Category: Uncategorised

How to Create a Winning eCommerce Merchandising Strategy

   |   By  |  0 Comments

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? Deciphering your customer journey 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.

4 types of market segmentation

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.

Ecommerce merchandising strategy - Cross-selling

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

   |   By  |  0 Comments

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.
Geographic segmentation in eCommerce marketing

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 factors

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:

Location

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.

Climate

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.

Culture

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.

Population

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.

Language

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.

Audience segmentation for eCommerce - Book a Yieldify demo now!

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.

Geographic segmentation example - Oddbox

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.

Audience segmentation for eCommerce - Book a Yieldify demo now!

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.

Geographic segmentation example - IKEA

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.

Geographic segmentation example - Coca-Cola

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.

Geographic segmentation example - Halal Haribo

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.

Geographic segmentation example - Toyota

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.

Geographic segmentation example - Home Depot
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.

Video Marketing for eCommerce: 6 Types of Videos That Will Help You Sell More

   |   By  |  0 Comments

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%). 

Video marketing strategy chart
(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

YouTube usage statistics - mobile vs desktop
(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’s journey from 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.

Facebook Ads combinations that work
(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. 

Ecommerce video marketing - video overlay

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

   |   By  |  0 Comments

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 online retail stores in the US
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

   |   By  |  0 Comments

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.

Key personalization trends:

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.

Ecommerce personalization adoption by channel

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. 

Data used for website personalization

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.

Website personalization challenges

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. 

Segmentation methods used for website personalization

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. 

Website personalization motivators

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.

Personalization After COVID-19 Report | Yieldify

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 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

   |   By  |  0 Comments

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. 

Consumer trust study - Nielsen
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.

Ethical fashion example - Spell

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. 

Word of mouth marketing example - Timberland

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.

Single page checkout example

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.

Why?

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.

Word of mouth marketing examples - Verishop

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.

Closing

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

   |   By  |  0 Comments

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 example - Best Buy
BOPIS example - BestBuy

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.”

BOPIS search volume

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.

BOPIS increase post-COVID

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.

Lululemon BOPIS adoption

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.

BOPIS retail statistics

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 Offers.com 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.

BOPIS challenges

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.

BOPIS example - Dollar General

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

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. 

BOPIS example - Lowe's

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

Petco

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. 

BOPIS example - Petco

Nordstrom

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.”

BOPIS example - Nordstrom

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.

BOPIS example - Home Depot

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.

BOPIS FAQ’s

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

   |   By  |  0 Comments

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, 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 how well you are retaining customers and how much they 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.

How to improve Gross Merchandise Value (GMV)

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!

How to improve Gross Merchandise Value (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.

GMV FAQs

? 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

   |   By  |  0 Comments

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? 

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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

   |   By  |  0 Comments

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.

Demographic segmentation for eCommerce

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
Demographic segmentation factors

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.

Audience segmentation for eCommerce - Book a Yieldify demo now!

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.
STP model, STP marketing: Segmentation, Targeting, Positioning

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.

Audience segmentation for eCommerce - Book a Yieldify demo now!

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.

Demographic segmentation example - Saga Holidays

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.”

BIC for Her campaign

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.

War Paint for Men | Yieldify clients

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.

Demographic segmentation example - Barefoot Wine

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

Demographic segmentation example - Nyetimber

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.

Demographic segmentation example - Wanahong

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.

Demographic segmentation example - Kohl's

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 way to provide relevant and targeted messaging to potential customers and existing customers alike. 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

   |   By  |  0 Comments

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
here

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

   |   By  |  0 Comments

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.

Best eCommerce CRM Software Tools

   |   By  |  0 Comments

Best ecommerce CRM software tools

Want to take your customer experience to the next level? Consider a CRM tool. We look at 5 best eCommerce CRM software tools on the market today and how to choose the right one for you.

For every eCommerce business, it’s vitally important to keep track of customer relationships. Once your business reaches a certain size, that task becomes virtually impossible without a professional eCommerce customer relationship management system, ECRM for short.

What is an eCommerce CRM?

E-commerce CRM software is a system that helps eCommerce businesses manage customer contact information, purchasing history and behavior and other eCommerce analytics data. It’s designed specifically for the unique needs of online stores to help them better understand and retain customers. In many instances, the CRM tool will directly integrate with the eCommerce platform to seamlessly capture and store customer data for future analysis and marketing campaigns.

The 10 best eCommerce CRM software tools on the market

1. Pipedrive

Best ecommerce CRM - Pipedrive

Pipedrive is a CRM tool that is very much focused on sales. One of the great things about this eCommerce CRM is that it has been designed for teams of all sizes. In fact, there are more than 90,000 businesses making the most of this tool across the world. 

In terms of ease-of-use for eCommerce business owners, Pipedrive ticks all of the boxes. The dashboard is intuitive yet it is powerful, with usability being the number one priority. No matter whether you are a beginner or you have experience with CRM software, we are sure you will have no trouble getting to grips with it. 

Pricing is very straightforward. Prices start from $15 per month for each user. This grants you access to all of the features. There is a free trial, though, to help you determine whether or not this is the right product for you. 

The features are extensive and powerful. You can expect territory management, quotes, and proposals, multiple integrations with marketing automation tools like Drip or Outfunnel, document storage, task management, segmentation, mobile access, leading scoring, and a calendar system. 

Pipedrive is among the most comprehensive, and yet intuitive and affordable CRM solutions out there. It might help you to keep in touch with your customers, run smart email campaigns, reengage those who abandoned their carts – the possibilities are endless. 

2. Copper CRM

Best ecommerce CRM - Copper

Another CRM that is worth looking into is Copper. This has been designed for small companies that are looking to grow their customer relationships and manage a greater number of sales.

With Copper CRM, the eCommerce managers can easily accomplish tasks that were once made difficult. One of the great things about Copper is that it can easily be integrated with your website, lead capture forms, and common tools that a lot of businesses already use, such as Slack, Mailchimp, and Gmail.

Pricing is also straightforward. It is just a bit more expensive than Pipedrive, with prices starting from $19 per month, per user. Rather than a free trial, there is a free demo that enables you to see how the product works.

The features are very similar to Pipedrive as well, including territory management, quotes and proposals, internal chat integration, document storage, task management, segmentation, email marketing, and a calendar system.

Copper has a great customer support center, featuring detailed articles and webinars. Even if you haven’t used a CRM system for your eCommerce business before, Copper would make sure that your learning curve is smooth and pleasant.

3. Capsule CRM

Best ecommerce CRM - Capsule

According to its creators, Capsule CRM has been designed for businesses that have between 10 and 1,000 employees – most of the eCommerce businesses fall into that category. Around the world, there are currently 15,000 companies using this platform, so it definitely has a good reputation.

Capsule can also be integrated with popular apps that your eCommerce store might be using, including Zapier, MailChimp, Google Data Studio, and Google G Suite.

There is a free version of the product available, although this is limited, as you would expect. You can also try out the free trial. Once you move onto the paid product, prices start at $18 per month, per user

The selection of features in Capsule is pretty standard compared to Copper and Pipedrive. You will also find that there are some good features catering specifically to eCommerce businesses, among them sales forecasting. Lead management is pretty extensive, covering source tracking, pipeline management, lead scoring, lead distribution, interaction tracking, and much more. 

4. Zoho CRM

Best ecommerce CRM - Zoho

We cannot talk about mentioning CRM systems for eCommerce without discussing Zoho, as it is one of the most popular options out there. This is partly due to the fact that it has been designed to empower organizations of all sizes. It also offers a wide range of features too.

In fact, you can even create your own bespoke version of Zoho CRM, ensuring it is fully tailored to suit your needs.

