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Holiday eCommerce: 7 CRO Tactics Your Website Needs This Peak Season

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We analyzed our data and handpicked 7 conversion optimization tactics known to boost holiday eCommerce sales. Check out these campaign ideas designed to make an impact before, during, and after the 2020 peak season.

If you’re selling anything anywhere in the world, then there’s slim chance you haven’t heard of the Cyber 5: A five-day period from Thanksgiving through Cyber Monday that marks the beginning of the holiday shopping season.

For consumers, this month-long affair leading all the way up to Christmas is best defined by an onslaught of marketing campaigns, deals, and discount offers enticing to shop until they drop. 

For retailers, on the other hand, it’s the most profitable time of the year. In fact, holiday eCommerce sales account for about 30% of the total eCommerce revenue each year!

Holiday eCommerce stats - Sales from 2015 to 2019

Statista’s data shows that in 2019, holiday season revenue for online stores reached $135 billion dollars, which means it was increasing by an average of $14.75 billion ever since 2015. But what does it mean for the 2020 peak season and beyond?

Holiday eCommerce: Market insights 

This year, online shopping has experienced a boom. Ushered by the COVID-19 pandemic, social distancing, and stay-at-home rules, consumers flocked to the internet to buy everything from groceries to clothing, office supplies, exercise equipment, and even stuff like bidets.

In three months, eCommerce experienced three years’ growth. The leap, christened by McKinsey as ‘The Quickening‘, has thrown many marketers’ projections out of whack and gave a valid reason for staggering claims that eCommerce is set to top $1.1 trillion dollars for the first time ever.

So, answering the question of what to expect from holiday eCommerce this year is as difficult as ever and is best approached with a data-driven mindset. Let’s look at some 2019 holiday eCommerce statistics to get a better idea of what’s coming.

2019 holiday sales statistics

  • Total 2019 U.S. holiday sales reached $722.6 billion (+4.1% lift from $694.32 billion).
  • U.S. holiday eCommerce sales reached $135.35 billion (+12% lift from $119.54 billion in 2018).
  • Cyber Monday 2019 was the biggest online shopping day in U.S. history with $7.9 billion in online sales.
  • Holiday eCommerce conversion rate reached 4.3% on desktop and 1.8% on mobile.
  • Holiday eCommerce average order value (AOV) reached $152.95 USD.
  • 34.5% of 2019 holiday eCommerce spending happened via smartphone.

2019 holiday consumer behavior

  • 60% of U.S. consumers said they start holiday gift shopping before December.
  • Home improvement was the leading holiday season eCommerce category by YoY growth.
  • Amazon was the preferred online store for Christmas gift shopping among U.S. adults.
  • Buy online, pick up in-store (BOPIS) option was implemented by 60% of U.S. retailers.

2020 holiday eCommerce predictions

Based on the insights from Yieldify’s Peak Season survey of 400 UK & US eCommerce marketers and 2,000 consumers, there’s an increasing divide between the two camps. 

On one side, 33% of marketers are choosing to opt out of 2020’s peak season campaigns compared to only 6% last year. Their positivity around improving the previous year’s results has also dwindled to only 45% saying they’re confident in their abilities to increase revenue. They cited concerns about a reduction in consumer demand, followed by increased competition with other eCommerce websites.

2020 peak season revenue trends

However, this is not at all reflected in the consumer report. In fact, according to Yieldify, 34% of consumers plan to increase their peak season spending. What’s more, the majority plan to mainly shop online with 48% of consumers heading to familiar websites and nearly one-third (29%) planning to shop on mostly new websites.

Holiday eCommerce stats | Yieldify

This huge disconnect between what marketers think consumers want vs what they actually want is where the opportunity lies for smart and agile eCommerce leaders. With less competition for an increased and more engaged customer base, marketers have a great opportunity to increase market share this peak season (and beyond).

7 CRO tactics to win this holiday shopping season

In order to help your store come out on top this holiday shopping season, we’ve delved into our proprietary data and client campaigns from last year and developed a list of holiday eCommerce specific strategies known to turn browsers into buyers (and create an on-point customer journey map). 

Cross-referenced with our research into website personalization trends after COVID-19, these tactics will help you differentiate your brand from the competition, improve your eCommerce customer experience, target promotional offers to customer segments, and make this sales period your most profitable yet.

Jump to a section:
1. Holiday lead capture
2. Holiday wishlisting
3. Social proof
4. Countdown timers
5. Holiday gift guides
6. Cart reminders
7. Return redirects

1. Holiday lead capture

The peak season, as well as the months leading up to it, are a great opportunity to grow your email list. And knowing that email marketing is consistently rated as the highest ROI marketing channel, it’s undeniably important to utilize in your holiday marketing campaigns.

As Campaign Monitor research shows, 116 million emails were sent on Black Friday seeing the highest number of opens and clicks. Another 106 million emails were sent on Cyber Monday. Overall, 20% of 2019’s holiday website traffic was coming from email.

That’s why our number one tactic is holiday lead capture. Here’s how to do it right:

  • Start your holiday lead capture campaigns early to get the maximum number of signups.
  • Offer holiday-specific incentives, such as access to pre-sale, exclusive discounts, and offers.
  • Update your creative to reflect the holiday theme.
  • Add your lead capture forms to high-traffic landing pages.
  • Experiment with timing, i.e. show the form immediately after load vs some time on the page.

Pro tip: Go one step further and develop a fully-fledged EDM marketing campaign. Not sure what EDM marketing is? Check out our blog post.

2. Holiday wishlisting

With some retailers opting out of 2020 peak season campaigns altogether and others starting their promotional offers super early (looking at you, Amazon), even your most loyal customers might be confused as to what they can expect from your store this holiday shopping season.

To prevent customer attrition, offer your visitors a wishlist functionality. Inviting them to create an account and save items to their wishlist not only grows your database but it also creates brand attachment for peak season and beyond.

  • Start your wishlist campaigns before holiday promotions to people have time to create their lists.
  • Send wishlist reminder emails to get those customers back to your store.
  • Use the customers’ wishlist data to further personalize your marketing efforts.

Pro tip: Incorporate the data you get from the wishlisting customers into your social proof campaigns. For example, display a “Most Wished For” banner on popular items. Not sure how? Get in touch!

3. Social proof

The fear of missing out (FOMO) is a powerful motivator, and with holiday eCommerce shoppers looking online more than ever, social proof will be an effective way to build urgency and drive conversions. 

For the duration of the holiday shopping period, consider running social proof campaigns on both product listing pages (PLPs) and product detail pages (PDPs) alike. Use copy that suggests scarcity and creates an urgency to purchase, such as: 

  • In high demand
  • Selling out fast
  • Sell out risk
  • Almost gone

Pro tip: Use real-time social proof to display customer activity here and how. For example, “X items sold in the last 24 hours” or “Only X items left.” For more social proof examples, head over here.

Holiday eCommerce CRO tactics - Social proof

4. Countdown timers

Continuing down the path of marketing psychology, we have another tactic that is known to toy with consumer minds and create urgency to purchase: Countdown timers

Timers are a great way to encourage shoppers to convert in-session because it makes them anticipate the feeling of regret if they miss the opportunity. eCommerce stores can use countdown timers in a number of ways: From flash sales and limited edition products to holiday campaigns, such as Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales.

Don’t forget you can also have your timer count up towards a specific date, for example, 10 days left until Thanksgiving sale!

Pro tip: Optimize your countdown timers for different devices. Whereas a pop-up overlay might work on desktop, mobile requires a different approach and is best served by a floating banner. See how M.J. Bale used countdown timers to boost conversions. Download the full case study here.

5. Holiday gift guides & recommendations

Don’t forget that the holiday peak season is not just about people shopping for their own needs. Gift shopping comes in strong with 9 in 10 Americans (89%) planning to buy gifts for friends and loved ones, and 54% of consumers taking recommendations from retailers, according to NRF.

Holiday gift guides are a great way to improve your eCommerce store’s experience by making site navigation easier, gift-searching more straightforward, and your brand more top of mind for the consumer. It is also a powerful tool for eCommerce websites to use cross-selling and upselling campaigns, and boost ancillary revenue.

  • Create a variety of gift guides based on relatable traits, such as price (gifts under $50), gender (for him, for her), relationship (for dad, for co-worker), hobbies (cooking, reading), etc. 
  • Include gift bundles to increase your average order value.
  • Tap into influencers to curate and promote a gift guide to their followers.

Pro tip: Create a toaster campaign that shows up once the visitor has added an item to their shopping cart. Show highly-targeted and relevant offers based on that user’s in-session behavior. Not sure how? Get in touch!

Holiday eCommerce CRO tactics - Gift guide

6. Shopping cart reminders

While cart abandonment is a constant challenge faced by eCommerce marketers, it seems like COVID-19 might have introduced even more things to worry about come peak season. Looking at Statista’s data, the average cart abandonment rate across industries in March 2020 reached 88.05% (before it was usually cited to be around 75.6%).

Cart abandonment rate statistics 2020

While the rate might be different, reasons for cart abandonment remain the same. Usually, shoppers abandon their carts due to high shipping costs, unexpected taxes, and discount codes not working. Also to blame is the habit of comparison shopping.

Knowing how important holiday eCommerce sales are to the overall revenue of the business, deploying smart cart recovery tactics is crucial for any holiday marketing campaign. Here are our top tips:

Pro tip: Remind visitors of past shopping sessions and streamline their progress to checkout with shopping cart reminders. These can be effectively combined with urgency tactics like inventory warnings and discount deadlines to drive speedy conversions. Not sure how? Get in touch!

Holiday eCommerce CRO tactics - Shopping cart reminders

7. Return redirect overlay

Congrats! You did everything there is to optimize your eCommerce store for holiday season conversions. You got the traffic, made the sales. Not to rain on your parade, but inevitably, you’re going to be faced with returns. And a lot of them.

The reality is that many customers buy products with an explicit plan to immediately return some or all of their items. When it comes to holiday frenzy with discounts and gift shopping, this becomes even more true.

Holiday eCommerce return rates

Don’t fret. Here’s a clever strategy to make those returners convert again. Using behavioral segmentation, you can target customers who have returned a product and serve them a personalized overlay with a copy that acknowledges their return and offers to find a better suitable item.

Pro tip: It’s important to know the reasons behind a customer’s return, otherwise this tactic might not be effective or even cause more dissatisfaction. Try to gather as much data as you can on the reasons behind a return and create targeting segments accordingly.

Holiday eCommerce CRO tactics - Return redirect

Not enough holiday CRO tactics? Get in touch and we’ll share 10 more!

Peak season is just around the corner and it’s important to start sowing the seeds – or in your case, holiday marketing campaigns. We can help you reach maximum exposure on your holiday promotions, turn browsers into buyers, abandoners into loyalists, and more.

All you have to do is get in touch with our team and we’ll share 10 other CRO tactics that our team has carefully curated for this holiday season.

CRO for eCommerce stores - Get a Yieldify demo

The Best E-commerce Conferences and Events In 2020

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With many e-commerce events and retailer trade shows canceled due to COVID-19, we sourced some of the best e-commerce conferences you can still attend in 2020. Note: We’ll keep this list updated with new information.

COVID-19 has turned marketers’ lives upside down, with event marketing and B2B trade shows taking one of the hardest hits. At the beginning of March, we’ve seen numerous e-commerce conferences being canceled and trade show organizers pulling the plug after corporate partners and attendees backing out due to coronavirus uncertainty.

The “grim reaper” of e-commerce conferences took mercy on no one: we’ve seen global giants like Shoptalk, Shopify Unite, RetailX drop at the same rate as smaller niche events.

E-commerce conferences 2020 | Yieldify

Nevertheless, a major trend has emerged. Businesses that were either planning to attend or host their own physical event decided to shift their focus online. In a matter of days, virtual events started popping up promising the same immersive experiences and networking capabilities of a face-to-face event…but from the comfort of your sofa!

According to Bizzabo, 57% of marketers had to pivot their events to virtual due to the impact of COVID-19 with a whopping 92% saying they plan to incorporate virtual events into their strategy going forward even though almost ¾ haven’t run virtual events in the past.

Source: Event Outlook Report (Bizzabo)

So while we can still expect physical events to return sometime in Q4 or the beginning of 2021, they’ll likely never be the same. And not only due to post-COVID-19 safety regulations, but also the fact that event budgets will be relocated or cut significantly.

So where to go if you still want to network with your peers, learn about eCommerce trends and strategies from leading retailers, or simply showcase your eCommerce brand? Here’s our – continuously updated – list of best e-commerce conferences and retail events to attend in 2020.

Best e-commerce conferences and retail events in 2020

Events in June

Southeast eCommerce Mini Summit [VIRTUAL]
June 16, 2020, 2:00 PM – 5:00 PM EDT
A day of networking, presentations, and panels from e-commerce industry leaders.

Selling With Conversational Commerce: The Unfair Advantage For Your Online Brand [VIRTUAL]
June 16, 2020, starting at 5:10 PM BST
A session on how to create engaging multi-channel messaging at scale, including chat campaigns, that boost conversion rates and improve ROAS and how to measure the impact on your brand growth.

Transformations: Change is hard – how do we own change and win? [VIRTUAL]
June 18, 2020, starting at 12:00 PM AEST
Organized by Trustpilot, this webinar will discuss transformation journeys faced by e-commerce brands right now. Panelists from Yieldify, Web Profits, Couriers Please, and Klarna.

eTail Canada Virtual Event [VIRTUAL]
June 18, 2020, 12:00 PM – 3:30 PM EST
The eTail Canada Virtual Event will give you tips, tricks, and lessons learned from the top minds in retail eCommerce and omnichannel.

eTail Virtual Event [VIRTUAL]
June 22-23, 2020, 12:00 PM – 4:00 PM ET
The eTail Virtual Event is an online free-to-attend summit, bringing together tops mind in e-commerce and omnichannel providing the latest insights with the convenience of an on-demand digital event.

#TrendsOfTomorrow Ep.1: Budget-friendly hacks for eCommerce growth [VIRTUAL]
June 24, 2020, 03:30 PM BST
#TrendsOfTomorrow is a new virtual event series by Yieldify. Each month, our industry experts will share their top recommendations on a key area of e-commerce, followed by open office hours where we’ll answer your burning questions.

Shoptalk Virtual: Resurgence of Retail: A New Era of Shoppers and Stores Emerges [VIRTUAL]
June 25, 2020, starting at 1:00 PM EDT
In this session, Shoptalk will conduct three 10-minute interviews with leaders at three different retailers to highlight how each of them has approached store reopenings and what they’ve learned about what does and doesn’t work as they strive to win over COVID-wary shoppers.

Signifyd FLOW Virtual Meetup [VIRTUAL]
June 25, 2020, 9:30 AM – 7:00 PM BST
Signifyd FLOW Virtual Happy Hour brings together like-minded thought leaders, local merchants, and members of the e-commerce community to collaborate and empower each other during this unprecedented time of COVID‑19.

Northeast eCommerce Mini Summit [VIRTUAL]
June 30, 2020, 2:00 PM – 5:00 PM EDT
A day of networking, presentations, and panels from e-commerce industry leaders.

Events in July

eTailing Summit 2020 [PHYSICAL TURNED VIRTUAL]
July 06, 2020
The summit continues to follow the award-winning structure that brings key e-commerce and digital managers from online retailers together with leading solution providers for focused one-to-one meetings via a pre-arranged itinerary of virtual business meetings.

Shoptalk Virtual: Changes in Consumer Behavior: Shoptalk Retail Framework for COVID-19 [VIRTUAL]
July 09, 2020, starting at 1:00 PM EDT
During this session, the Shoptalk team will provide an update to the Shoptalk Retail Framework for COVID-19 based on recent data and analysis related to changing consumer behavior. This update will look at how the new era in retail is being shaped by shoppers transformed by the COVID-19 experience.

B2B Online Virtual Event [VIRTUAL]
July 15-16, 2020, 12:00 PM – 4:00 PM EST
The B2B Online Virtual Event is an online free-to-attend forum, bringing together top minds in B2B manufacturing and distribution eCommerce and omnichannel providing the latest insights with the convenience of an on-demand digital event.

Events in August

eTail Asia 2020 [PHYSICAL]
August 04-06, 2020
eTail is designed to help e-commerce merchants increase the profits from their online business. Inspiring keynotes, over 30 hours of intimate discussion groups, disruptive strategies, peer to peer conversations, and connections with the top minds at Asia’s most successful retailers.

B2B Online Chicago 2020 [PHYSICAL]
August 05-06, 2020
The most disruptive digital, eCommerce, and omnichannel content. With 900+ B2B leaders exclusively in one place at one time, this is the only meeting place to shape the future of the industry.

iMedia Online Retail Summit: Australia [PHYSICAL]
Rescheduled: August 24-26, 2020
iMedia Online Retail Summit provides an intimate environment for senior online retail marketing executives to converge, debate, and discuss the major strategic issues they face in online retail. 2020 theme: Partnerships: great alone, better together.

#TrendsOfTomorrow: Personalization after COVID-19 [VIRTUAL]
August 26, 2020
The COVID-19 crisis has drastically changed the landscape of eCommerce, with the industry jumping forward 10 years in a 90-day period. But what does that mean for innovation, particularly in the field of personalization? Join Yieldify on August 26th to learn more about the results of a personalization survey conducted with 400 eCommerce leaders.

MivaCon 2020 Digital Day [PHYSICAL TURNED VIRTUAL]
Rescheduled to August/September 2020
The MivaCon 2020 Digital Day is all about empowering independent sellers. Merchant attendees will receive exclusive insights from top e-commerce experts on what they need to stay competitive, relevant, and profitable.

Events in September

eTail Asia & ANZ Virtual Summit Week [VIRTUAL]
September 07-11, 2020
Accelerate your digital transformation with proven strategies from leading retailers, get your eCommerce, digital marketing, and e-delivery capabilities ready for COVID-19, and discover how the latest strategies, tools, and technologies are being leveraged.

One-to-One Monaco 2020 [PHYSICAL]
September 01-03, 2020
The theme chosen for the 2020 edition will allow participants to better understand the expectations of a more committed and responsible consumer, and the challenges of market players who are massively accelerating in this process.

Shoptalk 2020 [PHYSICAL]
Rescheduled: September 14-17, 2020,
Everyone who’s anyone is at Shoptalk. Over 8,000 individuals attend Shoptalk each year from almost 3,000 established retailers and brands, startups, tech companies, investors, real estate operators, media, Wall Street analyst firms, and more.

iMedia Online Retail Summit: New Zealand [PHYSICAL]
Rescheduled: September 14-16, 2020
iMedia Online Retail Summit provides an intimate environment for senior online retail marketing executives to converge, debate, and discuss the major strategic issues they face in online retail. 2020 theme: Partnerships: great alone, better together.

Paris Retail Week [PHYSICAL]
September 15-17, 2020
Paris Retail Week 2020 will bring together trade professionals at Paris Expo Porte de Versailles in an ever more experiential format. Conferences, Workshops, Pitching, Awards, Innovation Tours, Store Tours, and announcements of new innovations will energize this event dedicated to sharing knowledge, experiences, and best practices.

Savant eCommerce London [PHYSICAL]
September 16-17, 2020
Savant eCommerce London will explore both established and innovative approaches for you to efficiently drive profitability within your organization.

eCommerce Under the MiCROscope: Cart abandonment [VIRTUAL]
September 23, 2020
With planning for peak season underway, Yieldify’s CRO experts are back with a special focus on cart abandonment and how to stop it. In this short session, we’ll be dissecting a selection of real eCommerce website live to show us best practice (and missed opportunities) when it comes to getting from cart to conversion.

Ecommerce Under the MiCROscope Episode 2

The Virtual B2B E-Commerce Summit [VIRTUAL]
September 24, 2020
Ready to get inspired by our virtual B2B summit for manufacturers, wholesalers and distributors? You will learn the latest and most practical information on how to succeed in e-commerce.

E-commerce Summit 2020 [PHYSICAL]
Rescheduled: September 28-29, 2020
The E-commerce Summit is an exclusive, invitation-only conference for retailers and brands. Focusing on the European market and the following three verticals: Fashion & Lifestyle, Home & Living, and Food & Care-, the top trending topics on E-commerce will be widely addressed.

Savant eCommerce Stockholm 2020 [PHYSICAL]
September 29-30, 2020
This year, Savant eCommerce Stockholm will explore the methods and strategies, both tried and new, for you to effectively drive profitability within your organisation.

eTail Virtual Event [VIRTUAL]
September 29-30, 2020
The eTail September Virtual Event is a 2-Day online, free-to-attend summit, bringing together tops mind in retail and providing the latest insights with the convenience of an on-demand digital event.

E-commerce Expo London 2020 [PHYSICAL]
September 30-October 01, 2020
E-commerce Expo is the UK’s largest event dedicated exclusively to the e-commerce industry. Focusing on customer acquisition, retention, and fulfillment, E-commerce Expo addresses the key areas to get your business growing.

Events in October

October 01, 2020
Get educated, motivated, and inspired by over 50 E-commerce Expert Speakers, Including Merchant Keynote Rebecca Minkoff.

Bloomreach Connect Global Online Summit [VIRTUAL]
October 06, 2020
Meet the brightest minds from the worlds of tech and commerce. The 5th edition of this flagship event will bring a global speaker lineup and an immersive digital experience live from your home.

Savant Supply Chain Congress [PHYSICAL]
October 06-07, 2020
Savant Supply Chain is always at the forefront of developments in your sector. An energizing and high-level event like no other in the supply chain space, it brings together 130+ Heads of Supply Chain, Logistics and Planning from Europe’s most established and most innovative B2C supply chains.

Drapers Digital Festival 2020 [PHYSICAL]
Rescheduled: October 07, 2020
An immersive festival featuring essential content from industry leaders, live awards judging, competitions, fringe events, and a celebration of the industry’s digital triumphs.

eTail East 2020 [PHYSICAL]
Rescheduled: October 13-15, 2020
eTail is a three-day conference designed to help e-commerce merchants increase the profits from their business. Action-packed stories, disruptive strategies, strategic conversations, and connections with top minds at America’s most successful retailers.

eTail Australia 2020 [PHYSICAL]
Rescheduled: October 13-15, 2020
With over 250+ retail decision makers exclusively in one place at one time, this is THE meeting place to benchmark your business with the best and shape the future of your industry.

Online Retailer Sydney 2020 [PHYSICAL]
Rescheduled: October 19-20, 2020
This October, hundreds of stakeholders, large and small, will come together to access the latest trends, strategic insights, solutions, tech and connections that will make a positive difference to their business in 2020 and beyond.

iMedia Online Retail Summit: South East Asia [PHYSICAL]
Rescheduled: October 26-28, 2020
iMedia Online Retail Summit provides an intimate environment for senior online retail marketing executives to converge, debate, and discuss the major strategic issues they face in online retail in a closed forum. 2020 theme: Partnerships: great alone, better together.

PI Live London [PHYSICAL]
October 27-28, 2020
PI LIVE London in an annual gathering of the brightest minds in e-commerce, affiliate, and performance marketing. Our events are carefully curated and designed with both retailers and publishers in mind giving access to great content, leading technologies, and potential partners across two action-packed days.

Events in November

B2B Marketing Expo 2020 London [PHYSICAL]
November 10-11, 2020
Europe’s leading marketing event, connecting the most proactive marketing professionals with the tools, techniques, and innovations they need to be at the forefront of the ever-evolving world of marketing.

