"Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery"
You've probably heard this proverb many times, and it certainly applies when talking about winning eCommerce strategy. Big retail brands absolutely have to focus on differentiation and by testing and innovating, but there are some tried and true strategies that all successful retail companies employ.
What are four of the foundational strategies that dictate success in 2017 for retail eCommerce?
1. Create Urgency
American entrepreneur Jim Rohn once said that "without a sense of urgency, desire loses its value". Urgency is a unique motivator not only because it increases the intended desire to purchase, but creates the age old psychological tactic 'fear of missing out'.
There are numerous ways to create urgency such as a countdown clock or "timer", showing the number of products left, and advertising the final day of a sale.
When it comes to urgency as a conversion tactic, Groupon might immediately come to mind as they have built an entire product offering around creating excitement and urgency for local deals.
Here, in one fell swoop, Groupon uses several different tactics to convey urgency to the shopper for a single deal.Can you count the different urgency tactics in this image?
If you counted 4, that'd be right!
- The sale (59% off conveys this might not be a normal price for the offer)
- The inventory (Two of the three options are 'Sold Out', so the remaining option won't last long)
- The timer ('Limited Time Remaining' indicated that the deal could go away at any time
- The watchers (40+ people have viewed today, so there's a lot of interest, thus increasing "fear of missing out")
While Groupon might be one of the forefathers of these urgency tactics, most successful retailers and shops use those same tactics to drive revenue in today's market.
2. Seasonality (Understanding Buying Cycles)
Beyond routine design and content updates to your eCommerce site, changing the main focus of the homepage to represent the time of year is something that most retailers really cash in on to drive extra sales at peak buying periods.
It not only provides the path of least resistance to the most relevant products based on the time of year, but might even alert the shopper to a category of products they weren't even aware the retailer had available.
Christmas is an obvious example of this that most retailers take advantage of, but the best will create many campaigns year round based on less obvious buying cycles.
Kate Spade knows their target audience are female professionals who are constantly on the go, and that during the Spring many of them will be planning around weddings they are attending or either planning their own. They use this as a perfect opportunity to serve up timely wedding campaigns front and center on their home page.
3. Simplifying Design
Simplicity is key. Taking a minimalist approach to your website and making it easy for your shoppers to navigate is crucial. ConversionXL states that simple websites are scientifically better and the concepts shown make sense. The article states that a study by Google in August of 2012 shows that "researchers found that not only will users judge websites as beautiful or not within 1/50th – 1/20th of a second, but also that “visually complex” websites are consistently rated as less beautiful than their simpler counterparts."
Creating a path of least resistance is critical in conversion rate optimization and winning eCommerce strategy.
Stitch Fix is a great example of simplifying their website in to one very clear & focused proposition, and even expands on that offer with a few explanation steps:
Stitch Fix isn't focused on overwhelming the visitor with different messages in hope of a conversion, rather using a very simple design to focus on a single path and clear next steps in hopes of capturing the user's time and attention.
4. Highlight Customer Happiness
Shoppers want to know what like-minded customers think, and there's no more powerful marketing tool than the power of a referral. This is why testimonials have the strong and lasting impact that they do.
Nike ensures that their previous customers seal of approval is present when current shoppers are making their buying decision. Right at the top they show the star rating that purchasers have given the product and even better, drill in to product specific ratings that further ensure the shopper will be pleased with the purchase.
Want To Learn More?
If you'd like to know more about how Granify helps customers increase build on these successful marketing tactics with a suite of user-focused tacticts like these, we'd be happy to provide a one-on-one consultation and dig in to your current eCommerce strategies and how you might be able to see growth in your retail revenue.