For most retailers the moment a customer makes a purchase is the time to relax and reflect on a job well done, however this is potentially missing one last opportunity for promoting repeat purchases and social sharing.
A new report from Owned It looks at the steps brands are taking to optimise their order confirmation pages, with Amazon and M&S apparently making the most of the opportunity to encourage further sales and engagement.
But what are these retailers doing right and what steps can businesses take to optimise their order confirmation pages?
Amazon achieved a high score thanks to its social sharing buttons, a discount voucher incentivising a repeat purchase, and the brevity of its confirmation page.
Discounts and offers have been around since the beginning of retailing history. Giving the customer money off has always been seen as the ultimate marketing tool for increasing sales volume.
To date, the web hasn’t changed this: price competition is at a historic high and the rise of deals sites has institutionalised discounts as an accepted part of online retailing practice.
There are many complex ways of increasing your online store's performance. From analytics to data segmentation, once you've mastered the infrastructure of selling online, reaching new customers and selling more can become much easier.
But there are simple tricks to achieve bursts and spurts too…
When former Apple SVP of Retail Operations, Ron Johnson, took over as the CEO of American retail giant J.C. Penney, he had hoped to do for his new employer what he had done for Apple, where he led the development of the Apple Store and its Genius Bar.
Unfortunately for Johnson, the revolutionary tactic of ditching discounts and offering consumers straightforward low prices every single day of the year, turned out to be more disastrous than revolutionary.
We’re coming towards the end of sale season, but businesses are still sending out emails to tempt customers into making a purchase.
Normally the retailer is specific about the amount of money off each product, however recently we’ve noticed that some businesses are sending emails with ‘mystery’ discount coupons, which basically means you don’t know how much the discount is for.
Yesterday Dell sent one of these emails, which attempts to lure you in with the offer a discount that could be anything from 10% to 50%. The problem is you only find out what the discount is once you get to the checkout.
The mysterious coupon is presumably supposed to make the customer so curious that they can’t help but click on the call-to-action on the off chance they are rewarded a half price laptop, but personally I find it to be an incredibly annoying offer.
Thanks to the rise of online shopping, Cyber Monday is now arguably just as big a cultural institution as its cousin, Black Friday. And it's only getting bigger: with Black Friday online sales topping $1bn for the first time ever, analysts are predicting that when retailers are done counting, this year's Cyber Monday may produce more than $1.5bn in sales.
Naturally, that has companies looking to cash in. But the deals aren't just limited to traditional holiday shopping fare like clothing.
Mobile couponing has been gaining more and more speed over the last year. According to a recent eMarketer study, rising food and gas prices in the United States has lead 74% of US consumers to use more coupons this year.
In particular, the use of mobile coupon is on the rise: mobile coupons or app usage increased by over 100% in 2011, and 100% again in 2012. Furthermore, 79% of US internet users were using more mobile coupons this year—on par with print coupons and circulars.
Mobile coupling is great, but wouldn't it be even better if you could poll your mobile audience? Ask users 'how many times have you purchased this product?' and 'how did you first hear of this product?', etc. Want to have the consumer watch a video about your brand? For many brands, awareness is key - couponing is only one piece of the puzzle.
Deals have always been popular, but thanks in large part to the Great Recession, many consumers have rediscovered their love for coupons.
Technology, of course, is playing an increasingly prominent role in the coupon ecosystem, but what does that really look like? How many consumers have upped their use of coupons? What digital channels are most popular for coupon-seekers? And what actions would consumers take for a 25% off coupon?
Before Ron Johnson joined department store giant J.C. Penney as CEO in 2011, he was the SVP of Retail Operations at Apple Inc., where he was responsible for developing the Apple Store and its Genius Bar.
Apple's retail strategy was a major contributor to Appl'e's mind-bending success over the past decade, and for his seven-plus years of work, Johnson was handsomly rewarded.
Needless to say, given Johnson's accomplishments at Apple, J.C. Penney shareholders had high hopes for what he might do for the century-old retailer.
Earlier this year, Johnson unveiled his bold vision: radically alter J.C. Penney's pricing strategy.
Instead of using coupons and discounts, something the department store had done extensively for years, J.C. Penney would offer "Every Day", "Monthly Value" and "Best Price" prices on its merchandise. And instead of selling items for $x.99, it would use round numbers.
Thanks to supportive venture capitalists with deep pockets, some of the most prominent startups in recent years have been able to put off the 'making money' part of creating a new business.
But no business can survive forever without a revenue model, and for Foursquare, it looks like it's time to make money.