Events in December

Digital Travel US 2020 [PHYSICAL]
December 14-15, 2020
Digital Travel is the premier interactive conference for travel executives who are looking to reimagine the customer journey. Join the top minds from hotels, OTAs, airlines, transportation companies, and everything in-between, to share practical insight on how to enhance personalization and improve their online strategies for better cross-channel experiences.

Other events

OroVibe 2020 [PHYSICAL]
Postponed until further notice

eTail Canada 2020 [PHYSICAL]
Postponed until 2021

CommerceNext 2020 [PHYSICAL]
Postponed until 2021

Alibaba Ecosystem Expo [PHYSICAL]
Postponed until 2021

IRCE 2020 at RetailX [PHYSICAL]

Shopify Unite 2020 [PHYSICAL]

Magento Imagine 2020 [PHYSICAL]

Behavioral Segmentation Defined with 4 Real-Life Examples

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Behavioral segmentation definition and examples

What is behavioral segmentation and why is it important to your eCommerce business?

Let’s answer this question and define some key behavioral segmentation examples.

Marketing Segmentation has always been a key component of the most effective marketing strategies. Dividing customers into smaller groups based on their needs and actions ensures you are best placed to efficiently solve their problems and in turn, sell more of your products.

Whilst understanding information such as your average customer’s location, age, and gender are essential first steps to begin addressing those needs, sometimes it is necessary to go one step further. 

Leveraging other useful customer metrics like behavioral data can help you identify how your customers interact with your business.

For example, behavioral segmentation can answer questions like How many times they visit your online store before purchasing?; or Which promotional message – a discount code or a free shipping guarantee – is more likely to nudge them towards a higher-value purchase?

This level of insight is what makes behavioral segmentation a must-have marketing strategy for eCommerce businesses. In this post we’ll cover:

1. Behavioral segmentation definition
2. Behavioral segmentation benefits
3. Four main types of behavioral segmentation

Purchase behavior
Occasion and timing
Benefits sought
Customer loyalty
4. Behavioral segmentation examples
5. Other types of behavioral segmentation
Customer journey stage

What is behavioral segmentation?

Behavioral segmentation refers to a process in marketing which divides customers into segments depending on their behavior patterns when interacting with a particular business or website.

These segments could include grouping customers by:

  • Their attitude toward your product, brand or service;
  • Their use of your product or service,
  • Their overall knowledge of your brand and your brand’s products,
  • Their purchasing tendencies, such as buying on special occasions like birthdays or holidays only, etc.

Going beyond the traditional demographic and geographic segmentation methods and utilizing behavioral data allows for the execution of more successful marketing campaigns.

At the very least, behavioral segmentation offers marketers and business owners a more complete understanding of their audience, thus enabling them to tailor products or services to specific customer needs. Below we take a look at four more benefits of behavioral segmentation.

Why is behavioral segmentation so important?

Identifies the most engaged users. Being able to filter existing customers and potential prospects that display highest levels of engagement – for example, those regularly opening your emails, or spend the most time with your product pages – enables marketers to make more informed decisions on how and where to best allocate time, budget, and resources. In return, this makes your marketing more cost-effective, as you’re not burning through budget trying to warm up predominantly cold leads. You can focus on those most likely to make a purchase.

Improves messaging accuracy. Behavioral segmentation allows marketers to optimize their positioning and marketing messages toward the customer data at hand. Imagine you’ve already identified that 24-35-year-olds are the most active segment on your fashion eCommerce store. Behavioral segmentation allows you to enrich this demographic data by splitting the segment based on their interests and preferences, such as “interested in activewear” vs “interested in formal attire,” or “one-time shopper” vs “wardrobe overhauler.”

Provides refined personalized experiences. To provide a sense of brand persona and uniqueness, deeply analyzing your audience and resonating with customer needs, wants, concerns, and demands can make noticeable differences. Specifically, personalized approaches, such as displaying complementary products on the website or sending an upsell email after a recent purchase can not only lower bounce rate, reduce cart abandonment, or speed up the purchasing process, but also cement customer loyalty.

Builds brand loyalty. Customers who feel they are being attended to throughout their customer journey will instinctively favor the brand over competitors. Behavioral segmentation enables eCommerce businesses to reach extraordinary levels of customer satisfaction & retention, increase customer lifetime value, and boost long-term revenue. All due to increased targeting accuracy and higher levels of personalization.

What are the 4 types of behavioral segmentation?

There are four main types of behavioral segmentation that help form a complete customer profile throughout their buying journey. Each nuance provides actionable insights, which can be embedded in a variety of marketing channels and encourage customers to act on their purchase decisions.

You can break these down into four main behavioral segments.

1. Segmentation based on purchase and usage behavior

Segmenting by purchase behavior disentangles the varying trends and behavior patterns that customers have when making a purchase decision.

Segmenting by purchase behavior disentangles the varying trends and behavior patterns that customers have when making a purchase decision.

This form of behavioral segmentation provides insight into the buying stage that your customer might be in, their role in the purchasing process, the obstacles they are facing, the incentives they’re most likely to respond to and much more.

For example, customers who prefer to undertake research will often turn to search engines or reviews to be assured they are making the right decision purchasing from you, whilst customers that are particularly thrifty may only interact with your brand or product when on sale. 

Ultimately, both of these customer types can fall into the same product affinity category. However, targeting all of them with the same marketing materials and messaging is destined to waste resources. The aforementioned careful consumer may not respond to discount promotions in the same manner as the thrifty one.

This is where segmenting by purchase behavior comes in. You can break these behaviors down into categories depending on:

  • How many interactions with your business does a customer need before proceeding to conversion;
  • What search queries a customer used to locate your brand, product or service;
  • What questions a customer asks when using a live chat or virtual assistant; etc.

Knowing this information allows you to respond to your customer’s needs in a relevant manner.

For example, customers who are in the research phase and are likely to leave to compare prices could be retargeted with a “best price” or “price match” guarantee. Alternatively, a shopper that is keen on social proof and buys in accordance with popularity trends could be targeted with a message suggesting that the item is in high demand, and moving fast.

2. Occasion or timing-based segmentation

Occasion-based segmentation categorizes customers who are most likely to interact with your brand or purchase from your website on either specific occasions or set times.

Occasions could include national holidays like Labor Day, a holiday season like Thanksgiving or Christmas, or life occasions, such as a wedding, new house, or vacation.

Occasion-based purchasing can also occur in a customer’s daily routine. Purchases like a happy hour round of drinks after work and a caffeinated morning drink are all types of occasion-based purchases as they are only bought at precise times.

Grouping customers using this form of segmentation involves monitoring a customer’s purchasing behavior to establish a pattern so that you preempt the targeting process.  

For example, if your store has customers that participate yearly in your Thanksgiving promotions, but do not buy anything else from you throughout the year, you can use this information to market to the customer in weeks in advance.

3. Benefits sought segmentation

Segmenting by benefits sought refers to dividing your audience based on the unique value proposition your customer is looking to gain from your product or service.

Let us explain further. When we make purchases, we do so based on the belief that we will receive a certain value or benefit from using the product or service. 

Even when purchasing something as mundane as toothpaste, we lean towards different value propositions: Some may be looking for whitening benefits while others seek comfort to their sensitive gums. Dividing consumers based on these factors embodies the benefits sought segmentation.

Grouping your data by benefits sought helps you narrow down the specifics of what drives customer purchases, revealing which product feature or service aspect they feel most attuned to. Divide data by these benefit categories when using this form of behavioral segmentation:

  • Quality: What makes your product better than your competitors?
  • Usage: How will it benefit your customer when they use it?
  • Customer Feedback: Are your customers happy with the product or service, or are there areas for improvement?  
  • USPs: What makes your product unique from other already existing products?
  • Additional Benefits: Are there other advantages a customer could receive from purchasing your products or services?

4. Segmentation based on customer loyalty

Loyalty-based segmentation measures the level of loyalty a customer has with your brand, either through a rewards program, number of purchases, or general engagement with your marketing efforts.

Using loyalty-based behavioral segmentation helps you to zero in on existing repeat customers, their needs, behavior patterns, and more. Besides generating repeat revenue from your business, loyal customers are incredibly useful in terms of referrals, word of mouth, and feedback.

Extracting valuable information from this segment can help you optimize future campaigns, improve your value proposition, strengthen positioning, and more. Consider identifying factors such as:

  • What the key behaviors were throughout the customer journey that nurtured loyalty;
  • Which customers are the most appropriate or ideal type for loyalty programs;
  • What factors are most essential in keeping those segments of customers happy;
  • Which ways value received from loyal customers can be maximized.

The most common examples of customer loyalty segmentation can be reflected in the travel industry which regularly promotes frequent flier programs and the finance industry who offer rewards for big-spending platinum credit card members.

Behavioral segmentation examples for eCommerce

When used effectively, behavioral segmentation can produce astounding results, transforming previously cold leads or customers into newly engaged and retained ones. Here we list some real-life examples, so you can see behavioral segmentation at its subtle, very best.

Usage behavior: BabyCentre UK

Part of the Johnson & Johnson multinational corporation, BabyCentre UK is a pregnancy and childcare resource located in the United Kingdom. The company uses a Facebook Messenger app to suggest personalized advice and make targeted recommendations based on the input that it receives from the user, through a series of questions and answers.

For example in the promotional images above, when the parent selects weaning as the problem they are encountering, the BabyCentre app engages the user by giving them a list of signs to look out for, as well as then suggesting recipes for when the child is ready for solid food.

This tailored experience provides BabyCentre with actionable data that it can use to segment the user by the information obtained through their selections: For example, their child falling into an age category that experiences weaning. Categorizing by this data can help target the customer with repeat, relevant information – such as recipe guides or other helpful advice.

When Babycentre investigated what drove the highest levels of traffic to its website – the chatbot or email marketing – it revealed that the messenger bot recorded a read rate of 84% and click-through rate (CTR) of 53%. Together the stats made for an overall engagement rate that was 1,428% higher than its email funnel, adding further evidence to how effective segmentation can be when categorized correctly.

Occasion-based: Guinness

One out the box example of occasion-based purchasing segmentation came from a campaign initiated last year by famous Irish stout manufacturer, Guinness.

Guinness gives their brand name to sponsor the Guinness Six Nations Rugby Cup each year and regularly experience sales boosts through fans purchasing their drinks to complement the matches.

However, with industry stats showing that 6.1 million people now actively choose not to consume alcohol, Guinness wanted to find a way to diversify their marketing strategy to appeal to those who don’t drink, whilst also aiming to retain previously existing customers, and those most likely to purchase again from them throughout the time of the tournament.

So, just before the Rugby Tournament was due to begin they aired a 30-second advertisement advertising their new product: Guinness Clear.

(Source: Ads of. the World)

The campaign used slogans such as “Make it a night you’ll remember,” and “Sometimes less is more” while alluding to the brand new ingredient of H20. The campaign reached 21 million people and immediately generated global media attention, with customers confused as to whether the product was a new product, or whether it was just water – which in the end, it turned out it was.

This process of segmentation worked across multiple audiences. For existing loyal customers, they immediately flooded manufacturers with questions as to where they could purchase the product, whilst those consumers that Guinness knew were more likely to buy, but only in conjunction with the event, were also targeted with a timely reminder of their brand to be enticed once again into purchasing.

Additionally, it had the potential to acquire any new or occasional drinkers who could be won over by a creative marketing campaign.

Benefits-sought: Olay

American skincare brand Olay used benefits sought behavioral segmentation when creating its Skin Advisor. The artificial intelligence beauty tool collects data from customers by asking them five to seven quick questions about their skin. The advisor then reveals the true age of the customer’s skin, and recommend products accordingly.

By asking the customer questions based around their skincare routine, and their preferences, Olay can collate data that can influence its product development, allowing the brand to bring out products that are most sought after and most relevant to their customers.

For example, through its Skin Advisor app, Olay gleaned that a large percentage of its consumer base wanted fragrance free products. Originally, these products were not even considered by Olay’s development team, but they were then able to be actioned for manufacturing. 

Olay did the same when data from the Advisor revealed that many customers were seeking Retinol based products, and the subsequent lack of Retinol products in its range was contributing to the brand losing custom. In response, Olay released Retinol 24 which has gone on to be one of the brand’s best selling products and which helped to completely transform their sales. 

Loyalty-based: DavidsTea

Another behavioral segmentation example is that of DavidsTea who uses behavioral segmentation in their loyalty programs.

DavidsTea is a Canadian specialty tea seller who wanted a fun way to personalize their messaging to their most valued customers. Their timeline style emails won general applause across the internet and are ranked as one of the best email marketing examples, ever.

As the above screenshot shows, when a customer reaches a specific anniversary with the company, they receive a “look back” email that contains data such as where their first purchase took place and uses the recording of data such as their most purchased teas to give a fun, by weight, comparison.

By receiving this email the customer feels unique and valued throughout their customer journey and will be more inclined to continue purchasing.

Other types of behavioral segmentation

Whilst we have covered the four main types of behavioral segmentation, there are other strategies that encompass different behavioral segments. These include:

Segmentation based on customer journey stage

A customer’s buying journey develops in four main stages, which make up the widely known AIDA model. The AIDA model recognizes this process of deliberation as a sequence of 4 steps: 

  1. Attention: The consumer becomes aware of the brand, product, or service. 
  2. Interest: The consumer’s curiosity develops into a deeper interest. 
  3. Desire: The consumer starts imagining the product in their everyday lives.
  4. Action: The consumer is ready to purchase.

It’s important to note the eCommerce buyer’s journey doesn’t end with the purchase. After the initial conversion follow Adoption (your customer makes repeated, regular purchases) and Advocacy (your customer becomes a loyal supporter of your brand, product, or service, frequently purchasing and actively promoting you by word of mouth, social proof, etc.).

Segmenting by the customer journey optimization opportunities gives direction to your business objectives: To pull customers into the attention stage you’ll need strong advertising campaigns, media coverage, influencer support, and all that jazz.

However, to nudge customers from desire to purchase you’ll need well-positioned USPs, clear and informative FAQs, associative product imagery, and good website UX. Not to forget that 8 in 10 customers often leave products in their cart, strong remarketing campaigns via email, SMS, or browser will also come in handy.

Our client, Vinomofo, used this type of segmentation to develop a strategy that targeted specific audiences including new, returning visitors, returning clients, and more. New visitors were served with a $15 off incentive, whereas returning clients saw premium services depending on their basket value. Check out the Vinomofo case study in full to learn about the results!

All in all, gaining a comprehensive idea of the stage your customer is in, as well as the touchpoints they interact with, allows you to provide more relevant and timely communication that can lead to higher conversion rates.

Segmentation based on engagement

Customer engagement can be categorized by three levels:

  • Occasional: Customers sometimes have contact with your brand, product, or service but not regularly. 
  • Regular: Customers regularly interact with your products or services, but fail to use them to the full extent. 
  • Intensive: Your products or services are embedded in your customer’s life and they buy from you at any opportunity. 

Just like customer journey stage segmentation, grouping customers based on their engagement levels can also help you to understand the reasons why their behavior falls into the appropriate category. 

For occasional customers, surveys could be a useful tool in determining whether they lack the motivation or trust to purchase. Providing regular customers with marketing material that highlights all the features of your product or service may display changes in their behavior. Those who are intensive advocates of your product or service could benefit from loyalty or reward schemes in order to retain their custom and incentivize further word-of-mouth marketing.

Use this information accordingly and adjust both your marketing messages and strategies to appeal to each segment. This will aid customer retention by dividing the relevant materials between those engaged, and those unengaged, and ultimately help to reduce churn.

Segmentation based on satisfaction

Behavioral segmentation based on satisfaction is the most straightforward of them all. Utilizing customer feedback can help you to enhance your product or service by understanding which features your customers most desire, or which could help you edge ahead of competitors.

Use marketing tools like surveys and offer incentives for completing the feedback such as a discount off of their next purchase. These will be worth it in the long run.

In conclusion

Behavioral segmentation is a vital part of any marketing strategy, and implemented in one of the above methods can display data trends and insights that you may have otherwise never have uncovered.

By understanding customer behavior you can use this to improve performance across other channels such as email marketing, SMS marketing, social media marketing, and chatbot marketing to diversify your results.

By segmenting your users by their behavioral data, you gain a more comprehensive look at how you can adjust your messaging, brand, marketing materials, and ultimately products or services in order to stay ahead of the competition and reduce your customer churn.

Behavioral segmentation FAQ:

What is behavioral segmentation?

Behavioral segmentation refers to a marketing segmentation process in which customers are divided by their behavior patterns when interacting with a business. 

What are the four types of behavioral segmentation?

The four main types of behavioral segmentation are based around purchase behavior, occasion-based purchases, benefits sought, and customer loyalty.

What is an example of behavioral segmentation?

Examples of behavioral segmentation include loyalty programs, happy hour events, survey collection, and recommendations, such as possible travel destinations, or ancillary products.

11 Best Resources To Learn About eCommerce Merchandising

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Ecommerce merchandising resources

Looking to learn more about eCommerce merchandising? We handpicked 11 merchandising resources for all types of learners: from online courses to books and webinars – find one that suits you the best!

Most marketers would say that working through their eCommerce merchandising strategy is quite an exciting time. It means you are taking the steps to improve your business model, increase your revenue, and grow a loyal customer base.

The art of displaying products and offers on shelves to increase sales has long been a staple of retail stores. E-commerce merchandising is a relatively new concept in comparison, but it has quickly become just as important for digital stores as it has been for brick and mortar.

We’ve rounded up the best eCommerce merchandising resources, including online learning courses, books, and workshops that will help you create a winning eCommerce merchandising strategy that works for your business, especially if you combine them with some the best eCommerce merchandising software.

Best merchandising courses online

1. Fast Track Retail Buying and Merchandising. This beginner course introduces you to the specialized terminology, concepts, jargon, and acronyms of merchandising. This Udemy course will give you a full picture of how everything ties in together to help you fully understand the complexities of the buying and merchandising cycle in your business.

2. Shopify Compass’ store design courses. Shopify has a series of courses in its Compass program (formerly known as Shopify Academy) that can help you create a stunning eCommerce experience that converts visitors into loyal customers.

The first course – How to Design Your Online Store (with Zero Design Experience) – will guide you through the principles of designing an eCommerce website. You will ensure you are designing for your target audience and will also learn how to create your own visual brand.

The second course – Introduction to Strategic Store Content – will teach you how to leverage strategic content to give your online store the strongest ROI. Lessons include learning how to optimize your website using best practices, and how every page on your website can work to lead potential customers through checkout.

The third course – Product Photography for eCommerce – focuses on the importance of product photography for eCommerce websites and teaches you how you can create your own low budget product photography. 

3. The Art and Science of Buying and Merchandising. With this 7.5 hours long online course available exclusively on Business of Fashion (BoF), you will gain a general understanding of the buying and merchandising functions in your business.

Taking this course you’ll get advice on how to use your data along with your instincts to make big business decisions. Finally, you’ll get a look into best-in-class companies and how they execute their buying and merchandising strategies.

4. Retail Management – Merchandising, Distribution and Marketing. While this free course available on Alison focuses mainly on brick-and-mortar stores, the first half of the course has some great lessons that can easily be applied to eCommerce websites. In Module 1, you will learn how to set price points, the basics of visual merchandising, the principles of design, and how to effectively design to attract customers. 

5. Product Styling for a Higher Revenue. Presenting your products in an appealing way in a big part of effective merchandising. Skillshare’s course will teach you how to create visually stunning images that are presented in a way that supports your brand story. Learning how to style your photos gives you the solid foundation you need to create beautiful images that convert.

Best merchandising books

6. Online Visual Merchandising: Structural Elements and Optimization for Apparel Web Stores. Written in 2014, Online Visual Merchandising is one of the first texts about how merchandising can be used in the digital world. Taking an academic angle, this book focuses on apparel online stores, but the lessons learned can be translated into any eCommerce website. 

7. Upstart!: Visual Identities For Start-Ups & New Businesses. If you are just getting started and you have yet to create a visual brand identity for your eCommerce business, Gestalten’s Upstart! is a great place to go for inspiration. This book showcases a range of visual identities that have been created by new businesses and start-ups and is a great way to find inspiration for your own visual merchandising.

8. The Ultimate Visual Merchandising Handbook. While this whitepaper on visual merchandising is written with retail stores in mind, 90% of the content is easily translated into the eCommerce world. The Tips and Tricks chapter is very applicable and offers some great takeaways and the How-To Measure VM Strategies provides a very interesting take on how to track and measure the success of your visual merchandising initiatives. 

9. The Elements of Visual Merchandising. Another book that focuses mostly on brick-and-mortar stores, The Elements of Visual Merchandising has a lot of wonderful takeaways that can be applied to an online store. The Importance of shopping environment is one section to take note of – how can you create an eCommerce shopping environment that keeps your customers coming back? And the section on creative applications can help you to understand just how far you can go to entice your customers.

Best merchandising webinars and conferences

10. NRF NXT’s 2020 Digital Conference. This annual conference is the biggest retail eCommerce and digital marketing event. Happening virtually on July 20-22, 2020, the NRF NXT conference is known to focus on merchandising strategies as well as other salient topics for eCommerce businesses. This year’s session on end-to-end execution for AI results and creating growth through experimentation will have direct implications for any digital merchandiser.

11. E-commerce Merchandising Informational Webinar. The University of Vermont offers a 4-week intensive course on eCommerce merchandising and this pre-recorded webinar gives you insight into the course but also into the basics of eCommerce merchandising, the current trends in eCommerce merchandising, the 3 biggest issues eCommerce merchandisers face, and a few tips and tricks to get you started.

In conclusion

While eCommerce merchandising is still a new field and the resources available are working to catch up to the times, there are a lot of great places you can get your information from. And most importantly, a lot of the content that has been created over the years for retail merchandising still rings true. Don’t be afraid to take what works for your business and leave the rest behind. Good luck!

6 Top eCommerce Merchandising Tool + Strategies to Drive Serious Sales

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Best eCommerce merchandising tools | Yieldify

We’ve rounded up 6 amazing eCommerce merchandising tools to help you kickstart your merchandising efforts:

1. Yieldify
2. Hotjar
3. Hawksearch
4. Shutter Stream
5. AstraFit
6. Guided shopping

Disclaimer: Yieldify is our product. We’ve done our best to present the information fairly because we want to help you make an educated decision but we’re especially proud of what we offer. We’ve seen it transform conversion rates, lead generation and revenue for so many brands – large and small – all over the world. You may have seen we use the Yieldify platform and services on our own website too. Learn more here and schedule a call with an advisor

Struggling to choose from the variety of eCommerce merchandising tools available on the market?

We’ve narrowed it down to 6 must-have technologies that will help you scale your eCommerce site to new heights. These tools can help online retailers improve marketing campaigns, customer experience, improve average order value and more.

Merchandising is essential in the eCommerce world. Effective merchandising helps lead potential customers through the buyer’s journey and aims to convert them into loyal customers before they bounce to a new website.

With a solid merchandising strategy, you can influence potential buyers’ purchasing decisions, which helps you increase revenue, reach sales targets, and make lifelong customer relationships. However, even the strongest merchandising strategy needs technology resources to be fulfilled.

6 must-have merchandising tools for eCommerce

1. Yieldify: personalized customer journeys

Personalization is key to any strong eCommerce merchandising strategy. You need to make your customers feel like their shopping experience is tailored to their needs, much like a salesperson would in a retail store.

Yieldify is a fully-managed website personalization solution focused on creating highly-converting eCommerce customer journeys.

