SheerID offers account tagging and account linking, both of which can be used to automatically update existing customer records within your CRM or marketing tech stack. The article below discusses best practices for implementing these features.
Using both a discount code and account tagging
When a consumer is successfully verified, you can provide them with a reward code to access your gated offer. At the same time, you can apply a tag to the customer's record within your CRM, CDP, or DXP. This creates a customer cohort for the consumer community within your marketing tech stack.
Account linking is when tags are applied to a customer's account, but no reward code is provided to them directly.
Account linking relies on webhooks, metadata, and REST APIs to indicate in a verified customer's record that they have been granted access to your gated offer.
This path should only be used if you require all customers to be signed in before making a purchase, in order to ensure their customer record is known at the time of verification.
Best practices for account linking
In order for account linking to be effective, it is imperative that every verificationID has an associated record in your customer database. This enables SheerID to be precise about exactly which of your customers has been verified.
Account linking also enables you to prompt unverified customers to go through the verification process, while refraining from offering this prompt to customers who have already been verified.
It is recommended that visitors to your website or online store first be prompted to sign in to their account before being prompted to verify with SheerID. This will ensure a connection to a known customer record.
Below are recommended steps and tips for success with account linking utilizing different offer and account management resources.
- Create a simple offer landing page that uses enticing imagery and clearly describes your offer and the steps to get that offer.
- You want to set expectations for customers that they will need to verify themselves in order to access your offer.
- This page should be public and readily accessible.
- Point your offer marketing campaigns to that landing page URL.
- The call to action (CTA) should be to create an account in your store (or sign in to an existing account).
- Make sure that signed-in customers see the prompt to get verified for access to your offer.
- We recommend putting this prompt in the My Account page of your store and/or in a site banner.
- Make the prompt conditional: if the user is signed in and not already verified, then show the prompt to get verified. If they are signed in but have already been verified, do not show the prompt.
- When opening the SheerID verification form, pass in the unique customer identifier as custom metadata.
- Make sure a SheerID-tagged customer can redeem the offer.
- This depends on your desired offer definition and the capabilities of your platform.
- You may choose to restrict certain products so that they're only visible or purchasable by customers with a particular tag on their customer record.
- Create a generic program for your target community.
- Update the verification journey:
- If you're not giving out a discount code, then open the program and click on the Code page. Select "No Code".
- Click on the Text page and update the Success message to instruct the verified customer on what to do next. You can include a redirect URL to point them to a specific destination.
- Click on the Settings page and find the Email setting. Update the Success / Approved email, to reflect the same message of what to do next. This email can be a critical reminder for customers of the available offer and how to complete their initial goal.
- Update the data:
- On the same Settings page, find the Metadata Tracking setting. Enter the key you use to uniquely identify your customers and set it as a required field. This will only let someone verify if their customer identifier is already known (and correctly passed to SheerID).
- On the same Settings page, find the Webhook setting and set the destination URL to which SheerID should post events.
- Add a failure webhook URL destination. This will tell you when a customer attempted to verify but was unsuccessful in doing so. You may still want to add them to a marketing cohort or otherwise engage them as they have expressed interest in your offer.
- Ask your developer to set up a webhook handler.
- This will listen for the real-time Success events from SheerID, securely pull the relevant PII and verification metadata, and correctly tag the correct customer record.
- You can optionally add additional verified data about the customer to their customer record.
- See this flowchart for more info.
These are available at https://developer.sheerid.com/tutorials/account-linking.
Example setup with account linking
The account linking example use case below is for a hypothetical clothing business that utilizes SheerID's Shopify app.
Let's say you want to offer a special package of cozy socks at a great price to healthcare professionals. Only verified nurses and other healthcare workers can purchase this package from your online store, which is hosted on Shopify. Using the Shopify app simplifies setup as the app can take care of some things automatically.
Your desired customer journey
- You run a campaign marketing your offer to healthcare workers.
- A nurse sees your campaign, is intrigued, and clicks through to your product page to learn more.
- The product page pitches the healthcare-only package in more detail, but won't let the visitor purchase it.
- Since the visitor is not currently signed in, they see a call to action to first create (or sign in to) a customer account on your store in order to unlock the package.
- The nurse creates their account on your store.
- On their My Account page of your store, they see the SheerID verification form.
- They input their information and are verified successfully.
- On the last page of the verification form, they click a button to redirect back to the special product page.
- On the product page, they now see the option to purchase the package.
- They add the package to their cart, click check out, and complete their purchase.
Through the above process, you will have acquired a new customer, with an account already set up for repeat purchases, and unique information with which to continue marketing to that customer.
Setting up this specific journey
To set this up for a Shopify store, perform the following steps in their respective applications:
Your Shopify store
Sign in to your Shopify store and complete the following steps:
- Create a new type of product page to use with your special package.
- Configure your store's page logic so that, if a customer has the tag "verified_nurse", they can add the package to their cart.
- If a customer does not have the "verified_nurse" tag, block their ability to purchase the package and provide language explaining that only verified nurses can purchase this package. Direct these visitors to create an account on your store.
- This page should be public and readily accessible. Point your offer marketing campaigns to the landing page URL.
- Install the SheerID Shopify app and create a SheerID program for the Healthcare community.
- On the Offer step, deselect the Discount option, since you don't want to offer a discount to their entire purchase.
- Select the Tag option and specify "verified_nurse" as the tag.
- Click Save.
- Prompt a signed-in customer to get verified in order to access the offer.
- Open the Theme editor for the My Account page of your store.
- Use the SheerID app block to add the verification form for your Healthcare program. In addition to showing the correct form, the app block will also automatically pass in the customerID of the signed in customer.
- Add conditional logic to only show the form if the signed-in customer does not have the "verified_nurse" tag.
After you've created your program in the Shopify app, sign in to MySheerID and complete these steps:
- Open the Healthcare program and click in the top navigation on the Text page.
- Update the Success message to congratulate the person on verifying.
- Add a redirect URL that links back to the special product page for the healthcare package.
- Click on the Settings page and find the Email setting.
- Update the Success/Approved email to include instructions for what to do next.
Test the flow
While the SheerID program is in Test Mode (you'll see a red banner at the top of the form confirming this), walk through and test the complete, end-to-end customer journey.