Landing Pages Apparel Webstores Overlook

Landing Pages Apparel Webstores Overlook

Once a customer visits your site, and no matter what page they land on you have three seconds to get their attention and persuade them to stay. Any landing page your apparel webstore creates is a building block of a successful website. Depending on what you sell, organizations you support, your story and other relevant information, you can have many landing pages. While you no doubt know about homepages, product pages and About Us pages, brands sometimes overlook the other pages that can build their brand and help customers navigate through their site. In this guide you’ll learn about the eight landing pages apparel webstores often overlook.

Brands & Designers

As an apparel webstore, you will house many different brands and designers. Customers will search for these specific brands and designers, especially if they are luxury, trendy or sustainable brands. That is why having a brand or designer-specific landing page is important. On this page, you will need to call out all of the brands and designers you carry. While designing this landing page, there are many different ways you can lay it out. Some companies decide to list their brands alphabetically while others list out based on categories. 

If you are looking for a design that is simple yet efficient, check out how the Fawn Shoppe sorted out their designers landing page:

Campaign

Landing pages do not have to be permanent. Instead, you can have temporary landing pages that go up during a specific campaign or time period. Whether these campaigns are for  holidays, collections, seasons, contests, giveaways or events, campaign-specific landing pages will reinforce your campaign messaging when they welcome visitors to your website. Social media, text messages and emails are all tools that can be used to drive visitors to your site and greeting them with an informative landing page will set you up for success. These landing pages can have multiple elements within them, depending on the details and specifics of your campaign. For example, holiday campaigns include many elements, especially if they are working with a charity, having a contest or participating in Black Friday. While creating these pages, don’t forget to stay on-brand, as well as match the campaign’s look. Build your campaign-specific landing pages with consistent design, imagery, video and copy. For more information on how to create a brand guideline to help you keep up with consistent design and copy elements, check out this guide.

Customer Service

Customers are your top priority. Your whole goal is to make them happy. The best way to answer any questions or concerns or to stay in contact with your customers is with a customer service landing page. In many cases, you may confuse a customer service landing page with a FAQ landing page. Typically, a FAQ page is a small section of your customer service landing page that answers your shoppers’ most asked questions. However, FAQ sections do not always answer all their questions, that is why you must have a thorough customer service page to help go into further detail of how to find their answer or how to contact you. The customer service landing page will also encompass shipping and order information, exchange and return policies, size guides, contact information and careers. While you can place the call to action to get to these pages anywhere on your webstore, many companies keep it at the bottom of their homepage. You can also link to your customer service page throughout your website.

Clearance or Sale

It is common knowledge that many customers cannot get enough clearance or sale items. To make the experience for clearance shoppers easier, having a clearance or sale landing page is ideal. While creating this page, make sure to include filters and customization options. This allows your customers to have an easy time navigating through all your clearance. The more customization filters and options you include like size, color, brand, etc, the easier it will be for your customers to find what they want.

Best Sellers

Just like people searching for clearance items, many people are also looking for the most popular items on an apparel webstore. A Best Sellers page is a great opportunity to post about trends, reviews and fashionable items. Customers want to see what everyone else is wearing and buying. Including a Best Sellers page will help connect with these specific shoppers and giving them a landing page where they can browse the top items on your webstore is paramount. 

Kabayare Fashion lays out its Best Sellers page very well by including filters and keeping the design simple:

New In Stock or Trending

If you want your customers to be aware of new inventory, a New In Stock or Just Released landing page will help bring awareness to your shoppers. This also allows customers to see that your apparel shop is modern, a brand that keeps up with trends and popular items. Plus, if you have existing and repeat customers, this helps them know when you have new products. Not many webstores include this type of landing page, so if you do, you will stand out compared to many of your competitors.

Account

You cannot forget about an Account landing page, especially if you want customers to keep coming back to your website to track their packages, leave reviews, buy gift cards or sign up for reward programs. This landing page is crucial especially when discovering your customers’ email address, name and phone number. Once you have this information, you can target brand awareness, membership or subscription emails to customers who do not sign up for email. Also, an Account landing page is a customer service portal. Your customer service landing page is for the general public while an Account landing page is specific for each customer. An Account landing page will have a login screen or sign-up screen. From there, your members type in their information to reach their account. In their account, you need to have sections like order information (current and past), profile information (name, address, phone number, etc), billing information, payment settings and any other relevant information.

Additional Pages

There are a few other pages that many companies forget. Other pages that all websites should include are terms of use, sitemap and privacy policy. These types of pages fall under more technical aspects because they help with SEO, copyright and other legal information. While most shoppers never view these pages, as a business, you need to have these pages available and up to date just in case. Typically, the call to action for these landing pages is at the bottom of your website. 

Now that you know what pages to include, it is time to start creating them. While many websites have easy to use and free templates, they can be lackluster, not functional and off proportion. These pages can be very ineffective if not designed by someone with experience. A lackluster design can directly affect your traffic and ‘time on site’. The design of a webpage is not just about ‘making it look pretty’. If the colors and segments aren’t balanced, then visitors don’t know where to focus. We do not want this to happen to any webstore. That’s why Interactone is here to help. We have a team of knowledgeable and experienced marketing and design experts who understand the ins and outs of creating any type of landing page or marketing initiative. If you need help honing down your landing pages, social media, emails or other marketing efforts, give us a call today to learn how we can help you.

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Padawan Series: Social Posts Your Apparel and Accessories Brand Should Implement

Padawan Series: Social Posts Your Apparel and Accessories Brand Should Implement

On average, users spend 144 minutes on social media daily. The platforms most visited are Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter. While having social media is not essential for every brand, you do have more opportunities and places to reach potential and existing customers if you are active on social media. As an apparel and accessories brand, there are many types of social media posts you can add to your account that can gain more followers, brand awareness and purchases that we will go over in this guide.