When it comes to merchandising, Yieldify’s solution is multifold:

  1. First, you get a powerful audience segmentation engine, which allows you to create and target specific customer segments based on demographic, geographic, technographic, and real-time behavioral data.
  2. Once you decide who you’re trying to reach, Yieldify’s CRO experts deploy a variety of well-timed campaigns for every step of your customer journey: From taking full advantage of lead capture software at the awareness stage to dynamic social proof at the moment of purchase, and beyond.
  3. Using behavioral triggers, Yieldify’s personalization engine allows you to deliver tailored messaging based on real-time customer behavior, such as interaction with specific product categories or pages, shopping cart value, site searches, and more.
  4. Yieldify’s team of designers elevate your merchandising strategy by implementing cohesive brand imagery and style in all the interactive elements used to enhance the customer journey.

To see more about how Yieldify can help you improve your eCommerce merchandising strategy and turn more website visitors into buyers, check out their case studies here.

2. Hotjar: heatmaps and behavioral analytics

Heatmaps are arguably the most powerful way to visualize and understand what your customers are doing on your website. And Hotjar, the industry-leading heatmap and behavior analytics tool, is a great addition to any merchandiser’s tool belt.

Hotjar provides a variety of ways for eCommerce marketers to optimize their website merchandising strategy. Using their heatmaps tool, you can visualize the clicks, taps, and scrolling behavior of your website visitors. This allows you to see the areas most browsers tend to focus on, as well as the ones they overlook.

Ecommerce merchandising tools - Hotjar

The most common use case is to see how far down your page customers actually scroll. If you have placed important information at the bottom of the product page, such as customer reviews, 360º product close-up video, or – god forbid! – your “Add to cart” button, but your heatmaps show that only 15% of visitors scroll down to see it, it’s a good indication to move that crucial information above the fold.

Hotjar also allows you to make session recordings. You will be able to see in real-time how potential customers are interacting with your eCommerce store. This all but eliminates the guesswork and lets you see exactly what usability issues they may face and what areas of your website are working for you and what areas you need to focus on to improve customer experience.

HotJar can be placed across key areas of eCommerce sites to gather data on the key steps within the eCommerce funnel. For example, you can place heatmaps and set up session recordings on a category page to review click through rate of product placement. You can then repeat this process across different product lines.

Alternatively, you could place these on a specific product page to see how product descriptions are performing, are the complementary products you’re cross selling having the right impact? You can review session recordings to see if you’re keeping the customer’s attention

Lastly, Hotjar enables you to gather more feedback and understand what your potential customers want to achieve when visiting your website with their feedback polls feature. You can target questions to customers anywhere on your page to gain valuable information on what is and isn’t working for them on your eCommerce website.

For example, you can ask how the visitor came across your website, what motivated or prevented them from making a purchase, or how to generally improve the website experience. See more Hotjar poll examples here with lots of them focusing on eCommerce.

3. Hawksearch – next-level product search

Effective search is an essential element of your merchandising strategy. You want a search tool that is simple, functional, and easy-to-use. But that is the bare minimum of what your search needs to achieve – with Hawksearch, it can do so much more.

Hawksearch is a powerful merchandising tool that delivers the right content, at the right time, and allows you to create the best user experience possible. With Hawksearch, your product categories can be applied as search filters, and be displayed based on the search results page.

You can also add a layer of personalization to search results, to highlight products based using location, weather, past purchases, and more. And finally, you can use the power of machine learning to identify relevant recommendations to show potential customers to upsell and cross-sell based on their behaviors.

According to AddThis, 84% of eCommerce sites don’t actively optimize or measure their on-site search. This in itself presents you with a quick opportunity to improve user experience and convert browsers into buyers.

A study by eConsultancy showed that while the average conversion rate across all websites measured at 2.77%, site search users converted at 4.63%. Whilst we can always try and guide users through websites there will be nothing quicker than effective site search.

4. Shutter Stream – 360º product photography

For eCommerce websites, having excellent product photography is a big part of online merchandising. In retail stores, it’s easy enough to display your products – customers can pick up, examine, and try on products in person. Online, you need to make sure that your product images are high-quality and appealing to entice potential customers to buy from your website.

Product pages are one of the most important pages on an eCommerce site, images make up a huge part of that. According to a study by Etsy, about 90% of surveyed shoppers believe the quality of eCommerce images were very important when deciding whether or not to make a purchase.

Shutter Stream creates software and hardware for eCommerce product photography that is designed for users of any skill level. The goal is to help anyone and everyone create high quality still and 360-degree product images in-house instead of needing to hire a professional photographer.

Shutter Stream Photography Software integrates image composition, camera control, image editing and image processing tools into a single standalone application that helps to automate and batch process standard imaging tasks.

5. AstraFit – virtual fitting room

If your eCommerce website is selling clothing, then let us introduce you to your newest employee – AstraFit. The smart assistant you never knew you needed, AstraFit helps to create a personalized shopping experience by advising potential customers on product sizes and helping them to pick the best fitting clothing.

AstraFit is a must-have merchandising tool in that it gives you a virtual fitting room right on your site by allowing them to see how garments fit their unique figures, by providing them with an easy to understand description of how the garment will fit and feel, and giving them a personalized fit score for each garment they look at.

6. Guided Shopping

Research has found that 83% of shoppers need support during their online journey. Providing a guided shopping experience can come in many forms, from simple chatbots and quizzes, to virtual shopping assistants, or via a tool such as Shopware.

This is a simple but very effective tool to have within online merchandising strategies. Guided shopping helps you keep customers’ attention, promote specific product lines, push relevant products, and can also help cross selling by showing what other customers also purchased.

A great example of this can be seen below from Sephora which provide users with a quiz to help guide their experience and quicken product discovery.

Once users are finished with the quiz they are provided with specific products that can fulfil their needs. This leads to effective product placement in quiz search results, will be a more engaging format than simply searching for products, and provide a unique shopping experience. You can see an example results page below.


No matter what your eCommerce niche is, online merchandising is something that you need to implement into your business. A strong merchandising strategy can help you increase your revenue – for example, one study found that personalized product recommendations resulted in a conversion rate that was 5.5 times higher.

Being able to implement a merchandising strategy is not without its obstacles, so finding a good merchandising tool that simplifies processes along the way is priceless.

Disclaimer: Yieldify is our product. We’ve done our best to present the information fairly because we want to help you make an educated decision but we’re especially proud of what we offer. We’ve seen it transform conversion rates, lead generation and revenue for so many brands – large and small – all over the world. You may have seen we use the Yieldify platform and services on our own website too. Learn more here and schedule a call with an advisor

Next ? 11 Resources to Learn Merchandising

How to Create a Winning eCommerce Merchandising Strategy

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How to create a winning ecommerce merchandising strategy | Yieldify

Wondering how to create a winning merchandising strategy? Read our blog post to learn about 7 surefire merchandising strategies to boost eCommerce sales.

Often associated with brick and mortar stores, a solid merchandising strategy can make or break your eCommerce store.

If you’ve never given thought to how your eCommerce store is organized, how you present products to customers, or how potential customers move through your online store, now’s the time to dive in and develop your eCommerce merchandising strategy.

Building a strong merchandising strategy is key to increasing your conversions and sales. It helps you determine which products are most likely to be purchased and whether or not the customer has a good experience while shopping.

Merchandising strategy quote

There is a wide variety of merchandising strategies you can employ in your eCommerce store – different strategies will work better for different business models. Read on to learn how to start creating an eCommerce merchandising strategy that is designed to increase revenue.

7 eCommerce merchandising strategies proven to boost sales

Every element of your eCommerce store plays a role in creating an effective merchandising strategy. How these elements interact with each other adds another dimension to your strategy. From your homepage and product pages to menus and checkout process, you need to be aware of how to optimize each element.

When it is boiled down, the purpose of merchandising is to grow your revenue by increasing sales, increasing average order value, and creating loyal, repeat customers.

Here are seven ways that will help you to create a bulletproof merchandising strategy and move the needle on the most important business metrics:

1. Understand your customer journey

How do your customers find their way to your eCommerce store? And once they find their way to your store, what do they do next? Analyzing your customer journey map will give you valuable data on how to interact with different customer personas and ensure you are connecting with them at the right time, in the right way.

Mapping your customer journey involves gathering data and thinking critically about how your customers currently engage with you, but the end result is invaluable when creating an effective merchandising strategy.

Download eCommerce engagement map | Yieldify

A customer journey map is a diagram that outlines the steps that a customer takes when engaging with your company. The more touchpoints a customer has, the more in-depth and valuable the map becomes.

Think about how your customers are interacting with your brand: Do they follow you on social media, subscribe to your newsletter, find you via a search engine? However they arrive, every interaction they have with you is an integral piece of information that will help you shape a merchandising strategy that effectively reaches your target customer.

2. Shape traffic accordingly

Once traffic arrives at your eCommerce site, it is important to funnel it to the right places.

More often than not, the first customer touchpoint with your online store will be the homepage. It is important to ensure that your homepage layout is optimized for conversions as this will set the stage for how your potential customers navigate and interact with your eCommerce store.

Keep your design simple, photography effective, and copy straightforward. A study conducted by GoodFirms found that 84.6% of people believe that crowded web design is the most common mistake made in the web design industry.

Ecommerce web design mistakes

Basically, you need to Marie Kondo your eCommerce website. Make use of white space, and most importantly, don’t pull customers in different directions – give them one, max two focal points above the fold.

A great place to guide their attention is to new collections, best-selling products, or an eye-catching sale section that highlights current discounts and promotions.

Your website navigation should be simple, clear, and easy to understand. Think of this as the map to your website – if new visitors can’t figure out how to locate things they want, they will bounce.

Ecommerce merchandising strategy - Homepage

You should have categories and subcategories that are descriptive and a menu logic that is easy to follow. You can also add product images to your main navigation categories to really drive home what it is that they can expect on each category page.

Finally, make sure your search bar stands out and easy to use. According to a survey conducted by InstantSearch, customers that use site search are 3x more likely to complete a purchase on an eCommerce website. Think about using clear language when labeling your search bar and implementing an autocomplete feature to help customers find exactly what they are looking for.

Higher conversions from sessions with search

3. Personalize the experience

In 2020, consumers no longer want shallow, one-off experiences with brands they purchase from. Instead, data shows, more than 60% of modern consumers expect brands to connect with them.

Knowing this, more and more brands are adopting certain personalization strategies to create bespoke shopping experiences for their customers. The best way to do this is to leverage your data and use it to create unique customer segments that you’ll be able to target with personalized offers and messages.

Quite often, eCommerce marketers look at demographic and geographic factors, such as age, gender, physical location, family status, etc. to craft personalized copy and use selective photography to appeal to a particular segment:

  • A clothing store could choose to highlight their sale on parkas for someone living in New York while a Los Angelite will be served with an offer for swimsuits;
  • A tourism company can change their website hero image to reflect romantic SPA getaways for two vs. family-friendly travel packages;
  • A bank can have multiple microsites with services for a specific age group (student loans vs. retirement plans).

Less popular, but arguably more effective are psychographic and behavioral segmentation. With psychographics, retailers can target customers based on hobbies, values, lifestyles, and more. Behavioral segmentation enables brands to divide their audience based on previous purchasing behavior or real-time interactions with the eCommerce store.

For example, you can look into their previous purchases, purchase frequency, favorite product categories, average order value, and more to create a personalized experience through the touchpoints they are served.

To tie it back to merchandising, you can serve overlays that highlight more expensive luxury goods to customers whose AOV is usually high. Alternatively, those who tend to purchase fewer or cheaper products can be served with cross-selling product recommendations to increase their basket value.

4. Grow the shopping cart

A higher volume of transactions and more items per transaction directly correlate to an increase in profits. A strong merchandising strategy helps you optimize your website to allow for more purchases with a higher value.

Cross-selling is a technique we’ve already mentioned before. It’s designed to get customers to spend more by purchasing related or complementary products. To make the most of cross-selling, you should present related items on your product details page to pique the interest of your customers.

Upselling is another technique that gets customers to spend more by purchasing an ungraded or premium version of what they already have in their shopping cart. Here’s how our client Petal & Pup cleverly used checkout progress bars and product recommendations to boost the shopping cart value.

Ecommerce merchandising strategy - Upselling

5. Generate excitement

Never underestimate the power of a sense of urgency. Merchandising strategies that focus on generating excitement understand that when something is limited edition, seasonal, or low in stock there is a general sense of necessity.

For example, Starbucks’s seasonal drinks are a perfect example of generating excitement. Millions of people wait every year with bated breath for the release of the Pumpkin Spiced Latte – only available for a limited time, this seasonal favorite is a big moneymaker for the coffee chain.

Impulse buys, new arrivals, seasonal items, limited edition, special items, and rapidly growing segments are all different ways to drive excitement. Our client Linenhouse used real-time social proof to indicate how many people viewed a particular product in the last 24 hours, thus showcasing it’s a popular and in-demand buy.

Linenhouse social proof campaign | Yieldify

6. Strengthen your brand image

Strengthening your brand might seem more like a marketing strategy than a merchandising strategy. But enhancing a brand through merchandising looks very different: It focuses on strategies that highlight the quality, service, price, variety, delivery, and presentation of your products.

If you are looking to increase your brand image for merchandising purposes, consider exclusive product offerings, highlighting your USPs and special offers like free shipping and returns, a money-back guarantee, or an extended warranty.

Exit intent overlay - Free shipping | Yieldify

7. Defend your turf

Unless you’ve found an untapped niche, odds are there is some competition in your eCommerce space. By using a turf-defending merchandising strategy, you are actively maintaining and protecting your market share against competitors.

Usually, these strategies take the form of aggressive pricing and promotion strategies. Because this can dig into your margin, we suggest taking an equally proactive but less aggressive approach to defending your turf.

You can leverage customer reviews or testimonials by placing them on the homepage as well as product pages to show potential customers why you are the best choice in the industry. You can also use a variety of trust badges to instill faith in your customers.

Ecommerce merchandising strategy - Customer reviews

In conclusion

Spending the time to build a strong merchandising strategy is a worthwhile investment. Let’s remember once more the 7 merchandising strategies that are sure to boost conversions and revenue:

  1. Understand your customer journey
  2. Shape traffic accordingly
  3. Personalize the experience
  4. Grow the shopping cart
  5. Generate excitement
  6. Strengthen your brand image
  7. Defend your turf

You will need to spend time to determine which strategies work best for your eCommerce business – the above seven strategies can be mixed and matched in an endless variety of configurations. But when you finally land on the perfect strategy, you will see an increase in revenue.

Next ? 5 Must-Have eCommerce Merchandising Tools

Geographic Segmentation Explained With 5 Examples

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Geographic Segmentation for eCommerce | Yieldify

Learn how to effectively use geographic segmentation in your eCommerce marketing strategy. Get inspired by real-world examples from industry-leading brands.

There is no easier route into personalized marketing than market segmentation. By breaking down your customer base into groups, you can target your resources and ensure your audience receives the messaging that is most relevant to them.

There are 4 main types of market segmentation, and each offers a different way to define an audience:

  • Demographic segmentation – grouping customers by identifiable non-character traits like age, gender, or income.
  • Psychographic segmentation – grouping customers based on their personalities and interests, including beliefs, hobbies, and life goals.
  • Geographic segmentation – grouping customers with regards to their physical location.
  • Behavioral segmentation – grouping customers based on their past actions, like spending habits, browsing habits, and brand engagements.

The premise is simple enough, but the key to successful market segmentation is understanding exactly how it can best work for you. Today we’re going to do a deep-dive on geographic segmentation, and discover all the different ways your marketing can benefit from it.

What is geographic segmentation?

Geographic segmentation involves segmenting your audience based on the region they live or work in. This can be done in any number of ways: grouping customers by the country they live in, or smaller geographical divisions, from region to city, and right down to postal code.

Geographic segmentation might be the simplest form of market segmentation to get your head around, but there are still plenty of ways it can be used that companies never think about.

The size of the area you target should change depending on your needs as a business. Generally speaking, the larger the business the bigger the areas you’ll be targeting. After all, with a wider potential audience, targeting each postcode individually simply won’t be cost-effective.

In total, there are six factors that pertain to geographic segmentation and can be used to create customer segments:

  1. Location (country, state, city, ZIP code)
  2. Timezone
  3. Climate and season
  4. Cultural preferences
  5. Language
  6. Population type and density (urban, suburban, exurban or rural)

Geographic segmentation benefits

Easy to implement

Geographic segmentation is different from the other types of market segmentation (especially psychographic and behavioral) because it requires fewer data points.

As a result, it offers a quick and effective route into personalized marketing and can offer tangible ways to reach potential customers using only their location as a starting point.

Higher product relevancy

This helps not only to improve sales but also creates a better relationship between customer and business. Presenting relevant items to customers improves user experience, reducing the amount of effort they need to put in to find what they want.

Improved advertising effectiveness

By presenting more targeted ads, you’ll guarantee that more of your marketing budget is spent reaching relevant customers, and less wasted on those who have no need or interest in your product.

This isn’t to say that geographic segmentation is always the best strategy to employ. It has specific uses for specific businesses and industries. Small businesses working in localized areas will benefit immensely from targeting their marketing to just these areas. Big businesses with products that will have consumer hotspots in specific regions will also benefit.

An international manufacturer of big four-wheel drive vehicles will achieve more sales targeting customers in rural areas than those who drive congested city streets.

But businesses that sell products that do not depend on region-specific patterns won’t benefit as much from geographic segmentation. Consumers of Corn Flakes are likely to be as common in one region as the next.

Geographical parameters by which to segment

There are several geographical parameters you can use, these include:


Getting the obvious out of the way. Segmenting by location gives you a lot of options. It could be a city, a town, different countries, or even a continent. This can also be used to identify a new geographic location your business may wish to expand into.


Do you think they are buying winter tires in Dubai? Segmenting by climate helps you identify areas where the climate is appropriate for your product or service.


When addressing your target market you need to account for cultural variations and sensitivities. For example, In Western cultures, white symbolizes purity, elegance, peace, and cleanliness. However, in China white represents death, mourning, and bad luck.


This can either focus on density or population type. A brand may choose to focus on a densely populated city area, for example, a fitness chain wouldn’t set up a gym in a rural area. You can also overlay demographic information here to find target audiences.

Urban, suburban and rural

These three different environments all need different and specific marketing strategies as customer needs are different. Those in cities and suburbs tend to have more purchasing power than rural areas, so products can be more expensive.


Not every country in the world wants or can be marketed to in English. If you’re running a marketing campaign it will be essential it’s done in the local language. You’ll need to make sure you’re ready to enter a market if all your marketing messages are going to need to be changed.

Geographic Segmentation Examples

An example of geographic segmentation is an ice cream company segmenting a country by how hot different regions are and targeting those specific areas that are hottest and therefore more likely to buy ice cream.

But that’s a very basic example.

There are however a number of different variables that you might consider when setting up your own geographic segmentation. These are the different ways you might choose to target consumers once you’ve decided on the location you want to focus on. Let’s look at how each might best be used.

Example 1: Segmenting based on location

Though all geographic segmentation involves grouping customers by the area they live or work in, here we’re talking about selling purely based on the availability of a product to a certain area. This is a tool that is useful to businesses that only have the infrastructure or facilities to serve customers within certain boundaries.

The food box subscription service Oddbox has, until recently, only had the infrastructure to deliver within the borders of London. However, they have now expanded to deliver to another nearby city, Brighton.

Using geographic segmentation they were able to target potential customers living in the city and deliver relevant marketing via social media ads. See their ads targeting Londoners and Brighton residents back to back above. As a result, users who weren’t previously aware of Oddbox can be shown the service now available to them.

For bigger, global brands segmentation by country becomes even more important. One brand that always hones it’s advertisements to the country it’s targeting is McDonald’s.

To see exactly how they do this watch the video below.

Whilst the above videos can be used to address an entire country, some brands choose to go even more local and focus on specific cities.

One brand that tried this was Nike with their “Nothing Beats A Londoner” video. The video does a great job of addressing football fans in London by including key landmarks, local football stars, and general life in London.

It worked so well that it shot to the top of YouTube’s trending chart within hours. It was even covered by national newspaperstweeted by London mayor Sadiq Khan, racking up millions of views in the process.

Example 2: Segmenting based on time zone

Time zone marketing is most useful to large businesses, as they are more likely to be operating across multiple time zones. It can also be of interest to smaller businesses if they operate in nations that have more than one time zone, as the United States.

Email marketing is an area that can hugely benefit from segmenting by time zone. Whilst big announcements and press releases should generally be shared at a set time, generic email marketing often benefits from being seen at a certain time of day.

If you are looking to have your customers read your email first thing on a Monday morning, segmenting by time zone allows it to arrive at 8:45 am local time, putting your email right at the top of the pile.

Example 3: Segmenting based on climate and season

There’s nothing worse than a badly targeted advert – except being caught without a winter coat in the middle of a deep freeze. Marketing based on the climate or season in a specific location allows you to present the most relevant information to your audience.

Seasonal offers tend to run for long periods, like the IKEA promotion above, which was marketed to British customers just as the summer kicked in. They can also be extremely time-sensitive, like a supermarket’s promotion of ice cream during an unexpected heatwave.

If you’re targeting an area that is consistently hot, or perhaps for the duration of summer months you could get a bit more creative. The below example from Coca-Cola does just that.

The below outdoor advertisement is in Dallas, Texas. Summer temperatures here are consistently above 95°F so the ad works really well.

Example 4: Segmenting based on cultural preferences

Different regions will have different values that determine whether or not customers decide to make a purchase. In some cases, these values will be determined by the dominant local religion or long-standing traditions and customs, but in other cases, they can be more esoteric local habits that nonetheless need to be understood and catered for.

One of the most common considerations for food manufacturers is religious dietary restrictions. Companies like Haribo that primarily sell gelatin-based sweets, use slightly adapted recipes to cater to the needs of certain demographics.

The German-based company’s main factory in Bonn and their UK factory in Pontefract create their standard range of sweets. Their base in 99% Muslim-majority Turkey, however, makes and markets only halal gummies, using bovine gelatine instead of the porcine gelatine found elsewhere. 

From an advertising point of view it’s also important to consider local culture. A recent example of this is Toyota’s TV adverts for its new car the Camry.

In total eight commercials were made to target different demographics across America.

Toyota even went one step further and ran the commercials in between TV Programmes whose main viewership matched the ads. People would see different commercials based on whether they were watching “Scandal” on ABC, which has a high number of African-American viewers, VS a Spanish-language network show on NBC such as Universo.

Example 5: Segmenting based on population density

Another variable to consider is the density and type of the population in the area you’re targeting. People living in urban areas have very different experiences than those in suburban, exurban, or rural regions.

Being able to segment by population density is especially useful for home and garden retailers. Imagine you’re someone like Home Depot. You probably shouldn’t pitch city-dwellers an electric riding lawn tractor, when you’d have much more luck marketing them a manual push reel lawn mower, which takes up less space and is suitable for small garden maintenance jobs.

Which lawn mower is more suitable for a city-dweller?

Don’t forget about the other types of market segmentation

Overlaying other types of market segmentation on top of these geographic parameters will allow you to drill down to a specific target market you can run targeted advertisements to. This ultimately will help you achieve customer growth and product sales.

In conclusion

Market segmentation is such a powerful tool for reaching your customers in ways that feel relevant and useful to them. Geographic segmentation is perhaps the simplest way to get your foot in the game.

