All Resources
Website Personalization

Everything You Need to Know About Using AI to Power Website Personalization

As a marketer, you have many different programs and technologies to manage on your website. And, oftentimes, managing all of these things takes away from your time to brainstorm and strategize so that you can better understand and connect with your target audience through personalization. While this is a reality for many marketing teams, it doesn’t have to be.

What if you could dedicate more of your time to coming up with creative ideas that resonate with your target audience and let automation take care of tedious, time-consuming tasks? Artificial intelligence can do just that, all while helping you accelerate personalization results and drive conversions and revenue. In this blog post, we’ll discuss how AI in website personalization works and how it can benefit your team.

What AI Is and How It Works

Artificial intelligence is generally defined as machines simulating human intelligence. Further, machine learning is a type of artificial intelligence that helps software applications more accurately predict outcomes. AI works by taking data, training an algorithm, creating a prediction, and then running it in the real world. This process runs in a continuous loop, constantly taking in and learning from new data.

What AI is and how it works

We see many examples of AI in our everyday lives, whether we realize it or not. A few examples include social media algorithms, predictive searches, and recommendations on streaming services. There are many different ways we use AI in marketing as well, ranging from email automation to real-time personalization. It may seem a little mysterious, or like it’s trying to take over your job (don’t worry, it’s not and never could!). In reality, AI empowers marketers by reducing manual work and automating processes. Most importantly, it enables marketers to spend more time doing what they do best – understanding their target audience, developing strategy and hypotheses, and generating creative ideas to appeal to their audience to incorporate into their campaigns and programs.

Debunking 3 Common Myths About AI in Website Personalization

Now that you have a better understanding of what AI is, let’s take a look at how it works in your website personalization program. But first, let’s separate fact from fiction and debunk some common myths about AI…we wouldn’t want any of these assumptions to get in your way of getting the most out of your website personalization efforts!

Myth #1: AI is too complicated to use in your personalization program

People tend to think of artificial intelligence as a complicated concept that will be too difficult to implement and use in their everyday work. However, running an AI-based personalization program actually makes your job easier, as the solution automates much of your work and can do things at superhuman scale. Rather than running one personalization campaign at a time and waiting weeks or months for results, AI can run countless variations at once and give you results in days or even hours. Plus, these solutions are no more difficult to implement than other website personalization solutions – you typically just need to add a line of code to your website and you’re off to the races.

Myth #2: AI can completely run your personalization program

While AI is a great way to manage your personalization program, it still needs your creative ideas (and rules, depending on which approach you choose – more on this later) in order to deliver personalized experiences to your visitors. AI helps marketers take a step forward in superhuman ways, but it never replaces the profound need for human understanding and empathy and the strategies and ideas that are generated from grasping those things as only a human could. The combination of AI technology and human creativity is what makes a website personalization strategy the most effective, leading to better customer experiences and higher conversions as a result.

Myth #3: Everyone talking AI is telling you the truth

Many companies use AI as a buzzword but often overpromise on what their solution can do in terms of machine learning. Some companies promising AI actually don’t use any at all, while others may provide a data scientist as a service to build some kind of AI model manually. The latter option does create real AI but, since the model is built manually, it is likely not regularly updated or optimized. This doesn’t mean AI is untrustworthy, but it’s important to carefully vet any AI-based solution before making a purchase decision. You want to make sure that what you’re buying is what you actually think you’re buying.

Questions you should ask when assessing supposed AI-based solutions include:

  • What does the AI/machine learning system focus on? – Is it optimizing directly for the key metrics you’ve indicated? Or, is it simply providing data or automation that fill a specific task in your overall process?
  • How does the AI/machine learning system learn? – Does it require a lot of data upfront before the system can start making predictions and take action? Or does it start learning in real time as visitors engage with your site?
  • Is the system transparent? – Can you see the personalization decisions it’s making, and can you access the data–your data–reflecting these decisions?

Benefits of AI in Website Personalization

Now that you know what AI is and, more importantly, what it’s not, let’s dive into the benefits of using artificial intelligence in your personalization program.

  • Reduced campaign management: With traditional A/B testing, the majority of your time is spent checking your campaigns to see whether they’ve reached statistical significance. But with an AI-based personalization program, all of that tedious campaign management is done for you. This means your team has more time to analyze your results and get to know your customers, and then come up with creative ideas to better engage them with future tests.  
  • Accelerated learning: Since AI allows you to do things at superhuman scale, you can dramatically accelerate your learnings from your website personalization program. By running more campaigns at once, you’ll gain a greater understanding of how different messages resonate with your audience. AI-based personalization also yields faster results than traditional solutions, with some tests declaring winners in hours or days.
  • Drive more conversions and revenue: With an AI-based personalization program, you’re able to deliver a more tailored experience to each unique website visitor. By providing your website visitor with messaging and content that makes sense for them, you’ll improve the customer experience and therefore drive more conversions and revenue.

2 Common Approaches to Personalization AI

The benefits of AI in website personalization are clear, and there are multiple approaches you can choose from to personalize your website and drive more conversions. Here are two common approaches you might consider.

  • Rules-based personalization is where you create “if this, then that” statements for various segments of your target audience. With rules-based personalization, there are often three main components: defining the audience the rules apply to, creating the experience this specific audience will see on your site, and determining which page(s) the rules will apply to. While AI does help to automate your personalization program with this approach, there is quite a bit of manual work involved in coming up with personalization ideas and then creating your rules.
  • Predictive personalization goes a step beyond rules-based personalization by using machine learning to predict what will be the best experience to show each website visitor. Rather than having to manually set up rules, machine learning automatically predicts which is the best combination of your personalization ideas to show each visitor to give them the most personalized experience for them. Plus, the machine is constantly learning as it runs your campaigns, and can even update the experience as a visitor’s behavior changes.

With AI-based predictive personalization, your team can vastly improve the customer experience and drive better results for your organization. Just see how other marketers have succeeded using a predictive personalization tool:

Impact of AI-based predictive personalization

Using AI to Personalize Your Website

Incorporating AI into your website personalization program is perhaps the best way to fast-track your success, especially if you choose a predictive personalization solution. With Intellimize’s Continuous Conversion™ solution, machine learning automatically serves the most personalized experience to each unique website visitor to drive more conversions and revenue. Intellimize amplifies your marketing team’s good personalization ideas by showing them more often, and protects you from your not-so-good ideas by starving them of traffic. As visitor behavior changes, Intellimize automatically adapts to fit these changes and deliver the best personalized experience.

B2B SaaS leaders like Drift have realized 322% more qualified sales leads by personalizing their site for each visitor using Intellimize. Request your demo today to see how Intellimize can help you improve the customer experience and drive more conversions too.

How AI Optimization Drives Conversions for Marketers - eBook