SmartTarget: Integrated Marketing and eCommerce from SDL
With Amazon's success on the brain, SDL Tridion (news, site) added a new leg to its Web CMS last week: SDL SmartTarget. The integrated tool is a profile-based marketing and e-commerce solution with a particular focus on the personalization segment of Web engagement.  

Driving the Customer Journey

SmartTarget's M.O. is to enhance a customer's experience from start to finish with benefits such as: 

  • Real time targeting - Targeting based on referring websites, e-mails, social media, search engines, explicit user preferences, visitor behavior, time and location and information from connected applications, including CRM, Web Analytics, and e-commerce systems 
  • Intelligent onsite search - Search based on synonym and language recognition in more than 40 languages
  • Increase relevancy of promotional content and navigation
  • Multi-channel and cross-channeltargeted campaigns
     

SDL breaks these benefits down into three different steps:

Capturing the Crowd

It's essential to make an outstanding first impression if you want to cut competition at the start. Because the majority of Web traffic comes from search engines, in SmartTarget language this means stepping up ad relevancy within search engine marketing, affiliate feeds and e-mail promotions.  

The tool manages this first step by presenting a customer with ads based on their search terms. For example, both Christine and Michael are researching an upcoming vacation. Christine is a single woman looking for some hiking fun, while Michael is in need of a family-friendly trip. They both end up on the same travel site, but the ads they see are catered to their needs: 

sdl_smarttarget_targetedads.jpg

Engaging Your Audience

After you've got their attention, it's time to focus on keeping it. SDL SmartTarget attempts to do this by offering a series of out-of-the-box connectors to CRM systems, Web analytics and e-commerce applications. Together they build a full circle view of each visitor and work to anticipate their needs. 

The tool then presents this information with structured reports: 

smarttarget_reporting.jpg

Convince The Customer

SmartTarget's approach to closing sales is a cocktail of dynamic navigation concepts to guide visitors to relevant content. Call to action triggers, such as time of day, past behavior or product availability, can be defined to help out in this area: 

sdl_calltoaction.jpg

The interface seems pretty straightforward as well. You can see it in action here: 

Engage, Engage, Engage

 “SDL SmartTarget marks the end of ‘one-site-fits-all’ websites,” said Jan Jaap Kolleman, chief executive officer of SDL's Web Content Management Solutions Division. “Now we can actively empower our customers to create, deliver and manage truly personal and valuable Web engagements.”

SDL is certainly not the first to weave this kind of solution into their CMS. Kolleman's sentiment about one-site-fits-all, along with totally integrated Web engagement strategies like SmartTarget, have been popping up everywhere lately (check out a short list here).

If you've been totally romanticize by SDL, however, you can check out more information about SmartTarget here