Think about exactly how your company can best benefit from it: Are you a big company that can utilize different messaging across different regions, or a small business that stands to get a lot more bang for their marketing buck if they target their local area? Maybe your product will be of particular interest to city-dwellers, or most in-demand during certain seasons.

Whatever the case, there’s an opportunity to use geographic segmentation to your benefit.

Get in touch with Yieldify to discuss using audience segmentation to personalize your customer experiences!

Geographic segmentation FAQs:

What is geographic segmentation in marketing?

Geographic segmentation is a marketing strategy that presents potential customers with targeted messaging based on their geographic location.

What is an example of geographic segmentation?

A great example of geographic segmentation is a clothing retailer that presents online customers with different products based on the weather or season in the region they reside in. A customer in New York will require much different clothing in the winter months than one living in Los Angeles.

What companies use geographic segmentation?

Geographic segmentation is used by companies across many sectors, but it’s most useful to businesses selling goods that might be affected by changes in climate or local customs. Companies with very defined regional interest, like sports teams, or small businesses offering local delivery, also benefit from marketing targeted this way.

E-commerce Video Marketing Strategy: 2023 Guide – Yieldify

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Video marketing for eCommerce

Video is known to build trust and increase engagement levels. But what kinds of videos does your eCommerce business need in order to see a revenue uplift? Here, we look at six types of eCommerce videos known to boost sales.

An eCommerce marketing strategy is dynamic and often made up of many separate elements. You’re running ads on social media. You’re writing emails. You’re promoting your product store… 

Having an omnichannel marketing strategy is key to success, but you may still be struggling to create the type of content your audience wants to consume. Look no further than online video marketing.

In this post, we’re going to cover the reasons why you should create an eCommerce video marketing strategy and give you a variety of video ideas to choose from.

Let’s dive in!

4 reasons why your business needs a video marketing strategy

1. Video converts viewers into customers

Your customers are more likely to buy your product if your eCommerce marketing strategy leverages the content medium they prefer. 

Wyzowl found that two-thirds of people (66%) said they’d prefer to watch a short video to learn about a product or service, which is over 3 times higher than people who said they’d prefer to read a text-based article (18%). 

(Source: Wyzlow)

Product videos and video content marketing are the tools you should use to sell your products. But that’s not all Wyzowl discovered in their survey. 

Turns out, 80% of video marketers say video has directly helped increase sales.

In return, 84% of consumers say that they’ve been convinced to buy a product or service by watching a brand’s video.

2. Video builds trust between you and your audience

In 2019, Stackla conducted a survey of over 1,500 consumers and marketers in the US, UK, and Australia. The study revealed that 90% of people say authenticity is important when deciding what brands they like and support. This is even more true for younger generations. 

Video is the most human form of digital communication. 

It displays your voice, your face, your eyes as if you’re standing in front of your customers. It lets you show off your personality. And it demonstrates confidence in your brand and products. All of which can create a strong bond between you and your audience. 

3. Mobile users crave video

If you would rather read text or watch a video on your smartphone, which one would YOU rather do? The answer seems obvious, and you probably assumed your audience prefers video, too. 

Well, YouTube confirms it. More than 70% of YouTube watch time comes from mobile devices, according to YouTube’s own research

(Source: Oberlo)

The best part? Consumers who watch your video content on their mobile devices are nearly 2x more likely to feel a personal connection to your brand and 1.3x more likely than desktop users. This is super important to keep in mind. Make videos that cater to mobile users first. 

4. Video is the best content for social media

From ads to tutorials, videos perform better on social media and get higher engagement more than virtually all other forms of content. So make sure you create a video that grabs attention.

On Twitter, for example, Tweets with videos are ten times more likely to 10x more engagement than Tweets without video. Facebook videos have an average engagement rate of 6.13% compared to just 3.6% for Facebook posts in general.

The newest video platform, TikTok, has the highest average engagement rate posts of any social media platform. And 90% of people say they have discovered a brand or product on YouTube.

It should be obvious at this point that eCommerce success is closely related to having a strong video marketing strategy in place. What you have to figure out now is, what type of videos should you create?

6 types of eCommerce videos you need in your marketing strategy

1. Product close-up

Buyers want to see videos of your product that make them feel as if they are holding it themselves. Product close-up videos zoom in on your product and display specific features viewers may not see in pictures, or demonstrate a function that has to be observed very closely, or simply show off your product from multiple angles. 

Product close-up videos leave nothing to the imagination. You should try to capture as much detail as possible so customers will have a clear understanding of what they’re buying.

Here’s a product close-up example from Truwood watches, showcasing their product in various environments and angles.

2. Product overview

A product overview video goes in-depth into the features and benefits of your product. This type of video usually features a speaker demonstrating how the product works and why your audience should consider buying it. This can also help build excitement for your product, especially when leading up to a product launch date. 

Here’s a product overview example for the Olympus’ OM-D E-M5 Mark III camera. 

You’ll notice he describes many of the top features of the product, how to use those features, how this camera differs from previous versions, and why photographers should buy it. You’ll want to describe your product in a similar way.

3. Video testimonials 

Social proof is one of the most powerful and persuasive motivators to get people to buy your product, and it’s essential to include in your eCommerce marketing strategy. 

Nielsen surveyed more than 28,000 people in 56 countries and found that 92% of consumers around the world trust recommendations from friends and family above ALL other forms of advertising, which represents an increase of 18% since 2007. And Brightlocal found that buyers prefer to read an average of 40 online reviews before believing a business’s star-rating

Here’s a great example of a video testimonial for the Roku device. The goal is to have your customers describe specifically what they like about the product, how it helped them, and how it improved their life or solved their problem.

4. Product tutorial

While the product overview shows off the features and benefits of a product in broad strokes, a product tutorial video demonstrates how a customer can perform specific tasks using the product through step-by-step instructions. 

These types of videos are super important for skeptical buyers who are wary of being disappointed by big marketing claims. Showing them how to achieve a particular goal with your product is a powerful way to convince them to buy it. 

Here’s a product tutorial example demonstrating how to use the Milk Makeup Kush liquid eyeliner.

The other reason product tutorials are a crucial piece of any eCommerce video marketing strategy is because you want your customers to succeed when using your product.

If they buy it but don’t know how to use it, or use it poorly, they won’t remain your customer for long. But if you set them up for success with easy-to-follow product tutorials, they’re much more likely to stick around.

5. Message from the Founder/CEO

A message from the Founder of the CEO video is not used by many companies, but when executed well, it can be a powerful tool to add to your eCommerce video marketing strategy. 

Featuring your company leader in a video is one of the best ways to personalize a brand and develop a deep connection with your audience and customers. A study by Ace Metrix revealed that ads featuring CEOs performed better, on average than ads without a CEO. 

This type of video has many different uses. The CEO of Mancrates created a video where he tells the story of their company and expresses gratitude for what they’ve been able to accomplish thanks to their loyal customers.

One of the most famous examples is the Dollar Shave Club video ad featuring the founder, Michael Dubin, mocking their competition and positioning their razors as a cheaper, superior option.

There are many ways to make a message from the CEO video. In fact, you could produce the other videos on this list, but instead of an actor or other associate in your company, your CEO is in the video. The only requirement is that your CEO is good on camera, authentic, and charismatic. If they check those boxes, then you should definitely produce this type of video.

6. Explainer video

Explainer videos are very popular and widely used to explain your product in a short period of time. They usually tell a story about a customer journey optimization done right, from a customer dealing with their problem, finding your product as the solution, and achieving outstanding results with the product. 

Many explainer videos are animated but they can also be live-action. They’re usually 30-seconds to a minute in length. These videos don’t necessarily show off all the features of your product but hit on the emotional reasons why your customer needs a product like yours and shows the outcome of having your product. 

Here’s a great example from Tommy John undershirts. They open with a central problem they know their audience deals with and position their undershirts as the perfect solution. 

How to start incorporating video In your eCommerce marketing strategy

By now you should know why it’s important to use videos in your eCommerce marketing strategy, and what type of videos you can use in different stages of the customer journey.

But where do you start if you want to make the most use of your eCommerce videos? There are a couple of no-brainer steps, such as:

1. Post these videos on your social media channels: YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, etc. Make sure to match the dimensions, length, and other technical parameters of each platform. Consider adding subtitles to your videos for people who don’t like to watch with sound. Also take into account what time you are posting, for example, the best time to post on Instagram may be different to the best time to post on Twitter.

2. Use them in your lead generation and retargeting ads. Video ads allow you to build an audience of engaged people because you can track their video view statistics. Combined with static image ads and served at the right moment, video ads can generate huge ROAS.

(Source: Facebook IQ)

3. Embed these videos on your website: homepage, about pages, product pages, FAQ pages, etc. Having videos on these pages will boost average time spent on the site and will likely improve the customer experience by providing answers on the most relevant questions.

4. Serve them across the entire customer journey: from lead capture forms to exit-intent overlays, etc. At Yieldify, we built multiple campaigns for our clients across various eCommerce industry verticals.

For instance, direct-to-consumer sportswear brand HYLETE ran a cart abandonment campaign highlight free shipping and returns to see which type of content – still image overlay or a video overlay – would generate more engagement. The results revealed that video was more effective at driving conversions, with 42.2% uplift versus the control group.

In another example, Yieldify helped France’s leading home shopping network, M6 Boutique, reinforce its core brand values using video. To visitors browsing the M6 Boutique website, Yieldify showed a live stream of M6 Boutique’s TV channel in a corner Notification. As a result, the M6 Boutique live stream gained 150,000 additional views in just a month.

Lastly, we teamed up with the award-winning festival operator We Are FSTVL to create an exit-intent overlay with an embedded highlight reel from the previous year’s event. The brand split-tested click-to-play video with sound against a video that autoplayed without sound. The results showed that an auto-playing video created greater engagement, achieving a +33% uplift in customers clicking through to get tickets.

Click here to see how Yieldify can increase your conversions and show you a better way to use video in your eCommerce marketing strategy. 

This article was written by Joe Martin from CloudApp.

Joe is CloudApp’s GM and VP of Marketing. With more than 13 years of experience in the industry, he provides strategic guidance on how to build and use the right stack for businesses. Formerly Head of Social Analytics at Adobe, Joe believes marketers need smart training and leadership to scale company growth. Connect with Joe on LinkedIn and follow him on Twitter @joeDmarti.

How to Compete with Amazon: 3 Ways to Take On the eCommerce Giant

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How to compete with Amazon | Yieldify

Are you an eCommerce SMB wondering how to compete with Amazon? Then this article is for you. We look at 3 ways even small and medium retailers can take on the eCommerce behemoth.

From a bookstore outside of Seattle to an eCommerce giant, the story of Amazon is both fascinating and inspiring. That is unless you’re an eCommerce entrepreneur trying to cut a piece of the market share for your business…

The platform that controls 45% of the eCommerce market share in the US (expected to reach 50% in 2021) can seem impossible to surpass and, frankly, quite intimidating to most.

Amazon GMV growth 2021
Projected retail eCommerce GMV share of Amazon in the US (Source: Statista)

Given its size, everyone who sells physical products through an online store is essentially in competition with Amazon. The niche, industry, or the size of your business don’t really matter since this is a platform that boasts about easy access all over the world, fast shipping, and extensive product diversity.

So how do you compete with Amazon in the already highly saturated world of eCommerce? You learn from its competitors!

A behemoth like Amazon attracts the strongest competitors and there’s a lesson to learn from their clash.  Today we’ll discuss three strategies that proved successful in the fight for customers’ attention and engagement, even when acting in the shadow of a giant.  

1. Build the best possible user experience

Content marketing creates a personal connection with shoppers, but they must feel at ease on your site for the connection to be built. What does this mean? 

Page speed matters

The attention of consumers is a priceless commodity these days. And they know this! According to a 2019 Retailer Website Performance Evaluation, 90% of respondents said they had left an eCommerce site that seemed slow to load. If this isn’t enough, 57% of the ones that leave, go to a competitor and 40% go to Amazon!

Google also supports the idea that slow pages make you lose customers and released the below graphic depiction of how fast this happens:

Website speed impact on bounce rate

Pay attention to mobile shoppers

Another issue that could keep customers away from your online store is a lack of compatibility between desktop and mobile devices. 

According to Business Insider Intelligence, in the US alone, there are over $170 billion in smartphone sales and over $34.7 billion in tablet sales in 2020. As such, the m-commerce market (online shopping using a mobile device) is expected to reach 32% of the entire eCommerce market share

Mobile commerce (m-commerce) market growth
Mobile commerce (m-commerce) market growth forecast (Source: Business Insider)

Essentially, if your site is not performing well on mobile devices, you could stand to lose a lot of customers!  

Amazon might not be the best when it comes to user experience (it’s difficult to create flawless user experience when you have so many things to organize). But still, they’re constantly improving their page speed and have a mobile app that encourages mobile users to shop. 

Build a mobile app for your store

A mobile app comes with lots of benefits, among which are: better communication with customers, better engagement due to social media sharing possibilities, and convenience. 

But you can take it one step further and use Augmented Reality (AR) technology to improve user experience. Brands like IKEA, HomeDepot, Sephora, and others use AR in their apps to combine online shopping with in-person shopping by allowing users to run a virtual test trial.

IKEA Place augmented reality shopping app
IKEA Place augmented reality app

While it may seem a bit futuristic, AR is not a new technology and modern mobile devices support it. Furthermore, if you’re a tech-savvy entrepreneur, it’s a good idea to learn React Native, the main programming language used to implement AR features. It will help you understand how the technology works and how to communicate your needs to developers. 

2. Focus on a niche

There’s no doubt that Amazon knows how to provide customers with what they want and need. 

The company uses a blend of fast delivery, low prices, and increasing product diversity to position itself at the top of online shoppers’ preferences. In fact, for many Americans, Amazon is the go-to store for everything.  

This is their strength, however, it’s also their weakness. 

eCommerce can be a soulless world where uniqueness and authenticity are swallowed by a sea of mass-produced generic brands. The fact that you can buy socks, lawnmowers, and inflatable boats from the same eCommerce store tells a story to anyone who wants to listen. 

So, how to compete with Amazon, the “buy everything” eCommerce giant? You start by carving a narrow niche for yourself and care for it like it was your baby! 

The biggest strength of small and medium-sized eCommerce stores stands in their select list of products that cater to a very specific niche. 

Let’s take Beardbrand as an example. This is an online store that sells all things beard-related. From oils to combs, scissors, and trimmers, you can find anything you need to maintain and style your facial hair. 

But this is nothing new. After all, you can find all these products on Amazon as well as in other stores. However, Beardbrand is thriving. 

The reason behind this success stands in the fact that they provide beard aficionados all over the world with a strong sense of community and valuable information. Through engaging and useful content marketing, as well as an exclusive Alliance membership, they positioned themselves as an authority in the niche that offers their customers a unique buying experience. 

How to compete with Amazon - BeardBrand example

You don’t go to their store just to buy stuff. You go to learn and connect with other bearded men who are proud of their looks. 

Use content marketing to your advantage

Content marketing helps brands connect with their audience and create a personal experience that lacks in Amazon’s online marketing campaigns. 

Of course, since Amazon is so big and popular, they don’t really need a content marketing campaign and they can promote their products using their newsletter system and regular ads. 

But smaller brands, without access to such large audiences and marketing budgets, can use content to attract niche customers who want more from the shopping experience (as stated in the Beardbrand example).  

Due to the plethora of platforms available right now, companies can create a wide array of diverse content, in different formats, for different audiences. The secret is to find relevant topics that get the target audience engaged and interested. 

For instance, if your online store sells clothes, your customers will be interested in learning about which materials are best for their needs or how to select the right fit for their body shape. In many situations, blog articles, eCommerce video content, or even short descriptions are extremely useful in promoting your products. 

Think of brands such as Glossier or Away that have started their own online magazines – Into the Gloss and Here Magazine respectively – to provide their customers with fresh, useful, and engaging content that goes beyond their products and taps into their values and the lifestyle they’re selling.

There’s also the option of engaging with influencers who are relevant to the brand. This solution is helpful when everyone creates content on the same topics and you want to stand out from the crowd. Furthermore, influencers expose your brand and products to a prime audience, that’s happy to be provided with recommendations. 

3. Don’t give up your brick-and-mortar store (just yet)

If you know Amazon only as a giant eCommerce retailer, you’ll be surprised to learn they also have physical stores all over the US.  It may seem counterintuitive, especially now when more and more brick-and-mortar stores are closing their doors in favor (or because) of online shopping. 

But maybe it’s time to learn a lesson from Walmart, one of the biggest competitors Amazon has on the global market.

Walmart makes most of its revenue ($514.41 billion in net sales per year) from classic retail that takes place in physical stores. But they also have a strong online presence, coming in second after Amazon.

Top 10 U.S. retail sites ranked by unique visitors (Data: eMarketer)

Now, you’re wondering how to compete with Amazon when even Walmart couldn’t, right? 

The trick is to understand that brick-and-mortar stores still have value from a customer’s point of view. But you must take a different approach and combine the offline experience with the online one (like Walmart did). 

Again, your strength stands in a smaller size and a more select audience. A physical store provides a way to interact with customers directly, which can only enhance the overall experience. 

In addition, a well-designed physical store can be a fantastic way to engage your shoppers’ needs to share on social media. Encourage your visitors to post selfies in your store and with your products, and get the word of mouth going. 

Lastly, a fixed location is something that can help trigger your campaigns in Google Merchant Center. Your ads will be displayed to locals interested in the type of products you sell, which is likely to bring more people into the store. 

In conclusion

Ultimately, it doesn’t really matter if one of your biggest competitors is Amazon. They are already established on the market and there’s no way you could beat them. 

But this shouldn’t be your goal. 

Your goal should be to learn from them and their competitors in order to build your own unique and authentic brand. Amazon is a fantastic teacher as they were pioneers in many areas of eCommerce and they continue to innovate and grow even now. Their journey speaks of the power of determination and attention to details, but most importantly, it shows that good customer service can take you a long way. 

In conclusion, if you want to succeed, you must build your eCommerce empire around your customers’ needs, not the other way around. The moment you forget to care for your audience is the moment your strategies will fail. So, before anything else, use the technologies at your disposal to understand who will buy from you and why. 

E-commerce Personalization Trends: The Changes After COVID-19

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Ecommerce personalization trends after COVID-19

COVID-19 ushered in meaningful change for eCommerce, but what will the impact be on eCommerce personalization trends in 2020 and beyond? Read our findings from a survey of 400 eCommerce marketers.

The COVID-19 pandemic saw eCommerce make 10 years’ worth of growth in a 90-day period, drastically altering not only the present landscape of eCommerce but also its future. McKinsey, the institution that first reported the sector’s immense growth, has come to refer to this monumental shift as ‘The Quickening’. 

However, with COVID-19 accelerating eCommerce to unprecedented levels, where does that leave personalization, a trend that was beginning to experience a surge in growing consumer demand?

In July 2020, Yieldify conducted research with 400 eCommerce leaders* across the UK and US to explore the current state-of-play in regards to website personalization specifically, the challenges it faces, and where it could be heading next. Here, we summarize just some of our crucial findings.

1. Over 74% of companies surveyed already have a website personalization program in place.

2. In 2020, retention (58%) has overtaken conversion (55%) and acquisition (45%) as the key goal for website personalization.

3. Only 54% currently use AI-driven predictive segments. However, this was identified as an area of high potential growth, as 89% expected to be using it by the end of next year. 

4. The three biggest obstacles that stand in the way of scaling a personalization strategy are: A lack of expertise (37%), limited functionality (36%), and a lack of time (35%).

Website personalization’s winning component? Data, say 74% of marketers 

The modern-day consumer is evolving. With access to the global economy, the latest technology at their fingertips, and social sharing working in their favor, today’s consumers know they are in control of their shopping experiences. 

“Customers in today’s era […] have the means to explore, research, and share every purchase decision. […] You have to be responsive to their needs immediately instead of trying to direct them,” says Gayatri Patel, eBay’s Director of Global Data Infrastructure.

This growing power of consumers means they are increasingly dictating when, where, and how they engage with brands. Instead of a funnel-shaped sales process where brands push information to customers, the process is now inverted – consumers are actively pursuing brands and channels that they feel are relevant to themselves as individuals, whether that’s morally, ethically, or environmentally. 

The challenge for eCommerce businesses is to keep up with growing customer expectations, and the distinctiveness of them. Enter: Personalization.

Currently experiencing a surge in popularity, personalization enables today’s consumers to feel as though their wants and needs are heard, understood, and incorporated as integral parts of their shopping experience. 

From a brand’s perspective, personalization offers a way to contextualize, and individualize, the messaging, offers, and experiences they deliver using unique data retrieved from each visitor’s profile.

So it’s no surprise that over 74% of companies surveyed have made changes to ensure website personalization is a key part of their business.

When surveyed, 76% of our respondents said that currently, the most popular option for driving website personalization is real-time behavioral data, ahead of historical cookie data, third-party data, and individual user profiles ingested from CDPs. 

These findings would indicate that website personalization is largely generated in response to in-session behaviors. A user session refers to a group of user-specific actions performed on a website or within an application during a period of time. These sessions contain data that can visualize user behavior by recording their button clicks, page loads, and service requests which give identifiable indicators of visitor motivation and desire.

This data can then be used by developers and marketers alike to increase user retention and reduce churn by better understanding what users seek most from the site. Having that understanding of a user or visitor means personalization strategies can be tailored to those requests.

Scaling a personalization strategy is not without obstacles 

At its core, personalization delivers tailored, meaningful, and relevant communication to your consumers. In return, this connection between brand and follower becomes an effective – and desired – conversion rate optimization tool. But juggling a multitude of user behaviors is not without drawbacks, even with sophisticated personalization technology available to assist the process. 

Our research showed that there were a handful of obstacles preventing scalability and subsequent, potentially higher conversion rates. 

Out of those surveyed, 37% said they lacked the expertise required to either take the next step or optimize their personalization strategy further. Another 36% advocated having limited functionality or personalization tools available to do so and 35% stated they simply did not have the time.

Nonetheless, these findings are still encouraging. Together they indicate that it is not an unwillingness to scale, but a lack of knowledge, skillset, and functionality required to enhance the strategy. 

Overall this suggests that personalization is not ineffective, as if more marketers and eCommerce owners were equipped with the time to enhance their knowledge, they would implement larger personalization solutions. 

The majority of website personalization will soon be powered by AI

In personalization strategies, Artificial Intelligence (AI) is a valuable, efficient, and time-saving resource capable of consolidating multiple data streams from various channels, extracting valuable insights, and then identifying actionable trends. 

AI is quietly powering personalized experiences everywhere, from music giants such as Spotify to fashion industry leaders like Tommy Hilfiger. Whether it’s implemented into a live chatbot or a product recommendation engine, it’s converting visitors to consumers and most importantly, retaining them. 

One of the most important findings from our research was the discovery that whilst 54% of all size businesses currently use AI-driven predictive segments, 89% are planning to be using it by the end of next year. 

In our research, positive responses to planning to implement AI-driven predictive segmentation by the end of 2021 far outweighed negative responses across all company sizes surveyed. And responses were especially positive in small to medium-sized companies, which is unsurprising given the impact on time constraints due to the ongoing economic fall out of the pandemic. 

As eCommerce companies continue to navigate the negative impacts left behind by the COVID-19 pandemic, AI is the perfect solution to the problem of having to do more with less. This is a personalization trend that will continue to be identified as an area of high potential growth as more companies look for time-efficient methods of scaling, growing, and enhancing their business in economic downturns. 