Lifestyle Shots

Social media users love seeing apparel lifestyle shots where people or items are in a scene over laydowns. These types of images feel more authentic and relatable to people. But, also remember that you can publish laydown posts by incorporating fun design elements like text, stickers, gifs, etc. Lifestyle images give you the opportunity to get creative at photoshoots. This is the moment where you get to direct models or influencers to pose or act a specific way. If you do not use models or influencers, set up a scene that looks realistic for product photos. Make sure to bring a shot list that includes social media ideas for every photo shoot. It is better to plan your social calendar at least one month ahead of time, so you have time to create, design and write every post. 

Even though Schuler Shoes only sells shoes, they still manage to create lifestyle shots of their product by putting them in a scene that many people can relate to:

Sustainability and Inclusivity

Right now, the apparel and accessories world is all about sustainability and inclusivity. Many sustainability supporting organizations are calling out many fashion brands due to the damage they are doing to the environment and how unethical their work practices are. Some fast fashion companies like BooHoo are under fire right now, especially since many of these brands do not have safe factories, are environmentally wasteful and create clothes mostly for small, petite people. As a business, you do not want customers to label your brand like this. That is why you will want to share any sustainable brands you sell and show a wide range of people, whether they are models, influencers or regular people on your social media.

National Holidays

Who doesn’t enjoy a fun national day? It gives us that extra excuse to dress-up, take photos or try something new. These days are not just for everyday people. Businesses can work these national days into their social media marketing as well. There are a ton of trending national holidays that you can post on that revolve around or can relate to apparel and accessories. Holidays like National Handbag Day, National White T-Shirt Day, National Lipstick Day, National Wear Red Day, etc. work great and have already established and well-followed hashtags. You can find a list of national holidays on the National Day Calendar. While creating these posts, you can get creative with the design. Add festive symbols, stickers or words that go with the holiday. For example, flag stickers or emojis on the 4th of July or snow, bells and lights around Christmas. Schuler Shoes added simple graphic elements on National Nurses Day that are effective and promotional at the same time:

Insta Stories and Facebook Stories

Stories are popular on Facebook and Instagram. Audiences love the valuable, engaging and creative content that comes from these posts. They also enjoy that stories involve more interactions over just leaving a like or comment. It’s the perfect area to add interactive buttons, stickers, music, questions, links to products, etc. Also, remember that on Instagram, you cannot link to anything on your news feed. However, you can link to as many products or blogs that you want on Insta Stories. The more engaging you are, the more chances you have of people following your accounts, interacting and shopping with your brand.

Authentic Influencers

Influencers are not for every apparel and accessories company, but if you already have or are willing to add influencers to your social media campaigns, then you can gain more followers on your social media pages. 78% of businesses implement influencer marketing with it to continue to grow every year. And this year alone increased influencer marketing substantially; however, customers are looking for authentic influencers instead of celebrities or high profile influencers. Micro-influencers and nano influencers are gaining popularity with consumers since they relate more to users. For more information on these types of influencers and how they can help your social media marketing, check out this guide.

Community Engagement

Without your community of followers, your social media would not go very far, and you would essentially have no one to market to. Whether you have a plethora of followers or a small handful, there is always room to gain more. Users on social media are looking for brands, companies and people that make a connection with them. Brands that do not relate or connect to an audience lose followers quickly or are slow in gaining new ones. You can make this connection by engaging with the community. Respond to comments, follow similar brands, react and like users’ posts and create posts about how you are helping the community. The more you show that you are part of your targeted audience, the more social media users will want to follow your company. 

Engaging with the community also means answering questions that come through on posts. The Fawn Shoppe gives thorough explanations and apologies whenever things go wrong:

Announcements

Social media is a great place to drop any exciting news or announcements about your brand. In many cases, if you have a stronger social media presence compared to email subscribers, it will be one of the main ways people will know about any announcements you make. And even if you have more email subscribers, not all your social media followers subscribe to your emails, so to keep everyone in the loop, it is best to post on social media as well. Things like new collections, collaborations, brands, offers, events and grand openings are perfect to post. 

Seiko does an excellent job of taking advantage of Facebook to introduce a new product they have by including links and a detailed description:

Contests

People love winning things, and social media is a fun and interactive way to host a contest. Whether it is a simple tag yourself or submit a photo or story, many of your current followers and potential followers will jump on board. If you are growing your social media presence, make sure to include in the rules that for valid entry, they must be following your page. Before creating your contest, decide on the prize, the ways to enter, disclaimers/rules/regulations and meet with your company’s HR team or legal team. The best way to make sure your contest goes smoothly is to work with a company or agency that has implemented many successful contests or giveaways.

Conclusion

Depending on your brand, audience and products, you can publish many other types of social media posts. Any time you start a social media page, there is a lot of creating, monitoring, tracking, responding, researching and improving that goes with it. Trends constantly change, and each platform adds new features throughout the year. While you can plan, post, watch and change elements on your own, it is an added step that takes more knowledge, time and effort. Take the stress off by working with a team of experienced professionals who have worked with many high profile clients. At Interactone, we have years of social media experience and understand everything that it takes to create a successful page. For more information on how we can help your company, shoot us a message today.

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Is Your Fashion eCommerce Store Holiday-Ready?

Is Your Fashion eCommerce Store Holiday-Ready?

We’re coming up to a busy time for online shopping, and this year is shaping up to be bigger than ever, as customers start hunting for promotions early. A study by Yotpo in August 2020 revealed that nearly 40% of customers planned to start holiday shopping in September, October or November, and 20% claim they’ve already started. 

The overall eCommerce conversion rate is up 6% from last year, and daily online fashion and accessory sales are up 10% year on year for early August, according to another study. So clearly people are in the mood to shop! 

Capitalize on this moment by making sure your eCommerce store is up to standard. Here’s a checklist of tips for how fashion eCommerce websites can prepare for and make the most of the holidays.

Create a special holiday promotion page

51% of online shoppers consider “free products and buyer perks (secret sales, free shipping, promo codes)” as “the best ways for brands to show they care,” according to a new global study. Show your customers you care—and get that holiday buzz going—by creating a special web page for your holiday promotions. This could spotlight deals on specific products, or it could focus on exclusive access or the introduction (or reintroduction) of rare or high-demand products. Focus your promotions on where you’ve done well and where you want to improve. If you want to increase items per order, consider offering a bundle deal. Regardless, ensure you have a solid inventory of your most popular items. And consider organizing these products into new categories like “gifts for women” and “gifts for men.”

