Minimum Viable Personalization for Leads

Your website receives visitors in different stages of the buying process, who have varying needs and priorities. You recognize this, so you’ve installed a personalization platform. Where to begin?

First, a word on what not to do. Do not get click-and-drag happy with your platform’s audience tool, and end up creating a monstrosity like “Returning visitors from Texas using Firefox on Mobile.”

Complex audience targeting rules, X'd out

These audiences are easy to target, but hard to reason about, painful to maintain, and impossible to extract value from.

Instead, start with leads.

Why leads? (And what’s a lead?)

The exact definition will depend on your customer journey, but broadly speaking a lead is any visitor who has identified themself on your website.

This might include:

  • Free trial users
  • Whitepaper downloaders
  • Webinar attendees

Put another way, leads are visitors who are neither paying customers nor anonymous.

As for why you should provide a personalized experience for them, there are three main reasons:

  1. You can. They’ve signed up, so you know something about them.
  2. They’re your second-most-valuable visitor segment. (Customers are #1, but that’s a topic for another day.)
  3. Your current website is probably dominated by top of funnel content that they’ve already seen, and no longer find valuable.

Given how important this group is, it makes sense to provide an experience that’s relevant to them. But how do you do that without rewriting your whole website?

Where to personalize

Meet your leads where they’re already spending time. Finding out the answer to this question is as simple as segmenting your analytics data by leads, then looking at top pages.

The answer is probably “the Homepage and the Pricing page” but don’t take my word for it. Let the data tell you where to focus, and what kind of reach you can achieve.

Google Analytics screenshot of top pages visited by Leads

Once you’ve identified the top pages visited by leads, you can further prioritize by focusing on the elements they see and interact with.

For example, Hotjar allows you to trigger heat and scroll maps with custom code. That means you can create a “Leads only” heat map of your home page. (If that’s too hard, just keep your focus above the fold.)

How to personalize

This step is where the magic happens. What unique questions do leads on your website have? What tasks do they prioritize? What does activation look like?

To help structure your ideas, look for chances to do three things: Educate, remove friction, and nudge.


Does your homepage hero heading tout your product’s core value proposition? That’s great, but your leads probably know it by now. Can you change it to outline an important differentiator?

Does the homepage hero CTA still say “Free Trial”? You definitely don’t need that. Does it make sense to link to your knowledge base, or a quick start guide?

Remove friction

A simple improvement you can make is to show your free trial leads a more prominent “Log in” or “Visit My Dashboard” button. There’s a good chance that’s what they came to click.

You can also disable widgets and popups focused on lead generation. Those elements, by definition, can’t provide you with a new lead in this context. All they can do is annoy an existing lead.

Nudge forward

What steps does a visitor have to take before obtaining value from your product? Configure an integration, view a dashboard, import contacts?

When they were new to the site, pushing them toward this would’ve been overwhelming. Now that they’re more familiar with your product, though, they need this guidance.

Does your chat widget still ask “New here? Got any questions?” Why not start an onboarding-related conversation instead? A simple script along the lines of “Have you imported your contacts yet?” can transform this chatbot from a nuisance to a touch point for upgrades.

Stuck for ideas? Here are a couple of suggestions for websites we at FunnelEnvy know and love.


What you can do today

The first step toward obtaining value from a personalization strategy is convincing yourself that it’s worth the effort. So, start there.

What is the single highest-traffic page for existing leads? How many visitors does it get each month?

What’s the single most impactful element on that page? If you’re not sure, start with the hero heading copy and CTA.

What’s the current experience for leads? Is it relevant at all? Can you think of a message that would easily be 10 times more helpful?

If so, you’re onto something.

The good news is that the technical hurdles involved in making this change are solvable in any number of ways.

Your personalization tool might support targeting based on past visits to the /dashboard page. You might convince a friendly dev to set a cookie for new signups. If you use Marketo, FunnelEnvy lets you target by Smart List.

So take your newly acquired vision for a better lead experience, share it with the team. You’ll be hard pressed to find someone willing to fight to keep redundant CTAs on the page. I doubt anyone will argue that converting leads to sales is a wasted effort.

Starting personalization with a well-defined, high value, high reach, and observably different audience segment will make the difference between real ROI and a cringe-inducing vanity metrics report. So let’s go nurture some leads!

By |2020-07-10T09:40:07-07:00July 2nd, 2020|Analytics, SaaS, B2B|0 Comments

Comparing Pages Per Session Across Variations in Optimizely

The tools that Optimizely gives you out of the box are excellent for lead gen or e-commerce sites. And while conversion metrics can and should be used for media sites, more often than not you’ll also want to be able to track the effect of any given experiment on pages per session.