In the future, simply being a favorite won’t be enough 

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, fundamental changes have been observed in consumer behavior. With more independent stores opening up online, offering discounts, or simply better, safer shopping experiences, as well as additional bonuses like faster delivery times, consumers are starting to shift their loyalty from companies they used to purchase from in the past.

As customer loyalty now remains a swirling cloud of uncertainty, within the eCommerce companies we surveyed, 58% stated that their drive to pursue a website personalization strategy came from wanting to retain their customers. In comparison, 55% said that their driving factor was conversions, whilst only 45% were driven by acquisition alone. 

It’s reported that between 65% and 85% of consumers intend to continue new shopping behaviors post-pandemic. The pressure is on for eCommerce businesses to not only optimize the entire customer lifecycle but make the personalization experience so effective and intelligent that customers simply return time and time again.

In conclusion

These are only four of our key findings. Within the full report, we dive deeper into personalization trends post-pandemic, as well as evaluate how different types of content (static, dynamic, and user-specific) fit into personalization strategies.

We also identify the key purchase drivers that are reigning king amongst the economic uncertainty and explore how privacy and personalization go hand in hand. You can download the full report here.

Looking ahead

In summary, the current state of play for website personalization indicates an industry that intends to accelerate rapidly over the course of 2021.  

As businesses look to favor e-commerce customer retention over acquisition strategies and supercharge their insights through growing technology such as AI machine learning, eCommerce personalization trends will be prime drivers in helping to provide business saving boosts to enterprises of all sizes. 

Whereas adoption rates in July hovered between 50% and 70% for many executions, many were forecast to reach over 90% in less than 18 months’ time and seem on track to do just that.

* An online survey was conducted with a panel of potential respondents. The recruitment period was 6th July 2020 to 20th July 2020. A total of 400 respondents completed the survey: 200 respondents residing in the UK and 200 respondents residing in the US. Only senior marketers or eCommerce directors at retailers with an eCommerce presence were eligible to take part and complete the survey. All questions within the survey were verified to be MRS compliant by a marketing research company specializing in online and mobile polling.

Word-of-Mouth Marketing: 5 Tips to Make Your Brand Worth Bragging About

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Word of Mouth Marketing (WOMM) | Yieldify

What is Word of Mouth Marketing and how to create a foolproof WOMM campaign for your eCommerce store? Read to find out our top 5 tips and more!

I recently watched a video of California surfers taking on a famous wave called the Wedge. One particular surfer had a surfboard that caught my eye. During his interview, he couldn’t stop raving about his Beater Board. 

Now, I definitely wasn’t in the market for a new surfboard. I already have too many. But after seeing it in action, and hearing him talk about it, I felt I could trust what he was saying.

A few clicks later, I had a brand new Beater Board. I told my friends about it too.

That right there is the power of word of mouth marketing. To drum up enthusiasm about your product that your customers can’t wait to tell more people about it. 

And you know the best part? It is a marketing strategy you can easily implement within your eCommerce business right now.

In this article, I’m going to break down exactly what word of mouth marketing is, demonstrate how it is used in business today, and show you how it can help you take your store to the next level. Here’s the full outline:

1. What is Word-of-Mouth Marketing (WOMM)?
2. Why is Word-Of-Mouth Marketing Important?
3. 5 Tips for a Successful Word-of-Mouth Marketing Campaign
3.1 Products and Services
3.2 Referral Incentives
3.3 Customer Support
3.4 Purchase Process
3.5 Customer Reviews
4. Closing

What is Word-of-Mouth Marketing (WOMM)?

Word of mouth marketing (WOMM), alternatively known as word of mouth advertising, is a marketing strategy that turns satisfied customers into brand advocates: people who will speak about your brand. 

A word of mouth marketing campaign uses customer’s positive experiences to build trust towards a business’ products and services.

Word-of-mouth marketing can convince potential customers to purchase products as well, just like how the surfer’s enthusiastic endorsement convinced me to buy a Beater Board.

The internet makes it easier to get your happy customers to spread news about your great products. Between social media and blogs, happy customers are now able to share their experiences not just with their friends and families but with the entire world.

Word of mouth marketing has become more effective and important to your business than ever before.

Why is Word-Of-Mouth Marketing important?

It is estimated that there are more than 24 million eCommerce websites operating as of 2020. Word of mouth helps you stand out in a crowded marketplace and grow your brand.

To return to surfing one last time: there are so many manufacturers making top-notch boards. I own a number of them. Even for the best surfboard makers, it’s hard to stand out against other surfboard shapers, manufacturers, and stockists.

A personal recommendation could cut through the noise. 70% of US consumers trust product recommendations from friends and family, compared to 15% of consumers who trust brands on social media. 

A survey found online consumers were most likely to trust recommendations from people they know, i.e. friends and family (Source: Nielsen)

Word of mouth marketing is social proof and trust rolled into one. 

Projections say that by 2021 over 2.14 billion consumers worldwide are set to buy goods and services online, with online retailers taking a cut of an estimated revenue of 6.54 trillion US dollars in 2022. That’s up just over 3 trillion from 2019, which returned a worldwide revenue amount of 3.53 trillion US dollars.

So there are plenty of opportunities for your eCommerce store to grow, it’s simply a matter of getting noticed in a highly competitive market.

That’s why, on top of all your other marketing tactics, it’s well worth implementing word of mouth marketing within your marketing campaign.

And you know the best part about word of mouth marketing? It’s basically free. And if your brand is worth bragging about in the first place, then you’ve got unlimited free marketing right in your pocket.

5 tips for a successful Word-of-Mouth marketing campaign

If your customers have a positive experience with your brand, they’ll naturally want to talk about it. And why wouldn’t they? We all want our close ones to enjoy the same great things that we’ve stumbled across.

This can be done through many forms of media like Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, vlogging, and blogging. It can occur through face-to-face interactions. Or, perhaps from influencers that work with brands to advocate for a brand’s product or services.

In fact, a survey conducted around the world involving respondents from 56 countries found that 92% of consumers trust earned media, such as word of mouth recommendations from friends and family. Furthermore, they trusted this type of marketing above all other forms of advertising, including search engine ads (37%) and banner ads (24%).

Referral marketing statistics (Source: ReferralCandy)

Here are 5 tips to get started on your own word of mouth marketing campaign.

1. Ensure that your products and services are worth talking about

No marketing campaign can outlast a bad product, no matter how marketing-savvy you are.

To give your brand the best chance of being talked about by your customers, you must offer your customers something they’ll love. After all, why would anyone brag about something they aren’t excited about?

So make sure you are getting the basics right first. Share-worthy products, top-shelf customer service, and awesome after-sales services all build customer trust and will encourage them to talk about your brand.

Take Byron Bay’s brand Spell for example. They not only make some of the world’s most beautiful bohemian clothes but they have also used the ethical clothing movement to their advantage.

And that’s a super-smart move, as you can see below ethical clothing is trending. The fashion and clothing industry has seen a big uptick in the demand for clothes that are manufactured and sourced ethically.

In following this trend and aligning with customer demand, Spell has created a killer product that is easy to market, is super social media friendly, and, best of all, is next-level shareworthy.

A great product and marketing strategy will get even the most tight-lipped customers talking. 

2. Offer referral incentives that your customers will love

To ensure the success of your word of mouth marketing campaign, it’s an absolute must to offer referral program incentives that your customer base is going to love.

Many shops offer rewards through a customer loyalty program as a way to encourage happy customers to come back for more. A referral marketing program incentive will not only do that but offer rewards to any friends they bring too.

Take Timberland here for example. 

They offer a 20% discount not only to their existing customer but also to any new customer they refer to your shop. And considering that they amassed over $3 billion in 2019, up from $1.8 billion in 2014, their marketing strategy works well.

The president of Timberland says that in 2014 they shifted their focus onto their ideal customer, who values ethically sourced functional footwear over trendy styles and fast fashion. 

It turns out that their target market is made up of millennials, who not only like ethical fashion but also a good deal, according to Jeff Fromm who is a market-analyst for Futurecast. So when Timberland hit those two key points in their referral marketing campaign, their revenue exploded. 

Timberland is a perfect example of how offering referral incentives that your ideal customer would love can be a powerful marketing move.

3. Provide first-class customer support

Sometimes the product isn’t the thing worth talking about. Often it’s the service that people really care for. If you get your customer support dialed in, people will be shouting your praises from the top of their social mountains. And on the flip side, if your brand is a pain to deal with, you’ll lose customers faster than you can build new ones.

In fact, customer retention (keeping happy customers) is far cheaper than customer acquisition (getting new customers). Five times cheaper to be exact.

So once you gain a new customer, you want to keep them.

Continuing on the ethical clothing trend here for a bit longer, check out how Patagonia ensures their customers are returning to their stores.

Patagonia offers top-notch after-sales services like their repairs policy. If any of your Patagonia garments happen to break, tear at the seams, or is substandard in any way, their team will repair the item free of charge under their Ironclad Guarantee.

If the damage is due to general wear and tear, they will repair the garment for a fair price. Not only that but they also offer this repair service to garments and apparel that aren’t manufactured by their own team.

In doing so, Patagonia is not only further aligning with their ethical clothing pledge, a big reason why many customers shop there in the first place, but they are also offering awesome after-sales services that will ensure their customers will return to their stores again and again.

Remember, return customers are great customers. Not only will they continue to spend money buying your products and services but they are also much more likely to be talking about it also.

And referred customers are 4 times more likely to buy when referred by a friend. So get your customer support right and you are on your way to serious success!

4. Streamline your online shop’s purchase process

One of the easiest ways to increase purchase conversions and customer satisfaction is to streamline your purchasing process. Consider this, well planned out website design can increase your conversions by up to a massive 400%

Think about it. Reflect on the last time you bounced out of an online purchase. Ask yourself what led you to abandon your cart or, worse still, opt out before you even started adding anything to your order. 

Perhaps it was the site’s pesky pop-ups that drove you away, maybe a clunky purchasing experience was what frustrated you into desertion, or perhaps it was hidden shipping fees that finally drove the final nail in the f#*% coffin.

Whatever it was, put yourself in your customer’s place. What can you do to ensure their purchasing experience is as quick and easy as can be?

Take a look at The Little Market, their single-page checkout makes for a super easy checkout that offers their customers an easy and stress-free shopping experience.

To get your store’s purchase process right, like The Little Market has, ponder these questions and considerations:

  • Site speed and page load time: Is your site clunky and slow?
  • Website usability and ease of use: How optimized is your site’s layout and how hard is it to get around?
  • Site navigation: How easy is it for your customers to find a product they’re on the hunt for?
  • Shopping cart design: How easy is it for a customer to checkout? How many steps are involved? How long does it take?

If you get all of these things right you can seriously improve your site’s success. Remember happy customers = more word of mouth = more conversions.

5. Leverage customer reviews

Sometimes WOMM isn’t as easy as it sounds. Occasionally you have to give your customers a gentle nudge in the right direction. A good way to do this is to integrate a reviewing system into your eCommerce store.


Because customers love to see other people’s experiences with your brand. They’d rather see those insights, opinions, and points of view than your advertising and sales pitches.

So consider customer reviews as just another form of word of mouth marketing, encouraging new visitors to your site and potential customers to trust your brand’s products and services.

Take Verishop here. They’ve integrated a basic review system within their site. It’s clean, simple, out of the way, but it serves its purpose: to boost your customer’s confidence when making a purchase.

These reviews, negative or positive (hopefully positive), are incredibly influential on people. They will help to increase your sales, boost your ROI, and, best of all, act as that beautiful form of free word of mouth marketing.


Leveraging word of mouth doesn’t have to be super complicated. In fact, it should be relatively easy and very cost-effective if you get it right.

Now that you know exactly how to set up your referral program just right, there really is no excuse. Get out there and start a killer WOMM campaign, your business and profit margins will thank you!

This article was written by Brody Hall

Brody Hall is a digital nomad, content writer, and SEO buff for ReferralCandy and CandyBar. He quite enjoys sharing his knowledge of environmentalism, self-care, and board sports. You will often find him enjoying an early morning coffee while checking his local surf breaks. If you feel like a chinwag, find him on LinkedIn.

BOPIS Strategy In Retail and eCommerce With Examples

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The Importance of BOPIS in Retail and Ecommerce

Retailers across the globe are adopting the BOPIS model to meet customer expectations and needs. But what exactly is BOPIS and what impact can retailers expect from it? Discover that and more in the article below.

You’ll struggle to find a successful eCommerce company that doesn’t offer BOPIS (buy online, pickup in-store) option to their customers, and there’s a good reason for it.

This method is a good stepping-stone between traditional brick-and-mortar companies and online retailers who are looking for ways to keep customers happy. It’s also a great compromise between those who love in-store shopping and those who swear by shopping online. 

Below, we’ll take a look at the impact that the BOPIS strategy has had on eCommerce and the retail industry as a whole, as well as how you can use it to drive performance and sales. 

Here’s everything that we’ll cover today:

1. What is BOPIS
2. How BOPIS works
3. BOPIS impact on retail and eCommerce
4. Benefits of BOPIS
5. Challenges of BOPIS
6. BOPIS in action
7. Conclusion

What is BOPIS in retail?

BOPIS simply means buy online, pick up in-store.

It’s become a popular retail strategy that allows customers to have the best of both worlds: online shopping and in-person pickup. That way, customers don’t have to pay for shipping, wait a long time for their items to be delivered, and deal with delivery errors that often arise with order fulfillment. They can shop from the comfort of their own homes, purchase the item online and go to the store when it is time to see the item is ready for pickup.

BOPIS is a great strategy for eCommerce that allows you to create a great blend of online shopping and physical stores, making the shopping process more convenient for everyone.

Brick and mortar businesses with eCommerce functionality have been making the most of this online and in store experience. Many retailers now offer bopis as part of their checkout process.

How the (BOPIS) buy online pickup in store strategy works

The BOPIS strategy is fairly straightforward to implement. If you have both an eCommerce website and a physical retail store, all you have to do is simply add an extra delivery method and ensure your stores can process these orders efficiently and provide a good bopis experience.

You’ll also need to ensure that there is a designated area that allows customers to quickly pick up their items. This could be a specific section within your store location or even curbside pickup to effectively deal with bopis orders.

Here’s a more detailed look at the BOPIS shopping experience:

  • Customers will browse the online inventory to see what’s available, and when they find an item they want, they will be given an option to select “pick-up” or “delivery.”
  • Once the order has been placed, the local storefront will fulfill and hold onto the order. 
  • The customer will go to that local storefront to pick up their order; there is typically a designated pickup area or help desk that can assist with online orders.

BOPIS is most effective when highlighted across the entire customer journey: from first seeing the option in the product list, to being reminded of it on the product detail page and all the way to the checkout.

Best Buy is a great example of adopting buy online pickup in store. On their website, shipping details and pick up options are clearly and consistently displayed throughout the buyer’s journey.

BOPIS statistics & its impact on retail and eCommerce

BOPIS has been increasing in its adoption rate by retailers consistently over the past few years. It’s reported that by 2021, 90% of retailers will offer the Buy Online Pick Up In-Store (BOPIS) option.

The below chart by Microsoft shows that BOPIS searches surged across retail categories: “Categories that contained necessities saw the largest growth in BOPIS as a result of the pandemic, with grocery and mass retailers leading the way. Pet supplies, home and garden, and beauty also saw significant increases in BOPIS shopping.”

So why are more and more eCommerce websites adopting a BOPIS model? Why is offering in-store pickup becoming more popular? 

The short answer is – BOPIS leads to more sales.

BOPIS leads to increased online activity and sales

Major eCommerce companies that adopted BOPIS in recent years have seen an uptick in sales as customers are more eager to buy online and pick-up in store. This behavior was amplified by recent conditions around the globe as retailers battled with the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

KIBO Commerce data shows retailers are seeing customers select the BOPIS option four times more than they were before the pandemic began. What’s more, compared to 2018, BOPIS orders have increased dramatically and now make up around 40% of total retail orders.

Companies such as Petco and Dollar General have seen an increase in their overall sales figures thanks to the introduction of a BOPIS option. According to AdWeek, Home Depot saw 48% of its online sales in 2018 use the BOPIS method.

The biggest reason for increasing sales is that customers are more likely to purchase additional items when picking up their orders in-store.

According to the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC), over 50% of adult shoppers use BOPIS, and 67% of those people add additional items to their carts when they know they can pick them up immediately.

This behavior was also seen by Lululemon – the brand reported  20% of shoppers who chose to pick up their orders in-store made an additional purchase when they came to collect it.

BOPIS growth & why it’s growing

Possibly the biggest driving factor behind the growth of BOPIS is convenience. Recent research from The National Retail Federation found that 83% of consumers find convenience while shopping to be more important to them than it was five years ago.

Added to this the report also found that 97% of respondents backed out of a purchase because it was inconvenient. On the opposite end of the scale, 70% of respondents said BOPIS improved their shopping experience. So it’s clear there is a continued interest in buying online, pick up in-store.

The benefits of BOPIS for retail

As seen above, BOPIS can potentially help eCommerce stores increase sales numbers by providing a delivery option that customers will use and appreciate. There are also some other advantages.

Lower or no delivery costs. According to study, 35% of respondents said they favor the BOPIS method because it allows them to avoid shipping costs. And in the odd times that you do have to pay to pick up in-store, the fees are usually much lower than home delivery.

Ultra-fast service. It can be stressful tracking a package that’s coming from somewhere else in the globe, hoping that when it arrives (if it does), it’s the correct item and it is undamaged. Picking an item up in-store means that customers can place an order and then go to their local store to pick it up if it’s in stock. Of course, you may still need to wait a few days if the item is not in stock.

Peace of mind. Some shoppers don’t like the uncertainty of waiting for a package to arrive without even being able to look at the physical item first. BOPIS offers a kind of in-stock insurance that online stores can’t always provide. Customers can open, view, and determine whether the product is right for them and meets their needs. If not, they may be able to return it straight away.

Extra purchases and increased foot traffic. Customers are more inclined to make purchases when they know they can pick it up in the store, so they are much more likely to add extra items to their purchase. Moreso, BOPIS will actually get people into your store. This presents you with an extra chance to make that point of sale display, or in-store only offer work even harder.

The Challenges of BOPIS strategy in retail

BOPIS can be a great strategy that yields very positive results, but it’s not without its own set of challenges. There may be some times where the BOPIS model causes an overwhelming or unsatisfactory experience for customers, and you may not feel completely satisfied with it on your end, either.

Research from NAPCO found that the biggest challenges stemmed from the physical store itself.

So here are some things to look out for if your planning on using a BOPIS strategy which left unchecked can lead to poor results and annoyed customers:  

Potential pick up queues. If too many customers are taking advantage of your BOPIS strategy at once, and they are all rushing to their local store for a pickup, that local store may have long lines. Make sure you have a designated area and even designated staff to deal with these customers quickly.

Lack of inventory. There are times where larger eCommerce companies cannot keep up with certain inventory demands. It’s important to keep an eye on what’s selling so you can keep them stocked up. Your POS or stock system needs to be in constant communication with all other systems involved to ensure that inventory levels are where they need to be.

Lack of participation by the storefront. The in-store pickup location needs to be fully on board with your BOPIS model. Unfortunately, some stores do not do a good job telling customers where to go, what line to stand in, or who to talk to in order to pick up their online order. Ensure that the BOPIS model is ingrained in your stores and new starter packs. 

5 examples of successful BOPIS strategy implementation

So what companies have been using the BOPIS model the right way? Here are some examples of those benefiting from this strategy.

Dollar General

Dollar General is a chain of variety stores in the US. In late 2019, they introduced DG Pickup, their own name for BOPIS, under the slogan “Get in, out and done even faster.”

“Our digital efforts are focused on making things easier for our customers by providing an even more convenient, frictionless, and personalized shopping experience,” the CEO Todd Vasos said of the initiative.

This ended up helping Dollar General increase sales by 27.6% to $8.4 billion in the first quarter of 2020. It is also one of the biggest reasons why the store was able to stay open during mandated COVID-19 restrictions.


Lowe’s is an American retailer specializing in home improvement with 2,000 stores nationwide, so, of course, BOPIS is ideal for them. Lowe’s identified the need to improve their systems and rolled out over 88,000 mobile devices capable of processing BOPIS orders. 

The aim was to help customers get in and out of the store faster, to streamline their experiences, to better manage inventory, and, of course, to increase sales. Which it did.

In the first quarter of 2019, Lowe’s saw a whopping 60% of its online purchases being picked up at local stores, as stated by Lowes EVP Joseph McFarland


Another American retailer that’s making the most of BOPIS is Petco. Petco is an American pet retailer in the United States with over 1,500 stores nationwide. Another perfect candidate for BOPIS.

So it may come as no surprise to know that within the first month of offering BOPIS transactions, Petco drove 100,000 BOPIS orders and a 5% increase in net new customers and eCommerce revenue. 


In the third quarter of 2019, Nordstrom reported one half of its department store digital sales growth coming from order pickup. Added to this in Los Angeles, two-thirds of digital sales growth came from in-store pickup.

Co-president Erik Nordstrom has even said that order pickup is the company’s most profitable transaction: “Leveraging existing store assets and digital capabilities enabled us to implement their shared inventory approach without making additional material investments … This represents a meaningful opportunity to increase convenience for customers during the holidays and at a lower cost for us.”

Home Depot

In 2018, Home Depot began a three-year plan to invest over $11 billion dollars into improving its retail experience. A big part of this strategy was to better blend its physical and digital selling experiences.

According to CEO Craig Menear, the strategy is paying off as he described 2019 as a record year for the company. Sales for the fiscal year 2019 were $110.2 billion, up 3.5% from 2018’s $108.2 billion. He also went on to add that its online customers choose to pick up their orders in stores more than half the time.

The BOPIS bottom line & best practices

So if you’re a brick and mortar retailer with an online presence who isn’t offering BOPIS you may want to start looking into that. You’ll be providing your customers with a convenient delivery method that has been proven to increase sales across multiple retailers. 

Just make sure you have, or can get the following requirements in place to ensure a successful BOPIS offering:

  1. A website or app for ordering.
  2. At least one brick and mortar location.
  3. Real-time inventory capabilities.
  4. A location that allows for easy pick up in store or even curbside pickup

Online shoppers are always on the lookout for convenience, this is the main driving force behind retailers adopting the buy online, pick up in-store model (BOPIS). This presents you with an extra chance to make that point of sale display or in-store only offer work even harder.

The key here is to work with the best fulfillment companies, which ultimately places orders in the hands of your customers much faster.


What is BOPIS in retail?

In retail & eCommerce BOPIS simply means buy online, pick up in-store. Customers can purchase items online, but choose to collect their purchase in-store rather than getting it delivered.

How does in store pick up work?

If a website offers in store pick up you can select this option when checking out. Your purchase will then be stored at a designated pick up area ready for your collection.

(GMV) Gross Merchandise Value: Meaning & Calculation

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What is GMV | Yieldify

What is Gross Merchandise Value and why is it important to your eCommerce business? We break down what GMV means, how you can calculate it, and how you can improve your GMV.

When you are running an eCommerce website or deal with any kind of retail, it is vital to know what GMV is. Also known as Gross Merchandise Value or Gross Merchandise Volume, this important figure tells you the total value of goods you have sold over a certain period. This is a good metric to keep in mind when working on ways to increase sales and expand your company’s bottom line.

Below, we’ll take a look at everything GMV: what it is, why it is so important, and how you can improve your own GMV while making sales to satisfied customers.