Promote your upcoming sale or special

When you’ve decided what your holiday promotion is going to be, ensure you share it widely through social media, emails and paid advertising. Generate a sense of urgency by communicating the limited nature of your promotion. This means communicating the end date of your sale, or the limited availability of particular styles that you won’t be repeating. Well-designed timers and countdown clocks on your holiday promotion page can be a great way to add a sense of urgency and increase conversions.

Collect email subscribers by offering early access to sales

Turn one-time shoppers into long-term customers, drum up excitement and grow your mailing list all at the same time. Nurture leads with content that builds excitement and tells your brand story. Your emails could count down days to your sale, hype up particular products or even drop hints about what special offers will be available. Promote this special newsletter-only content on your social media by letting your followers know that by signing up they will get access to exclusive information and offers.

Offer gifts with gamification

Stand out from the crowd by offering a range of different gifts, for example a different free item with a certain dollar-amount purchase every day or hour. A timer on your website could indicate to shoppers how long they have left to make the purchase in order to get that gift. You could also offer certain gifts only with certain items that you’re trying to push, or present an array of gifts that the shopper simply chooses from at checkout.

Take care of any overlooked areas of your website

Optimize and streamline your cart and ensure everything is in working order. Ensure that your website can handle increased traffic, that your navigation is in shape and that all of your pages are optimized for mobile. Your search bar should always be highly visible and well configured, but in the high-traffic holiday season it’s more important than ever. Make the most of past and present popular keywords to drive shoppers to important products. And, of course, be ready to offer and promote gift cards and gift wrapping on your holiday promotion page, on product pages and at checkout.

Get your abandoned cart strategy ready now

Not all shoppers will commit to buying straight away—some may browse your products for a while and then leave, others may get as far as adding products to their cart and then exit your website. That’s why you should have a series of both browse abandonment emails and cart abandonment emails ready to go, so that you can win these people back. A series of well-timed emails with short but compelling copy in the body and subject line will help you to convert any browsers into buyers. This is another opportunity to create urgency by reminding of the limited nature of your promotion.

Have a solid post-purchase communication plan

Get ready to welcome your new customers with great emails after they’ve made their first purchase. Introduce a loyalty program that rewards customers any time they make an additional purchase, and share your compelling brand story and content to keep them engaged and invested in your brand. Also make sure you follow up with first-time purchasers to ask about their experiences. Encourage them to review the products they bought on your website, and ask them to follow your social media channels.

Continue to nurture your community

Engagement is more important than ever, so don’t neglect your core community. Keep engaging with your audience as you normally would, while also driving home your holiday campaign. This will be an unusual holiday season with emotions running high as people reflect on the challenges of the year, and their purchases will likely reflect that. Consumer behavior might be unpredictable these holidays, but remain consistent with your brand and provide messages that resonate, reflect and inspire.

Spruce up your homepage

A special holiday-related landing page is important in this very competitive time for eCommerce, but not all of your shoppers will see it. Many people still go straight to the homepages of stores they’re interested in shopping at, so it’s important that this part of your website is not overlooked in your holiday overhaul. Ensure your homepage is up to date and includes all of your holiday specials and announcements. For more advice, check out our recent blog about how to optimize your homepage design.

Conclusion

Getting your eCommerce store holiday-ready requires a juggling act of creating and maintaining content for your website, emails and social media, and this needs to excite and engage customers both old and new. InteractOne is well versed in managing these needs and can help you with every step of the process. Reach out to our team to put your holiday goals in motion today.

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How to Engage Your apparel Audience with an Email Newsletter

How to Engage Your apparel Audience with an Email Newsletter

There are many ways to engage with your apparel web store’s audience, from sharing content on your social media channels to creating your own compelling website content. You’re likely already doing these things, but are you missing one of the other very useful and engaging marketing tactics? 

Email newsletters are a great avenue for fashion eCommerce brands to keep their customers engaged and informed without waiting for them to come to their website or social media channels. Newsletters help brands stay top of mind, establish authority and, of course, notify readers about new or interesting products and promotions. 

However, despite all of these useful qualities, email newsletters can sometimes be overlooked because they can seem like a lot of work, or that they’re hard to get right. But like any kind of marketing, there are tactics you can follow and metrics you can use for measuring your success, including the number of subscribers, open rates and click-through rates.

Use your brand voice and keep it consistent

The best fashion eCommerce newsletters are imbued with the brand’s voice, which is then maintained and developed over time. Some brands find value in letting other staffers take over their newsletter temporarily (similar to an Instagram takeover), but regardless of who writes it, your newsletter should keep a consistent tone.

Athleisure brand Entireworld has a great newsletter that is fun, casual and inviting. Their welcome email is filled with original GIFs, funny copy and even a video of their founder. Importantly, the newsletter stays true to the tongue-in-cheek tone they’ve established across their website and social media.

Devise a content strategy and schedule

Instead of cramming all types of content into the one email, keep it simple by focusing on one topic or kind of content per email. Establish a schedule with different content focuses for different days of the week or month, allocating promotional emails to certain days and informative/educational emails to other days. You want to avoid overwhelming your readers with too much content all at once, which could send them clicking elsewhere.

Once you’ve decided on your schedule, stick to it, whether it’s weekly, bi-monthly or monthly. This will benefit your brand in a number of ways. It will create a sense of urgency and expectation for your latest release, help you maintain top-of-mind status with your audience, and avoid the spam folder. (On that note, be clear on your newsletter sign-up page about when and how often your subscribers can expect to hear from you.)

Be informational as well as sales-driven

Your email newsletter is a valuable sales-driving tool, but it should also offer content that adds to your brand and engages your audience on an informative or entertaining level. Hubspot suggests a balance of 90/10: 90% information, 10% sales material. This is because consumers get tired of constantly being told to “buy buy buy.” Customers want to also learn how to style apparel and accessories, how they’re made, and who else wears and enjoys them.

