Consumer's Reader: Personalization for the Consumer, “pros” and “cons

Rubric: Consumer's Reader

 In the previous publication, “Your big data as a consumer can predict what you need”, from our “Consumer Reader” section, we described the way consumers’ big data can be used. We showed the dark and bright sides of the nowcasting and the predictive analyses.

Now we will tell about the personalization and its application in online commerce.


The digital environment enables online businesses to get to know much better and in advance the preferences and behavior of consumers compared to the brick and mortar shops. In addition, online platforms are increasingly able to predict the reasons why the user turns to them. This allows them not only to have a targeted approach to the individual customer, but also to give better configured conditions and prices.

For online businesses it is easy to customize advertising or an attractive offer, even if the consumer contacts the business for the first time. Online companies can theoretically produce a unique offer for each user.

All these types of individual differences are called personalization.

Personalized advertising or personalized offer can be beneficial to the consumer if it meets the actual interests and preferences of that user.

But businesses can also use their knowledge of the consumer in an unfair way, not entirely in his favor.

One example of a personalized offer, requiring relatively little prior knowledge of the consumer, is the display of more expensive products to a person living in a postcode related to mostly expensive private homes. Another example is a business that shows more expensive accommodation on a travel site to a consumer who uses an expensive computer or phone from which he accesses the website.

In the opposite case, a customer, member of a business loyalty scheme (such as a customer card or a savings scheme), may receive customized discounts based on previous behavior or interests upon purchase, at the appropriate and desired time.

In one case the practice is not in favor of the client, in the other it is. In any case, read the personal data texts, what you allow to be done with it – whether to be used for offers, marketing, delivering news before everyone, etc. The decision is yours, do not hurry, consider, judge. 

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Published on 21.06.2020 Back to news