In terms of pricing, there is also a free version of this product and a free trial too. Zoho CRM pricing begins from $12 per year, per user. As you may expect with pricing starting from such a low rate, there are different packages and different features are available depending on the plan you choose. 

The eCommerce CRM features that Zoho boasts include everything that you would want and need. This means all the standard features, as well as more advanced features like financial forecasting and customer experience

An advantage of using Zoho CRM for your eCommerce business is that it makes your system very extensible and easy to integrate with multiple other Zoho products. 

5. Hubspot CRM

Best ecommerce CRM - Hubspot

Another worthy mention of eCommerce CRM systems is HubSpot. This has been designed for larger eCommerce teams that are very much centered on growth and taking their business to the next level. 

The organization of Hubspot CRM is very impressive. You can see all of the details about a lead in one place, enabling you to make your workforce more empowered, which will lead to better customer relationships and improved efficiency. 

There is a free version available, and a free trial as well. The pricing works a bit differently. The CRM is free, and then you pay for premium marketing automation and sales features. We would advise delving into the features you need so you can get an idea of the cost.

CRM features are extensive. You get all of the CRM features listed for Pipedrive or Copper, except there is not any territory management with this platform. HubSpot also covers project management, scheduling, quotes and proposals, forecasting, and client tracking. Furthermore, you will get lead management and financial CRM.

6. Salesforce Pardot

Salesforce is a customer-centric company with tools that solve all business needs. It has become one of the most popular CRMs in America and around the world, solving for primarily enterprise level companies who need help managing their customers’ information systems from start to finish – whether they’re new or old.

This eCommerce CRM comes fully equipped and it’s cloud-based meaning you don’t have to download or install individual software on multiple devices within your business and marketing teams.

For small businesses just embarking on your eCommerce CRM journey this probably isn’t the best pick for you to start with. It also comes with a pretty expensive price tag which may also put you off. Pricing starts at $1,250/month for up to 10,000 contacts.

However, If you’re already in the Salesforce universe, Pardot is probably the best eCommerce CRM for you.

7. SendInBlue

With SendinBlue, you can automate campaigns and track conversions in real-time. The reasonable monthly price alongside a freemium version makes it an affordable option for small businesses or start ups who want some help with their marketing efforts but don’t need all the bells whistles.

If you’re looking to get started with eCommerce CRM software SendInBlues free version could prove very useful. As far as eCommerce CRM features go, you’ll find what you need including email templates and automation workflows.

They have phone support for the first 60 days of using their service as well. You can send up 300 emails per day on this account with some advanced features like web tracking or lead scoring if needed too. Even then, if you find you need to upgrade their paid plans $25 a month for 20,000 emails.

If your online store is built on WordPress SendInBlue also has a highly-rated plugin that you can use which also provides a seamless user experience.

8. Freshworks / Freshsales

Freshsales is a multi-purpose AI-powered eCommerce CRM software for small and medium businesses. Freshsales has the features that will allow you to generate more leads, boost customer engagement and as they put it “earn you a customer for life”.

Some of the features that may appeal to you from an eCommerce point of view are:

  • AI-powered chat campaigns: You can run these on your website to understand your visitors’ intent, automate communication with leads, and send contextual answers to their queries.
  • Create, customize, and deploy web forms: You can place these on high-converting pages to capture website visitors as leads, track their journey to engage in contextual selling, and sell faster.

Freshsales will also provide you with an activity timeline of the leads you capture from your online store. This includes web activities, recent conversations, appointments, and all engagements with your business, you can see all this from one screen.

This then gives you the option to personalize every lead’s path to purchase. For example, sending them targeted emails during the buyer’s journeys based on their purchase history.

Again as a first eCommerce CRM this might not be the best pick, but you can sign up for free and get an idea if it is the right solution for you. You then have different pricing levels starting from $12 per month per user.

9. Lucrativ

Lucrativ is an eCommerce CRM that offers free sign-up so you can check out what they have to offer before committing. In terms of eCommerce features, you get sales pipeline management, marketing automation among others with metrics & insights powered by AI CRM and even options Gamification strategies.

This platform has a great balance of features and functions, making it both simple to use for beginners as well yet powerful enough that experienced marketers can create campaigns with ease. The gamification element is also something that really stands out about this CRM tool.

Lucrativ’s lack of 3rd-party connections is unfortunate, as this might have lost them some points in our evaluation criteria. However, their REST API offers hope and requires significantly less technical skill than other options on the market today!

Lucrativ pricing starts at $50 per month, per user but as stated above it does offer a free trial and free demo.


10. Metrilo

Metrilo is the perfect solution for eCommerce teams looking to take their revenue and customer insights into new territory. It’s a CRM tool that has been specifically built for online businesses and this shows with the great features it boasts.

Metrilo integrates with popular eCommerce platforms such as Shopify, WooCommerce and Magento. Its 4 main features make it a very useful CRM tool, Metrilo focuses on Analytics, CRM database, Email marketing & Customer Retention.

  • Growth Assistant tool: Uses data and AI to provide suggestions on how to improve performance. Best days, product bundles etc
  • Analytics features: This has everything you need, from real-time dashboard and reports on marketing channel performance, revenue and product performance breakdowns. You can also get your eCommerce funnel mapped out, and customer lifetime metrics.
  • Ecommerce client organization: Customer data is stored and organised with segmentation and filtering available.
  • Email marketing: All this data can be used to create email campaigns. Metrilo has a simple to use drag-and-drop email builder, with templates available. You can also set up automated email campaigns and can also receive customer feedback via email.

The only area where Metrilo lacks is within inventory and order management but your eCommerce platform should handle this. Its strengths more than make up for this though and make it one of the best eCommerce CRM tools around.

You can either book a demo or get a free 14-day trial of Metrilo which has access to all the features. After this you have to pick a plan which starts from $119 per month, the premium plan then starts from $299 per month.

Choosing The Best eCommerce CRM Software

If you run an eCommerce website choosing the right CRM software will be an important decision to ensure you can continue to acquire new customers and retain old ones.

When choosing a eCommerce CRM system , think not just about where you are currently – but where your business is going to be in 12-18 months. Setting up a CRM system takes time and effort, and so you have to be confident that you won’t outgrow the platform of your choice too soon.

Among the alternatives above, Pipedrive, Copper, and Copper might work best for small and medium eCommerce businesses. They’re easy to set up, don’t require big investment upfront, and can scale with your organization to a certain point. All three of those CRM systems have all the features you need to accomplish your goals.

If you’re running an established eCommerce business that already has all the processes in place and is looking to scale up to the next level – Hubspot might be a better option. It’s much more than a CRM, as it comes bundled with powerful marketing automation and sales platform.

There are plenty of eCommerce CRM tools out there so use the checklist below to help you figure out which one is best for you.

eCommerce CRM checklist

So what should you be looking at when choosing which eCommerce CRM software to go with? What features are a must-have? What should you avoid?

When we looked at the best eCommerce CRM software to put in this list we evaludated them based off of the list below. This list can also be your checklist when reviewing other CRM software we may have left out of our list.

Usability

User Interface (UI): If you can have a demo, or see the CRM in action before you commit to paying, does it make sense to you? Is the design clean and logical? Of course, you can get use to things but first impressions count.

Usability: Do you think you can use it? If not, what support or training can they offer? Again, if you can get a free trial or a free account you may be able to get a taste of this.

Features & Functionality:

Analytics and Reporting – You need to make sure the CRM system can provide you with actionable customer insights that can help grow your business. Do you have to find these insights yourself? Or can the software alert your, or use AI to highlight these opportunities for you? You should also be able to run adhoc reports, create performance dashboards etc

Cross-Channel Tracking – If you’re running marketing activity across social, or other platforms can your CRM cross your customer’s journey across these?