Aim to strike a balance, with the idea that less is more when it comes to hard selling. You’ll likely see your informative content compelling people to click and buy. Use one main, clear call to action to direct readers to check out your latest products, promotion or content on your website.

Feature unique content

Unique content can be a strong impetus for subscribers to sign up, so try including special newsletter-only content such as backstories on designs and the inspirations behind them, or behind-the-scenes content such as outtakes from photo shoots. Be sure to include alt text on your images, as not all people enable images in their emails, and therefore they might not see what the image is. This is particularly important if your CTA is in your image.

Service-style content or advice can also be greatly appreciated by subscribers, for example, styling advice, garment care advice, or information on how to increase longevity of products made with special materials. This kind of useful content can help your brand become a trusted source of information, beyond simply a source of clothing.

Include newsletter-only offers

There are still a lot of people who don’t care about unique content, and just want deals. Newsletter-only offers are a great way to build your brand’s email list and entice people to sign up and then keep opening your emails—just be sure to mention them in your subject lines! When word gets out about these special offers (either from you or your subscribers) others will also be encouraged to sign up.

Special offers could include first looks at new collections, first dibs on sales, and subscriber-only sales or discount codes. You could also feature special competitions with unique rewards, only for subscribers. However great your offers may be, there will always be some people who want to unsubscribe for whatever reason, so be sure to make it easy for them to do so. Again, don’t risk getting sent to the spam folder!

Establish a connection with your audience

Customers who have a strong attachment to a company spend 23% more than average consumers who don’t have that attachment. That’s why it’s important to nurture your customers with this special content that connects with them and reminds them why they follow your brand and signed up for your email newsletter.

Inboxes are more personal terrain than your website or social media, so you should feel free to talk to your audience more personally in your newsletters. Bring personality and connectivity to your brand through playful and engaging content. This will help you establish longevity with your customers.

Reformation does this well with their eye-catching imagery, lively copy, and by featuring their followers in a special section of their newsletter, called “You guys being wild in Ref.” This includes photos that customers have posted to social media of themselves wearing items by the brand, and further encourages and deepens that valuable sense of community.

Conclusion

Our marketing team works with a range of fashion and apparel clients on a regular basis to help improve and optimize their eCommerce email marketing campaigns. Want help developing and distributing your brand’s email newsletter? Contact us for strategy consulting and support with technical integration and execution.

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Four Pop-ups Your Fashion Webstore Must Deploy

Four Pop-ups Your Fashion Webstore Must Deploy

Pop-ups get a bad rap, but that’s when they’re overwhelming, unhelpful and irrelevant. Those kinds of pop-ups can cost you customers, as they get frustrated by the interruptions and invasive shopping experience and swiftly leave your web store. What’s more, Google can also punish your site if it’s deemed to provide a poor user experience by displaying pop-ups that cover up crucial information, or arrive too quickly. 

However, when they’re used correctly, pop-ups can be very beneficial, helping to grow your audience, drive sales, improve your customer experience and guide the customer journey. According to BigCommerce, the 10% highest-performing pop-ups have a conversion rate of 9.28% on average. That proves there’s a lot of value to be found in the humble pop-up. 

If your fashion web store isn’t using any pop-ups, now is the time to get started. Here are four kinds of pop-ups, with examples of how you can utilize them on your apparel eCommerce website.

Greet your customers & grow your email list

A pop-up upon first visit to your homepage is a great way to greet your new visitors and make them feel welcome. Think of it like how you greet customers in your physical retail store: providing a warm welcome into your space. When this kind of pop-up is combined with a newsletter sign-up CTA and a discount, it can be an excellent method for growing your email list (which might otherwise languish in the footer of your homepage).

Pop-ups that offer a tangible financial incentive perform well, as they often prove irresistible to shoppers. Often they read something like this: “Welcome! Subscribe to our email newsletter and receive 10% off,” or “Stay in the know and receive 15% off your first order.” Even if you don’t offer a specific discount, it can be beneficial to mention that an offer will be available in the future for those who enter their email address. Aerie opts for this approach, with the following message: “SIGN UP FOR EMAIL! Get an exclusive offer when you sign up, plus insider access to even more offers, new arrivals, style tips and more.”

Discounts for first-time buyers have become de rigueur in fashion eCommerce—to the point where brands now stand out if they don’t serve pop-ups featuring some form of this offer, according to the website Glossy, so it’s wise to try it as part of your marketing. And if you’re concerned about coming off as aggressive or potentially overwhelming your prospective customer, you could try an extended timed pop-up that appears only after the visitor has been scrolling or had the website open for a number of minutes.

Drive sales

While the above “welcome” style of pop-up certainly helps to drive sales, there are more direct approaches that your apparel eCommerce brand can take, if that is your top priority. One way that pop-ups can drive conversions is by announcing a sale starting at a certain time, using an animated ticking clock or a countdown to build excitement and provide a compelling visual representation. Uniqlo has an interactive pop-up that presents the opportunity to obtain one of three types of discounts, with the CTA inviting visitors to “Spin to reveal your offer.”

Another tactic is to share a special discount code that’s available for a limited time only or that’s available only on certain popular products. For example: “Save up to 50%, today only,” with a CTA that takes them to a unique sales page.

To achieve even more success with these pop-ups, use personalization to speak to the visitor in a compelling way. Acknowledge and welcome first-time visitors and provide a concise introduction to your brand; and welcome back returning customers and encourage them to check out your newest offerings that have been added since their last visit. Regardless of whether you want to steer them toward hero pieces or new collections, ensure you have a clear CTA that compels them to click. And when you do so, use micro copy below the CTA to tell users what will happen when they click the button. For example: “Clicking ‘yes’ will open another page.”

Improve your customer experience

Sometimes your sales are ticking along nicely and you want to ensure it stays that way. Nurturing your community of customers can take many forms, from customer service to social media and email marketing, but it can also take place in pop-ups.

