Personalization in the Sitecore Universe: How Data Changes Everything

Are you ready for Sitecore Symposium? If you have attended this conference before, you know it is rife with information about advances in Sitecore omnichannel tools and brimming over with people who are deeply invested in omnichannel development. If you won’t make it this year, rest assured a fountain of content will follow the symposium from sources tuned to the same topics you care about.

On the marketing side, all the talk is about personalization — this is nothing new. But how personalization is achieved, well, there will certainly be news. Sitecore 9.2 was released in July and includes technical previews for Cortex and Horizon (click here for a peek), and ultimately these will be fully actualized.

Sitecore’s much-anticipated Cortex and Horizon rollouts will bring finely-tuned AI to the equation. Cortex is the tool under the hood discovering the personalization rules, while Horizon is the editing tool showcasing contextual insights. Today we manually create algorithms and have a machine work on data. Tomorrow, we will have a machine that builds algorithms for us.

If we are at risk of getting ahead of ourselves, we should remember that Sitecore’s personalization options are already robust.

Sitecore“What I appreciate about Sitecore is that it helps me understand my client’s status before any marketing is actually done. And then from there, we can use the segmentation tools to create groups,” says Valtech Experience Engineer Dominic Hurst. “Audience profiles can be based on any number of things, from characteristics to behavior.”

Web-based experiences are designed to respond to and guide the groups, giving users the information marketers believe users need to make ideal buying decisions.

The next level is machine learning, where artificial intelligence refines these groups substantially through data collection and interpretation. Many businesses demonstrate through their profiling that they believe they understand how their users navigate a specific site, but the visibility can only be enhanced; our understanding of user behavior can only grow.

“We are all excited about Horizon because we are going to discover groups we never heard of before. I have taken part in UX testing twice for this so know it will be good,” says Hurst. “We only know what we know, and still we can take advantage of all the existing tools to flesh out individual and group profiles. However, the full integration of Horizon will move us forward quickly.”

Stay tuned for more details about Cortex and Horizon. Insights will be shared on our blog and all our social channels.

Sarah Kinbar

Sarah Kinbar is a Co-founder and Content Strategist at Orlando Content Marketing. She is a writer and editor with 20+ years of experience in publishing and communications.