Automated workflows – CRM tools should have this built-in but make sure whichever one you choose can handle some basic automated emails to help you. most of this may be around email marketing. (Think welcome services, basket abandonment emails etc.)

Customer History – Are you able to look into specific customer history? From a lead management point of view being able to see critical data like purchase history and customer behavior will be important when it comes to customer segmentation and identifying key features of your top customers.

Integrations

Your website: Does the eCommerce CRM integrate with your website seamlessly? Can they provide examples or case studies of how well this has worked for others?

Third-party tools: Chances are you may already be using other marketing tools. If so, can the eCommerce CRM you’re looking at integrate with all the ones you need to provide actionable insights?

Value for money

Your budget: Does the CRM offer all the features you need for the budget you have in mind? How does each CRM compare vs each other?

Pricing: You’ll find a lot of CRM have different levels of pricing, make sure that pricing is clear, transparent and flexible.

The benefits of eCommerce CRM

There are many advantages to using a CRM system for your operations. First of all, more timely and precise customer tracking opens up valuable opportunities for cross-selling and upselling. The better you understand your clients’ purchasing habits, the higher your average order value is going to be.

CRM systems might be quite pricey, but in the long run, they’re actually going to save you money and lots of time. Modern CRMs are all about the automation of internal and external processes like emails, invoicing, reporting, and financial forecasting. Instead of doing all these things manually, you can create smart workflows that are triggered once you or your customers perform certain actions. 

Finally, leveraging a CRM system will eventually increase your customers’ happiness. They will feel like they’re being listened to more closely and provided a better experience.

This post was written by Vlad Shvets from Paperform.


eCommerce CRM Frequently Asked Questions

What is eCommerce CRM?

E-commerce CRM (ECRM for short) is a customer relationship management system designed specifically to help eCommerce businesses manage customer contact information, purchasing behavior, and other analytics data.

Does eCommerce need CRM?

In a word, yes. CRM is an essential part of an overall marketing strategy, including for e-commerce websites. A successful CRM can help you retain customers, drive lifetime value (CLV), and allow you to effectively stay in touch with your customer base.

What are the types of CRM?

There are three main types of CRM: Operational, Analytical, and Collaborative. Operational CRMs use sales, marketing, and service automation to streamline business growth. Analytical CRMs focus on gathering and analyzing customer data to improve their experience. Collaborative CRMs facilitate information sharing between various business units, such as the sales, marketing, technical and support teams.

4 Types of Market Segmentation With Real-World Examples

   |   By  |  0 Comments

4 Types of Market Segmentation | Yieldify

When you’re looking to improve the effectiveness of your marketing, segmentation should always be one of your first ports of call. Learn about the 4 most common types of market segmentation, plus some other ones that you may have missed.

Market segmentation is an increasingly important part of a strong marketing strategy and can make all the difference for companies in competitive market landscapes, such as e-commerce.

When up against a range of online competitors, effective communication is the best way to differentiate your business. Market segmentation offers an opportunity to pinpoint exactly what messaging will drive your customers to make a purchase.

The 4 basic types of market segmentation are:
1. Demographic
2. Psychographic
3. Geographic
4. Behavioral

We’ll go into there 4 types in a lot more detail below.

In this article, we’ll cover
1. Demographic segmentation
2. Psychographic segmentation
3. Geographic segmentation
4. Behavioral segmentation
5. Other types of segmentation
6. The benefits of segmentation
7. Conclusion

Audience segmentation for eCommerce - Book a Yieldify demo now!

The 4 types of market segmentation with examples

The purpose of market segmentation is to identify different groups within your target audience so that you can deliver more targeted and valuable messaging for them.

There are four main customer segmentation models that should form the focus of any marketing plan.

For example, the four types of segmentation are Demographic, Psychographic Geographic, and Behavioral. These are common examples of how businesses can segment their market by gender, age, lifestyle etc.

Let’s explore what each of them means for your business.

4 types of market segmentation: Demographic, Psychographic, Geographic, Behavioral

1. Demographic segmentation: The who

Demographic segmentation might be the first thing people think of when they hear ‘market segmentation’. This is perhaps the most straightforward way of defining customer groups, but it remains powerful. Demographic segmentation looks at identifiable non-character traits such as:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Ethnicity
  • Income
  • Level of education
  • Religion
  • Profession/role in a company

For example. demographic segmentation might target potential customers based on their income, so your marketing budget isn’t wasted directing your messaging at people who likely can’t afford your product.

Luxury goods manufacturer Montblanc worked with Yieldify to present a selection of offers across their website. One sought to raise conversions using a Father’s Day deal that offered a free gift to those spending over £200 – an amount that acknowledged the spending expectations of Montblanc’s target audience and saw a +118% uplift in conversions for those targeted.

Another offer was aimed specifically at corporate gift buyers – a market segment that Montblanc particularly appeals to – and resulted in a +30% uplift for that segment.

Segmentation isn’t just about your business reaching customers more effectively – it’s also about those customers seeing messaging that is more relevant to them!

2. Psychographic segmentation: The why

Psychographic segmentation is focused on your customers’ personalities and interests. Here we might look at customers and define them by their:

  • Personality traits
  • Hobbies
  • Life goals
  • Values
  • Beliefs
  • Lifestyles

Compared to demographic segmentation, this can be a harder set to identify. Good research is vital and, when done well, psychographic segmentation can allow for incredibly effective marketing that consumers will feel speaks to them on a much more personal level.

In our experience working with luxury resort business Omni Hotels & Resorts, for example, were aware that a big sector of the company’s target audience was always keen to get the very best price they could. By targeting a notification campaign specifically towards comparison shoppers, Omni Hotels & Resorts achieved a 39% conversion rate uplift.

Omni Hotels market segmentation example | Yieldify

3. Geographic segmentation: The where

By comparison, geographic segmentation is often one of the easiest to identify, grouping customers with regards to their physical location. This can be defined in any number of ways:

  • Country
  • Region
  • City
  • Postal code

For example, it’s possible to group customers within a set radius of a certain location – an excellent option for marketers of live events looking to reach local audiences. Being aware of your customers’ location allows for all sorts of considerations when advertising to consumers.

Using Yieldify’s tools, an online shoe store could show different products depending on where the visiting customer was based: wellington boots for someone in the countryside, pavement-friendly trainers for a city-dweller, strappy sandals to resort visitors, and so on!

In large nations like the United States, customers could be presented with options that match with local weather patterns. Geographical identification is an important part of seasonal segmentation, which allows businesses to market season-appropriate products to customers.

Some recent examples of proper geographic segmentation came from the response by e-commerce businesses to the coronavirus pandemic. During lockdown stages, many businesses shifted their focus to local communities to highlight how their services could still be accessed online.

Conversely, as public spaces began to open up again purely e-commerce brands had to shift their marketing plans to maintain the levels of business they had seen over the lockdown period.

COS geographic segmentation example | Yieldify

4. Behavioral segmentation: The how

Behavioral segmentation is possibly the most useful of all for e-commerce businesses. As with psychographic segmentation, it requires a little data to be truly effective – but much of this can be gathered via your website itself. Here we group customers with regards to their:

Customer segmentation feature by Yieldify

All of these are datasets that can be harvested from a customer’s usage of your website. At Yieldify, we utilize behavioral segmentation to deliver highly relevant and targeted campaigns based on a number of behavioral patterns:

For example, we can distinguish between a first-time visitor and someone who’s already been on your site multiple times but haven’t purchased. Based on this behavioral data, we can tailor our messaging accordingly:

First time visitor: Hey, learn about our latest collection!
Returning visitor: Join our loyalty program and start saving!

Working with online wine club Vinomofo, we used behavioral segmentation to target three distinct audiences: new visitors, returning visitors, and returning clients.