On your website, install pop-ups that are helpful, educational and supportive. One tactic for achieving this objective is to provide timely and relevant information, or offer personalized help for shoppers who may have questions but not a burning desire to initiate contact with customer service. A simple, friendly and polite pop-up that reminds customers of your store’s extensive size chart, FAQ and/or virtual assistance can go a long way in increasing their trust in you and your products, and build credibility. Meaning, they’ll recommend you to their friends.

The copy should be simple, cheerful and helpful, for example: “Need help with sizes or styles? Chat with a stylist!” or, “Wondering about how to style this look? Talk to a stylist!” or even more simply: “Talk to a stylist.” This could be accompanied by a CTA button that launches a chatbox with one of your customer service and styling associates, or directs visitors to another page in order to connect.

This kind of pop-up works best when it’s delivered as a delayed pop-up, after the visitor has been on a product page for a while. Perhaps they have selected a size and color option of the product, but not added the item to their cart yet. In this case your pop-up would also work toward combating exit intent and cart abandonment.

Guide the customer journey

This form of pop-up is perhaps the most innocuous of all, but no less important. Simple pop-ups that occur when a visitor adds an item to their cart may seem standard and uncontroversial, but they are still worthy of calling out for the crucial UX function they perform. “Added to cart,” “Edit cart,” or “Checkout now” pop-ups all serve to show your visitor that their action was completed and that they are progressing through their shopping journey. Like the “sign up and get a discount” pop-ups, they are very commonplace, yet if your store goes without them it runs the risk of standing out for the wrong reason.

Make your customer’s journey clear and straightforward. Show them their cart’s status, including the number of items and total dollar amount, to allow them to continue shopping without having to leave the page to check their cart’s status. You could add “Continue browsing” to this pop-up message for that purpose. And most importantly, for these and any other kind of pop-ups you install, make sure they work on mobile, as this is how most of your customers are visiting you.

Conclusion

It should be noted that all of these points are subjective, and different websites have different needs and styles. For best results, you should always A/B test to find out what works best for your brand. But generally speaking, pop-ups have become everyday tricks for the vast majority of savvy eCommerce websites, so your web store could likely benefit from utilizing at least one of the above kinds of pop-ups.

InteractOne works with a number of fashion and apparel eCommerce brands to build pop-ups into their websites, with amazing results. If you’d like assistance  with building pop-ups into your website, set up a time to talk with us about how we can help you.

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Must-Haves for Your About Us Page

Must-Haves for Your About Us Page

An apparel About Us page is important, as it allows customers to see the people behind your products. Anyone can sell a garment, but modern customers want to shop at stores that align with their values and have fashionable or trendy clothes. Creating an apparel webstore About Us page is tricky. There are many moving parts and sections that go into building a good one. While some companies keep their About Us page simple and straight to the point, others go all out. Instead of spending hours trying every method under the sun, we’ve applied our years of web design experience to create a list of must-haves every apparel site About Us page should have.

The Importance of an About Us Page

An About Us page is crucial for every brand, business and website to have. This page is where users understand the voices, people and faces behind the site they are viewing. An About Us page also gives you more credibility, trust and content for Google to analyze for SEO purposes. This landing page is the one place where you can highlight the biggest selling points of your eCommerce business. The overall goal for your About Us page is to leave a strong impression on your customers for them to feel about shopping and engaging in long-term business with your company.

Tell Your Story

If you do not know where to begin your apparel About Us page, the first step should be to tell your story. While writing the story of your brand, answer questions like: 

  • How did you start? 
  • Why did you start? 
  • What were some successful and unsuccessful steps along the way? 
  • How long have you been in business? 
  • How have you helped others? 
  • What does your company value?

If you have a brand guideline, you can pick up the majority of your story from there. The more you explain your story, the more authentic and credible you are. You will also want to keep the verbiage on this page in your brand’s “voice”. 

There are many ways to showcase your company’s story. Some brands like the Fawn Shoppe keep their page simple:

While other brands like Schuler Shoes, add pictures, designs and a timeline:

Include Links & Call to Actions

Never miss out on the opportunity to include links and call to action (CTA) buttons on any of your pages, including your About Us page. Internal links and calls to action redirect your customers to other pages on your site. This gives your customers more opportunities to see your products and other pages you want to highlight. More people visiting other pages can boost your engagements and impressions. For apparel companies, the links and CTAs you will want to include are social media, emails, product pages, careers, blogs and frequently asked questions. 

Highlight Your Sustainability Efforts

You’ve probably seen fashion sustainability problems all over the news. Many apparel companies are responsible for adding more harmful waste on our planet. Second to oil industries, clothing and textile companies are one of the largest polluters in the world – producing 20% of the world’s waste per year. Fast fashion brands like Boohoo and Shein made headlines this year as a means to show customers and other businesses that apparel stores need to change. Consumers are actively searching for brands that support sustainability. They want to see how you are helping the issue, what organizations you partner or support and how they can help through shopping with you. While we have mentioned them in a few other blogs, United By Blue is an online apparel firm that has committed to remove one pound of trash from oceans and waterways for every product purchased. Your About Us page is the perfect place to showcase all the ways you are contributing to saving the environment. This section will explain sustainable brands or collections you have as well as organizations, nonprofits or charities that you work with. If your company has any special programs or initiatives like recycling older garments or specific sustainable fabrics, you will mention it here as well. For more help on honing your sustainability efforts, check out this guide.

Explain Your Values

For many apparel brands, sustainability efforts coincide with their values, but there is so much more you can add. Your brand’s values are the ethos that drives your brand. All companies need to explain their values on their About Us page. This allows customers to see if they have aligned values. You can further define your values by showing any social causes or organizations that you support. Many consumers are looking for brands that support not only sustainability but accessibility and diversity as well. Seiko does an excellent job at highlighting their accessibility efforts:

There are many ways to share your values with visitors to your website. Schuler Shoes breaks theirs down to a second About Us landing page where they discuss the projects they support, their mission statement, vision and values:

Express Why Your Apparel Webstore Over Others

While you do not want to come off overly confident or rude, you do need to express why consumers should shop from your apparel webstore over others. In this section of your About Us page, you will let customers know why you are the expert in your field. Facts, business history, sustainability, inclusivity and unique product details or safety will be top factors  to mention. You are promoting yourself, but you want to stay humble and on-brand at the same time. Refrain from including competitor names and items and always stay respectful. 

