor understanding, visitor engagement, and valuable digital interactions is the key to leveraging the full value of your Sitecore investment. Through this approach, Sitecore is transformed from an enterprise content management system to a robust digital experience platform that can help you accomplish your marketing objectives through optimization of the online customer experience.

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