As we return to a new normal, there will undoubtedly be volumes of case studies, blogs and ancillary pieces dedicated to the marketing lessons learned from the pandemic. Consumers used to browsing, seeing, touching and trying merchandise in stores have been forced to use their digital devices to search and shop online. This caused marketers to quickly shift their strategies to meet their new patterns.
Because studies show many consumers prefer and will continue the same digital shopping behavior in the new normal, this may be a good reminder of some of the major reasons why marketers may wish to change or bolster their current ecommerce strategies. A big difference that was discovered during the pandemic was that consumers chose more than a product. Many also selected the company they wished to patronize. The reasons varied but one of the newer ones is that consumers—particularly Millennials and Gen Z—also considered the company’s values and ethics and whether they aligned with theirs. That was a major discovery in recent research and explains why many previously loyal customers said they left their favorite brand to try new ones.
“Live” chat also mushroomed. Nonprofit Wix, with its network of more than a half-million global online stores saw their gross merchandise value grow as much as twelve times higher at stores offering “live” chat, when compared to those who didn’t, according to Wix’s Head of Strategic Marketing, Liat Karpel Gurwicz. He added that sales rose 71 percent when stores recommended products to visitors during “live” chat.
Improved messaging and customer centricity helped KURU Footwear experience an 18 percent increase in conversions. Two major changes were responsible for the difference: KURU improved its customer service platform so that it would display a customer’s entire history of communication with the company. This gave customer service reps a deeper understanding and history of past customer conversations. KURU also identified some of the pages on its sites where past history showed higher consumer intent to purchase and directed customers to their purchase funnel with proactive triggers.
Selling jewelry online has to be one of the most challenging tasks for any marketer. Fenton revised its landing pages so that visitors were met with a step-by-step guide on how to create their own ring, with numerous GIFs and illustrations to help. The bottom of each page featured Trustpilot reviews to help ease customer anxiety. The improved pages resulted in 400 percent more transactions than the former ones and Fenton continues to monitor and A/B test the site regularly.
Cart abandonment has always been a challenge. According to Optinmonster.com, the average is 69.57 percent. A recent abandoned cart strategy by Café Last recovered nearly $44,000. Once a cart is abandoned, the coffee merchant sends emails or messages at intervals of five minutes, one hour and one day to the prospective customer. They’re continuing to split test it to gauge and ensure future success.
Sometimes simple changes can make a big difference. The nonprofit, Starlight Children’s Foundation, removed its donation page and made its donate button interactive to make the potential donor journey easier. By reducing the number of steps a donor had to take, traffic increased 465 percent.
A common thread of these success stories is that brands have recognized that chances of success are enhanced when they can make it easier for consumers and donors to navigate and access information while learning that the brands are transparent, credible and trustworthy.