Include a Gallery of Images or Videos

Since you are selling apparel and accessories, many of your customers will want to see what your items look like on real people before they purchase. Therefore, your apparel brand can flourish if you include a gallery of images or videos of your models, influencers or past customers wearing your garments. There are many ways to implement this idea on your About Us page. You can sprinkle these photos throughout the page, or you can have a section or carousel dedicated to showing off your products. Since inventory changes, you will want to update your images or videos after an item sells out. On each image or video, make sure to include a link to the item, so if customers show interest, they can head straight to the product page. Creating a photo or video gallery can take loads of time and knowledge on specifications and file types. A credible marketing agency can help you size and place everything so the results look professional and on brand.

Use Testimonials

Testimonials and reviews add more credibility and trust to your customers. This gives your company an extra boost on why customers should shop with you over other similar businesses. While choosing which reviews or testimonials to include on your About Us page, try to keep it to three separate captions that are short, give positive feedback and relate to your values or quality. Apparel brands that decide to add these reviews to their About Us page typically place them on the bottom or sides of the page. Make sure to preview and test out the best place to add these.

There are many moving parts on an About Us page that need constant monitoring and updating. While you can do it on your own, it will take a lot of time, effort, knowledge and testing. At InteractOne, we have a team of professionals who have been working and implementing the information on About Us pages and more for many of our high profile clients. So before you spend many hours and dollars trying to create the perfect About Us page for your apparel site, contact one of our members to make the job easier.

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Increase Conversions on Your Apparel Web Store with User-Generated Content

Increase Conversions on Your Apparel Web Store with User-Generated Content

When you launched your eCommerce website, you no doubt envisioned your brand developing a loyal audience. If you’re indeed fortunate enough to have customers who are so happy with your products that they talk about them on social media, forums, review websites and blogs, you have an opportunity that needs to be capitalized on. 

User-generated content is defined by SproutSocial as “content created by a brand’s user,” which can be “anything from images to videos to blog posts. The user could be a brand’s customer, site visitor or social follower.” This content is extremely valuable to your business because it’s basically one shopper telling another that your products are worth spending money on. 

As we’ve outlined before, engagement on social media builds trust. User-generated content helps brands achieve trust by demonstrating evidence of value through social proof. This helps you increase traffic, engagement and conversions on your eCommerce website. Read on for tactics for how you can do this by utilizing user-generated content.

Feature your customers via social media posts

Posts on channels like Instagram, Facebook and Twitter are the main types of user-generated content that brands can leverage. They could include selfies and other images of customers wearing your products, unboxing videos and review videos. By reposting customer content on your own social media channels and featuring it on your website on a dedicated page, you open your brand up to many more potential customers.

Some brands choose to give their customers a nickname when they repost their audience’s content, for example, Réalisation Par. When they post a photo of a customer wearing their clothing they call them “Dreamgirl.” When it comes to Facebook, try to share users’ posts that have viral potential—videos are great in this instance. And with Twitter, make sure you share images as well as glowing written reviews, as visual content really stands out on the platform.

Start a hashtag campaign

The key to creating a successful hashtag campaign is to be clear and engaging. Make it easy and fun for your audience to participate and they will be much more likely to engage with your hashtag. It can also help to have something that incentivizes and motivates your audience to engage. That’s why hashtag campaigns that also involve a giveaway or some form of competition are so effective. Another thing to keep in mind when creating a hashtag is simplicity. Choose a hashtag that people can spell and read easily on their phone. Too many letters or multiple words in a hashtag will scare off users and cause plenty of posts to go unnoticed due to misspelling. A hashtag such as #LoveYourOutfit may sound great in a marketing meeting, but in execution it could cause problems. How does the hashtag look without capitalization, which many users won’t attempt? #loveyouroutfit will look like a mess of letters when seen in a social media timeline. Where as #LoveYou is much simpler and still applicable. Brevity is the soul of wit, especially when it comes to hashtags.

You can also try a competition where all the customer has to do to enter is post a photo with your chosen hashtag, and where you declare a winner at the end who gets an exclusive item as a prize. Make the terms and conditions clear, including how you will pick the winner (for example, pick at random, or pick the one that achieves the most likes), and a clear end date for the competition. The legalese that’s required for these types of competitions is important to get right and it can be tricky to do so. That’s why we recommend partnering with a firm that has experience in implementing and monitoring digital contests.

Ask customers to answer questions in a Q&A

Set up a question and answer (Q&A) page or section on your website, and ask your customers to answer questions about your products. This is a tactic that has helped Amazon become the eCommerce juggernaut it is today, as Q&As are effectively FAQ for each product. The more questions your page can answer without the shopper actually having to contact your customer service, the more likely they will be to convert. In a study by Aspect Software, 69% of millennials said that they feel good about a company when they’re able to resolve an issue on their own.

You can ask your audience to answer questions via your social media channels, your newsletter, in pop-up ads on your website, and via email after they make a purchase. You could also have pop-up ads on your website that offer a discount in exchange for their feedback.

Encourage customers to share photos in their reviews

Shoppers can be distrustful of models or paid advertising, because nearly everyone has had the experience of  ordering products online only to find they don’t live up to expectation. Often, in the case of apparel, it doesn’t fit as expected. But when a customer is able to see a product in a natural environment—in another person’s home, or on someone with a similar body to them—it can make all the difference, and be the tipping point to purchase.

So when you enable product page reviews, be sure to enable—and encourage—photos in reviews. Yotpo is a reliable service that we often use when building customer reviews and Q&A sections for our clients’ websites.

Share blogs that feature your products

Much the same as reposting satisfied customer selfies and review videos, sharing positive reviews and articles by bloggers that feature your products will do wonders for reinforcing your brand. By showing that a person or publication considered you worthy of writing about and that they took the time to share your products on their platform, you will gain even more trust and credibility.

Acknowledging your press and reviews on your website and social media also shows that you’re paying attention to what’s being said about you and that you care about feedback and criticism. Engagement is more important than ever nowadays, so prove that you’re active and open to it.

