The online world is bigger than ever, which means more and more niches are becoming saturated.
Getting visitors to choose your website over someone else’s is becoming increasingly more difficult, but it’s not nearly as difficult as getting them to stay once they arrive.
You need to leave a good impression and continue building up your reputation if you want to stand out among the crowd of your fellow bloggers and marketers.
You need to put in more work involving things your audience is truly interested in, a lot more than your competition seems willing to do.
Creating and implementing user-specific content on your site allows you to do just that.
Why you should create user-specific content on your site
Every niche has an extensive amount of content or topics it can cover as well as an extensive amount of people it can reach.
For example, WP Superstars is a WordPress blog, but we cover a variety of different topics that range from WordPress-centric topics to more business-related topics, which is the purpose of this specific post. As such, we have a diverse audience.
Some of you, if not most, are WordPress developers. You know the ins and outs of WordPress, your business depends on it, and you read blogs like this one to expand your knowledge on the topic.
Some of you, however, don’t know WordPress quite as well. You’re bloggers and business owners who use WordPress to power their sites.
All of your readers will also have different preferences when it comes to how they enjoy browsing websites. Some despise ads and try to avoid them at all costs. Others hate long-form content.
Some even hate it when the ads, promotions, and opt-in forms served to them on sites don’t match the content they’re reading.
All of these things and more make user-specific content incredibly valuable.
Let’s take a moment to go over the definition of “user-specific content.” We’ll go over why you should implement it and how to implement it in just a bit.
What is user-specific content?
User-specific content is content that gives your site a more personalized user experience without you having to spend too much time or money creating a different version of your site, different pages, or different systems.
It’s essentially content served to users based on their interests or actions.
A few simple examples would be creating a multilingual site and having it detect where a user is located to serve content in their native language automatically.
Another example would be using a service like Thrive Leads from Thrive Themes to hide email opt-in forms for existing subscribers.
The benefits of user-specific content
Your site will serve a variety of different individuals with a variety of different needs and preferences, as stated before. Having a one-size-fits-all approach toward the content you create and the way you build your site is not an efficient way to nurture all of these different needs and preferences.
What’s even worse is the fact that users who feel your site is not user-friendly or doesn’t have the content they need are less likely to convert.
They’re less likely to be as engaged as they could be had you taken the time or effort to create more user-specific content, and we all know less engagement means less revenue for your business.
Now, let’s talk about a few different ways you can create user-specific content.
Widgets can be pretty useful, but using the same set of widgets on each and every page isn’t a great way to serve targeted, user-specific content.
For example, if you use a widget designed to show an advertisement from one of your sponsors, you’ll likely see much higher click-through rates if you only promote that ad on pages and posts with similar content.
Similarly, if you use lead magnets to promote your email list, you’ll see much higher conversion rates if you use and promote targeted lead magnets whose content relates to the content on the pages and posts they’re promoted on.
Let’s take a look at a few different ways you can display different widgets on your site.
Widget Logic is a powerful plugin that allows you to control which pages specific widgets appear on. It has basic settings anyone can tweak, but it also comes with more advanced settings code developers can use, too.
Custom Sidebars is another plugin that allows you to display different widgets on different pages and posts using a dynamic widget area manager.
The previous two plugins are great and will suit you just fine, especially if you’re not interested in installing this particular “outdated” plugin, but Display Widgets has been the standard for managing which pages and posts’ specific widgets appear on for quite a while.
Simple Page Sidebars
Simple Page Sidebars is a straightforward plugin that allows you to assign custom sidebars to individual pages.
Fit My Sidebar
Fit My Sidebar is a different type of sidebar manager that allows you to show or hide your sidebar based on content length.
Divi is a multipurpose WordPress theme by Elegant Themes. It’s powered by the Divi Builder, a built-in, drag-and-drop page builder plugin. This plugin comes with a lot of different features, one of which is the ability to customize sidebar content by page or post.
Optimizing the way you approach email marketing can lead to a higher number of conversions, which means more engagement and revenue for your business. Creating user-specific content for your email list can help you optimize your email marketing game.
Let’s take a look at a few different ways you can do this.
Give your users control
One way you can create user-specific content through email marketing is by allowing them to choose when an email opt-in form is displayed.
This can be done in a variety of different ways, such as by triggering a pop-up email form with a simple click. Email marketing services such as ConvertKit and tools such as Thrive Leads, OptinMonster, and Privy allow you to do just that.
They also allow you to use exit-intent opt-in forms, which blocks pop-up email forms until a visitor attempts to leave your site. It’s less intrusive, and it only happens when they have yet to subscribe.
SmartLinks from Thrive Leads
Thrive Leads comes with a specially-developed SmartLinks feature you can place inside the emails you send to subscribers.
When a subscriber clicks this link, let’s say a link to a blog post you’ve just published, they won’t see a single Thrive Leads email form on the page, giving you a way to hide promotions for something they’ve already subscribed to.
Multiple-Choice Forms from Thrive Leads
Another great way to create user-specific content through your email list is to give them a choice when it comes to the way they subscribe to your email list or whether they subscribe to it at all. These multiple-choice forms by Thrive Leads allow you to give users choices when they view your email form.
It can have different types of content for them to subscribe to or even a yes or no question asking them if they want to subscribe at all.
Targeted Lead Magnets
This one involves being more strategic and specific about the offer you promote when you display email forms.
You should create targeted lead magnets for every category on your site. You can even go a little further and create lead magnets for individual topics. Doing this ensures the free offer you’re promoting ties directly into the content your user is reading.
