Retail, in the eyes of the everyday customer

new ideas and thoughts about the online retail world

Author Archive

Taking a Stand Right on Their Homepage

leave a comment »

This might not be the most elegant approach, but it works (pointed by red arrows)—


Click to see larger image

Written by betterretail

July 27, 2015 at 5:19 am

Posted in uncategorized

Tagged with ,

Starting the Process

leave a comment »

The most important step in driving conversion rates is to get the shopper to take an action that clearly demonstrates interest.  It doesn’t have to be a big action, the smallest of actions will do.

Something magical happens once an action is taken.  When a visitor first lands on the site their personal investment is 0, and with 0 investment you have 0 relationship with the visitor.  This is terrible for the business.  However, moment the visitor takes a concrete action things start to change.  It might not be big enough to make a purchase but it’s infinitely more valuable than 0.  To see an example of this strategy I’m sharing a screenshot from homepage. is a website that sells a simple product— filters.  Here is their homepage—


You’ll notice that the first thing they do is ask shoppers where they live (“Do You Like In A …”).  I tried both options and the results page is identical, which makes me think this question doesn’t really have a business purpose.  But I bet it meets a big psychological purpose because moment the shopper makes a selection (home or condo/apt) they are unconsciously starting the process of engagement.

And don’t assume such a tactic can only work for a site that sells filters.  It can work for any site.  Here is another example (notice the dropdown question)—

And here is an example from

Written by betterretail

July 20, 2015 at 5:35 am

Posted in uncategorized

Tagged with

Geotargeted Reviews

leave a comment »

For years I’ve been thinking about a test idea that combines these 2 facts–

1: Shoppers are more likely to convert when they can read reviews.

2: For a shopper in [Michigan] reading a review of another shopper who also happens to live in [Michigan] is a strong influencer.  Here [Michigan] can be any state.

And then, I discovered a page on that does exactly that.  They show an interactive map of North America and you can click on any state and see reviews from that state.  Naturally shoppers from North Carolina will click on their home state.  Here is a screenshot of the idea–


And here’s the live page (you have to check it out!).

Written by betterretail

July 13, 2015 at 5:20 am

1 Time Opportunity

leave a comment »

When you want to make it really stand out, make it sound like a 1 time opportunity—


Written by betterretail

July 6, 2015 at 5:21 am

Posted in uncategorized

Tagged with ,


leave a comment »

The 2nd best way to communicate complex information in a confined space—

 Grinder Infographic

Written by betterretail

June 29, 2015 at 5:06 am

Posted in uncategorized

Tagged with ,

How Greed Kills Conversions

with 8 comments

Many websites evolve to get too busy.  This happens even with the best of intentions.  Here’s what happens—

1: They look at their email marketing platform report and see that historically shoppers who signup for newsletters have a higher lifetime value, so they add a giant popup to drive up newsletter sales.

2: They look at their Google Analytics data and see that their sale page produces a conversion rate that’s 5x site average so they replace sale page link on top navigation with a blinking one to make sure shoppers see it.

3: They look at their top 10 selling items and realize only 25% of shoppers see them so they display thumbnails of top 10 sellers right on homepage.

4: Looking at historical performance in Google Analytics reveals site search is an important conversion catalyst, it both drives up conversions and average order value, but is used by only 7% of site visitors.  So they make a floating search bar that is always anchored on top of page, making it impossible to miss.

5: They test using live chat, see it performs well and add a floating “Click for Live Help” tab to the right edge of each page.

6: They read a case study about how SteelHouse helped Creative Labs improve holiday season conversion rates 245% so they add the SteelHouse widget to their site.

Individually, these enhancements are all good ideas because they’re based on actual data.  However, in our quest to maximize everything we end up with a website that’s too busy and ineffective.  A delicious meal is delicious because of the harmony of its individual ingredients.  Tripling the quantity of its top 5 ingredients will not make it more delicious; it’s likely to do the opposite.  So what’s the solution?  Focus on one goal per visitor scenario— select the one thing you want a first time visitor to see, optimize for that.  Select the one thing you want a repeat visitor (who hasn’t made a purchase) to see and optimize for that.  Select the one thing you want a repeat buyer to see and optimize for that.  Select the one thing you want to show someone who starts and quits from checkout, and optimize for just that.  Select the one thing you want to show someone who visits on a mobile devise and optimize for that.

Basically, instead of showing 4 things on a page for 4 shopper scenarios, isolate the shopper scenario first and show them one thing that is guaranteed to produce results.

Once you master the art of focusing on one goal per visitor scenario you can start breaking up scenarios into sub-scenarios.  For example, starts and quits from checkout can be broken into cart page abandons and shipping/billing page abandons.

Written by betterretail

June 22, 2015 at 5:37 am

Posted in uncategorized

Tagged with ,

What to Do When Your Product Page Has 479 Customer Reviews

with one comment

Product reviews are crazy important.  According to PowerReviews research going from zero reviews to one review with 4.2 stars improves conversion rates (sales) by 20%.  But what happens when your product page has 479 reviews?  For a shopper who wants to read reviews 479 is just a daunting number. realizes this.  Their Turkish Figs product page has 479 reviews so they show a summary report while giving you the option of reading all reviews—


They’ve selected a large enough set of reviews (9) that most shoppers will not feel the need to click Read all 479 reviews.

Written by betterretail

June 15, 2015 at 5:11 am

Posted in uncategorized

Tagged with ,


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 184 other followers