Get high-profile customers to take over your social media

Social media takeovers can help build trust and engagement, which leads to increased conversion rates. Often they are done with high-profile social media users, or influencers, as a way to grow followings and social clout, but they can also be done by employees as a way to share more behind-the-scenes content. However, if you’re looking to gain traffic and conversions, you’re best to go with someone with a following themselves. Read our recent blog about the rise and power of nano-influencers, which are a more affordable type of social media influencer you could utilize here.

Set a clear framework on what is expected in terms of timing, types of content and the number of posts. Will it be just Instagram Stories or grid posts as well? Or will you stick with Facebook or Twitter, or another platform? Whichever you choose, be sure to communicate clear guidelines on your brand’s do’s and don’ts.

And finally, use a third-party social monitoring platform such as Hootsuite to keep an eye on all of your pages, assets and interactions. This means you won’t have to be manually checking all of your platforms constantly, which will save you time and provide more analytics to make your reporting easier.

Conclusion

Developing an effective social marketing program takes experience, strategy and lots of fine-tuning. At InteractOne we work with our clients to review and improve their social strategies to increase engagement and conversion. If you’d like to learn more about how to utilize user-generated content to grow your audience and sales, please get in touch.

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Best Places to Advertise Your Apparel Webstore

Best Places to Advertise Your Apparel Webstore

Apparel webstores do not have the same access to real-life customers nor a physical store location, like brick and mortar retailers. They do not have signs, flyers or physical people or clothing for customers to see. Everything is virtual. With a virtual store, you have to be a little more creative with your advertising. Here are the best places to advertise your apparel webstore.

Email

For most merchants this will be the first place you advertise your apparel store. You already have your customer contact info, so you don’t have “media” costs. In an email, you can include your products, promotions, company updates and any other relevant information.

Padawan Series: Email Marketing Best Practices for Apparel & Accessories

 Recommended Extensions for Your Email Marketing

Social Media

Consumers spend about 2 hours and 24 minutes per day on social media with Facebook and Instagram being the top two platforms. Customers like seeing how garments look on people before purchasing. Facebook and Instagram target ads based on location, interests, recent searches and more. So Social Media is an increasingly effective way to reach your target market. You can also have many types of ads on both — display ads, video ads, lead ads, etc. You can also advertise on Pinterest with its new Shoppable pins.

Social Media Tactics to Increase Traffic to Your Webstore

Google Shoppable Ads

Similar to Adwords, but shows more information than just copy. Customers can also see the price and an image of the product. This ad format also allows brands to highlight multiple products on a single ad unit that will appear at the top of Google Images. Perfect for showing a collection or complete outfit.

Paid Advertising

Many apparel companies utilize paid advertising like Ad Words and display ads for many websites. For Adwords your company will want to use profitable keywords and create great text ads. Display ads (aka banner ads) that are shown on many different websites and social media are effective for growing brand awareness

Live/Virtual Events

Advertising for your apparel webstore doesn’t just end on the internet. You can also advertise at live or virtual events. You can set up an in-person/virtual booth at different events that fall under your niche (beauty, sports, medical, religion, etc.) At your booth, you can have business cards, displays, catalogs, and even merchandise ready to be sold. Great opportunity to have a sheet to collect potential customers information like name, email and phone number.

Complementary Brands 

Your apparel webstore can create a partnership with complementary brands like beauty and sports to cross-promote. Find a company with a similar audience and products that pair well with apparel and accessory items.

Creating effective digital marketing programs requires a team of experienced professionals implementing a data driven strategy.  Once created, digital marketing programs require consistent review and fine tuning in order to provide great results.  Our team has many years of experience creating,maintaining and optimizing digital marketing campaigns that power growth for our clients.  Contact us to learn more and speak with our solution experts.

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How to Optimize Your Homepage Design

How to Optimize Your Homepage Design

Your fashion eCommerce website’s homepage is your digital storefront. And just like your physical storefront, it needs to be welcoming, well designed and easy on the eyes.

A recent study by Shopify found that over half of buyers have shifted more of their spending online during the pandemic, and 40% said an easy-to-navigate website made their shopping experience a positive one. 

With so many choices out there, it’s crucial to make sure your web store provides a positive user experience. This involves multiple elements, but rethinking your web design is key. On average, visitors will spend 10-20 seconds on your homepage before they bounce. So you need to make a strong first impression, fast

Here’s how to optimize your homepage and get your visitors to convert to customers.

Use a strong header image

Your homepage should display your unique value proposition, or what gives people a reason to choose you over your competitors. This could be your sustainability efforts, your distinctive designs. Anything that sets your brand apart.

Using a strong header image that clearly communicates your brand’s unique style straight away is not only immediately enticing to your visitors, but also reduces the number of choices they have to make. Give them one compelling thing to click on and you take away the paradox of choice, making their shopping experience much more enjoyable.

Everlane is one such example of a brand that features one strong image “above the fold,” or in the upper half of the page. Their homepage presents their latest campaign in a way that feels evergreen and fully representative of their brand, regardless of how new or old the product is. The photos are friendly and inviting, drawing the visitor in.

Have a clear visual hierarchy

Keep the design of your homepage simple, and have a logical navigational structure. Make it easy for your visitors by prioritizing important products and putting key information front and center.

Fawne Shoppe has a straightforward visual hierarchy on their homepage, starting with their most recent drop and descending through the collections. The call to actions (“shop now,” “have a look,” “shop our edit”) are consistent, but not repetitive. A banner menu at the top enables visitors to immediately see and navigate their most popular shopping categories, such as “new,” “designers,” and “baby” and “kids” clothes.

Make it engaging

Fashion retailer Madewell was found by SEM Rush to be one of the most engaging US fashion eCommerce websites, with a low bounce rate of 22%, and it’s easy to see why. A recent visit to their homepage presented their latest collection with fresh, welcoming photos and a hard-to-resist offer of the “ideal fall wardrobe, narrowed down to six easy pieces.”

