fashion retail

Eye tracking heatmap on ecommerce website

Are biometrics the future of UX testing and CRO?

Even as they become increasingly integrated into our daily lives, there’s still something inherently futuristic about biometrics.

Whether it’s unlocking your phone with a fingerprint, or using voice recognition to access your bank account, using biometrics to carry out everyday tasks still feels like something out of Star Trek.

Marks & Spencer’s new Australian website: six things to note

Marks & Spencer has just launched new localised ecommerce sites to cater to Australia and New Zealand.

Previously, Australians could shop online via M&S’s UK-run website, which delivers to 30 countries worldwide, but now they have localised payment, content and returns.

I’ve had a look through the site, trying to spot best practice or any teething problems. Here’s what’s worth knowing.

Zalando: the fashion platform looking to China for great customer experience

German ecommerce pure play Zalando is learning from the Chinese market, offering stylist consultations by IM or phone call, unique social interactions and three-hour local delivery. 

It’s part of rethinking the ecommerce model and blending online and offline to create a viable ecosystem, rather than simply an online shop.

Shazop review: designer comparison site is clunky on mobile

Shazop is a new service aggregating designer fashion products and allowing consumers to find the best prices online.

The proposition is fantastic but there’s a little work to do before the mobile experience is silky smooth.

Here’s the full website review.

How French Connection can improve its multichannel promise

French Connection announced this week that almost a quarter of its sales took place online in 2014.

Ecommerce represents 23% of its total retail revenue, which is 20% up from the previous year and as also reported in InternetRetailing 24% of all orders were fulfilled using its click and collect service. This follows its recent investment in multichannel services, from the website platform to the warehouse.

Lets take a look at French Connection and examine how the retailer can improve its multichannel standing, paying particular attention to delivery, returns, mobile and social customer service.

How Mango can improve its otherwise excellent ecommerce site

Mango is a Spanish fashion retailer founded on 1984 that now has more than 2,000 stores in 103 countries, 150 of which are in the UK.

Mango has also been operating its ecommerce site for around 15 years and it makes for an interesting study in highly innovative retail site design, but with areas that could definitely use an improvement.

Here we’ll take a look at what works on the site from a customer experience and usability point of view first, before highlighting where it could be more effective.

How Gap can improve its email marketing

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.

How fashion ecommerce brands use email marketing

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…

How fashion ecommerce retailers can reduce online returns

How a company handles its online returns is one of the trickiest areas of ecommerce customer service. 

How helpful, flexible and clear you are about your returns process can mean the difference between encouraging repeat customers and sending them off to a competitor.

There’s an excellent article on the best practice of handling returns written by editor-in-chef Graham Charlton which highlights 14 ways that companies can avoid annoying their customers.

But what if you want to reduce the amount of returns your business deals with, particularly if you’re a fashion retailer that traditionally deals with a higher volume of returns than other businesses? 

Are there ways that you can help consumers find the right size product straight away, therefore saving you and the customer unnecessary trial and error?

Let’s take a look at some examples, including some from our own case study database, to see how companies are reducing the amount of returns they receive.