What is GMV (Gross Merchandise Value)?

Gross Merchandise Value (GMV) is a metric that measures your total value of sales over a certain period of time. It’s a metric that is most commonly used in the eCommerce industry and is also sometimes referred to as Gross Merchandise Volume. 

GMV can be used to determine the overall health of an eCommerce business, and a good indicator of growth. This is because it measures the volume and value of merchandise sold or the number of transactions handled. So if your GMV is up, business should be good!

According to the Corporate Finance Institute, eCommerce GMV should be measured at least once per year, if not once per financial quarter. However, it’s important to note that the Gross Merchandise Value calculation is made before the deduction of fees and expenses associated with the sale of products. This includes things like the cost of delivery, discounts, advertising costs, and returns, etc.

GMV is at its most useful when it’s being used as a comparative measure over time. This could be comparing current quarter sales vs the previous, or year on year. Ultimately, Gross Merchandise Value is another way companies can understand and put a figure on their sales numbers.

How to Calculate GMV

The simplest and most common way to calculate GMV is by using the formula below. This simply takes the price charged to the customer and multiplies it by the number of items sold:

Gross Merchandise Value =  Sales Price of Goods x Number of Goods Sold

So let’s say you sell 10 products for $100 each, your Gross Merchandise Value would amount to $1,000.

Why you shouldn’t rely on GMV alone

Calculating your GMV in this way will give you a good idea of how much growth your business is experiencing as it looks at how much you are actually selling. However, you shouldn’t rely on it solely as the one formula to determine how healthy your company is. 

This is because while Gross Merchandise Value tells you how much you’re growing, it doesn’t tell you whether or not you are actually profiting off the real value of the items you sell.

For example, if GMV was your company’s primary growth metric, you may focus on more expensive, big-ticket products as the sales price of these products will help boost your total transaction value. 

However, the margins on such products are often much lower than cheaper products such as clothing. So as you can see, it’s not necessarily an accurate representation of an eCommerce company’s performance.

So going back to our example above if those 10 products you sold for $100 cost you $75 to make or purchase, you’re only making $250 profit.

You won’t be able to use this formula to determine if you are selling your items for too much or too little as it doesn’t take into account margins. Number seven on our list below can help you do that!

So should I still track GMV?

Yes, it’s still an important metric as it essentially calculates your total gross sales value. Of course, you want this figure to be relatively high as sales are the lifeblood of any eCommerce business.

When you use this figure comparatively, you want it to be growing, whether it’s year-on-year or quarter vs quarter. If it’s growing, it means you’re either selling more, or you’re selling more expensive items both of which should be good for your bottom line.

But as we mentioned above there are other financial metrics that can help determine the performance of your eCommerce business. 

Consider using other eCommerce KPIs to get a more balanced and accurate view of your performance:

1. Net Merchandise Value (NMV) is what you get after you deduct all the fees and expenses from your Gross Merchandise Value over a period of time. It’s a more realistic look into how your business is actually performing as it takes into account costs, refunds, etc.

NMV =  GMV – All Costs (marketing, refunds, gateway payments)

2. Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) is calculated simply by dividing all costs spent on acquiring customers (including software costs, eCommerce merchandising tools included, marketing team salaries, etc.) by the total number of customers acquired in the time period the money was spent.

So let’s say you spent $5,000 on marketing in one month and acquired 500 new customers. Your CAC would be $10.

CAC = Total Marketing Spend / Number of acquired customers

This is an important metric as it essentially tracks the effectiveness of your advertising, and how much you are paying to get new customers. If this figure is too high, you’ll be eating into margins and wasting your budget.

3. Customer Lifetime Value (CLV) works out the amount of money customers will spend with you over the entire life of your relationship. To calculate CLV you’ll need to define LTV first, that is Lifetime Value:

LTV = AOV x Number of transactions x Retention time period

CLV = LTV x Profit margin

CLV essentially tells you if your e-commerce customer retention efforts are paying off and how much the customers like your product or service. The higher this number, the greater your profits will be. If it’s low, you know you need to work on your customer retention strategy, or that something in your product or service isn’t meeting customer expectations.

4. Average Order Value (AOV) tracks the average amount a customer will spend each time they place an order. It’s simply calculated by dividing the total revenue by the number of orders.

AOV = Revenue / Total Number of orders

It’s clear you want this number to grow as it means your customers are spending more money with you, again this links back to CAC and increasing your CLV. If the amount is low you may need to look into ways of increasing your AOV.

5. Conversion rate (CVR). For eCommerce websites, this will be one of, if not the most important KPI to track. Conversion rate is an important metric that shows how your overall website is converting visitors into customers.

CVR = Number of transactions / Number of sessions

6. Profit Margin per Product (PMpP) will help you determine which products to push, how much you can discount, and where to keep a closer eye on things because margins are tight.

Product margin per product is easy to calculate. For example, if you sell a product for $25, and it costs $20 to make, the gross profit margin is 20% ($5 divided by $25).

PMpP = (Product price – Product cost) / Retail price

7. Net Promoter Score (NPS) is a customer loyalty and satisfaction metric. The score is taken from asking customers how likely they are to recommend your product or service to others on a scale of 0-10.

Satisfied customers mean returning customers so again the Net Promoter Score metric can help improve lifetime value and average order values as customers will be willing to spend more with you as they know the product or service will deliver. 

3 ways you can spark GMV Growth

So if GMV is one of the financial metrics you are tracking, you’ll want to see this figure increasing. Since gross merchandise volume is the direct measurement of your growth, it only makes sense that smart e-commerce business owners will be looking for ways to improve it.

Need some ideas on boosting your Gross Merchandise Value? Here are a few:

1. Offer Free Shipping where you can

A study by UPS showed that 58% of online shoppers are willing to add additional items to their order if it means they get free shipping… Offering free shipping either across the board or after customers have reached a certain price threshold can be a great way to boost your GMV and your sales overall.

Not to mention this will increase the base value of your average order, as customers will start to add more items in order to qualify for free shipping.

2. Invest in cross-selling strategies

Cross-selling is a powerful way to get customers to buy more. The best part is, you don’t have to do much to convince them; it’s the customer that makes the final decision to buy more and expand their shopping cart. 

You can add a “frequently bought with this item” window on your product pages, or even offer some accessories as last-minute add-ons on the checkout page. You’d be surprised how much this can boost your GMV!

3. Add bundles

Another great way to encourage your customers to buy more (without being too pushy about it) is to offer bundles and packaged deals. Not only is this effective for getting rid of some of your less-popular inventory, but it also can significantly improve your GMV. 

Customers will be happy to invest in a bundle since they are getting more products than usual for a price that is much better than usual, so they will feel that they are getting a great deal. Meanwhile, you are making bigger average sales, getting rid of old inventory, and boosting your GMV. It’s a win-win situation!

How to improve Gross Merchandise Value (GMV)

Final thoughts

So whilst GMV will be a good metric to look at to determine total sales value and if this is improving, it needs to be used in conjunction with other metrics to give you a true picture of business performance. 

It is critical to consistently measure your growth over each month to determine what you may be doing right or wrong. By creating more buying opportunities for customers using smart cross-selling strategies for adding bundled deals, you will be encouraging more activity on your website.


? What is GMW & What Does It Mean?

GMV or Gross Merchandise Volume is a term in eCommerce that shows the total sales value for merchandise sold through a marketplace over a specific time frame.

? How is GMV calculated?

To calculate GMV simply take the sale price per item charged to the customer and multiply this by the number of items sold. For example, if you sell 10 t-shirts at $50, the GMV is $500.

? How can I boost GMV growth?

There are many ways you can attain GMV growth. We detail 3 easy ways such as offering free shipping, product bundles and cross-selling strategies.

Managing eCommerce Projects In a Time of Crisis

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Ecommerce projects are hard work at the best of times. So, what should you do with them when hit by the unexpected?

It’s reported that 42% of companies don’t understand the need or importance of project management. Which doesn’t bode well when a crisis comes along.

The last few months have turned the eCommerce world upside-down. Amid the rollercoaster of crisis communications, demand, disruption to supply chain, and uncertainty about future recession, there are fires to fight everywhere. Those standard operating procedures you created may go out the window.

However, there’s a big question in the background: What happens to all our grand plans for innovation when a Black Swan event arrives? 


Most of us had eCommerce projects in play when the coronavirus crisis arrived. These kinds of innovation projects can be big or small. It can be replatforming, switching or onboarding new technologies, or trying out new acquisition channels.

Now that the world has changed so quickly overnight, how do we decide what to do with them?

Ecommerce projects: The state of play 

First of all, none of us are alone in pumping the brakes in light of upheaval. In a recent survey by Marketing Week and Econsultancy, 43% of marketers reported having delayed or are reviewing planned technology or infrastructure spending in light of the COVID-19 crisis.

This comes as part of a wider freezing of growth. The same survey reported that 55% have paused new product or service launches, and 60% have delayed budget commitments

Business impact of coronavirus crisis on marketers

These numbers seem fairly substantial. However, they actually show that around half of marketers aren’t changing their plans for growth or innovation in light of the crisis. That’s a significant proportion of the competition that is still pressing ahead with business as usual (more or less). 

So the question is: Which of these two opposing camps should you fall into?

Which camp are you in?

From what we’ve seen in the last few months at Yieldify, where we work with around 1,000 eCommerce websites worldwide, there’s a fairly clear set of two different factors determining whether or not companies are pausing innovation projects. 

Prioritising short-term fires

First up is fire-fighting. Many eCommerce companies – whether they’re seeing a huge spike in demand (like our clients at Domino’s Pizza) or seeing traffic drop – are dealing with immediate disruption to their businesses that has to be prioritized. 

For example, many have seen their supply chains impacted by lockdown in China. Others have had difficulty in fulfilling orders as lockdowns increase in their home markets. Both of these have been accompanied by the challenges of remote working and a diminished workforce as a result of illness and self-isolation.

If you’re experiencing crisis management challenges such as these, it makes perfect sense to press pause on innovative eCommerce projects to redeploy your resource where it’s most needed. However, it’s vital as a leader that you raise your head up from the current fires to see what’s next on the horizon and be ready for it.

This crisis – like any other – will be over at some point, and business will return to normal. 

Long-term innovation vs. economic fallout

The second motivation we’ve seen for halting activity on eCommerce projects has been longer-term concerns about business success and viability in anticipation of the economic impact of COVID-19. 

This is where things get a little bit more complicated. Exercising caution in the face of potential rough times is, of course, a smart thing to do. But to stop completely is potentially to throw the baby out with the bathwater. 

Here’s why.

One of the hottest takes in our space right now is that the coronavirus crisis isn’t necessarily disrupting the eCommerce industry. It is simply accelerating change that was already in play. 

E-commerce growth 2020 chart

Put simply, it’s saying that the ones to survive this turbulent time will be the ones who had already done the work of transitioning successfully to a digital model. And the ones who don’t survive were already in trouble (or at least heading towards it). 

You can agree or disagree with this. For us, we think it’s a little too early to commit fully to an idea like that. However, there’s an important lesson in it for anyone who’s freezing their eCommerce projects in the face of a crisis: It’s very likely going to impede your recovery. 

You can look at it this way: If you’re lucky enough to be in a part of our industry where consumer behavior is generally playing in your favor as a result of COVID-19 (let’s say, online groceries), you’ll still need to emerge from this time with an ability to turn your newly-acquired customers into actual lifetime value. That work starts now. 

COVID-19 impact on website traffic

Alternatively, you might be in a vertical where there’s real nervousness about what a recession might do to your business. Luxury goods, for example.

You’re about to head into a time where there’s a smaller market to share, so your competitive edge needs to be ten times sharper. With less traffic coming in, your conversion rate has to get higher. You’re going to need to take your website’s experience to the next level to win. Again – that work starts now. 

How to keep moving forward 

If you had some grand plans in February that suddenly came grinding to a halt in March, where do you go from here?

To help you determine how you should move ahead, we recommend asking yourself the following three questions about the eCommerce projects you’ve pressed pause on:

1. What positive impact does it stand to make?

This is the first question to ask as part of a pretty simple cost-benefit analysis. In the world that we’re about to enter, you’ll need to make sure that you’re getting measurable results from your eCommerce projects in order to justify the resource and the budget. 

Focus in particular on those actions that will improve your website experience. Traffic is already volatile and there’s a limited level of control you have over this. Turn your attention to making sure that the traffic you’re getting converts at a higher rate

2. What disruption and risk do your eCommerce projects entail? 

If we’ve determined the benefit, then look at the cost. How much does your project necessitate putting your existing business at risk?

For example, replatforming usually involves teething troubles and bug fixes (39% see a drop in conversions immediately after launch). In the case of Marks and Spencer, it even involved getting existing customers to reactivate accounts – a huge risk!

Marks & Spencer replatforming with Yieldify

At times like this, you may want to delay sweeping changes in technology. But remember, that doesn’t mean ruling out changes altogether. For example, most chatbots and onsite messaging tools integrate with just a couple of lines of code and can be easily removed if you need to – and can make a real impact on your bottom line right now. 

3. Can you be iterative? 

Aside from looking at the cost-benefit analysis that you first put together, take the time to break your eCommerce project down with fresh eyes. If something seems too labor-intensive or high-risk at this point, see whether you might be able to break down your project into smaller, more manageable stages. 

Being agile and iterative at this point will help you immensely (a principle that applies to how you do business as a whole – not just how you manage innovation).

Closing thoughts

Perhaps you’ve re-evaluated your eCommerce projects and determined that even in their most agile form, the fires you’re fighting still need to come first. That’s perfectly OK. 

But let’s return to the point we made earlier about keeping your eyes on the prize, even when things are crazy.

If you’ve decided that your project is on ice for this week, ask yourself again next week. Don’t park this conversation for a months’ time. In the world we’re in now, a month is a lifetime. Check-in with yourself every week and repeat the exercise to make sure you’re on the front foot. 

In the meantime, we recommend signing up for E-commerce Leadership Series: our new series for founders, VPs, CEOs, and other eCommerce leaders. You will get access to valuable e-commerce leadership content, exclusive dinners, and event invitations.

Demographic Segmentation Defined with 5 Marketing Examples

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Demographic segmentation for eCommerce | Yieldify

Learn how to effectively use demographic segmentation in your eCommerce marketing strategy. Get inspired by real-world examples from household brands.

If you want an effective way to target your marketing, customer segmentation is an excellent entry point. Segmentation groups customers based on different factors and allows you to apply messaging that speaks directly to their needs.

There are 4 main types of market segmentation: demographic, psychographic, geographic, and behavioral. Each provides different ways to look at your customer base, and define what it is that will help you sell to them.

In this blog post, we’re going to do a deep-dive into demographic segmentation, and see how generic non-character traits like age, religion, or level of education can help guide your eCommerce marketing strategy. Let’s begin!

What is demographic segmentation?

Definition: Demographic segmentation groups customers and potential customers together by focusing on certain traits such as age, gender, income, occupation & family status.

It’s an accessible form of market segmentation, as it requires fewer data points to implement than psychographic or behavioral segmentation, whilst offering more selective nuance than geographic segmentation. There are plenty of ways to segment markets using demographics.

The most commonly used demographic segmentation factors are:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Ethnicity
  • Income
  • Level of education
  • Religion
  • Occupation
  • Family structure

The simplest way to adopt demographic segmentation is by using factors like age gender income, but there are many non-character traits that you can focus on. Income and family structure are particularly useful factors for retailers, allowing them to single out certain groups that might be interested in purchasing a specific product or service.

Business-to-business (B2B) marketers, however, are much more likely to rely on occupational segmentation to ensure they are pitching their products to the people who actually make purchases for their company, and not an intern who has no purchasing power.

Segmentation vs. targeting – what’s the difference?

It’s important to recognize that segmentation and targeting differ, though they can be closely linked.

Market segmentation isn’t about targeting specific customers, but about creating groups based on the different traits that they share. Demographic segmentation allows you to collate your customers in a way that then lets you identify the best way to promote your goods or services to them.

Once you’ve segmented your market, you might look to target a segment – targeting itself is the action of looking at an already defined market segment and asking yourself how you can reach them specifically.

One way to better explain how segmentation and targeting are different but work together is via the STP marketing model.

STP (Segmentation, Targeting, Positioning) is a three-step approach that combines each of the above practices to hone in and successfully market to consumers.

  • First, we segment the audience using market segmentation practices.
  • Next, we choose which of those segments to target.
  • Finally, we use this information to guide our positioning and identify the most effective marketing mix to reach the audience we want to focus on.

What that could look like in real life is a hypothetical food company that uses demographic data to segments its market by age group. Looking at sales across these segments, they might acknowledge that 25-30 year-olds are not buying as many yogurts as older segments. So they would look to target their marketing campaigns towards the 25-30-year-old group in order to change this.

Having chosen this demographic segment as its target, the company can start working on its positioning to make it youthful and its marketing mix to reach the target market via channels they use most.

Demographic segmentation benefits

If you use demographic segmentation as part of your marketing strategy, you’ll benefit from the following:

1. Improved personalization. A segmented market allows you to present different messaging to different demographic segments. The same product can be shown in different ways – for instance, a car might be marketed as a family-friendly vehicle to parents, whilst couples who don’t have children are shown other benefits, like its suitability for long driving holidays. So your marketing strategies should resonate a lot better.

2. Improved product relevance. As a result of this, you can ensure people seeing your marketing are presented with products more relevant to them. Demographic marketing is particularly useful for advertising kosher or halal products to the right audience. An advert showing a non-halal meat product to a Muslim could risk isolating the customer and putting them off making future purchases from you.

3. Improved advertising effectiveness. To take the above example further, you’ve also wasted your marketing budget in advertising that non-halal product to a Muslim, as they are never going to be a buying customer. Demographic segmentation allows you to target the most relevant customers, and ensure that there is minimal waste in your advertising budget, higher ROAS, and lower CACs.

Is demographic segmentation right for me?

The short answer is: it depends. Demographic segmentation is not always the most effective type of segmentation to use. It’s important to look at what you are selling, the size of your business, and who you are selling to. It might be that there are other strategies that would work better.

If you are an online clothes retailer you might want to consider if you have enough data to implement behavioral marketing, which potentially offers even more personalization opportunities.

A company that only has the infrastructure to service a local area might be better served using geographic segmentation, and one that sells hobby-centric products like c

Disadvantages of Demographic Segmentation

As highlighted above using demographic segmentation may not be the right move for everyone. As you’re only focusing on basic data that excludes actual customer behaviours and desires its effectiveness is limited.

Limited Range

For example, just because we have two people in the same demographic segment doesn’t mean they want the same things.

Using the wrong demographic variables

In some cases, it won’t make sense to use every demographic variable there is. So don’t. For example, if you’re selling high-end luxury products segmenting your market by income makes sense. If you’re selling food, segmenting by Gender may not be the most useful variable to use.

Demographics will always play an important role in identifying your target customer but it’s vital to combine demographics with other types of market segmentation to get the complete view.

Examples Of Demographic Segmentation In Marketing

Because there is such a wide variety of demographics that you can use to segment your market, there’s also a wealth of options for utilizing the strategy. Let’s look at some demographic segmentation examples in action.

Segmenting based on age

Whilst it isn’t a universal truth, it’s fair to say that people of different ages often have very different desires and Whilst it isn’t a universal truth, it’s fair to say that people of different ages often have very different desires and expectations. Taking this into account as you plan your marketing strategy can be a useful tool.

Age segmentation example

Saga Holidays sell travel packages exclusively to those over 50, and their marketing reflects this.

The images they use to show their holidays are serene and peaceful, the people represented in the lifestyle shots are well in the target audience’s age range, and the company goes out of its way to highlight the USPs important to their age segment: airport pick up, door-to-door travel service, insurance, etc.

This won’t necessarily appeal to all over 50 year-olds, but those who are still looking for busy, exciting adventures are not Saga’s target market anyway, so using demographic segmentation in marketing this way makes a lot of sense.

Segmenting based on gender

Gender-specific marketing can be a very powerful tool when done well, but it’s increasingly important to consider your messaging.

Pen manufacturers Bic have twice been called out for using lazy stereotypes to sell to women: first by producing a Bic for Her that was nothing more than a pink pen; and second with an International Women’s Day campaign that told women to “Look like a girl, act like a lady, think like a man, work like a boss.”

Effective gender marketing isn’t about playing up gender stereotypes, but about presenting clear, effective, and taEffective gender marketing isn’t about playing up gender stereotypes, but about presenting clear, effective, and targeted marketing.

An excellent example of this is our client War Paint for Men, a men’s make-up brand that provides clear and effective marketing towards their chosen market segment: from the brand name to the imagery to the content, their message is crystal clear.

Segmenting based on income & occupation

A very useful marketing tool is to segment by occupation or related demographics, such as income bracket or the level of education the person has reached.

Students are the frequent target of marketers, as a segment who are easily defined and have unique interests and needs. Perhaps the most common of these strategies is income-related segmentation.

Marketers find this tool useful as people in different income brackets can have drastically different approaches to making purchases. Crudely speaking, those in lower brackets are more likely to be swayed by good value, whereas those with more disposable income will be happier to spend more for a better product.

Compare the bright and casual tone that mass-market wine brand Barefoot uses, above, with that of the luxury sparkling wine brand Nyetimber, below.

Segmenting based on cultural background

Demographic segmentation also allows us to group our customers by ethnicity, religion, and nationality. This is perhaps most useful for those in the food sector, particularly for businesses selling food or products from specific cuisines.

WaNaHong is an online Asian supermarket selling primarily to Asian expats living in the UK. Their website features many familiar products from China, Japan, Taiwan, and other Asian nations, and is also skewed heavily towards providing the best experience for their customers, with many headings and products described in both Chinese and English.

Their COVID-19 information page was presented in Chinese first to ensure maximum clarity for their customers.

Segmenting based on family status

We can find our final group of demographic traits in the home – looking at marital statuses, family structure (for instance, how many children a family has), and the life stages of those in each family.

This could include things like how far each child is into their education, whether the person is renting their home or owns it and, in the case of the latter, whether or not they have paid their mortgage off.

Department store Kohl’s presented brilliantly conceived Back to School marketing campaign during the COVID-19 pandemic that both spoke to parents’ needs to buy equipment for the new school year, but also acknowledged the very specific and unique situation they were facing – highlighting that children might be heading back to school, but might also just be logging on for remote learning at home.

Either way, they present themselves as a solution and allow for those in this particular life stage to feel catered for.

In conclusion

Demographic segmentation is an excellent ecommerce conversion rate optimization strategy to provide relevant and targeted messaging to potential and existing customers. The key for your business is identifying which demographic segments are most relevant to you, and how best to utilize the opportunities segmentation affords you.

Demographic segmentation FAQ:

What is demographic segmentation?

Demographic segmentation groups customers and potential customers together by focusing on certain traits that might represent useful markets for a business.

What are the 5 main different segments for demographics?

The five main demographic segments are age, gender, occupation, cultural background, and family status.

What is a demographic segmentation example?

An example of segmenting by age would be Saga Holidays. They sell travel packages exclusively to those over 50, and their marketing reflects this.

How to Be an eCommerce Thought Leader in a Time of Crisis and Grow Your Brand

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We’re in unprecedented times: COVID-19 was likely not a scenario in anyone’s crisis planning playbook. But can crisis bring opportunity?

While there have been corporate casualties during the COVID-19 crisis, there sure have been some winners too. For example, Walmart, Amazon, Peleton, and other consumer goods companies have not only fared well but arguably flourished under an influx of increased consumer demand. You can attribute much of this success to effective crisis planning.