This is often known as a “content upgrade.” It encourages them to subscribe to receive the free offer, which leads to higher conversions for you as well as the chance to turn a new subscriber into a highly-engaged member of your audience.
Creating user-specific content doesn’t mean you only need to focus on casual readers. You can also make paying members and customers feel more appreciated by offering them exclusive, member-specific content only they have access to. You can do this by blocking some of your content behind a paywall.
There are a number of different ways you can implement this inside of WordPress, but here’s a quick resource you can reference for tools and services that offer this feature.
- Pay Per View – Block certain content behind a paywall.
- Memberful – Block certain content behind a paywall based on a user’s subscription level.
- SQweb – Block content behind a paywall and hide ads for paying users.
- Simple Membership – Set up premium content.
- MemberPress – Restrict posts, pages, categories, tags, feeds, digital communities and more based on a user’s subscription level.
- Paid Memberships Pro – Restrict content based on subscription level.
- Ultimate Membership Pro – Restrict content based on subscription level.
Optimizing your site with A/B testing & user feedback
A great way to make sure you’re creating user-specific content and that your site is user friendly in general is by conducting a few split tests and research through user feedback. You can do this with advanced split-testing tools and simple polls.
A/B split testing
(Image credit: Visual Website Optimizer)
A/B testing or split testing allows you to test two different versions of something to find out which one performs better or leads to higher conversions. The outcome is dependent on what you’re testing.
There’s a long list of things you can test and optimize. Here are a few suggestions:
- Email Signup Form
- Call to Action Location
- Recommended Content
- Social Sharing Buttons Location
- Product Images
- Ad Locations & Sizes
- Checkout Process
- Content Length
Testing different variations of these elements and creating content based on what performs best can help you create an optimized website that features a user-friendly design.
Here are a few tools you can check out to implement this form of testing on your website:
- Visual Website Optimizer
- Test multiple variations of your website.
- Includes heatmaps.
- Integrates with Google Analytics, SiteCatalyst, Mixpanel, Magento, BigCommerce and Shopify.
- Nelio A/B Testing
- Test different pages, custom post types, posts, headlines, themes, menus, styles and widgets.
- Includes heatmaps.
- Compatible with WooCommerce, Contact Form 7, Gravity Forms and OptimizePress.
- Optimizely – Web Experimentation
- Advanced tool used by big name brands (Microsoft, Netflix, IGN, Trulia, WeightWatchers and Charity: Water).
- Great for ecommerce.
- Test multiple variations of your website, multiple pages and any stage of the customer experience.
- AB Press Optimizer
- Test different pages, posts, images, buttons, content blocks, forms and headlines.
- Simple Page Tester
- Test different pages.
- Compatible with Google Analytics.
- Thrive Headline Optimizer
- Test different headlines.
- A/B Theme Testing
- Test different themes.
- Compatible with Google Analytics and BuddyPress.
- Google Optimize
- Test different pages.
- Integrates with Google Analytics.
A lot of insight can be gained from simply asking your users or audience for feedback. It can let you know what types of content you need to focus on, whether or not you need to redesign your website or find a way to make it more user friendly, and more.
A simple way to find these things out is by running a poll on your site. Here are a few tools that allow you to do just that:
- Hotjar – Allows you to have a poll appear based on a user’s action, such as the amount of time they were on the site or when they leave (exit intent). Also offers heat map tracking functionality and other CRO tools.
- YOP Poll – A simple way to add polls on your site. It even collects and saves data for you.
- WP-Polls – Another simple poll plugin for WordPress. This one includes a few features developers can use to extend the functionality of the plugin.
Build a mobile-friendly design
This one’s probably obvious, but it’s still worth mentioning. If your site isn’t mobile-friendly, you may lose out on a lot of readers and perhaps even business. There are a number of different ways to ensure your site is mobile friendly in WordPress. For starters, your theme absolutely 100% needs to be responsive.
You can also take things a few steps further and create a separate design for mobile devices. This is often referred to as a “mobile theme.” You can use plugins like WP Mobile Edition and Any Mobile Theme Switcher to have your site auto-detect when a user is using a mobile device and display the mobile version automatically.
Geotargeting is a sophisticated feature that auto-detects a user’s location and sends them targeted advertisements or content based on where they’re located. This is an incredibly useful feature, especially if you have customers from all around the world or all around the continent you’re serving. Here are a few tools you can use to implement geotargeting:
- GeoTargeting Lite – Serve exclusive content to users based on where they’re located.
- AdRotate – Send targeted ads to users based on where they’re located.
- Advanced Ads – Send targeted ads to users based on where they’re located.
- Geotargeting Add-On for Icegram – Serve exclusive content on email forms based on where users are located.
- WPML – Translate your website into different languages and have your users’ native languages be detected and displayed automatically.
Knowing you need to create a more user-friendly experience on your site is easy. Knowing how to implement that, however, is not. Hopefully, placing your focus on creating user-specific content can make things easier for you.
Every website is different as is every business model. You need to take the tips and advice outlined here and determine what types of content and tests would be best for you. You’re essentially taking small steps to make your site more user-friendly to encourage users to stay when they visit or to subscribe.
Don’t make yourself feel overwhelmed thinking you need to make major changes to your site’s design. It could be as simple as implementing the SmartLinks features from Thrive Leads or optimizing your checkout page.
We wish you the best of luck no matter the change or user-specific content you choose to implement!