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Personalization Gets Deeper

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Many of you know that I spent the last few years at ibm.com, focusing in large measure on personalization. Eight years ago, when we first started looking at personalization, Amazon was the only Web site doing it successfully, but times have really changed. I realized how much has changed last week while travelling in Canada.

I was sitting in the Trudeau airport in Montreal, watching as several flights home were cancelled due to bad weather. But I was connected wirelessly and trying to knock a few items off my to-do list while sitting around. My wife had installed a great backup solution from Argentum that she uses to back up our personal files from her computer and my kids’ computers—I have had it in my list for a while that I should get it to back up my personal files, too, rather than using the cumbersome system I do now.

So, I visited the Argentum Web site to order the software. I was surprised to see the currency default to Canadian dollars. Even though I know all about geolocation, I was surprised to see it in use from a small company. I was able to quickly correct the order to US dollars and easily completed my purchase, but it left me realizing how many Web sites are using personalization techniques considered sophisticated just a few years ago.

Personalization is becoming more deeply entrenched in the Web. While Google makes headlines with personalized search, unknown companies are experimenting with personalization each day.

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