Personalization Web Design

Personalization in Web Design: How to Make Content More Appealing 

In the past, websites were rather static concepts - characterised by one-way communication with your users. With the help of personalisation, you create relevant content that enriches the individual customer journey of your target group. The goal: from a rigid approach to more dialogue and better experiences.

According to Hubspot, 74 percent of users react frustrated when they are shown irrelevant content. This refers to information that has nothing to do with their interests. Another analysis examined more than 93,000 call-to-actions (CTAs) within a year. The unsurprising result: personalised CTAs bring in 43 percent more clicks than those that were the same for everyone.

So it's high time to make your website more personal!

When we talk about personalisation, we distinguish between content that users can change (customisation). And content that is changed by the website for the users (personalisation). In addition, you can make your website more interesting with cleverly used interactions and thus offer visitors a more personal experience.

Personalisation in web design

When we talk about personalisation, we mean content that is adapted to the users - without their direct intervention. This means that you, as the website operator, adapt content for your target group. We do this based on the data we have.

With individual content, you can improve usability and the general user experience. But be careful: don't lose sight of data protection. Especially in Europe, you should know which data you are allowed to store, when, how and, above all, for how long.

Content based on the location of the user

Location-based content is constantly used for personalisation in web design. We know location-based information from online shops and international companies that offer regional content. Many companies, such as Adobe, automatically output their website in the language of their users' respective region as a result.

Adobe also relies on location-based information in web design.
Adobe also relies on location-based information in web design.

Login and user area

When it comes to personalisation in web design, the login and user area should also be mentioned. This includes, for example, the social login. With this, you can make it easier for your customers to log in to your website. It saves them time and they don't have to remember too many passwords. In e-commerce, it is also a good idea to display a customised product preview based on previous orders.

Social Login makes it easy to log in to your website.
Social Login makes it easy to log in to your website.

Number of hits on the website

It can be useful to show different content to each person - depending on whether and how often they have been to your website.

Miro shows first-time users or those who haven't been around for a while a short introduction to the most important functions of the programme.

Personalization in Web Design: How to Make Content More Appealing 
A short onboarding at Miro explains the most important functions.

Giving your users the option to stay logged in on certain devices can add a lot of value.

Amazon not only offers recognition, but also the possibility to save popular products for later. As a user, you can return at any time to products that you looked at earlier. Amazon also makes use of the location and only shows products that can be sent to the respective location.

Personalization in Web Design: How to Make Content More Appealing 
Amazon allows you to stay logged in via a checkbox.

Browsing History

Many websites offer targeted advertising. These are usually based on what someone has looked at recently. Your general browsing history can influence this. Personalised content of this kind is important for e-commerce websites.

Showing your visitors content that they have previously viewed or saved can have a positive impact on your sales. The idea here is to make it as easy as possible for your target group to find items that have already piqued their interest.

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Customisation in web design

Customisation in web design includes changes to your website that your customers can set themselves. The best known of these is probably the language setting, when you display your website in other languages with the help of a button. 

The option to view your website in dark or light mode is also part of customisation. With the help of customisation, users can decide for themselves how they want to see certain aspects of your website.

You can use this type of personalisation to massively improve the usability of your website. The Federal Employment Agency offers several types of customisation.

As a user, you can have the website displayed in an easy-to-understand language or in sign language. In addition, the website is available in other languages besides German.

Personalisation in web design: The Federal Employment Agency relies on tools for more accessibility.
The Federal Employment Agency relies on tools for more accessibility.

The Puppy Love agency has decided on a humorous approach. Visitors to the website can decide at the beginning which voice over they would like to listen to. The background colour can also be changed individually. This is more of an add-on that offers no real added value.

Personalization in Web Design: How to Make Content More Appealing 
Humour and personalisation can go hand in hand - as the agency Puppy Love shows.

Product personalisations

Personalised products have been around for a long time. And yet they have not lost their appeal for customers. The special thing here is that the website is merely the means of personalisation, but the website itself is not tailored to the person.

This can be the actual product being personalised, as in the Nike example below.

Personalization in Web Design: How to Make Content More Appealing 
At Nike, you can create your own customised sneakers.

The product to be personalised can also be a marketing product. As in the example of Nutella. Here, users are rewarded with a personalised Nutella recipe book if they have bought at least two jars of Nutella.