Vinomofo behavioral segmentation example | Yieldify

One of the best examples of this type of segmentation is showing new visitors a $15 incentive in exchange for joining the community. Returning visitors who had already subscribed but have not redeemed their coupon yet were reminded on their first order incentive. Whereas returning customers saw a campaign about Vinomofo’s premium services. 

This targeted approach focused on purchasing habits reached a 34.02% conversion rate uplift with new and 29.24% CR uplift with returning visitors!

Other types of market segmentation with examples

Though the most common types of market segmentation are demographic, psychographic, geographic, and behavioral, there are other types that are also worth considering and can offer excellent opportunities in the right context.

Technographic segmentation

Technographic segmentation identifies and groups customers with regards to the role technology plays in their lives. This might mean recognizing groups of early adopters when marketing new technologies. It might also be as simple as recognizing the device users access the site from and presenting deals differently.

With personalization, it’s easy to target adverts at specific groups like this. Consumers accessing an online phone store via the Safari internet browser might be more interested in Apple products – and can be shown these as a result.

Generational and life stage segmentation

Generational and life stage segmentation both expand on aspects of the demographic approach. Identifying customers by generation allows for broad but distinct approaches depending on age.

Life stage segmentation, however, works similarly whilst divorcing life experience from age itself. Instead, it groups customers by factors including marital status, home-ownership, and whether or not they have children (and more specific still by considering the ages of their children).

Bank of America, for example, has successfully used life stage segmentation in their digital marketing strategy. Medialogic details BoFA’s “Family Life Banking” program that invited customers to segment themselves by clicking on a relatable tab within and email. From there, the customer would land on a custom microsite designed specifically for their segment.

BoFA life stage segmentation example | Yieldify

Transactional segmentation

Transactional segmentation is based on previous interactions your customer has had with your brand. Whilst it can draw on behavioral elements, it also has a much wider scope – considering the initial source of their registration with your business, how long it has been since their last order, and how many orders they’ve made overall. 

Yieldify worked with clothing retailer Turnbull & Asser to boost conversion rates on their online store. Offering free shipping to all their customers would have been too expensive, so Yieldify targeted a specific transactional segment of their userbase – offering free shipping to those with a set value of items already in their carts.

Turnbull & Asset transactional segmentation example

The shipping offer encouraged many of those targeted to make the extra purchases necessary to claim it, and drove over £22,000 of extra revenue for the brand.

Picking up on information like this is a particularly effective strategy across multiple industries, including top competitors to mass global retailers like Amazon, presenting e-commerce businesses with the best understanding of their customers, and encouraging return visits.

Firmographic Segmentation

Whilst the above marketing segmentation strategies mainly focus on B2C organizations, Firmographic segmentation can be extremely useful to those in the B2B world.

Firmographic segmentation is the process of analyzing and classifying B2B customers based on shared company or organization attributes & characteristics.

This segmentation strategy allows B2B companies to better understand and target their audience and marketing campaigns. This process is very similar to the way B2C marketers would use demographic segmentation.

This type of market segmentation predominantly uses 7 factors to identify customer segments.

  • Industry
  • Location
  • Company Size
  • Status
  • Number of employees
  • Performance
  • Executive Title
  • Sales Cycles Stage

This market segmentation process can help form an effective B2B marketing strategy by identifying target customers and tailoring marketing efforts to these specific customer segments.

10 Benefits of Market Segmentation

There are many benefits of market segmentation, our top 10 are below.

1. More effective marketing

This is the biggest and most obvious benefit to well-implemented market segmentation. By better recognizing the needs of your customers, you can identify more effective tactics for reaching them and improving their interactions and experience with your business.

2. More efficient spending

After all, your targeted marketing is going to allow for better returns on investment, and you’ll waste less money on marketing that reaches the wrong audience.

3. Higher quality leads

You’ll also notice that the more targeted more marketing is, the better your leads become. You’re reaching the right people, and they’re starting to notice you!

4. Identifying niche markets

Similarly, your research into segmentation may help you recognize areas of the market you’d not considered before and help you develop a market penetration strategy. This might even lead to the development of new products that are aimed specifically towards these markets.

5. Improved customer retention

By identifying your customers by their needs, you can put out marketing that offers irresistible reasons for a return visit. This is proven to increase customer retention, customer loyalty and lifetime value.

6. Differentiating your brand

The purpose of market segmentation is not only to help you reach your audience but also to allow your customers to see the true value of your brand via marketing that speaks to them – and in doing so puts you head and shoulders above your competitors.

7. More focus

Ultimately, thoughtful customer segmentation will allow your business to focus every element of its activity to better reach those that it serves. Your marketing becomes focused on your customers’ needs, your research and development may focus on meeting those needs, your spending will be focused on achieving these, and not wasted on mistargeted marketing and planning.

Everything becomes better suited to giving your customers what they need, and as a result, your business becomes exactly the sort of business they want to be buying from. This can greatly help with the return on investment of all your marketing activity.

In conclusion

So, as you can see there are different types of marketing segmentation you can choose from to find and define your target market to effectively promote your product or service.

Your customers’ every decision is judged on whether the result is what they want, or whether it is what they need. Market segmentation allows you to recognize these needs and market directly to them, without any wasted messaging.

Whether it’s telling new drivers about the best car insurance for them, or sharing offers on barbeques and sun-chairs to those living in the middle of a heatwave, market segmentation offers you thousands of ways to ensure your customers see you as exactly what they want, and exactly what they need.

Audience segmentation for eCommerce - Book a Yieldify demo now!

Market Segmentation FAQs

What is meant by market segmentation?

Market segmentation builds a subset of a market. This can be based on demographics, needs, priorities, common interests, and other psychographic or behavioral criteria.

What are the 4 types of market segmentation?

The 4 basic types of market segmentation are:
1. Demographic
2. Psychographic
3. Geographic
4. Behavioral

What are the advantages of market segmentation?

By segmenting your market you’ll be able to understand your customer’s needs better and how you can fulfill these better than your competition.

How Inventory Management Enhances Your eCommerce Strategy

   |   By  |  0 Comments

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 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.
Benefits of inventory management
Source: Visual.ly

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 inventory management analysis
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

   |   By  |  0 Comments

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.

Amazon results page

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.

Amazon product 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 Amazon.com 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.

Ecommerce product images best practices
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. 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.

Social proof examples | Yieldify

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.

Trust badges statistics | Yieldify

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.

Cart abandonment reasons | Yieldify

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

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.

Nike product detail page

FitBit

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.

FitBit product detail page

Kardiel

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.

Kardiel product detail page

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

   |   By  |  0 Comments

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
Amazon growth chart (Source: Pitchbook)
❓ Who are Amazon’s biggest competitors?

Amazons’ main competitors globally are Alibaba, eBay, Walmart, JD.com, 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, Play.com, Next, and John Lewis.

❓ What is the best alternative to Amazon?

The best alternatives to Amazon are Alibaba, eBay, Flipkart, JD.com. 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, such as Amazon, for repeat purchases
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

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
Amazon revenue vs Alibaba, Ebay and Etsy (Data: MacroTrends)

eBay

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
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.

Walmart

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

Apple

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.

Top online electronics and media stores | Yieldify
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.

Amazon competitor - Facebook Shops

Pinterest

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

Amazon competitors comparison table | Yieldify
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!

How to compete with Amazon | Yieldify

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.

7 Of The Most Successful Shopify Stores & How They Did It.

   |   By  |  0 Comments

Successful Shopify Stores | Yieldify

Get inspired by some of the best eCommerce merchants out there. We’ve collected 7 successful Shopify stores with tactics that you can steal immediately.