These successes highlight the importance of fully understanding how to respond to a crisis. Also, emphasizing the business benefits of creating a positive brand experience during trying times.

So, let’s start by looking at what actually constitutes a crisis and how it’s created.

What is a crisis?

What is a crisis? A crisis is any event that will (or could) lead to an unstable or dangerous situation affecting an individual, company, community, or whole society. During this situation, difficult and important decisions must be made, which can result in positive or negative impacts.

Crisis is universally driven by fear. That’s what feeds the fire during a crisis situation and causes it to escalate. When people are afraid or there’s uncertainty about something, they naturally become fearful.

However, for brands, this is dangerous. Fear often leads to assumptions, rumors, and other developments that can turn a potential crisis into a full-blown crisis. Thus crisis planning is key to any comprehensive business strategy.

What is a Crisis for Your Company?

When crisis planning, it’s important to clarify what is considered a crisis for your company and what is not. Many companies do this by creating a hierarchy of crisis levels.

For example, if an issue is isolated and has not affected many people or isn’t known beyond a few people, this is not a crisis. It could have the potential to be a crisis, but at that level, it is not. We consider this a level one crisis. If the issue spreads and more people are affected, becoming known among a wider group, this is a level two crisis. When the issue becomes public and is affecting a large group, this is likely a full-blown crisis.

Crisis levels
This example from Groundswell shows an alternative 5 level methodology

As part of your crisis planning, you want to create rules on how you treat each crisis level to outline the role you play in proactively communicating during them. This will help guide your communications plan for positioning your senior leadership team and the brand itself.

There are certainly many ways to respond to a crisis and it will largely vary brand to brand. For example, some people tend to retreat and not have a voice or take a stance, others are more neutral, while some take a proactive approach and address the crisis head-on.

But before we delve into how to best position yourself during a crisis, let’s first look at how to best prepare for a crisis situation – ideally minimizing any potential negative impact.

Crisis Planning Fundamentals

1. Build Relationships With Your Key Audience

First, it’s crucial to make sure you actively communicate with your key audiences on a regular basis so you have a strong track record for engaging with them. Don’t wait for a crisis situation to be the first time you focus on building these relationships. Be a good corporate citizen and build strong relationships with key constituents and it will pay dividends later down the line when you really need their support.

It’s worth remembering that if you have a positive reputation and track record, your key audiences are more likely to forgive you when you make a mistake. This preparation work can buy you precious goodwill from both the public, media, and other stakeholders involved. It’s certainly worth the effort.

2. Keep Messaging Consistent

During a crisis situation it is more important than ever to bring your “A Game”. You want to make sure you deliver a consistent message time and time again. Do this by using similar messaging for internal and external audiences and try not to deviate from the company’s line.

If you put out different messages, it can negatively affect your credibility and make you look suspicious. It’s ok to update your message as the situation evolves, but it should still stay consistent. Look for ways to incorporate your brand messages, which you would ideally have defined in your crisis planning. Whether it is on your website, in media interviews or internal meetings, incorporate your key brand messages and cover your bases. 

3. Utilize any Increased Exposure

While no one wants to be in a crisis situation, it’s actually a unique opportunity where you have the attention of your key audiences. All eyes are on you, but if your response is well-received, the results can be lucrative.

Most of the time, brands are trying to get their customers and potential customers to pay attention to them — through marketing, advertising or digital channels – and during a crisis, they actually want to hear from you.  Don’t run away from this: use it to create a positive brand experience and actually build stronger relationships with employees, customers and attract new customers. These potential advocates will also help you in future crisis planning.

Once you have nailed these crisis planning fundamentals, let’s move on with how you would structure your responses when the crisis hits.

Formulating Your Response: Where do you Begin?

When thinking about how to communicate with key audiences during a crisis, where do you start, how do you know what to say and where to say it?

These are all questions you need to be able to answer as part of your crisis planning. Here’s how:

  • First, identify who your key audiences are – employees, customers, potential customers, investors, etc.
  • Secondly, identify where they are and how to reach them – email, text, social channels, PR, paid digital, traditional advertising, etc. so you know the best way to engage
  • Finally, clarify what you want to communicate and how you can stand out – you want to be authentic and not be seen as taking advantage of the situation, but you also don’t want to add to the noise.  Ensure you communicate in a meaningful way and stay away from fluff or jargon in your messaging

Follow these three simple rules and you will always deliver relevant and timely responses via appropriate channels that are guaranteed to have optimal impact.

But what if that isn’t enough and you want to take it to the next level?

Creating a Crisis Planning Thought Leadership Strategy

During a crisis, people are scared and looking for resources and information to help guide them through the crisis.  With COVID-19, we have seen how quickly information can change and the need for reliable resources as the situation has unfolded – new learnings, best practices, policy changes, etc.  

In recent months we have seen every company and CEO send out communications about their response to COVID-19. And, in some ways this was appropriate. However, in others, it seemed like they were just sending the communication because it was what everyone else was doing.

Following the status quo didn’t seem meaningful or authentic. As part of your crisis planning, consider whether this will resonate well with your audience. Transparency is key and identifying what you want to take a stance on, and ensuring it is relevant to your target audiences and that it reinforces your brand, is the first step in creating a thought leadership position during a crisis.  

A great example of this is Starbucks. The CEO did a great job communicating about COVID-19 and reinforcing the brand’s mission and values.  Below is an email from the CEO to consumers sent on March 12, 2020.

Example: Starbucks Crisis Planning Response

“At Starbucks, we believe it is our role and responsibility
during this time to prioritize two things: the health and
well-being of our customers and partners while also
playing a constructive role in supporting local health
officials and government leaders as they work to contain
the virus. Through that lens, we will continue to make
decisions with vigilance and courage informed by the
latest science-based information and guided by Our
Mission and Values.

I want to also thank you for supporting our Starbucks
partners who proudly wear the green apron. We have a
long-standing history of caring for our partners,
recognizing they are the heartbeat of Starbucks. That is
why, as we navigate this dynamic situation, in addition
to our sick leave benefit and mental health offerings, we
are also expanding catastrophe pay so that partners do
not need to feel like they need to choose between their
health and their work. 

Thank you for being a loyal customer. It is our intent to
remain transparent, providing the latest information
from Starbucks

Starbucks’ resilience is owed to our unwavering Mission
to inspire and nurture the human spirit – one person,
one cup and one neighborhood at a time.

We are privileged to serve you and your community and
look forward to seeing you soon.”

This email does a great job of outlining what Starbucks is doing to address the situation, reinforcing its brand/mission. It helps to instil confidence in consumers so they know what their favorite brand is doing, what they can expect and how Starbucks is going to continue updating them as the situation changes, and continue providing a consistent brand experience.

Building on this, next we’re going to glance inward and look at how senior company representatives can position themselves as thought leaders during a crisis. We’ll be tackling 5 top tips that you can put into action either alone or with a team.

5 Top Tips For Becoming A Crisis Planning Thought Leader

1. Don’t be shy when crisis planning

As a business leader, take a proactive approach to communicating with internal and external audiences as part of your crisis planning. This is a time when people want to hear from you – whether it’s via email, your website or other channels. Give them the attention and reassurance that they need, speaking from a trusted position of authority for added gravitas.

2. Communicate with your key audiences on a regular basis

Don’t just communicate at the beginning of the unfolding crisis, but make sure it’s consistent throughout the year. That way your audiences know you’re authentic and are there for the long haul, building up added trust over time.

3. Create opportunities to engage with key stakeholders

Whether it’s through Zoom or other virtual tools, make it personal. Identify the appropriate channels as part of your crisis planning, then you can simply activate your plan when the time is right. It will be important to ensure these meetings run smoothly, so some quick Zoom tips to plan and manage this process more productively are to make sure you have a set agenda, make sure key stakeholders are engaged on the call, and finally make sure you’re not on mute when you start talking! It doesn’t matter whether you are using Google Meets, Teams or an alternative such as Zoom, those tips will serve you well.

4. Launch new initiatives that are timely and resonate with your key audiences

Now is the time to try out new HR initiatives that can engage employees and help show them how much they’re appreciated. This can also be a good opportunity to launch external initiatives in your community and with customers, further building a community of advocates that can, in turn, support your brand.

These might include:

  • Participating in a food drive or other ways to help people in need
  • Offering flexible pricing or COVID sales to help address consumer concerns about spending money
  • Providing resources to customers – give away free masks with every purchase, or send a COVID care package to customers as a way to let them know you care, offer free Webinars on issues related to your business, etc.

5. Take a proactive crisis planning approach to social and media channels

In a time where social media silence or ‘no comment’ could be deemed an admission of guilt, it pays to get ahead of the game. But rather than jumping straight into defense mode, there are other options that are more tactical.

For example:

  • Draft articles, blogs or vlogs on what you’re doing during these challenging times to meet the needs of your employees and customers – positioning them more as helpful advice – not boasting
  • Launch a PR campaign to secure interviews on local and trade media channels to discuss what you’re doing and encourage other business leaders to help their communities and customers during these challenging times

Ultimately, you want to stay positive – focus on how times are tough, but talk about the future and what we can do now to prepare for the post-COVID phase.

In Conclusion

These are trying times, and people are looking for strong leaders who can guide and support them during this new normal. Take a stance and be there for your employees and customers in a meaningful way. Don’t send out communications just for the sake of it or create content that is fluff.  People will see right through it.

To be a successful leader you must show confidence, be authentic, be caring and show how you are addressing their needs. By following these best practices for crisis planning, you will position yourself as a thought leader and grow your brand. But importantly, you will also help to make a positive impact on the lives of others.

This guest post was written for Yieldify by Shana Harris, COO at Warschawski, a widely recognized thought leader in PR and crisis communications.

Want to learn more about crisis management for e-commerce?
Episode 2 of our new web series, #TrendsOfTomorrow, is all about this topic. Click here to access the full video archives.

Crisis Management Plans: 5 Key Behaviors for eCommerce Leaders

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Creating a crisis management plan is tough, least of all during a global pandemic. Here are the five key defining behaviors of effective eCommerce leaders.

In a fast-paced industry like eCommerce, a leader’s ability to create an effective crisis management plan has become a critical skillset. Experience often plays a key part, but it doesn’t automatically make or break someone as a good leader in a crisis. Let’s explore what does.

Good vs Effective Crisis Management Plans

When you think of the qualities associated with ‘good’ leaders, it’s likely your response is emotion-based. These leaders are often compassionate, unequivocally committed to both their team and company success when times are tough. Decisions are made ethically, after much consideration, and for the greater good.

‘Effective’ leaders work slightly differently. These are the ones that simply get the job done, no matter what crisis or obstacle gets thrown at them. They are goal-oriented and fixated on moving the needle from where it is now, to where it needs to be. All with the aim of securing a successful business outcome.

The key difference here is the ‘effective’ leader’s ability to make quick decisions under intense pressure and creatively explore solutions. If something isn’t working, strategies are pivoted immediately, using the latest information at their disposal.

Can a leader be both ‘good’ and ‘effective’?

In short, yes. A great example of this is Jacinda Ardern, Prime Minister of New Zealand. According to research, she is “the most popular New Zealand prime minister in a century,” with 92% of poll respondents saying that her decision to take strict measures during the COVID-19 crisis was “the right call.” 

Ardern has built a strong reputation for caring about people. However, she also has a strong, evidence-based strategy for applying that ethos in a practical way. This had resulted in a high level of trust and respect worldwide.

Clara Ross-Benham, Head of People and part of Yieldify’s leadership team agrees, commenting: “a balance is important, especially during a crisis where we often see a conflict between the needs of the employee and the employer. A manager serves two functions: to lead a team and to contribute to the success of the business. Communication and honesty will go a long way in building the trust of your team and navigating them through unsettling situations. It’s important not to over-promise. The goal of both a ‘good’ and ‘effective’ leader here is to ensure that the employee and employer have an understanding. 

“A successful leader should be able to connect and to collaborate. Achieving this requires empathy and greater business awareness. I believe the best leaders care genuinely, not just about their direct reports but about the company as a whole. This allows leaders to bring together the right people, give effective feedback and work as a collective.”

But what is the glue that binds Jacinda and other effective leaders together? Below we explore the 5 key behaviors of crisis planning, nominated by business leaders for business leaders, adding in our own top tips.

5 Key Behaviors To Embrace When Creating A Crisis Management Plan

1. Trust-building

Mattress Next Day | crisis management

Martin Seeley, CEO of MattressNextDay believes “Honesty is one of the most valued character traits, but many leaders fail to achieve it.

“Honest leaders inspire trust from their team, which leads to employees being more productive and loyal. This transparency builds credibility and support.

“In a crisis, a leader must admit when he or she doesn’t have answers to all the questions rather than confusing people with false information. Withholding important information that could affect employees is also dangerous because it can breed mistrust and uncertainty. Honesty will make people work for you not because of your title but because of who you are.”

Top Tip: It’s key to communicate, and that doesn’t stop at the leadership team. Consider creating an FAQ document or intranet page that provides clear answers to the important questions that all employees are asking. Even if the answer is simply ‘we don’t know yet, but we’re working on it’. Silence fuels fear and promotes distrust, which is exactly what you want to avoid.

2. Acting with courage

Fracture | crisis management

According to Abhi Lokesh, CEO of printing company Fracture, courage is mission-critical in many ways. “Whether it’s how you communicate with your team to being willing to make significant changes to your business strategy in the face of adversity. However, in many ways, courage can be found in the actions you DON’T take versus the actions you do take.”

“We tend to admire and lionize those leaders who exemplify the traditional definition of courage. For example, being bold and instinctive, shrugging off doubt and ignoring reason, single-mindedly striding into battle or tackling adversity head-on. The truth is that courage and cowardice often get confused for each other. It’s important to try and understand the difference.”

“The courageous leader is the one who exercises restraint and calm even in the eye of the storm. As human beings, we’re biologically wired to react instinctually to danger – hence our “fight or flight” response. It’s incredibly hard to fight that impulse and conquer that instinct. True courage is not simply following the herd and doing what everyone else is doing. Instead, it’s stopping and asking “Why?”, reflecting upon past experiences, and seeking counsel from those around you.”

Top Tip: It’s easy to confuse action and motion with courage. So be patient and ensure that you’ve analyzed a situation from the necessary angles before you make a move. Whatever decision you make will likely face intense scrutiny, so having the facts, figures and logic to back up your rationale will help overcome any objections.

3. Anticipating the unexpected

English Blinds | crisis management

John Moss, CEO of English Blinds comments: “An effective leader during a crisis is one that is calm and adaptive. They understand that the crisis is still evolving and is, by nature, unpredictable, and so requires a fluid and responsive approach to mitigation and management.”

“Being able to take a big picture view and understand not just the current or direct impact of the crisis is important too. This ensures that the secondary or knock-on effects that are apt to happen down the line are prevented or planned for as well.”

“Staying one step ahead, being able to visualize the potential directions or conclusions things will take, and problem-solving or troubleshooting on the fly are key skills. As is being able to keep a cool, clear head and provide direction and reassurance to others.”

Top Tip: Forward-thinking is a key component of any crisis management plan. The more scenarios that you can predict in advance and create a plan for, the more prepared you will be when disaster hits. However, of course, there will always be events like a pandemic that takes us by storm. In which case, having a basic framework that applies to any scenario will be invaluable. You can find this in our Crisis Management Toolkit which is free to download here.

4. Critical thinking

Creation Business Consultants | crisis management

According to Carolyn Cairns of Creation BC: “One trait of an effective crisis leader is their critical thinking skills. They should be able to understand and appreciated the unique complications of each crisis situation.”

“A leader with critical thinking skills can recognize the logical links between concepts, recognize the validity and significance of claims, spot contradictions, or flaws in judgment. Thus, allowing them to make the best decisions.”

“They must also be able to assess how certain information can be relevant in specific situations especially during a crisis like the pandemic.”

Top tip: Trusted third party stakeholders can prove to be valuable sounding boards for testing out new strategies and ideas. They are far enough removed from the crisis management plan at hand that they can offer fresh perspectives and spot subtle flaws that might otherwise be missed. Invest time in building these relationships as they can bring other great rewards as well!

5. Leading from the front

Aligned at Work | crisis management

Laurie Battaglia, CEO of Aligned at Work®, commented: “In times of crisis, people are looking for a visible leader, one who leads by example and knows how to engage the hearts and minds of people who are under pressure.”

“People seek information and guidance during times of crisis. They hope that the leader either has experience in leading through a crisis or that the leader is surrounded by smart people with that experience or knowledge.”

“Great crisis leaders know when to make a snap decision, and when to engage with others to come up with the best solutions. They inform, stay visible, and create an environment where others can step up or step into leadership with them. Value is placed on listening and listening often. They surround themselves with trusted advisors who have the people’s interests at heart. And they describe the larger purpose that people sign on for and support.”

Top Tip: Leading by example doesn’t have to mean taking the entire burden of the world on your shoulders. Surround yourself with a trusted crisis-ready team and bring those employees with you on the journey to the solution. Listen carefully to what they have to say and use this to help inform what actions you take. This will also assist you in achieving buy-in across the business when your plan is ready to present publicly.

In conclusion

The role that effective leaders can play in a crisis management plan is immensely valuable to any organization. Aspiring leaders shouldn’t wait for a crisis to occur to start nurturing their skills. This will ultimately allow them to perform to their full potential if/when disaster strikes.

Things to remember:

  • Be honest and promote an environment of trust and respect
  • Leverage your team and listen closely to their input
  • Always look at situations critically and ask “Why?” before acting
  • Have the flexibility to be able to pivot strategies as the crisis evolves

“Greatness is not in where we stand but in what direction we are moving. We must sail sometimes with the wind and sometimes against it—but sail we must and not drift, nor lie at anchor.”

Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

Want to learn more about creating a crisis management plan for e-commerce?
Episode 2 of our new web series, #TrendsOfTomorrow, is all about this topic. Click here to access the full video archives.

Ecommerce Inventory Management: What It Is & 5 Essential Techniques

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Inventory Management for Ecommerce | Yieldify

Learn about the essential inventory management methods and enhance your eCommerce sales and marketing strategy.

So, you are living the dream! After months of making plans, figuring out costs, and putting in the hard graft, you have finally set up shop. You are running your own eCommerce business! Or, you may have had an online business for years…

Either way, there is one aspect of all retailer’s lives that doesn’t get the traction it needs. And that is knowing how to use inventory management methods to make your business the best it can be.

What is eCommerce inventory management?

On the most basic level, inventory management is sourcing, storing, and selling stock. It is knowing how much stock you have, how much it should sell at, where to keep it, and how long to keep it for.

Understanding how to manage inventory is crucial for any business – large or small. It prevents waste, saves costs, and saves time. Keeping on top of supply creates more customer focus as it gives people the products they want.

Unfortunately, many businesses still lack the knowledge in inventory management best practices. Some of the biggest firms in the world have collapsed through not using the right techniques and systems.

Here are a few pointers to make sure your eCommerce store stays on top by adopting a proper inventory management system.

Understand the ins and outs of inventory management

Why you need inventory control

Inventory control doesn’t have to be complicated, but it is always important. Understanding stock levels helps you with knowing;

  • When to re-order. First, you need to know when stock is running low. You don’t want to be in a position where you cannot provide products for customers. Think of it as doing a weekly shop. If you are running out of milk, you don’t wait until the carton is empty before you buy more.
  • How much to re-order. Say you own an online pet shop. The squeaky carrot toys have been selling much more than you predicted. So, you need to order more of those in. Yet, you don’t want to over-order and have piles of high-pitched toys piling up in the warehouse. Managing inventory helps steady numbers too.
  • How many more to order. Keeping with the toy example, if the carrot is selling well, will a squeaky tomato sell well too? Accurate inventory tracking will also help with the purchasing and success of new products.
  • How long stock can stay out/in the warehouse. This is something that may seem a little obvious for things like perishables. But without proper inventory, a lot of goods may end up unaccounted for and unsold. Left either to go out of date or out of fashion.
Top 10 benefits of inventory management

Choosing the right inventory management software

According to Wasp, 43% of small businesses still use manual methods to manage inventory. What this really means is 43% of small firms are vulnerable to mistakes. So, having a software tool assists in avoiding chaos and human error.

However, choosing the right inventory management software is no small feat. You really have to consider the nature of your business, your company size, specific challenges and needs. GoCodes suggests asking the following questions:

  • How many users will require access?
  • Does the software allow for scalability as your company grows?
  • Can the software integrate with other systems?
  • Can they provide data migration assistance?
  • Does the system allow for customized reporting?
  • Are you allowed to audit the history of your inventory?
  • Does the software allow you to prevent stolen, lost or misplaced inventory?
  • Do you need to access the inventory management software on multiple devices?
  • What is the quality of their technical support during troubleshooting?

Based on the most common criteria, you want to find software that:

  • Can analyze data in real-time;
  • Analyze data and optimize inventory
  • Takes overstocking and understocking into account;
  • Considers seasonality;
  • Makes adjustments for where the product is in its lifecycle.

Using software that leverages price optimization will also be a great benefit. It will give you recommendations on when to sell at higher or lower price points, and what sells best in which season. Not only does it help you sell the stock for the best profit, but it also helps clear space for new stock.

If you still feel like you’re missing some information about all the inventory tech options, check out Brightpearl’s retail tech stack report. The report helps you understand the options that are available and the current market trends influencing them.

Having an understanding of the solutions available will speed up the process of choosing or upgrading a software tool, thus making sure your money is being spent on the right tech in the right areas.

What you need to know about auditing

Auditing is making sure that you are checking how much stock you have. Even with the best software, it’s important to do manual auditing too. It can help account for any stolen items and prevent any over or under-stocking issues.

The first way to do this is through a full audit. This usually involves counting all the stock a couple of times a year. Frankly, this method can be time-consuming and boring.

The second way is to do a partial audit. Also known as cycle counting, this is when you count items throughout the year. It checks against already recorded numbers and helps measure accuracy.

Spot checking is the third technique. This is when you randomly compare the numbers of one item to the recorded numbers in your software. It’s a good way to check that numbers are accurate.

Of course, different approaches will work better with each company. The following are a few ways that may work for you.

Types of auditing

Setting Par levels

This is also known as keeping safety stock. It’s a method that helps structure, order, and assign priority to items. It works by making sure there is a minimum amount of stock for each product. Setting a Par level is often used in hospitality. The method prevents food waste and keeps inventory healthy.

Orderly suggests that Par level is usually worked out using the following formula:

Par level = (Weekly inventory use + Safety stock) / Deliveries per week

It also suggests keeping around 20%-30% of the weekly inventory to use as safety stock.

An advantage to this technique is that staff don’t have to have as much knowledge about inventory management. They will always know the least amount to order.

First in First out (FIFO)

Also known as FIFO, the First in First out method focuses on selling older stock before anything else. This helps with the natural flow of goods. It makes it easier for record-keeping, too, as it avoids recounting old stock.

And it isn’t just food companies that need to consider this method. Whether it’s tech, clothes, or something in between, fashion dictates the quick change of many products. You don’t want to be stuck with piles of “Mom Jeans” in the back. Waiting for them to come into style for a third time so you can shift them.

Essentially, using FIFO means you can have a high rotation of stock. This keeps things fresh and prevents you from having to do massive clear-out sales. 