The problem is that Optimizely, in most cases, will only let you track differences in whether or not a single event happened — a conversion. Optimizely also has built-in support for tracking the difference in revenue per visitor, but not for the difference in the average of any other metric that you might be interested in.

For the purposes of this post, I’ll be writing about how to get around that specifically for pages per session, but this can be used for any metric that can be tracked in Google Analytics.

Tracking Pages Per Session in Google Analytics

To get started, we’ll need to start tracking pages per session as a dimension in GA. Google Analytics will already track Pages Per Session as a metric, but since we’ll need the distribution in order to perform the analysis of the data we’ll need to track it as a dimension.

First, we need to create the dimension in GA.

Open up your Google Analytics account and click on the admin section.



Next, go the “Property” panel and click on “Custom Definitions” then “Custom Dimensions.”



By |2016-04-19T09:52:03-07:00April 19th, 2016|Analytics|0 Comments

Analytics Superpowers with and Google Tag Manager

Analytics plays a critical role in improving conversions in several ways including exploratory analysis and ongoing reporting.  One of the main factors that can constrain your ability to optimize your site for conversions is the quality of the data you have available and your ability to act upon that information. There are an amazing array of web analytics solutions available to the marketer these days, but too often they’re underutilized in the face of other business priorities or technical and setup complications. That’s a gap in the analytics architecture, which  is just as important as the product architecture for online business.


By |2014-05-07T00:04:47-07:00May 7th, 2014|Analytics|21 Comments

The Trouble with Attribution Models: Multi-device Realities and Conversion

One of the hottest topics in our industry and at a recent panel at SMX West is the reality of multi-device or multi-channel attribution and its impact on conversion optimization. If a user enters your funnel on one device and then picks up the process on another device, what does that do to your CRO efforts? It raises questions around managing the customer experiences, determining when and where cross-platform optimization is appropriate, and what if any impact this evolving reality has on our ability to measure and maximize conversions. Here’s a closer look at multi-device attribution and some preliminary thoughts on how you can work with this in your own efforts to increase conversions in your business.


By |2014-04-29T19:48:25-07:00April 30th, 2014|Analytics|0 Comments

How to Close Your Data Gap with Outsourced Analytics

One recent study asked businesses to highlight which skill was most in demand in the online marketing world. The biggest gap that nearly 40% of companies noted was analytics capabilities. As the most desirable skill, this is an important message to job seekers. But it’s also critical for entrepreneurs and business owners to ask: are you using the analytical capabilities necessary to position your business for success? Do you have access to these insights from a current member of your team, and if not what are you doing about it? One solution that many companies find helpful is working with an outsourced data consultant. Here’s a closer look at what you need to know and how to ensure a successful collaboration.


By |2014-04-21T14:53:04-07:00February 21st, 2014|Analytics|4 Comments

5 Steps to Restore Analytics Sanity and Make Better Decisions

Imagine being able to make the right decisions for your business without relying on your intuition.

This can be your reality.

If you know how to pay attention to the right metrics, you can use a numbers-based approach to guide your actions, increase your revenue, and make a mark in your niche.

Is More Data Better?

Most businesses are at least familiar with the importance of using metrics to become more successful online.

So they fire up Google Analytics or another analytics platform. They take a look at the mountain of data that’s available to them, throw their hands in the air, and promise themselves they’ll sort it out later.

With all the different data points to review—even on basic analytics platforms—it’s understandable for people to feel overwhelmed. They don’t have the time to become a technical genius just to understand their analytics report; they have to focus on running and growing their business.


By |2014-04-21T14:58:39-07:00December 13th, 2013|Analytics|0 Comments

8 Questions Analytics Data Can Answer About Your Customers

You’re never going to grow your online business and improve conversions unless you use analytics. Back in the old days, the owner of a mom-and-pop store knew who was coming through the door, who’d sent them, what products were shifting and when to reorder. That’s what analytics tells you – and more – for an online ecommerce business or website. It can help increase conversions and website sales. While there are plenty of analytics tools, Google Analytics is one of the most widely used. More than likely you already have it installed on your site. The Google Analytics dashboard is divided into four sections: audience, traffic sources,content and conversions – let’s look at the information you get from each of these and how that can help you.


By |2014-04-21T15:02:16-07:00September 30th, 2013|Analytics|0 Comments
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