You can make your homepage equally as engaging by championing your key offering(s) with a strong design and appealing color palette. Pay attention to what your customers like about your brand and put that in the spotlight on your homepage. Speak to them with a warm and friendly tone, and try to reflect the values you share, to make it resonate.

Kabayare Fashion is another client of ours who does this well. Their homepage features large, compelling photos followed by special items from their latest collection. They also feature blog posts which speak directly to visitors, whether to wish them a happy holiday or to share style advice. It’s thoughtful content that engages and encourages their visitors.

Present your best offer

Aside from stunning photography of your latest and greatest products, your homepage should feature your best deals. This could mean a seasonal sale, special promotion, or membership discount.

For example, direct-to-consumer lingerie brand Savage X Fenty leads with the latter, promoting their “New Xtra VIP Xclusive” offer to encourage new visitors to sign up to their subscription service. Urban Outfitters plugs their latest sale with a bold banner ad at the top of their homepage that features a “limited time only” discount. Whichever option is relevant for you, lead with your best offer and keep it simple with one clear call to action.

Include important information in the footer

Homepage footers are not to be overlooked, as they’re a place many shoppers are trained to go to to find lower priority yet still important information. Here you should have links regarding contact information, customer service, and refund and exchange policies. Beyond this, also include your social media links, email sign-up field, brand information links and a careers link.

The footer is also a great place to enhance shopper trust by featuring the logos of credit cards and other payment options you accept, as well as badges for security services you have an account with, such as McAfee or GeoTrust. This shows visitors that your store is both reputable and user-friendly, which is especially important for the 17% of consumers who abandon their carts due to a lack of trust.

The footer can also be a place to put useful information such as a list of “top searches,” which is what Madewell does in the footer of their homepage. It allows their visitors to easily click through to popular items such as “skinny jeans” and “tote bags.” These kinds of details show that you’re paying attention to what your customers love about your brand, and suggests that you want to make things easier for them.

Conclusion

These are all relatively simple steps to achieving a strong homepage design and creating a positive user experience. Once you’ve done all of this, ensure your homepage is refreshed regularly, as you release new collections and as seasons and demand changes. With a little effort you can create a highly favorable online shopping experience.

We’ve helped many of our clients design and develop engaging homepage designs. We also work with our clients using best-in-class conversion rate optimization software to improve their homepage engagement and conversion. If you’d like to know more about how we can do the same for you, please contact us.

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How to Drive Customer Loyalty and Reward Regulars at Your Fashion Web Store

How to Drive Customer Loyalty and Reward Regulars at Your Fashion Web Store

New customers are hard to come by, and they’re also expensive. According to The Harvard Review, acquiring a new customer is anywhere from five to 25 times more expensive than retaining an existing one. 

On the other hand, repeat customers are nine times more likely to convert than a first-time shopper. They also have a higher average order value than first-time buyers, so they have a higher lifetime value (as they’re expected to spend more over a longer period of time). The bottom line is, it makes sense to hang on to your loyal customers, and reward them. 

Brands can reward their repeat customers in a number of different ways. Here are three tactics you can use to increase customer loyalty and keep regular customers returning to your fashion eCommerce website.

Develop a loyalty program

Loyalty programs are a form of gamification, or the application of game principles to non-game contexts (such as eCommerce) to motivate participation and reward long-term engagement. They were first popularized by grocery stores in the 1950s, who gave customers stamps every time they made a purchase. Since then theyhave evolved into sophisticated programs that not only improve customer retention, but also build community and drive sales online.

Loyalty programs can offer all kinds of different rewards to repeat shoppers and can be set up in a number of different ways.Your loyalty program could be as simple as offering a discount on any customer’s second purchase, or after a certain dollar amount in purchases. You could also implement a points system, where a customer must accrue points assigned to dollar values and get rewarded once they reach a certain threshold of points. Or you could offer access to exclusive merchandise or services.

Some brands are now adding gamification to their rewards programs in the form of animated interactive spinning wheels on their landing pages. Customers can click the wheel and “spin to win,” unlocking an offer such as a percentage discount or free shipping.

Create a referral program

Referral programs are another form of gamification, where your loyal customers send people to your eCommerce store to purchase and/or sign up and, in return, they are rewarded. The referrals can be your customer’s friends and family (“refer a friend”), or people they don’t know personally but that they’re connected with on social media.

These programs work well because people are likely to recommend brands they’re loyal customers of anyway, so a referral program incentivizes them to do so—hopefully with added frequency and enthusiasm.

Referral programs are sometimes called the “digital marketing dark horse” because of their lower level of use. A Gigaom survey found that only 39% of marketers use referral marketing regularly, yet 43% of companies that use referral marketing consistently acquire more than 35% of their new customers with it.

You can implement a referral program that either rewards only your customer providing the referrals, or both the existing customer and the new customer. However, the more incentive you provide, the more likely your program is to be successful. Rewards can come in the form of price discounts or points that accumulate toward those discounts. There are a number of platforms that can help you manage this, such as Talkable, ReferralCandy, Ambassador, SaaSquatch and Buyapowa.

Offer personalized discounts

Beyond traditional loyalty and referral programs, personalized discounts are another way to further engage and reward your valued customers, and there are a number of strategies for sharing these. You could utilize smart tags to show customers personalized discounts based on the categories they’re browsing on your website. Or reward your newsletter subscribers by including special deals that are only available to your subscribers. You could also reward your social media followers by offering special discounts only via these channels.

Discounts can also be sent more individually, via email and SMS marketing. For every customer that has an account or profile with your website, send out special discounts on their birthday. Or send special discounts on other special occasions, such as the anniversary of your store, or the anniversary of your customer’s account creation or first purchase.

Conclusion

As you can see, there are numerous strategies for engaging and rewarding your most valued repeat shoppers. All of them build on your community and increase engagement by rewarding customers that are loyal to your brand. Whichever tactic you choose, make sure that it’s not too complex and difficult for customers to understand, otherwise they’ll be less likely to engage with it. Make rewards easy to redeem, and ensure that the value is there so that customers will want to use them. We can help you to retain and reward your loyal customers—reach out to us for help with strategizing and implementing a loyalty program today.

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