ABC management system

This is a really simple way of categorizing products from least to most valuable. Essentially, it’s looking through inventory and working out if each line is in the A, B, or C category. A is a highly valued product but low in quantity. B has regular products in moderate quantity, and C is low valued products in high quantity.

A provides 80% of revenue and 20% of the stock. B provides 15% of revenue and 30% of the stock. C provides 5% of revenue and 50% of the stock.

ABC management system graphic
Source: Katana

Say, for example, you own an online footwear shop. The ABC method in this scenario may look like this:

A: High-end, expensive trainers earn the majority of the sales (80%). Selling just three pairs of these in a day makes most of the income. But as they are on the pricey end, fewer people tend to buy them, so you don’t have a lot in stock (20%).

B: Work shoes are somewhere in-between with sales and stock. They get a decent amount of sales in a day but not a huge amount. They aren’t as expensive as the trainers, and are more of an essential item. So, these sales make around 15% of revenue and make up 30% of the stock.

C: Socks make the most sales in a day. So, they are 50% of the stock. Yet, although lots of these are sold, they are cheap. And so only makes up around 5% of the profit.

Working with this method enables you to focus on the products that are most profitable for you. That’s one vital element of managing a successful eCommerce business. It will help you to know which items to keep in stock. 

5 essential inventory management methods for eCommerce

Finally, there are some key points to remember when using inventory management. Keeping these points in your mind will help your stock go that bit further. They will also make sure you are profiting and keeping customers happy.

1. Keep an inventory of safety stock

You never know when something unexpected may happen. Therefore, it’s important to make sure you have safety stock.

There could be many reasons you may need this. We only need to look at recent cases of panic buying to see that unexpected supply and demand happens. Keeping an inventory of the stock will make sure you prepare for anything unforeseen.

2. Balance inventory

This is as simple as not overstocking and not under-stocking. It’s about getting the balance right.

You don’t want to have so much stock you are having to liquidate. But you also don’t want to have too little stock that you have to tell a customer you don’t have the product and push away your target market. Both these can lead to loss of profit through clearance sales and bad reviews.

Having the right software and managing inventory correctly will help avoid this.

3. Use a kitting technique

Putting together stock to sell as a deal is known as kitting. E.g. Buy 2 Get 1 Free offers. It helps to get rid of any overstock at a good price. It also boosts average order value and lets customers know they are getting a great deal.

4. Look at past purchases to predict future stock

In doing this, you can create a feedback loop of understanding what stock works. You can assess the stock that needs either boosting or reducing. Tracking stock enables you to see which products are selling the best. It also helps in the assessment of yearly trends and can be done as often as you like.

5. Be smart with storage

When gathering stock to sell, it’s important to think about the physical storage of items. Whether keeping items in a spare room or a warehouse, make sure the items are easy to locate.

Keeping them at a place where you can easily pack and post them means the customer will get the item sooner. Base the location on sales and trends. Move things around now and again if you need to. Doing this will help you to keep on top of your stock and will deliver great customer satisfaction. 

In conclusion

Having a great inventory management system in place can make your job so much easier. Using a mix of the right software and these techniques will make sure you are keeping on top of your inventory resulting in more profit for you. Ultimately, it means a happier customer who will keep on coming back.

eCommerce Product Detail Page Examples & Best Practices

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Product detail page | Yieldify

A product detail page is the lifeblood of eCommerce. Read our blog post to learn the best ways to create high-converting PDPs and get a free 25-step design template.

Any online consumer will tell you that it’s important to know everything there is to know about a product before purchasing it. And when you are running an eCommerce website, you want everything to be as easy as possible for your customers. Creating high converting eCommerce product pages is an essential part of a successful online store.

But, what exactly is a product detail page, and what makes it effective? All of these questions and more will be answered below.

But, what exactly is an eCommerce product detail page, and what makes it effective?

All of these questions and more will be answered below.

We’re going to cover:
1. PDP Basics
2. Why Product Detail Pages Are Important
3. PDP Best Practices
3.1. General Components
3.2. Conversion Components
3.3. Administrative Components
4. Product Detail Page Examples
5. Yieldify PDP Template

Check the tips and tricks offered in this guide as you start planning your own web-based market strategy to capture leads, interact with customers, and generate profits.

PDP: The basics

What is a product detail page (PDP)? A product detail page, also known as a PDP, is a web page on an eCommerce website that provides information on a specific product. This information includes size, color, price, shipping information, reviews, and other relevant information customers want to know before purchasing.

To put it in more poetic terms, PDPs are the lifeblood of any eCommerce website. To understand them even better, consider Amazon: Notice that when you initially search for a product on Amazon, you’re given a list of products to choose from. When you see one that you like, you click it to find out more information about it.

When you click on a product on Amazon, it will open a new page. This page tells you about that specific item in detail, including a description of it, as well as its measurements, materials, ingredients, or installation instructions.

It tells the consumer everything there is to know about the item so they have a better idea of what they’re purchasing. This is the product detail page.

This page usually comes with a series of photos of the item, as well as a list of available sizes or colors it comes in. Last, but definitely not least, there will be an add to cart button somewhere near this product description.

Why is a product detail page so important?

A well-designed product detail page is essential to your marketing strategy since it is the page that leads directly to a sale. It is vital that you give consumers more information about the product they are interested in; otherwise, how are they going to know what size it is or what functions it has?

The lack of an ecommerce product detail page will make consumers more skeptical about your items, and it may turn them off from adding anything to their online shopping carts.

According to Shiprocket, 98% of shoppers discontinue a purchase if the information about the product is incomplete or incorrect. Not to mention that accurate and detailed product descriptions minimize the risk of customer complaints and returns.

Giving customers and potential buyers all the information they need to make an informed decision is the end goal. We’re talking about specific product data, product benefits, key features, social proof, and more which we will detail further below.

Your product detail pages are a key page to start the buying process and generate sales so you need to get the core components right.

eCommerce product page best practices

Now that the importance of having a product page on your website for each and every product you’re selling has been established, it is also important to understand what specifics must go into its design.

You need to design your page in a way that will ensure that your customers will stay on the page long enough to read the product description and make a buying decision. Here are some of the best practices to follow:

General components

There are certain elements that you can’t design a product detail page without. Each and every one of these elements must be present on your page, and the order and placement of these elements on your page can make a huge difference.

These elements will make the overall page design but there are also some specific things that can improve your conversion rate.

1. Menu. The menu is an essential navigation tool for customers to be able to find their way through your site. The menu will offer quick links to different areas of the site, including the homepage, the various product categories, and the customer’s shopping cart.

2. Breadcrumb. A breadcrumb, in web terms, is used to describe the path a person took to arrive at the product page. It will show all of the different web pages that a customer visited before landing on a specific product.

For example, when visiting to look at an air conditioning unit, you may notice at the top of the page that there is a path leading to that product. It may look something like this: “Home > Shopping > Home & Kitchen > Air and Heating > Portable Units.”

3. Product title. This should be the biggest and most easy-to-find text on the page. A product title names the product, showing your customers exactly what they’re looking at. Try to be as specific as possible without being too complicated.

4. Product descriptions. While it doesn’t need to be too long, product descriptions should accurately describe the product and define its features and benefits, its functions and limits. This is where good copywriting comes in handy; knowing what your customers want, and the right language to use to talk to them, can really entice them towards more items in your online store. If you can sprinkle in any relevant keywords from an SEO point of view as well even better.

Product descriptions should also address any big objections or concerns that anyone might have with the product. For example, if you are selling air conditioners, you might want to address a popular concern that customers have with energy consumption by talking about your product’s Energy star rating.

5. Product images. You need good, high-quality images of your product so customers can get a good look at the product. You want them to feel like they are looking at the item in person, so be sure to show images of the product at all angles.

According to eMarketer, digital shoppers expect to see anywhere between 5 and 8 images on each product description site. Don’t forget to add proper credit or copyright to the creator of the image if you are collaborating with others to share product descriptions. Finally, make sure you use high quality images.

Urban Decay shows multiple views of their product, including on skin

6. Price. Probably the most important factor on this page to your prospective customers. The price of your product or service needs to be prominent and clearly displayed. You also have the opportunity to display any discounts or reductions in price here to help drive conversions, i.e use price anchoring that looks like this: $29.99 $39.99.

The price should also be positioned near the “Buy” or “add to cart” button. This is to help with the natural flow of the page and encourage users to go from viewing the price to adding the product to their basket.

7. Call-To-Action. This is the most exciting part of the page. This is where you get to tell your customers to “add to cart”! A call-to-action is a short and quick demand that gets customers to do just that – perform an action. Typically, this action entails adding an item to their shopping cart.

8. Product availability. Potential customers want to know they can get the item quickly, showcasing that the product is in stock, or is limited in stock can help entice them into a buying action and move on to your checkout page. You’ll see most eCommerce sites will show this, so if you can have it on your product detail page definitely include it.

Conversion components

9. Social proof. Social proof can be a game-changer for your conversion rates and is a staple of top tools for CRO. Nothing will convince a prospective customer to buy a product more than hearing the positive feedback from other purchases. Social proof can come in many forms from average star ratings, to industry awards and trust badges. Have a think about what types you can use and leverage social proof if you can.

10. Scarcity and urgency signals. Showing that a product is in low stock, or has multiple people viewing it at the same time is a quick and easy way to show a customer may miss out, and they need to act quickly if they want to get the product.

11. Cross-selling. If a user is on a product detail page clearly they are seriously considering purchasing your product. You need to make the most of this intent with clever cross-selling, or upselling strategies.

12. Trust badges and trust seals. Trust badges are another quick and easy way to diminish any reluctance to purchase from your website. By highlighting that your website is secure users will feel a lot more comfortable in purchasing from you.

In a survey conducted by Econsultancy, 48% of respondents said that trust badges reassure them that the site is secure and trustworthy.

Administrative components

13. Policies. You may also wish to add certain disclaimers and policies to each product page. This clearly highlights the extent of your company’s liability with the use of your products, and what return policies may or may not exist. A return policy allows customers to feel more comfortable buying from you, just in case they ever need to return it in the future.

Privacy policy and terms of use disclaimer may be helpful as well. This prevents you from getting into any legal trouble in case a product is shipped wrong or has a faulty function. Also, list all warranties and guarantees!

14. Shipping information. You can’t have as much control over shipping as you can over the general price of your products. The same goes for state sales tax. Shipping details will need to be calculated individually with the customer depending on where they live and what kind of postal service they want to use.

The cost of delivery has a major influence over purchasing decisions. Of those who abandon their basket due to delivery, more than 50% do so because of unexpected shipping costs. So it’s best to address this as soon as users land on the page and to be straightforward about any additional fees that may occur.

3 examples of eCommerce product pages (PDPs) in action

Getting a first-hand look at some winning product detail page designs can help you plan for your own product pages. You’ll see you can get quite creative with your product page layout


Nike is one of the most recognizable brands in the world so you can expect its products page to be on point. And Nike doesn’t disappoint.

The highlighted box is actually a video that automatically plays showing the product in action. All features and benefits can be seen on the right-hand side with special attention shown to the sustainability of the product, even giving details on how the product was made. Reviews can also be seen and delivery information is clearly shown removing any potential barriers to purchase.


Fitbit has quickly become a household name in the fitness industry, and its product pages showcase best practices perfectly. From awesome product imagery and eCommerce videos to a bright and bold CTA, this is a leading example of what a product page should look like. Free shipping is also highlighted, with this section scrolling through warranties and money-back guarantees.

Fitbit also does everything it can to remove any buyer hesitancy by clearly displaying features and benefits. Each section on the menu above is clickable and will display all the information a prospective buyer could ever ask for.


Kardiel is another example of a product page done right. All information is clearly displayed and easy to find. You’ve got multiple high-quality product images, and two product videos, and if that wasn’t enough Kardial also allows users to order “swatches” of the possible colors you can choose from. As this is quite an expensive product to buy online, especially without seeing the product this is a great way to overcome any buyer resistance.

Love Hair

Love Hair’s products are designed to make your hair healthy and beautiful, with a matching clean design for their product detail pages. They use white backgrounds that allow the colors of each individual product to stand out. They have a very easy-to-follow product page layout so you can find all the product details you need.

Love Hair has a specific section (highlighted in red above) that provides all the product information potential customers would need. You’ll notice a specific ingredients section, this is something that is likely very important to their target audience so a section that lays out the natural ingredients will work well for them.

Their product details page ticks all the boxes and is a good example. A high quality product image that’s used to draw attention. Reviews from other customers, product attributes clearly displayed. The page is also well optimized for search engines with relevant keywords throughout the content.

Yieldify’s perfect product detail page design template

The below template can be used as an inspiration to create the perfect eCommerce product page. It contains everything the user will need to know to reduce any barriers to purchase. From social proof to highlighting shipping options all the information is present.

View the interactive product detail page design template here or download a free high-resolution PNG version.

Product Page FAQs

What is a product detail page (PDP)?

A product detail page, also known as a PDP, is a web page on an eCommerce website that provides information on a specific product.

What is PLP vs PDP?

A Product Detail Page (PDP) contains information for a specific & single product. A Product Listing Page (PLP) simply lists all products within a certain category or products that have been filtered.

What makes a great product page?

A great product page will contain all the information a user is looking for, displayed in an engaging and easy to understand way. Check out our template below for more ideas.

Reviewing Amazon’s Biggest Competitors Across Different Industries

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Amazon competitors | Yieldify

As the world’s leading eCommerce marketplace, Amazon faces harsh competition. Let’s look at four types of Amazon competitors giving it a run for its money.

Amazon, a titan in the business world, started as an online bookstore operating from a home garage. Within 25 years, it has become a global behemoth that offers products and services across myriad industries.

While mostly known as an eCommerce marketplace, Amazon is much more than that. The company offers over 175 different services, with its biggest markets being food, fashion, entertainment, web services, and on-demand services.

Amazon growth chart (Source: Pitchbook)
❓ Who are Amazon’s biggest competitors?

Amazons’ main competitors globally are Alibaba, eBay, Walmart,, Flipkart, Rakuten, Etsy & more. Check out our competitor comparison chart below.

?? Who are Amazon’s competitors in the UK?

Some of the biggest players in the UK’s online retail market include Tesco, eBay, Esty, Asos, Argos,, Next, and John Lewis.

❓ What is the best alternative to Amazon?

The best alternatives to Amazon are Alibaba, eBay, Flipkart, Different countries online retailers will are also good alternatives such as Walmart, BestBuy , Argos & John Lewis.

Amazon has positioned itself as the world’s largest online marketplace with over $280 billion net sales in 2019. Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, stated that its success was built on three customer value propositions: low prices, fast delivery, and extensive selection.

With a market share of almost 40% of US eCommerce sales, Amazon has been on an unstoppable run. However, even Amazon has strong competitors. While the company is likely responsible for a rise in customer expectations for eCommerce stores, the best thing you can do for your business is to learn from your competitors.

4 types of Amazon competitors in the eCommerce field

On top of its array of services, as an eCommerce platform Amazon sells almost everything imaginable. It’s not hard to see why they would have their fair share of fierce competitors.

In this blog post, we’ll explore 4 main types of Amazon competitors that operate in the eCommerce field, as well as look at individual brands and what contributes to their competitive advantage. (See the full comparison table below)

1. Online marketplaces

Online marketplaces have many different buyers and sellers trading through the same website. According to DigitalCommerce360, sales on marketplace sites accounted for more than half of global online sales in 2019.

Online marketplaces are convenient for sellers that don’t want to – or can’t – invest in their own platform. What’s more, shoppers prefer online marketplaces for repeat purchases and they may even start to take away first-time purchases from individual retailers and brands.

Consumers prefer online marketplaces for repeat purchases (Data: Salesforce/Publicis)

In 2019, the top 100 marketplaces sold $2.03 trillion worth of merchandise, or 58% of global online retail sales. Even though most will have heard of the biggest ones such as Amazon, eBay, Alibaba, Google Express, or Etsy, there are hundreds of other options. Many of these large marketplaces remain quite niche, such as Zalando for fashion or AirBnb for tourism and lodgings.

Let’s look at two eCommerce marketplaces – Alibaba and eBay – that give Amazon a (slight) run for their money.


Alibaba is a Chinese eCommerce dragon that connects wholesalers to businesses around the world. Over the years they have expanded their services to include Taobao (a site similar to eBay), Tmall (a site similar to Amazon), and Aliexpress.

Unlike Amazon, which sells products directly or serves as an intermediary in the process while taking a cut of sales, Alibaba is the middleman between buyers and sellers. Alibaba’s business model has left them with hundreds of millions of users and a revenue of almost $72 billion.

While Alibaba is often called the ‘Amazon of China’, with the growth to back it up, it is still lagging in market share. Only time will tell whether the eCommerce world is big enough for both these giants.

Amazon revenue vs Alibaba, Ebay and Etsy (Data: MacroTrends)


eBay is an online marketplace that enables buying and selling between businesses and individuals. According to eBay, there are over 170 million sellers on the site, which is reflected in their revenue of $10.8 billion in 2019.

eBay has positioned itself as one of Amazon’s top eCommerce competitors in the US. The platform is dwarfed by Amazon’s size and profitability, but it is still preferred by a majority of online sellers in the US.

Most popular online marketplaces in the United States (Data: Statista)

2. Click and mortar retailers

The global eCommerce industry reached an astounding $25 trillion value in 2019. Even though there are more than 20 million online stores in the world, much of the growth can be attributed to Amazon.

However, when it comes to online retail, the revenue is more dispersed. Most of Amazon’s online retail competitors also have brick and mortar (hence the click and mortar) stores, which gives them an upper hand in the physical market.

Let’s take a look at two Amazon competitors – Walmart and Apple – that are a force to be reckoned with due.


While Amazon is trumping Walmart in online sales, they lack in physical presence. Almost 90% of Americans live within 10 miles of a Walmart store. The company’s total revenue is almost twice that of Amazon’s at an astounding $523 billion.

Most of their profits come from their physical department stores, but they have started putting in the necessary work to position themselves as an eCommerce store as well. In the US, they hold a strong second place for the most popular online store. With 207% growth in its eCommerce customer base, Walmart may be giving Amazon a run for its money.

What’s more, on June 15, 2020 Walmart announced a partnership with Shopify. In a nutshell, the industry giant is adding 1,200 Shopify sellers to its online marketplace this year. The partnership focuses on adding small- and medium-sized U.S. businesses.

Top 10 U.S. retail sites ranked by unique visitors (Data: eMarketer)


Amazon and Apple are a part of the Big Four tech companies whose value has exceeded $1 trillion. Apple was the first US company to surpass the $1 trillion mark.

Similar to Walmart, Apple’s success can mostly be attributed to brick and mortar stores, but also their premium branding. Coming in at $27 million net sales in 2019, Apple has proven that a brand that sells only a specific category of products can still compete with an online marketplace giant.

Apple owns 10-15% of the Electronics & Media market in the U.S. (Data: EcommerceDB)

3. Social media marketplaces

Social media marketplaces are where eCommerce meets social platforms to create a seamless shopping experience. Almost 90% of shoppers claim that social media influences their purchase decisions. It’s no surprise, therefore, that social shopping is on the rise.

The shifting eCommerce landscape has pressured social media sites to modify how their platform interacts with potential shoppers. Most of the major social media platforms, such as Facebook (38.82%), Pinterest (2.13%), and Instagram (2.07%), have hopped on this bandwagon.

In 2019, Facebook listed Amazon as a competitor in the digital advertising space for the first time, marking a new era in eCommerce. In the last five years, all major social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest introduced the option of in-platform shopping, which has dramatically changed the eCommerce market.

Let’s take a look how Facebook and Pinterest compete with Amazon for customers’ attention.

Facebook Marketplace and Facebook Shops

Facebook’s online Marketplace launched in 2016 as a place where people could buy and sell in their local communities. It is used in 70 countries by 800 million people each month. These numbers aren’t surprising since Facebook is used by almost every other person on the planet.

Even though selling on the platform is free, Facebook has partnered with a number of eCommerce platforms including ChannelAdvisor, Shopify, and BigCommerce to ensure profit from smaller eCommerce vendors.

In 2020, Facebook launched a new feature that put it in direct competition with AmazonFacebook Shops. This venture is the most significant step Facebook has taken in eCommerce to date as it enables users to shop directly on the platform instead of simply redirecting them to other websites with ads. Many businesses are compelled by the idea that they can market and sell on a single platform, and Facebook may pose a significant threat to Amazon in the future.


The rivalry between Pinterest and Amazon began in earnest in 2018. With the introduction of Shopping Ads and Shoppable Pins, Pinterest enabled shoppers to make a purchase without ever leaving the social platform. The new feature was good news for shoppers and businesses alike, as it streamlined the shopping experience without charging a commission to the companies.

Pinterest has also adopted the business model of partnering with massive eCommerce platforms. With specific features targeting iPhone users and enabling a personalized shopping experience, Pinterest is considered to be one of Amazon’s growing online competitors.

4. Niche eCommerce vendors

Niche stores have managed to exploit unexplored market space which makes it possible for them to compete with giants such as Amazon. With very specific products and services, niche vendors can thrive by existing outside of oversaturated markets. They rely on a loyal customer base and the idea that customers would rather shop with a specialist company than a large marketplace.

It’s hard not to feel discouraged after reading about these eCommerce titans. How are smaller stores ever meant to compete? The simple answer is that they don’t need – not directly, at least. Small vendors should learn from Amazon and its online competitors. We’ve put together some of the key takeaways that eCommerce companies can start implementing straight away.

Amazons biggest competitors comparison table

Click on the image to download

How can niche brands compete with Amazon

1. Leverage branding

Simply put, successful branding and identity are what makes most products sell. While almost 77% of consumers don’t feel like they have relationships with brands, brand awareness remains crucial for success.

In a sea of products on Amazon, most aren’t branded. A niche eCommerce store, on the other hand, has the opportunity to tailor the experience to their target audience. Demonstrate your expertise and what you stand for through content, social media, and personalization!

2. Rely on customer data

Amazon’s competitive edge comes from knowing their customers inside-out. By collecting and analyzing data, they not only track what customers are buying but also predict what they might want to buy.

Data-driven marketing can help you do the same without investing millions of dollars as Amazon does. Understanding your customers can help you improve customer acquisition, retention, and conversion.

3. Focus on customer experience

Amazon has set high standards for customer experience with fast delivery, simple returns, and great customer service. A Walker study found that customer experience will be the key brand differentiator.

As an online store, focusing on making websites user-friendly, fast, and appealing should be a top priority. In addition to working on websites, companies should facilitate the shipping and returns process.

The latest statistics show that 92% of customers will buy again if the returns process was easy. Free and fast shipping has become the norm, with almost half of retailers offering it as standard.

4. Advertise on marketplaces

Advertising on Amazon could result in brands being lost in a sea of unbranded products. However, social or niche marketplaces may be the right solution for smaller businesses.

As 90% of people buy from brands they follow on social media, growing a company’s presence on a social media marketplace can be a great strategy. Instead of relying solely on websites, companies can find out where their target audience shops already and meet them there.

For more tips and tricks on how to compete with Amazon, check out our blog post by Stewart Dunlop from Udemy!

In conclusion

Amazon has utterly transformed the global online retail landscape with its ubiquity, quality, and ease of use. Due to its size and success, virtually every online store has to compete with Amazon.

Beating Amazon at their own game will require amazing customer experience and support, high-quality products, fast shipping, easy returns, and a good deal of customer-resonating branding.

If companies can give people a unique experience and tremendous value on top of the products, they might just creep out from Amazon’s shadow and become a serious competitor.