Shopify is one of the best and most sought after eCommerce platforms available today with well over 20% of eCommerce market share. It started out as a store that sold snowboarding equipment, and now, Shopify claims to have hosted over 1,000,000 businesses in 175 countries.

In case you’re still wondering are Shopify stores successful – yes, they most definitely are. Shopify businesses have contributed a whopping $319 billion to the world’s economy between the years 2016 and 2019.

Shopify GMV growth
Shopify GMV growth (Source: Yahoo Finance)

What’s even crazier is, during the COVID-19 lockdown period, they have seen a 45% increase in the number of people buying from their stores that they’d never shopped at before.

In fact, some of the most successful eCommerce brands, such as Kylie Cosmetics ($630 million) and Gym Shark ($223 million), are developed and hosted using Shopify.

A quick snapshot of the successful Shopify stores include:

  1. Fashion Nova
  2. Gym Shark
  3. Allbirds
  4. MVMT Watches
  5. Kylie Cosmetics
  6. ColourPop
  7. Ruggable
  8. Raycon
  9. BioLite

We’ll dive into some of those above in more detail below and breakdown some of their secrets to success.

So, what makes Shopify one of the leading eCommerce platforms? Here are some reasons that make it stand out from its competitors:

  • Beginner-friendly. Shopify stores are really easy to set up, and even as a beginner, you can get things up and running in a couple of days.
  • Variety. Over 100 free and paid Shopify themes are available for all categories of eCommerce businesses. These are easily customizable and can be personalized for all genres of businesses.
  • Affordable. Their prices start at just $29 a month. They also offer a risk-free 14-day trial option.
  • Ease of usability. Things like web-hosting and other technicalities are taken care of by Shopify to “reduce barriers to business ownership.”
  • Customer support. Shopify provides 24/7 customer service through options like live chat, even during the trial period.
  • Commitment to sustainability. Shopify offers social-impact initiatives such as the use of renewable energy and reducing the carbon footprint. This appeals to a lot of store owners.
  • Ease of marketing. Shopify also offers various SEO and marketing tools so that you don’t have to start your marketing efforts from scratch.

Over the years, a huge number of businesses have gained success using the Shopify platform. You too can model these businesses and pave your way towards eCommerce success.

So, if you are looking for useful insights into the most successful Shopify stores and the secrets that have led them to success, then you have landed at the right place!

CRO for Shopify stores - Get a Yieldify demo

8 common traits the most successful Shopify stores

It is estimated that by the end of the year 2021, worldwide retail eCommerce sales will cross $4.9 trillion! This means, there is a lot of market demand. But, how do you stand out amongst the millions of other stores?

The first thing you should do is to find the best Shopify stores out there and start identifying their most common traits. You need to figure out a pattern that works, look at successful ways they have promoted themselves, and this is exactly what we have done for you here!

Here are a few common traits found in most successful Shopify stores:

1. Customer experience above everything

Pick any top-grossing Shopify store and you will find the best-in-class customer experience. This makes sense because research shows that 80% of customers leave your store because of poor customer experience.

Good CX includes everything from aesthetics like minimalistic design, visual appeal, pleasant color palettes, and good photography. And other functionality based aspects too, such as an easy checkout process, easy navigation, no irritable pop-ups, and chatbots to provide 24/7 assistance.

2. Brand appeal

High brand value is another major factor that helps customers decide which store to pick from. Top Shopify brands do this by having a strong presence on social media platforms, especially Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook. Having a unique USP, collaborations with popular brands/influencers, and taking sustainability initiatives also majorly contribute to their brand appeal.

3. No unnecessary extra costs

Hassle-free payments are one of the basic expectations of buyers. Top Shopify stores overcome this by offering risk-free payment options and avoiding any additional costs during the checkout. Free shipping and risk-free return policies are also offered by many successful stores.

4. Social proof

Positive reviews and testimonials have an impact on the minds of your buyers like nothing else. And displaying social proof prominently on the home page has contributed to increased revenues for many top Shopify stores.

5. Accurate product descriptions and specifications

Research is the first thing that buyers do before taking any decisions. So, having accurate and high-quality product images, extensive product descriptions and accurate size charts are a must-have for top stores. Many stores take it up a notch by integrating augmented reality and 360-degree views for their product images and videos.

6. Top-notch customer service

Building good relationships with customers and making them feel valued is another common trait observed in top eCommerce stores. This includes things like quick assistance, best customer support, engagement through email lists, and quicker resolution for payment and shipping issues.

7. Quicker website load speeds

The majority of your customers are going to browse through your store on mobile devices. Hence quicker page load speeds are again one of the crucial factors which are carefully taken care of by many leading Shopify businesses.

8. Abandoned cart recovery

Utilizing various cart abandonment solutions, such as email remarketing and web push notifications, plays an important part in almost all successful Shopify stores. Capturing abandoned cart details and re-engaging with potential customers and has proven to be super-powerful in bringing back lost revenue.

CRO for Shopify stores - Get a Yieldify demo

7 most successful Shopify stores with tactics to steal

Successful Shopify fashion stores

Fashion Nova has emerged as one of the most popular fashion eCommerce brands and has crossed $400 million in revenue in 2019.

Their USP is that they offer affordable clothes for men and women of all shapes and sizes. This is in contrast to the stereotypical sizing offered by other fashion brands. They have set out to make fashion inclusive of curvy women which makes their plus-size customers feel more special and valued.

Successful Shopify stores - Fashion Nova

But what stands out the most, is their brilliant social media strategy and incorporation of user-generated content. Fashion Nova ask their followers to post with Fashion Nova’s clothes on Instagram to win a chance to get featured on their homepage. This feature has worked really well for them.

Their massive success can also be attributed to their influencer strategy which includes collaborations with world-famous influencers like Cardi B.

Tactic to steal from Fashion Nova: Post consistently and frequently on social media to gain a decent following. Make use of user-generated content to skyrocket your customer engagement and bring more traffic to your store.

Successful Shopify beauty stores

ColourPop store stands out amongst thousands of other cosmetic brands because of their strikingly beautiful design and playful colors which brilliantly adds to the customer experience.

No wonder they have crossed an estimated $4 million in revenue. They have even collaborated with huge names such as Disney and Sofia Nygaard which has generated a large chunk of ColourPop customers through social media.

Successful Shopify stores - ColourPop

With their captivating play of colors and elaborate product reviews, they have emerged as one of the most successful Shopify beauty stores. They also offer vegan and cruelty-free product options which is a huge plus.

Tactic to steal from ColourPop: Sending free products to influencers has been their play using which they have crossed 4,000 influencer mentions. You too can do that by focusing on both organic and sponsored influencer strategy.

Successful Shopify home goods stores

Ruggable is one of the most popular Shopify stores in the home decor category with 85,000 unique monthly website visitors.

Apart from serene photography and beautiful design, their on-point copywriting is what stands out the most. Their USP lies in the fact that their rugs are washable. And one look at their home page instantly lets you know about the amazing benefits of their products.

Successful Shopify stores - Ruggable

Another thing to note is their focus on SEO because of which they rank for competitive keywords like “washable rugs.”

Tactic to steal from Ruggable: Efficient and benefit-driven copywriting definitely pays. So create a fluff-free copy which chalks out all your amazing benefits in the most minimalistic way.

Successful Shopify electronics stores

Raycon is one of the top-grossing electronics stores with over 52,000 unique monthly visitors. With beautiful high-quality images and social proof displayed above the fold, you will want to visit their site again and again.

The most noteworthy page on their website is the one with “Celebrity Sightings” where you get to see Mike Tyson calling these “the best earbuds in America.” Now, who wouldn’t want these earbuds?!

Best Shopify stores - Raycon

Their minimalistic product detail pages featuring beautifully laid out benefits are hard to miss. They have invested in high-quality images and minimized all kinds of distracting elements on their product pages.