Personalization in Web Design: How to Make Content More Appealing 
Nutella also relies on personalisation in web design - with individual recipe books.

Interaction in web design

As a rule, your website will already have some interactions - be it buttons, links or logins. Form elements such as the registration for the newsletter also represent interactions.

Every opportunity to do something on your website enables an interaction. How can you make these interactions more exciting for visitors to your website?

Francois Risoud uses a tracker on its website that follows your mouse. The wafting background deforms accordingly and creates small circles that are linked to his Skills are labelled. This approach is simple and playful. As a visitor, it makes you want to explore the website, while the Risoud can skilfully show off his skills.

Personalization in Web Design: How to Make Content More Appealing 
This is where skills and interaction come together: by moving the cursor.

You can find a similar effect on the website of argor-heraeus.com: The mouse pointer leaves behind a tail reminiscent of gold dust.

Personalization in Web Design: How to Make Content More Appealing 
If you move your cursor on the Argor Heraeus website, you leave gold dust behind.

At blacknegative.com you can use the Mouse-over Uncover a background image piece by piece.

Personalization in Web Design: How to Make Content More Appealing 
Curiosity can also provide more interaction in web design.

Interactions are a great way to learn more about your customers. For example, by using product-relevant questionnaires, you can find out some relevant information about your target group. And you can do this while offering them added value.

ImmoScout24 lets visitors use the property calculator free of charge. This encourages users to interact with the website. It also offers an additional benefit: a quick and free valuation of the property. In return, ImmoScout gets an insight into the national property market. For the valuation, they need the postcode, the type of property, the size of the plot, the infrastructure and much more. 

Similarly, free tools can be a clever way to get your visitors' email addresses and then send them relevant content. Again, be careful: aggressive email marketing will scare off potential customers.

Personalization in Web Design: How to Make Content More Appealing 
Immoscout uses ratings to collect data.

You can use this type of interaction whenever you can provide your customer with personalised information about your products.

You can find another example among the many insurance providers or on comparison portals such as check24.

Personalization in Web Design: How to Make Content More Appealing 
Check24 collects data: via personal comparisons.

Interactive content can also be presented as a quiz. For example, in the form of a knowledge quiz. This way you can offer added value and, according to the results, show products, links or information that are better tailored to your users.

You can also use interaction to liven up your website. However, it does not offer any direct added value.

However, such interactions can lead to visitors staying longer than usual on your website. They are encouraged to explore and remember your brand positively.

Anyone who lands at The Cool Club and clicks on the pack of cards there makes the packaging shake and empties the cards piece by piece via their website. A humorous, playful approach that fits in with the rest of the corporate identity.

Personalization in Web Design: How to Make Content More Appealing 
A playful approach by The Cool Club for more personalisation.

Interactions are a great way to communicate content and knowledge. Whether through interactive storytelling or in combination with gamification, if you prepare your content interactively, you can increase your reach immensely.

At polishchristmasguide.com, visitors can wade through the snow and playfully explore the various Polish Christmas traditions.

Personalization in Web Design: How to Make Content More Appealing 
Personalisation and gamification come together

With the help of interactive scrolling, Obys shows how to use the properties of CSS Grid. Visitors can switch the CSS Grid on or off to match the theme. It is also possible to change theme on their website.

Personalization in Web Design: How to Make Content More Appealing 
CSS Grid can be switched on and off on the Obys website.

Technical implementation in WordPress

Depending on how you want to make your website more personal or more interactive, WordPress offers you a number of options for the technical implementation. I have selected a few plug-ins for you - but the selection on the market is of course much more extensive.

Conclusion on personalisation in web design

The possibilities of interaction and personalisation are far from exhausted. Interaction and personalisation work best when they add real value to your audience. For example, when they match your brand and industry and help your customers save time or share valuable information.

If the personalisation or interactions don't add value, visitors to your website will quickly become bored. Unless you change parts of your website regularly. However, the latter could be expensive and time-consuming.

If you use an interaction as an onboarding or intro to your website, you should give your users the option to skip it. Otherwise, this can frustrate returning visitors.

Lastly: If your interaction or personalisation includes sound, please don't forget to implement it in such a way that users can turn it off.

Your questions about personalisation in web design

What questions do you have about personalisation in web design? Which concepts can you recommend? Feel free to use the comment function. Want more tips on web design and development? Then follow us on Twitter, Facebook or via our newsletter.

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