This week, I've been talking with London-based IgnitionOne, which specialises in listening in to these on-site behaviours to pick up the tips it would pass on to email marketers. The main thing, according to its Director of Customer Success, Dominic Gramatte, is combining what you clearly know about a customer with the data you can discern from what they do on your site.
"We have car clients and so they know when a customer has bought a car, booked a test drive or downloaded a brochure," he says. "Those are the declared actions, but the undeclared can be very important too. You may have a prospect you recognise who has been researching a particular model a lot and maybe looking at the configurator page but they haven't yet booked a test drive. It's that undeclared behaviour that can be 'scored' -- and if they fit the necessary criteria, an email could be sent out with more information about the model with a call to action to book a test drive at their nearest dealer."
Another pointer is that scoring rules, which determine whether browsing behaviour is significant enough to prompt an email, will vary from one client to another and can be informed by looking at the behaviours of past converters and seeing what important milestones they passed through on the road to conversion. With a scoring regime setup, emails can be automatically triggered to, hopefully, aid a prospect's transition through the sales funnel.
Ultimately, however, the overall lesson would appear to be that blending what customers make blatantly obvious to you with more subtle learnings from less obvious interactions online can give brands a far better picture of their audience so the right prompts can be emailed over at an appropriate time to turn lookers into bookers.