Tactic to steal from Raycon: Adding social proof, especially above the fold, can have an immense subconscious impact on the minds of your buyers. And using celebrities as social proof works like magic because research says that 49% of buyer decisions depend on influencer recommendations.

Successful Shopify camping stores

BioLite is a new age, innovative business with a mission. They offer off-grid energy products for camping and other outdoor recreational activities.

What stands out is that, with their mission, they have impacted thousands of sub-Saharan African lives. They help in bringing safe-cooking, lighting, and charging to these families by investing a part of your purchase.

Best Shopify stores - BioLite

People who purchase from their store feel accomplished on having contributed to the less fortunate in some way. This value proposition is what helps them stand out.

Tactic to steal from BioLite: Make use of your proprietary data. Let customers know how exactly they are contributing to making the world a better place by showing them the hard numbers.

Top eco-friendly Shopify stores

When we think about eco-friendly men’s fashion brand, Taylor Stitch is what comes to mind. They only offer affordable clothes that are recycled and use regenerative fibers or fibers that are made from 100% natural products.

They also partner with local organizations to offer community service. These things have increased their brand affinity and helped them stand out amongst competitors.

Best Shopify stores - Taylor Stitch

Taylor Stitch makes great use of lead generation pop-ups and other onsite messaging formats, such as a sticky bar with a countdown clock. Their elegant and non-intrusive format appeals to a majority of customers and helps the brand seamlessly grow its customer database.

Tactic to steal from Taylor Stitch: Sophisticated and non-intrusive popups are a great way to expand your potential customer base. Don’t overwhelm your visitor with notifications, rather give them a variety of options to choose from by segmenting your customer base and using behavioral triggers.

Top Shopify travel stores

Great copy and well-displayed testimonials are what adds to the appeal of Exist Travel’s successful travel booking Shopify store. Their website fits the needs of any travel-hungry person and offers travel packages to a variety of destinations.

Best Shopify stores - Exist Travel

The addition of multimedia also sparks the imagination of people and gives them a glimpse of the journey with them.

Tactic to steal from Exist Travels: Having an easy to navigate contact page provides a hassle-free way for your customers to connect with you. Chatbots are also great for offering assistance round the clock.

In conclusion

Shopify is a no-brainer option for opening your own eCommerce store if you are looking for versatility, affordability, technical support and the best UX for your customers.

So, start now! Take inspiration from these top-grossing Shopify stores and build your own today. Remember that you are just a few clicks away from designing your dream store.

Most Successful Shopify Store FAQs

?️ What are the most successful Shopify stores?

Kylie Cosmetics, Gymshark, Allbirds, MVMT watches, Rebecca Minkoff & Boo Tea are just some of the hugely successful Shopify stores.

? How many Shopify stores are successful?

In October 2019, Shopify announced they surpassed one million merchants worldwide. In May 2020 New stores grew 62% between March 13, 2020, and April 24, 2020, vs the prior six weeks. Shopify will give eCommerce websites all the features they need to be successful.

? How successful are Shopify stores?

Shopify stores can be extremely successful. Around 800,000 merchants use their platform across the world. This generated over 1 billion transactions in the last 12 months.

Satisfaction Guarantees: The 7 Types & Real World Examples

   |   By  |  0 Comments

How to leverage satisfaction guarantees for eCommerce | Yieldify

Looking to build trust with your customers and simultaneously improve their shopping experience? A strategically placed satisfaction guarantee could be the way to go.

Unlike shopping in-store, online shopping always carries an element of risk for customers. The customer can’t see, smell, or touch the products, making it an entirely different experience. It is, therefore, essential to build trust and demonstrate that you’re a reputable retailer.

An effective way to attend to the perceived risks of your customers is by offering satisfaction guarantees.

By offering money-back, lifetime, or best price warranties, you showcase your confidence in the quality of your products and service. It relaxes and comforts your customers by shifting the risk of their investment from themselves to you.

Your customers don’t want to make a purchasing decision they will later regret. By offering a satisfaction guarantee, you can convince them to trust you with both their data and money.

While the guarantee may be introduced to protect customers, it can also be a compelling marketing tactic. Satisfaction guarantees are powerful tools that can serve as reassurances to potential customers. They can even act as distinguishing factors that differentiate you from your rivals.

7 types of satisfaction guarantees for eCommerce

1. The money-back guarantee

Offering your customers a full refund if they aren’t satisfied with your products is an indication of quality. Or rather, your confidence in the quality of your product. Money-back is the most common guarantee and has almost become standard practice in retail.

Nevertheless, while offering it may reduce perceived risks and help you distinguish your products amongst competitors, there will always be customers that try to take advantage. For that reason, money-back guarantees are usually constrained by a time period, usually 30, 60, or 90 days. Sometimes they can last up to a year or even an entire lifetime.

To determine how long the guarantee should be, you need to examine the specifics of each product. Try to establish how long it takes for your customers to use or wear out the product, and add on a little more time. The longer your guarantee, the greater the risk of customers cashing it in, but also the more sales it will drive.

2. The best price guarantee

Price is one of the determining factors that influences purchasing decisions. In the world of eCommerce, competition is fierce. By implementing the lowest prices for a particular product, you can persuade potential customers to make a purchase with you rather than with a competitor.

The best price guarantee reassures buyers that they are getting the best available offer. If their customers manage to find a better deal elsewhere, companies will often match the new price and refund the difference.

Be careful when implementing this guarantee, as it can significantly hurt margins and even start price wars with your competitors. If you take a more reserved approach and don’t offer this guarantee, your customers could easily flock to a competitor, leading to lost sales. In any market, promoting your products as the “best price” is a high-risk strategy.

3. The lifetime guarantee

Promising your customers a lifetime guarantee on your products is a bold statement of confidence. Lifetime guarantees are usually reserved for higher-priced products that make people question whether it’s worth investing the money. However, splurging on a costly backpack or a good set of knives isn’t as daunting when you know they will last forever.

It shows that you believe your products can last a lifetime, which almost always justifies their price. Offering money back is not the only option, either: you could offer repairs, refills, or replacements depending on your product.

Bear in mind that a lifetime guarantee isn’t something to be taken lightly, and should be used only if you have absolute confidence that your products really are that durable.

4. The free trial guarantee

Free trials are most common for software products, but this is certainly not a hard restriction. E-commerce stores can offer their products for a limited time period with a fully refundable deposit.

For example, shopping for clothes online can be problematic for many. Being unable to see how the clothes fit or to feel the fabric deters 35% of online shoppers from making a purchase. By allowing your customers to return, you give customers the chance to experiment with a range of your products before committing to their favorites.

By taking this small risk, many fashion retailers have boosted their revenue as customers are much more willing to pay for a product they’ve physically seen and worn. If they don’t like it, the product is returned in mint condition, still ready for sale.

Free trial impact on D2C brands | Yieldify
A 2019 research showed that more than 1 in 4 US internet users would be motivated to try a new D2C brand if they were offered a free trial period

5. The ‘try before you buy’ guarantee

Similar to a free trial satisfaction guarantee, ‘try before you buy’ (or ‘pay for what you keep’) is almost exclusively used by fashion retailers. This type of satisfaction guarantee allows customers to buy several items upfront, try them on – or even wear them for a limited number of days – and then return the ones that did not fit. Quite often it is also paired with a personal stylist or a clothing subscription service.

In fact, a 2018 study by Klarna found that 37% of online shoppers surveyed preferred ‘try before you buy’ over any traditional payment method.”

Try before you buy guarantee | Yieldify

6. The free samples guarantee

However, not everything can be tried on as easily as a piece of clothing. That’s where the free samples come in handy.

