“What Every Brand Should Know Before Launching Into Live Selling” by Finn Faldi via Total Retail

“What Every Brand Should Know Before Launching Into Live Selling” by Finn Faldi via Total Retail

Credit: Getty Images by fizkes For retailers and brands, “going live” consistently can drive conversion rates that are higher than what they see on their e-commerce sites. Here are some tips that businesses of all sizes should keep in mind when expanding into the high-potential live selling channel. Live selling proved a lifeline for retailers and brands over the past couple of years as the pandemic disrupted store operations and consumers moved online in droves for shopping and entertainment. Many retail operators that have recently dipped their toes into this new selling medium have quickly discovered that “going live” can generate higher conversion rates than they typically see on their e-commerce sites. It can also turn occasional customers into dedicated brand fans who habitually tune in to engage with their favorite live selling hosts to learn about new products and make repeat purchases. In fact, successful brands and retailers have found that their customers are tuning in not only to shop, but also for entertainment and personal connection. Coresight Research forecasts that the live selling market in the U.S. will reach $25 billion by next year; McKinsey estimates that by 2026, live selling will account for 10 percent to 20 percent of global e-commerce sales. As the consumer audience for live selling continues to grow, the platforms where retailers and brands can stream are multiplying. Businesses can now live sell not only on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok and other social media sites, but concurrently on their own e-commerce websites and, if they have them, on their own mobile apps. One major benefit of live selling is that it allows retailers and brands to...
“7 Tips To Visually Optimize Your Website” by Krystina Morgan via Independent Retailer

“7 Tips To Visually Optimize Your Website” by Krystina Morgan via Independent Retailer

With retail ecommerce giants like Amazon and Walmart setting the bar extremely high for website design and experiences, smaller online stores are left behind to constantly make updates to ensure their websites are similarly easy to use. It is absolutely crucial to have a visually appealing website, seeing as 38% of consumers will leave if they find the layout unattractive.  In order to prevent future customers from abandoning your site, here are 7 tips to visually optimize your website:  Include the Most Important Information Above the Fold The content on your homepage that is “above-the-fold” is visible before any scrolling occurs and will be the basis of a user’s first impression, so it needs to be good. Putting the wrong content above the fold may result in a high bounce rate and a loss of customers and revenue.  Pro Tip: According to Wingify, brands should include their logo, contact information, navigation and search bar, current promotions, shopping cart, and calls-to-action above the fold.  Make Your Website Mobile-Friendly Mobile commerce makes up 30% of all U.S. ecommerce, and mobile traffic represents 53% of all ecommerce traffic. If your website does not conform to smartphone viewing, you can easily lose all of those shoppers. In order to make your site mobile-friendly, you will need to:  Choose a mobile-responsive theme or templateStrip back your contentMake images and CSS as light as possibleAvoid FlashChange button size and placementSpace out your linksUse a large and readable fontEliminate pop-upsTest regularly Include Images & Videos Images and videos are great for enhancing the user experience, especially when it comes to showing off your products. Clicking on a website, only to stumble upon...
“Most Product Purchases Aren’t Impulsive, So Why Sell Them That Way?” by Bob Phibbs via The Retail Doctor Blog

“Most Product Purchases Aren’t Impulsive, So Why Sell Them That Way?” by Bob Phibbs via The Retail Doctor Blog

I walked into a store in California last year and they had what seemed like thousands of mason jar candles stacked on a glass fixture from the ’80s.It was right next to the register.I could see the logic of putting the display there. Candles are an impulse item. We probably don’t have to talk much about them. They could be a grab-and-go and increase sales.The flaw in this thinking was the price point. These were $24.95.That is not an impulse item.Even though it is a small product, the price point made it a considered purchase and demonstrated what I want to draw a distinction for you about today in this post.A considered purchase is one that makes the customer stop and ask themself questions: Is this a good value?Do I really need this?How does it work?What happens if I get it home and it isn’t right?Will this last? Obvious examples of considered purchases are flooring, automobiles, window fashions, and furniture – these are all large purchases that people have to think about not only before going to the store but also incorporated with new information they will receive in the store before they buy.So, what made these candles a considered purchase?Right off the casual glance, the merchandising said commodity. Once you saw the price tag, you had questions. What is the scent? What are they made of? What am I getting for $25? What are the differences between these items?A customer who has questions arise in their mind doesn’t buy…they move on. This is why there were so many candles left sitting on the shelf.Now if those candles had a sign that...
“Did the Pandemic Change Retailing Dramatically?” by Jan Rogers Kniffen via The Robin Report

