Why Marketers Should Use PURLs
Consumers are most likely to pay attention to messages that speak to them personally. Personalized URLs deliver just that. Adopting PURLs as a marketing tool can make every message more relevant to each recipient. Used optimally, they help sellers approach behavioral targeting both online and in the mailstream.
PURLs, which combine dynamic online page building with two-way data streams, are unique Web addresses that include customized information such as a target’s name or user ID.
Customers and prospects who log onto their own PURLs see content served specifically to them based on prior behavior, life stages, segmentation, demographics and any other data a company may have.
As consumers view products, read, play videos, browse, click and purchase online, their activities are fed back into the marketer’s data pool. This new intelligence can be used to make subsequent communication even more pertinent.
Though data is still preliminary in this field, response rates for direct mail with PURLs are reportedly up to 5 percent, versus typical industry averages of 2 percent to 3 percent. Additionally, site visitors who use a PURL tend to stay engaged longer and have higher conversion rates. The more marketers know about customers, the more they can deliver messaging that causes them to act. Therefore, PURLs create a feedback loop that benefits marketers and customers alike.
If PURLs sound enticing to you, take these steps to discover their value:
1. Focus on analytics. Many services are springing up that offer marketers the ability to customize URLs for prospects and customers, but be sure the back-end analytics are also state of the art. For PURLs to work, there must be a feedback loop between driving transactions and improving data, and they must be leveraged intelligently with your goals and metrics in mind.
2. Put this project on the front burner. The way technology moves, we can assume that PURLs will become commonplace at some point. The benefit of initiating PURLs now is that when everybody else is doing it, you’ll be doing it better, having already established a feedback loop between yourself and your customers. They'll already understand that your business meets them with the best offers, personalized to their needs. That’s the beauty of PURLs.