If you’re a furniture or home decor eCommerce retailer, for example, you may want to provide free fabric samples (aka fabric swatches) to your customers. This way, they can get a feel for the material as well as understand if the color matches their interior before taking the leap and making a high-value purchase.

7. The first-purchase guarantee

Good first impressions can be paramount for customer retention and loyalty. By offering a first-purchase guarantee, you can ensure you’re making a great one.

Turn the fence-sitters into lifetime customers by giving them the option of a return, refund, or even getting another product for free. The first-purchase guarantee eases the minds of your customers and reduces their uncertainties to ensure a great customer experience.

Satisfaction guaranteed examples from leading eCommerce brands

Money-back guarantee example from Feetures

You may be surprised that Feetures, a company that sells socks, offers a lifetime guarantee for their products. Feetures makes a promise to its customers that their socks are durable and high-quality. With a no-questions-asked lifetime guarantee, customers can rest assured that they are investing in a rock-solid product.

Satisfaction guarantee example | Yieldify
Feetures offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee – no questions asked!

Best-price guarantee example from HobbyKing

To prevent comparison shopping and showcase their affordable pricing, Australian retailer HobbyKing teamed up with Yieldify. The solution was to employ a click trigger, meaning that whenever users highlighted a certain line of text, they were shown a ‘best price guarantee’ message, like so:

Prevent comparison shopping - Yieldify feature

Lifetime guarantee example from Patagonia

Patagonia is one of the leading outdoor clothing brands that has implemented an e-commerce platform to boost their sales. They are known for making long-lasting, eco-friendly products, and they even discourage customers from buying too many of their products.

Their “ironclad guarantee” has been tried and tested by many of their customers. It’s a lifetime guarantee that has become a cornerstone of their success in achieving the trust and loyalty of their customers. By making it one of their USPs, Patagonia has used the guarantee as a clever marketing tactic while staying true to its core values.

Free trial guarantee example from Red Wing Shoes

Red Wing Shoes is known as one of the best shoewear investments you can make and to back this up, the company offers a “30-day unconditional comfort guarantee.” Red Wing gives its customers 30 days to break in the shoes. Knowing that no two feet are the same, they allow returns and offer a refund or replacement if for any reason customers are not satisfied.

‘Try before you buy’ example from Warby Parker

Warby Parker, a well-known American online retailer of prescription glasses and sunglasses, allows its customers to select five frames to test out for five days. Shipping and returns are taken care of, and you can easily mix and match between styles for men and women.

Warby Parker offers a free home try-on

Free samples example from Joybird

Custom furniture and home decor retailer Joybird has created a swatch kit to provide its customers with unconditional support in their buying process. Customers are able to select a family of colors they want to explore. They are also provided with a handy card of all the wood finishing options that Joybird has to offer, and a resourceful booklet with more information.

Satisfaction guarantee example | Yieldify
People love sharing swatch pairings on social media (via Instagram)

First purchase guarantee example from Atolla

Atolla is an AI-powered skincare brand that creates customized beauty serums. Having data and technology at its core, Atolla showcases confidence in their product by offering a money-back guarantee on the first purchase.

Satisfaction guarantee example | Yieldify
Atolla guarantees full refund on your first purchase

In conclusion – are satisfaction guarantees right for you?

There is no straightforward answer to this question, as every brand and business model is different. Offering a 100% satisfaction guarantee can boost your sales and ensure happy, returning customers. However, it can also have a negative effect on your ROI.

Sometimes not offering a guarantee is the better choice. If you’re an up-and-coming store that doesn’t have an established brand, you may want to think of making some kind of promise to your customers: by committing to a 100% satisfaction guarantee, for example, you will be more likely to provide that level of quality. Trust in yourself and your products will translate to loyalty from customers.

However, be careful about what you’re promising. Offering a lifetime guarantee on disposable products could quickly take its toll on your balance sheet. Don’t use guarantees as empty promises, but rather as an encouragement to do better.

Satisfaction Guaranteed FAQs

❤️ What Is A Satisfaction Guarantee?

A satisfaction guarantee is any formal assurance that products can be returned, repaired, or replaced if they do not meet the specified quality.

? What Type Of Guarantees Are They?

There are many types of satisfaction guarantees, including money-back, lowest price, free trial, and lifetime guarantee. We go into more detail below.

❓ Should You Offer Satisfaction Guarantee?

When a company offers a guarantee it shows they stand behind their product and believe customers will not get their money refunded. This is a clever way of showing that you believe the product works well and will leave customers 100% satisfied.

6 Types Of Marketing Testing Methods To Try

   |   By  |  0 Comments

Marketing testing methods | Yieldify

There are many marketing testing methods out there, but which ones should you try? Here we look at 6 most popular ways to test various touchpoints across the entire user journey.

Marketing testing is probably one of the most misunderstood and thus, overlooked, areas in B2C marketing. Even when they are performed, marketing tests rarely influence any significant changes due to the fact that we either a) implemented the test wrong; or b) don’t know how to interpret the results that we’ve got.

We’ve all run an odd email subject line test at some point, or pushed our design team to A/B test different colors of a call-to-action button. But what really hides behind marketing tests and what mistakes should you avoid to enjoy data-driven insights? Join us as we dig deeper into the benefits of marketing and user journey testing.

What we’ll be covering:
1. What is testing in marketing?
2. Six popular marketing testing methods
2.1 A/B testing
2.2 Multivariate testing
2.3 User testing
2.4 Usability testing
2.5 Content testing
2.6 Incrementality testing
3. Why it pays to test the entire user journey

What is meant by testing in marketing?

​​Test marketing, also known as market testing, is a marketing technique that businesses use to evaluate the viability of their new products, services, or marketing campaigns before releasing them on a large scale. Businesses all around the world test multiple marketing scenarios to determine consumer needs and to find out whether the product, service or campaign meets and fulfils consumer requirements.

The test campaigns can be carried out in chosen test markets, such as in brick and mortar stores, online stores, or social media platforms. The experiment is generally done without customers’ knowledge to acquire non-biased feedback on the product or service.

After collecting test market feedback, the data is analyzed and data-backed insights are utilized to improve the product, service, or marketing strategy. To collect, aggregate and analyze the data, reporting tools are often used as these are able to automate data processes and showcase results in easy to understand visual reports.

Download the infographic | Yieldify

A/B and Multivariate testing

Let’s kick off with the tests that most of us are already familiar with: A/B tests and multivariate tests. These are user experience research methodologies used to compare variables and determine which set of variables is most effective. Also referred to as split testing, they are somewhat similar to one another but offer rather different outcomes.

What is A/B testing?

A/B testing compares two variations of the same element to determine which one produces better results. It is called A/B testing because it measures a user’s response to Variant A vs Variant B.

Marketing testing methods - AB testing | Yieldify
A/B testing = Same salad, different dressing

A/B tests have risen to stardom in the early 2000s (interesting tidbit – first cases of A/B testing date back to the 18th century and were used to treat scurvy). They were quickly adopted by designers, marketers, and developers alike to test UI elements, copywriting, discount offers, you name it!

The nice thing about A/B tests is that they’re fairly easy to implement and they can be used at a variety of touchpoints in the customer journey to test placement, color, copy, size, and other variables. But easy doesn’t mean they are always done right. Here are the main pitfalls of A/B testing:

  1. Testing more than two variants. The most common mistake is when you actually perform a multivariate test but judge the results as if it were an A/B test. To avoid this, remember this simple rule:

    [x] vs [x] = A/B test
    [y] vs [y] = A/B test
    [x] vs [y] – not an A/B test
    [x] vs [x+y] – not an A/B test
  1. Insufficient sample size. For an A/B test to return significant results, you must think of your sample size before running the test. This is not a one-size-fits-all situation – you really need to think of the level of confidence you want to achieve as well as the uplift rate you’re looking to get. There are dozens of sample size calculators online so find one that works best for you!
  2. Testing too short or too long. Again, it’s not easy to say what is a good test length for your A/B test but the general rule is that you should test for at least 7 days to reach statistical significance. If you haven’t, you can extend the test for another 7 days. However, if you run a test too long, there is a likelihood its results will compound with other tests and activities happening in the background.
Megabus A/B testing case study | Yieldify clients
See how megabus.com reached +7.5% CR uplift by A/B testing campaigns

What is multivariate testing?