“Did the Pandemic Change Retailing Dramatically?” by Jan Rogers Kniffen via The Robin Report

Any professional observer of retail trends and every shopper in the U.S. would tell you that retailing, and retailers changed dramatically during the pandemic. But many of those changes were already in the works before the pandemic even started. One of the interesting things that happened during the pandemic is that Amazon announced the closure of almost all their test stores that were in the works. On the surface, one might think that online retailing charged ahead so rapidly during the pandemic that Amazon decided to withdraw from stores altogether, concluding that the world had passed brick-and-mortar stores by. Well, there is no doubt that online selling charged ahead during the pandemic. It went from about 9 percent of retail sales to over 18 percent in that short (very long living through it) pandemic period. But Amazon’s move to close stores and try “something new,” which right now seems to be a 30,000 square-foot department store, seems to be driven by the poor consumer reception to the various test stores tried so far, not a belief that stores are not still important. 1/ The Physical Store Actually Became More Important My conclusion is that despite the explosion of online selling during the pandemic, stores became even more important as retailers realized that physical stores were going to be great support for online retailing going forward. They saw the billboarding effect of the store was real, using the store as a distribution center was necessary and using the store as a customer service center for online sales was a requirement. Despite Amazon arguably (some experts would say unarguably) being the very best online retailer in...
“Social Commerce is Having More Than a Moment – Brands not embracing this trend, or at least testing the water, will be left behind” by Stevie Morris via Total Retail

“Social Commerce is Having More Than a Moment – Brands not embracing this trend, or at least testing the water, will be left behind” by Stevie Morris via Total Retail

Credit: HubSpot Social commerce, the latest darling of digital marketers, continues its meteoric rise with the latest predictions putting the industry at $1.2 trillion in purchases by 2025. With more than $958 billion spent in 2021, it’s clear that social commerce represents a very real, profitable tactic for brands. No wonder there’s hunger to invest. But at this pace, strategic marketers must ask themselves a few questions. Social Commerce: A Moment or a Permanent Shift? Three major drivers are affecting the moment we’re living in: Time spent: Today, there are 4.5 billion people using social media — that’s more than half the world’s population.Content: With so much to see, do and learn, average daily time spent on social media is now 2.5 hours.Payments: Driven mostly by millennials and Gen Z, 2 billion people now use mobile wallets. As these behaviors shift, so do expectations with more shoppers seeking: Convenience: Research shows that 82 perfect of shoppers like how quick and easy it is to shop on social media, while 71 percent say they prefer to buy immediately after viewing content rather than switching to a retail site.Inspiration: 60 percent of users say they’ve discovered a product via social feeds, and 55 percent were moved to buy.Validation: Heavily influenced by community, 70 percent of people who watched livestreams hosted by an influencer say they were “highly likely” to buy the products recommended. While traditional e-commerce is calculated, self-prompted, and often cumbersome, social commerce is spontaneous. It allows you to be inspired in the moment and to buy without leaving the experience you’re in. Related story: Authenticity, Social Commerce Spur D-to-C Brand ZOX’s Growth What Are Social Platforms Getting...
“The Best Advice I Can Give Retailers Right Now” by Dan Jablons of Retail Smart Guys

“The Best Advice I Can Give Retailers Right Now” by Dan Jablons of Retail Smart Guys

It would be easy to start this article by talking about how we’ve all been through the craziest times in our lives.  But you already know that.  I could also talk about how challenging things can be now, with the extreme difficulties in the supply chain causing many to struggle to keep up with increasing demand.  On top of all that, we’re dealing with mask mandates and all kinds of political noise that affects retail.  But you know about that too, and you’re already navigating that. So let’s get down to something important.  In times like these, the winners are those that can become hyper-focused on the truly important things.  It’s very easy to get distracted by the problems that exist in our industry, to throw up your hands and just hope that things work out.  You could do that, but you’re also better than that. At this moment in time, my most successful clients are focused on 2 things, and 2 things only: Their customers and their inventory.  It could be argued that staying hyper-focused on those 2 things has always been the key to retail success, and that’s true.  That said, it’s especially true today, given everything I wrote in the first paragraph, the fundamentals of focus are more important today than ever before. But how do you do that?  The nature of our business is such that there seems to never be enough time to get everything done, and lots of small details seem to block our ability to focus on the things we want to focus on.  Push play to hear about how Dan Jablons...