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The number one cause of cart abandonment is hidden delivery costs at the checkout.
A study conducted in 2013 by eDigitalResearch and IMRG, found that 77% of online shoppers have abandoned their basket in the past year, with 53% citing unacceptably high delivery costs as the main reason for bailing.
Last July I wrote an article called how fashion retailers use email marketing, in which I investigated 16 brands including ASOS, Topshop, H&M and Gap to check the frequency, content, subject lines and ultimately effectiveness of their various email campaigns.
Now six months later I’ve decided to follow up the article by cautiously peering into the inbox of the email address I created specifically for the investigation to see what its current state is.
Are retailers doing enough with our data to make online customer experiences truly personal?
If you’re used to shopping on Amazon regularly then you’ll be used to a homepage full of items you’ve already browsed, items inspired by your history and other recommended products based on your preferences and behaviour.
That guy you stand behind at the supermarket checkout, while he clumsily thumbs through endless loose vouchers and causes a tailback four trolleys long at 11:30pm… that’s me.
That party of four, sat at the table of a popular pizza chain restaurant scrolling up and down their smartphones trying to find an online voucher for 50% off while the waiter patiently awaits our order… that’s my party of four.
In the same way that exclusive offers and flash sales cause shoppers to throw rational thought out of the window, dwindling stock levels create a fear of loss and a sense of urgency that nudges consumers ever closer to making a purchase.
Ecommerce retailers are obviously wise to this as a sales tactic and it's common to see stock information displayed prominently on product pages.
With this in mind I’ve been scouring apparel ecommerce sites to see how different retailers present stock levels as part of their product page design.
Here’s a selection of what I found...
It’s not just about driving footfall to an offline store anymore, when it comes to mobile commerce the big winners are the brands achieving conversions there and then on a mobile device.
Here we’ll be presenting a selection of ecommerce stores excelling at the mobile experience and ensuring a frustration free shopping experience on the small screen.
What will we be looking out for?
As our own Ben Davis discussed in 14 features of great mobile commerce design, here are some of the tools and features that can best aid mobile shoppers:
Continuing my quest to investigate how various industries use email marketing, here’s a look at how some of our favourite fashion retailers use this most effective yet often neglected marketing channel.
Much like my round-up on the travel industry a couple of weeks ago, I’ll be looking at the frequency of emails, the use of subject lines, the email content itself, special offers, editorial voice, personalisation, relevance… All of the many tools that a company can utilise to coerce the recipient to open up an email or even engage with it.
As well as the above criteria, I also filled up a shopping basket and abandoned it without purchase to see if I would receive any reminder emails. I also entered my birthday as a date in between sign-up and writing this article to see if I was offered any discounts or at some birthday wishes. It’s not fraud, it’s science!
These are the 16 sites I chose to register my details with: Urban Outfitters, ASOS, Threadless, H&M, Topshop, Topman, American Apparel, UNIQLO, Gap, River Island, Next, Pull and Bear, Anthropologie, Forever 21, Miss Selfridge and The Kooples.
Now let’s take a look at the ravaged state of my inbox. Thank you Gmail promotions tab…
For those of you who were following the saga of #GiveGregTheHoliday last week, you’ll be well aware of the power of agile marketing, Twitter and free holidays to Las Vegas.
The brands that leapt on the hashtag swiftly and with the most relevance, enjoyed a huge increase in promotion, brand awareness and a positive upswing in perception.
TrekAmerica would see its gift of a holiday to Vegas covered everywhere from BBC News, Mail Online, Buzzfeed to NPR, complete with embedded link to its Twitter page.
The initial tweet was retweeted 245 times and TrekAmerica picked up roughly 600 followers over the next few days.
Clothing retailer Threadless has unveiled a new iPhone app, giving its customers another way to shop and interact with the brand.
Threadless is a community website that specialises in unique designs for t-shirts, hoodies and other items. It is built around social media and allows users to follow their favourite designers, submit their own ideas, and vote for designs that they want the website to sell.
Alongside the standard ecommerce functions, the app includes a voting tool so users can rate new designs and a never-ending feed of original products.
As a relative newcomer to the digital marketing world, I've decided to write a series of 'beginner's guides' to uncover what is meant by certain terms, trends and technological advances in digital; being both a travel guide and a personal investigation.
Here I’ll be answering the following questions: What is scarcity? Why should you use it? Are there good and bad practices? In a tone of voice that has been described as both 'helpful' and 'not too rambling'.
Scarcity in marketing means to use the fear of shortage to sell more.
It’s a fairly simple psychological premise. “We don’t have many Furbies left I’m afraid, you’ll have to buy it now if you don’t want to ruin your child’s Christmas” is the simplest and most extreme example.
However if we think of scarcity in terms of providing transparency about how much stock is left of a particular item, then it’s a very helpful, positive tool.
Scarcity can also increase the perceived value of the item or service you’re providing.
Your products can become that much more precious in the eyes of a customer. The fear that there is only a limited supply will make the customer purchase faster and possibly with less thought.
Which leads to the argument that scarcity can also be manipulative and in some circumstances, exploitative.
Before we get to the more frustrating end of scarcity, let’s take a look at some of the positive uses.
Using video on a landing page can increase conversion by up to 86%.
This statistic comes from a study by EyeView on various ecommerce sites.
In the study, two different variations of the same website were built, with 50% of the traffic being directed to a landing page with an embedded video, the other 50% directed to a page without.
The website that achieved the largest conversion rate (86%) was an online tutoring service. This is clearly the type of company that would naturally benefit from a landing page video, as most of its content is likely to be delivered via that medium anyway. It’s a free ‘sampler’, a way to show how professional and useful your service is before the visitor has signed up for a subscription.
Video is one of the best and most persuasive of all visual tools as it’s capable of delivering large amounts of information quickly and succinctly. Especially if it's about a new service or product.
Everybody loves Lego. It's possibly the most warmly regarded brand on the planet. I can hear that unmistakable rummaging of a thousand pieces of plastic as I write this sentence. Ah, bliss.
Lego’s online strategy and how it can improve its social reach has been discussed on this blog before, and it looks as if Lego is now making huge strides in its sociability with the crowdsourcing site Lego CUUSOO.
According to Brickipedia, the brilliantly named Lego Wiki, the word cuusoo when translated loosely from Japanese means to ‘wish something into existence’. This really is the perfect way to describe Lego’s crowdsourcing initiative.