Multivariate testing (MVT) compares multiple variations of several elements to determine which combination produces better results. The upside of multivariate tests is that you initially have more freedom and can make subtle changes rather than committing to versions A or B.

Multivariate testing = Different salads, different dressings

So what could be a multivariate testing example? Let’s say I want to increase conversions of my product page. Some of the elements I can use for a multivariate test are:

  • Test different imagery: product shots vs lifestyle shots.
  • Test button copy: ‘Buy now’ vs ‘Add to cart’.
  • Test different trust signals: customer reviews vs dynamic social proof.

Or if you’re running an email marketing campaign to promote the release of a new product. You could test:

  • Test sender names: brand vs individual.
  • Test opening lines: with recipient name vs generic.
  • Test visual formats: image vs video.

Note that MVT is a more advanced marketing testing method and is, therefore, most suitable for high traffic sites. Compared to A/B tests where traffic is usually split in two, in multivariate testing, it can be split in 3, 4, 5, and more groups.

User testing and usability testing

If you were ever involved in a product release, app launch, or even a website redesign project, you’ve probably heard of usability testing and user testing. Both of these terms refer to testing methods that involve real-life users and are often used interchangeably. However, they both offer different value and insights, and thus should be used separately.

What is user testing?

User testing, or user research, is an umbrella term that involves a variety of user testing methods: interviews, surveys, field studies, focus groups, and others. Its purpose is to determine the potential demand for an idea or a product by investigating user needs and behaviors. A typical outcome of a user test is a user persona or a target audience segment.

Under this definition, user testing would include usability testing.

User testing | Yieldify
User testing = Would you buy this brand new, cutting-edge salad?

What is usability testing?

Usability testing is a technique used to evaluate how easy or difficult it is to use a product or service by testing it on real users. Usability testing lets you understand how real users interact with the product or service, measure the user experience, and improve design based on your findings. In a typical usability test, participants are asked to complete a set of tasks while being observed by a research team.

Usability testing | Yieldify
Usability testing = How fast can you eat the salad with a fork vs. a knife?

“User Testing is about ‘Will this user use my product?’ Usability testing is to figure out ‘Can this user use this product?’ – the UX Blog.

There are multiple benefits of usability testing:

  • Usability testing is easy to implement. All you have to do is gather some participants, find a room and ideally record the process.
  • Usability testing saves money. It removes guesswork and enables you to focus on trouble areas instead of wasting away budget.
  • Usability testing clarifies your USP. It enables you to observe honest and true reactions to your product or service, determine the ‘wow factor’ and capitalize on it.
  • Usability testing uncovers missed opportunities. It showcases real-life scenarios and may uncover use cases that you haven’t thought of before.
  • Usability testing can be used throughout the product life cycle. It is not just for launching new products – usability testing helps you iterate current versions and remove existing pain points.
  • Usability testing makes everything better. Ultimately, it is here to improve user experience, which is essential for any project to succeed.

So what does this translate to for eCommerce marketers? Well, your websites and apps are your real estate, so focus on testing those! See how easy it is for users to find a product/offer they want, how they interact with ancillary products/offers on your store, how they navigate to the checkout, how they fill out the shipping form, etc. Usability testing can also work wonders for testing loyalty programs

Also – remember it doesn’t just have to be your product or service. You may as well test a competitor’s website to see where they might struggle or outshine you, gaining you a competitive advantage. 

There are several usability testing methods at play. Most commonly usability tests are split into: moderated vs. unmoderated; remote vs in-person; and explorative vs. assessment vs. comparative. The combinations go from there as you can have a moderated in-person assessment test, an unmoderated remote comparative test, and so on.

Usability testing methods | Yieldify
(via Hotjar)

Content testing

Arguably the most self-explanatory of all the marketing testing methods listed here, content testing can be considered part of usability testing. Its primary purpose is to determine whether a set of real-life users can understand and comprehend the content that you’ve provided.

Content testing | Yieldify
Content testing = Which menu is easier to read?

Again, the objective is to measure user experience: content testing is not to determine whether users like your content, it is to determine if they can read and understand it. A good example would be the user manual for assembling a piece of furniture: you can test if the text is legible, written accurately and whether it provides the information necessary to use the product. 

When thinking of eCommerce websites, content testing comes in handy when you need to determine the names of your product categories, phrase a discount offer and its terms and conditions or feature your headline or slogan on the page – does it catch attention and explain what the page is about?

Incrementality testing

One of the marketing testing methods that we like to talk about a lot at Yieldify is incrementality testing

Incrementality testing is a technique that measures the impact of a single variable on an individual user’s behavior. In other words, it helps to identify how effective a particular interaction is in influencing conversions. Incrementality tests are always performed with a control group to determine the uplift an interaction brings vs. a ‘no-change’ scenario.

Incrementality testing | Yieldify
Incrementality test process explained

Incrementality testing falls under the A/B testing umbrella. However, whereas A/B testing is used mostly on creative elements and measured by click-through rate (CTR), incrementality testing focused on sales uplift and is measured by conversion rate (CVR).

Widely used in digital advertising, incrementality testing found its way into conversion rate and customer journey optimization processes as well. At Yieldify, we run incrementality tests to help our clients understand the value of the campaigns that we run on their websites. Here’s an example of what an incrementality test report could look like:

Incrementality report example | Yieldify
Incrementality test report example

Why it pays to test the entire user journey

The marketing testing methods we’ve discussed above are incredible ways to finetune your product, software or service. By employing some of them together you’re bound to collect invaluable data about your users and make necessary changes to boost your conversions.

Nevertheless, conversion rate optimization (CRO) is just one side of the coin. If you really want to see significant outcomes of user testing, you have to employ these practices across multiple user touchpoints. In other words, you must test the entire user journey, from initial marketing channels, all the way through to how potential customers navigate your website.

The main difference between CRO and customer journey optimization (or CXO – customer experience optimization) is that CRO tests individual element sets removed from the rest of the customer journey. Whereas CJO (or CXO) runs across multiple touchpoints providing a ‘big-picture’ look at the different levers you can pull to improve your customer journey as a whole.

For that purpose, marketers exercise customer journey mapping. This allows them to not only develop empathy for the customer, but also understand consumer behavior patterns that influence conversions, loyalty, and a number of other business metrics that are directly connected to revenue.

In conclusion

Regardless of the type of market test you are carrying out, the most important thing is that you are conducting tests, collecting copious market research, and thus, gaining access to all of the valuable insights and data that can better inform your strategy. 

For the best results, it is clear that the holistic, 360 degree, all-encompassing, customer journey map reigns king. With high-impact benefits such as higher conversions, loyalty and revenue income, the marketers that can include this potent weapon in their arsenal will ultimately reap the best rewards and edge ever further in front of the competition by better understanding their target market.

Marketing Testing FAQs

What is a marketing testing method?

Marketing testing methods include A/B testing, Multivariate testing, user, and usability testing. Each testing method is designed to improve performance and user experience.

What is meant by testing in marketing?

Testing in marketing can mean a lot of different things depending on the type of tests you are running. It could be a limited release of a product to a test market, or an A/B test showing two different product pages to a select group of users.

Click to download

Marketing and user journey testing infographic | Yieldify