Smart Content Web Personalization Module

ArticleFebruary 1, 2019

Web personalization will soon be table stakes for good user experiences. Static, “dumb” websites are increasingly falling behind as businesses who are investing in personalized experiences gain ground.

But getting started can be tough. Third-party web personalization tools can be costly, cumbersome, and just too much to handle out of the box. And for businesses using Drupal 8, the additional challenge is to leverage the open-source investment already made. 

So you may be asking, is there a way to start small with Drupal web personalization before investing in a larger system? The answer is yes! 

Introducing Smart Content, now in alpha release for Drupal 8, designed to help businesses already running Drupal 8 get started with web personalization today.

So, What is Smart Content?

Smart Content is a toolset to enable real-time, anonymous website personalization on any Drupal 8 website. It enables you to leverage browser conditions, cookies, or third-party APIs to display different content for anonymous and authenticated users.

The Smart Content module provides limited functionality on its own. Instead, it is designed to work in conjunction with other modules to bring the full power of personalization to life:

  • Smart Content Blocks (Included) allows you to insert a Smart Content block onto any page in order to hide/show/swap content within that block, based on conditions defined by a content administrator. They can be added anywhere, and even in multiple regions on a single page.  
  • Smart Content Segments allows you to create, save and manage sets of conditions, called segments. Smart Content blocks can use any segment(s) to display corresponding content. 

The Power of Conditions

Conditions are the cornerstone of Smart Content, and how websites can target different users based on combinations of attributes.

Smart Content Web Personalization Module

Types of conditions vary. Some are simple, such as browser language or whether or not a user is using a mobile device. Other conditions can be more advanced, such as targeting different industries based on third party IP lookups, or tapping into existing segmentations or campaigns from a marketing automation system. 

Sample use cases include:

  • Targeting first-time users with a welcome message
  • Showing content specific to a mobile user
  • Gating content behind a contact form

With Smart Content, anything that has an API with available data can be used as conditions to help drive your personalization strategy and better leverage the tools you already have. 

Displaying Reactions

Reactions are the flip side to conditions and determine which content to show users. The advantage to Smart Content in Drupal is that all of your content is available to show and promote through Smart Content Blocks. Whitepapers, videos, media, team members, stories—anything that’s already in the Drupal CMS can be delivered to a segment. No more editing HTML outside your CMS, it’s all native to Drupal.

Working with Other Web Personalization Systems

Smart Content was not designed to replace other personalization systems such as Acquia Lift, Marketo RTP, Demandbase Engagement, or even Google Optimize. Instead, Smart Content’s intentionally lightweight footprint is simply a way to start personalizing an existing Drupal site using existing content and integrate with other systems as needed. 

How to Get Started with Smart Content

It’s simple! Install the Smart Content module and start configuring conditions and reactions right out of the box. Once you’ve added a Smart Content block on to a page, you’re ready to start offering personalized content to your users, straight from Drupal. 

Judd Mercer
Written By
Judd Mercer VP Creative Strategy

A dot-bomb survivor, Judd learned the trade of a designer as a high school intern and has been doing it ever since. Expanding into design strategy, copywriting, architecture and analytics over 16 years, he’s evolved into a strategic design leader with the ability to think big and go wide.