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Behavioral targeting with Reedge: an interview with CEO Dennis van der Heijden

Just a little while ago Reedge went out of beta. As part of this news they shared their competive price structure. Reedge focuses on the small size and mid size companies with an interest in actionable insights and onsite behavioral targeting. Over a 1,000 users are already working with Reedge to optimize their website and increase conversion rates. As part of the service to Reedge clients, Analytics for Joomla has developed a Joomla plugin to easily implement Reedge into your Joomla website.

We asked the CEO of Reedge to share some of his insights and expertise on the subject of onsite behavioral targeting. With years of experience in the field CEO Dennis van der Heijden is an expert in website optimization and onsite behavioral targeting.

Starting off with some questions about onsite behavioral targeting

Analytics for Joomla: How important do you believe onsite behavioral targeting is within the whole spectrum of website optimization?

Dennis van der Heijden: I have seen our clients at Reedge.com use behavioral targeting as a natural addition to standard a/b and multivariate testing. A/B testing an multivariate testing are gaining popularity thanks to low-cost and efficient tools and marketers, SEO and analytics professionals alike see the benefit since ROI of these tools is usually only several months. They have a big impact on the conversion rate and the natural next question is, can I test on hypothesis based on user behavior or segments and profiles. So the combination between testing and behavioral targeting is a very logical one.

Analytics for Joomla: What is the number one suggestion you can give to people who are getting started with behavioral targeting?

Dennis van der Heijden: Do not “over personalize” your site. Behavioral targeting should give users the feeling of serendipity and not feel creepy. You should not look at each users profile individually, but group them in personas and segments and create valuable content based on the persona and segment of a group of users.

Analytics for Joomla: What do you need to get do before starting with onsite behavioral targeting?

Dennis van der Heijden: We suggest to get a least some basic segments in our system to start monitoring trends. Segments of behaviors you want to target later on. Make funnels visible and just like tests build hypothesis and start testing first. The combination of testing tools inside Reedge.com and behavioral targeting allow you to start experiments and see the impact on the conversion rate.

Analytics for Joomla: How many visitors or revenue does your website need to generate before you should get started with onsite behavioral targeting?

Dennis van der Heijden: We start with plans with pageviews as small as 5,000. But its realistic to first start regular a/b testing, followed by multivariate testing to find the first big wins. Then when clients reach 10,000 USD revenue or 100,000 pageviews we see behavioral targeting experiments and personalization profiles in their accounts.

Analytics for Joomla: Can you share some general guidelines or insights about tracking personalized content and reporting on the successes?

Dennis van der Heijden: The first important thing is to communicate the fact that your site is using behavioral targeting by including a clear description and an opt-out option. Second, I have seen behavioral targeting most effectively used at companies that have a diverse product offering. It is important to build profiles of users that have a specific interest so having closely related product it might become difficult to target them. We have a client that uses our tool to profile businesses that look for specific business software and they have a hard time using behavioral targeting, since how different are some CRM, Finance and ERP solutions nowadays? Other clients that have an insurance agency benefit better from the behavioral targeting features, house insurances and car insurance are very different products and not easily confused.

We also asked a few questions about Reedge

Analytics for Joomla: Did you involve the end-user in the development of Reedge?

Dennis van der Heijden: Reedge.com was developed out of frustration when we tried to solve a problem we faced at my previous company. We are generating leads and with over 200,000 monthly visitors we knew that we should focus on existing visitors and improve the conversion rate over putting more money in Adwords. With hundreds of domains in different areas and not that much budget. The only tool that was available at that time was Adobe Omniture or Google Website Optimizer and one was out of our reach in budget and the other was just way to simple and needed lots of manual tagging and code pasting. We were actually our first beta user and from that grew more beta users that were very important for the growth of Reedge.

Analytics for Joomla: What is your favorite feature of Reedge? And why is this your favorite feature?

Dennis van der Heijden: I really like the segmentation tool, it is simple and yet very powerful. We took an idea that was already out there and made it the base for our testing and personalization. This feature can look up to 24 months onto a users history and load a specific content block or test based on historical records before the page is finished loaded and for me that is still an amazing piece of technology my colleague Claudiu Rogoveanu made.

Analytics for Joomla: Does Reedge have selflearning optimization techniques and do they allow for predictive analysis?

Dennis van der Heijden: We have not touched the area of self learning and predictive technologies yet. We plan to first make a more holistic conversion optimization tool before we focus on these two areas.

Analytics for Joomla: Can you tell us something about the future of Reedge? Into which direction will it develop?

Dennis van der Heijden: Our first effort is to integrate every individual tool we have in the suite and make the synergy visible to users. Our next step is to integrate with suites in related area’s like marketing, CMS and CRM since we believe that partnerships in these area’s will bring quick wins for users from these systems with little effort and cost. This is the area where users are pushing us and I hope they keep moving is in the direction where we can make their live easier. So who knows where Reedge.com is in two years…

This interview is part of a series, in which we interview several leaders in the field of onsite behavioral targeting and tool development. Next week: Danny Hen, CEO of Personyze.

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