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Artistic Email Signup Popup

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These days nearly every site has an email signup popup on their lading page.  It must be flavor of the month.  But most of these email signup popups look alike, which is probably why visitors instinctively close them.  If you want your email signup popup to work you’re going to have to make it look different, in a good way.  In October we saw an example from Harry and David where they use Facebook social proof to garner signups (link), before that we saw an example from where they use clever copy to generate signups (link).  Now, I’d like to share an example from where they’ve used a hand-drawn design to get the visitor’s attention.  I think it looks good (ignore the offer, focus on the design)—


Written by betterretail

February 3, 2014 at 5:28 am

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Fuzzy Ad

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Saw this advertisement on right hand margin of my Gmail inbox—


Notice how Software King icon is blurry? Not sure if this was deliberate or a mistake, but if it was deliberate these guys are marketing geniuses. Here’s why— blurry images immediately capture our attention because we’re expecting to see clear images. What makes this ad so effective is that while the logo is blurry the message 15% off on Office 2010 and all software when you enter code AdWords. Buy Now and Save Big! is super clear. In a way, the blurry image makes the ad copy stand out. Bottom line— they get my attention with the blurry image and get me to click based on relevance of sales copy. You should test this. I know I will.

Written by betterretail

January 27, 2014 at 5:41 am

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Data Breach + Bad Usability = Worst Possible Combo

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Target (the retailer) was hacked recently and 110 million customer records were stolen.  Target took swift action and offered customers free credit monitoring for 1 year.  They sent an email asking customers to visit and enter their activation code.

Let’s think about this from the perspective of a Target customer.  They are obviously freaking out and any personal information requested by Target is a sore topic.  But I wanted my identity protected so I visited the requested page.  Screenshot of top half of page—


On I’m required to enter my Social Security number.  That’s a big deal.  I wanted to make sure this was a legitimate site so I scrolled to bottom of page and clicked BBB (Better Business Bureau) link on footer—


Guess what?  The link doesn’t work.  Don’t believe me?  Go to and click BBB (Better Business Bureau) link on bottom half of page.

Written by betterretail

January 20, 2014 at 5:35 am

Unsubscribe Page

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This is how your email opt-out page should look like—


1: Super-large font size.
2: Simple, clear messaging.  Page leaves no doubt about me being unsubscribed.
3: Sense of humor.

Written by betterretail

January 13, 2014 at 5:19 am

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Comment Back

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If customers leave an unfair review diffuse the situation by responding to their comment (pointed by red arrow in screenshot below)—


Why does this matter?  Because reviews live on forever.  If your site has 100s of products with 1000s of reviews I suggest starting with your top selling items and working backwards.

This might seem like a labor intensive project but if you break it down based on most important products and create a system around it you will quickly be able to work through the list.

Written by betterretail

January 6, 2014 at 5:52 am

David and Goliath

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Many mid-sized e-tailers believe that the Amazons of the world have too much of a lead on them.  This isn’t true.  Every week I notice one major error at one large ecommerce site.  An example— screenshot below is of subcategory page—


You’ll notice I’ve highlighted product reviews with red boxes in screenshot.  Here’s the funny part— if you visit any of the red box highlighted product pages you will see NO link to see reviews for that item.  Don’t think could make such a blunder?  Check it out for yourself—|mfs3

Since is such a big site it’s going to take their team weeks to notice this error.  It’s also possible that they’ll never catch it and it’ll continue leaking sales, indefinitely.

Hope you feel a little better about your own site now.  Have a great 2014.

Written by betterretail

December 30, 2013 at 5:25 am

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Email Subscription Popup Is OK on All Pages Except One

with 2 comments has a sitewide email signup popup that appears on every landing page.  I get it, they want to maximize email signups.  Here is where the logic breaks.  I’ve been receiving a little too many emails from lately, so this morning I clicked the “unsubscribe” link on their latest email.  This took me to their unsubscribe page where, because it was a landing page, their email signup popup appeared.  Tip: it’s OK to have email signup on every landing page, just remove it from your email “unsubscribe” page.

Written by betterretail

December 23, 2013 at 10:04 am

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Great About Us Page Video

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Taken from—

Written by betterretail

December 16, 2013 at 6:25 am

Recently Viewed

with one comment sells a huge selection office supplies— from dozen varieties of ink cartridges to paper products.  Shoppers who are browsing multiple product pages might have a hard time keeping track.  This is why has a prominent floating element (anchored to bottom of page) that displays recently viewed items.

Closed state—


Open state—


What I like about this tactic—

1: Makes recently viewed items super accessible. Shoppers can browse around freely knowing their shortlisted items are just a few pixels away. Eliminates the need to use shopping cart as temporary holding spot.
2: Minimalistic design that nicely blends into existing site design. This frees vital screen real-estate for marketing more products.

Written by betterretail

December 9, 2013 at 5:35 am

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Easy of Use Is Use

leave a comment » product pages have a question and answer section—


Clicking it reveals—


Where you can see a whole list of questions that were answered by people who purchased this product. If your question hasn’t already been answered just type it in and post it. When it’s answered by the community you’ll be notified via email—


Written by betterretail

December 2, 2013 at 5:01 am

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