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Content and Personalisation Key Focus for Website Strategies

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Integrating social media with websites is bottom of the list of marketing objectives

  • Top priority for website strategies is increasing the amount of information online

  • Only 8% say using their website a hub for social media is a priority

  • 63% of marketers say the biggest challenge is keeping content fresh and engaging

London, 30 September 2010:  Marketers are prioritising content creation and personalisation in their website investment strategies for the next 12 months and putting social media on the backburner, according to a survey of 250 marketing decision makers, commissioned by EPiServer.  Increasing the amount of information available topped the list of the top three areas of focus (58%), followed by providing more personalised content (45%), then developing a member or customer portal (37%). 

Perhaps surprisingly, social media barely features in the website strategies of UK marketers for the next 12 months. Only 8% of respondents said providing a hub for social activity was a key purpose of their website, putting it at the bottom of their list.  Less than half (47%) stated they run any social media activities at all. 

The most common objectives for a website presence were focused around more commercial aspects, with driving sales leads cited by 39% and converting website visitors into customers by 34%.  Dealing with customer service enquiries was also highlighted as a goal by 30% of respondents.

Encouragingly, 30% of marketers said their budgets for digital marketing are growing, which bodes well for those looking to increase content creation and introduce communities. However, the road may not be easy for marketers as the top three biggest challenges in managing their website content were: keeping content fresh and engaging (63%); understanding what visitors want (37%); and putting in place personalised content (20%).

The results of the survey, along with top tips and best practice guidelines, are available in a new guide -  Online Strategies 2010 - available to download from http://www.episerver.com/onlinestrategy.

“As the web continues to grow in importance, delivering engaging online experiences will become increasingly important for businesses that are looking to engender brand loyalty, improve their business online and deliver real return on investment,” said Maria Wasing, VP of Marketing Europe at EPiServer. “However, as the survey demonstrates, there are some major challenges for businesses to overcome to ensure their online presence is up-to-date, fresh and engaging. By having the right approach and combining content, community, commerce and communication in an innovative way, companies can ensure that they are meeting the heightened expectations of online visitors and customers.”

- Ends -

Notes to Editors

For media information, please contact:
Danny Whatmough/Max Tatton-Brown
Wildfire Technology PR
Tel: +44 20 8339 4420
Email: episerver@wildfirepr.co.uk

Methodology
Using Onepoll, EPiServer surveyed 250 marketing decision makers and business owners coming from a range of company sizes in the UK. The research was carried out online on 3rd and 4th August 2010.

About EPiServer
EPiServer, the leading supplier of platforms, products and services that enable true Web engagement driving business results for end customers .Close to 3,000 customers worldwide use EPiServer CMS to create collaborative and engaging websites. EPiServer CMS is the foundation for more than 9,000 websites and is used by more than 130,000 web editors daily. The EPiServer platform is delivered through an extensive network of over 450 partner companies in 30 countries. EPiServer combines the stability and support of a commercial product with EPiServer World, a thriving developer community of more than 10,000 developers. EPiServer is a Microsoft Gold Certified Partner with an AAA-ranking by Dun & Bradstreet since 2000.  The company was founded in 1994 and has offices in the United States, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Finland, The Netherlands, South Africa, Australia and the United Kingdom. For more information, please visit www.episerver.com.