My new blog post is the 2nd video in a new series of posts: It’s an ecommerce analysis of a recent online shopping experience I had.
I buy from ecommerce brands, and I tell you what they’re doing well and what they’re not doing so well.
We did one of these posts a while back, and after popular demand we’ve decided to do a series of them. They’re a lot fun for me, and incredibly helpful for you as an ecommerce business owner.
So, I just purchased something from Buck Mason, an online clothing store, and I’m going to take you through my whole customer journey with this business:
Getting targeted by their ads, my on-site shopping experience, their post-purchase communications, and what it was like actually receiving the products.
How effective was their ad targeting?
Very! It really could not have been more spot-on. They had guys in man-buns and everything. The targeting really couldn’t have been better.
And this is the amazing opportunity that Facebook gives us. It’s an opportunity that no other sellers in history have had: We can target people based on an unprecedented number of data points.
We can choose exactly who we’re putting our message in front of; it’s pretty incredible.
Were their product detail pages optimized for conversion?
First I’ll say that they did something very well on their website.
They used high-quality, story-based videos to show me their story, their values, and how their products are made.
And I loved them! I like knowing about the brands I’m supporting and the products I’m buying. These videos really sold me on the purchase.
But unfortunately, they have done very little to optimize their product detail pages: They don’t leverage their story-based content, they don’t have an image carousel, their add to cart buttons don’t stand out, and a few other things that are easily fixed.
It’s always surprising to see a brand doing some things so well, but ignoring some very basic conversion optimization principles.
Did they leverage their thank you page and confirmation email to get me engaged in their community?
No. Again, this is a very big oversight that’s easily fixed.
Instead of only thanking me for my purchase and providing shipping information, they should consider getting me to join their Facebook page or engage with them on another social media channel.
How’s their post-purchase email sequence?
It could really use some work.
While they did send me post-purchase emails—high quality emails with great images—they didn’t offer me any kind of discount to encourage a second purchase.
They also didn’t seem to use behavioral targeting at all, or, making me offers relevant to the data points they’ve collected on me.
And maybe most surprisingly, they didn’t offer me any kind of post-purchase content to keep me engaged with their brand, nor did they make an effort to collect conversion assets from me: No requests for selfies, reviews, or other forms of social proof.
Though they did make up for this by including a pretty fantastic package insert.
So how’d they do?
It sounds like I’m being very critical, but the truth is I thought they did pretty well (I purchased from them after all!).
Their targeting was on the money, and they had some great on-site content.
That being said, their website would benefit from applying some conversion optimization principles, and they could be doing a lot more post-purchase to keep me engaged and purchasing from them again.
Watch the video for my full review.
(And thanks Buck Mason—I’m loving my products!)
0:48 Their Story – Video and Text Content
1:27 The Product Page
2:15 Category Page Content
3:08 Post Purchase Confirmation Page
3:18 Thank You Email
3:43 Post Purchase Marketing Emails
4:38 How’d they do?
6:05 The Package Insert
6:40 Invoice and Return Slip
7:08 Would I buy from them again?
Click Here For Video Transcript
So I was checking it out and I navigated to a page…I don’t think their category page is done particularly well and I’ll tell you why in a moment…but I navigated to a page called Our Story and it had a video and some text content. This is important, they told their story in video, as well as image and text format, which is very important because it gives people who prefer to consume media in different formats the ability to consume that media in the format that they prefer.
I like to watch the video, so I watched the video and I was sold. Because I like to look nice, I’m on camera a lot, I’m on stage a lot, I like to have nice clothing, but I like to know where my clothing comes from and know that it’s well-made and all that kind of thing. This video was very well done, all about how it’s organic and how they take care in the production of their clothing. It was really well done and that’s really what sold me.
Now when I moved on to their product page, I was a little…as an e-commerce marketer, I was like, “Come on, guys, you’ve got such an amazing sales video here. You could be using that on the sales page.” No carousel to show me that there’s other products available. The Add to Cart button does not stand out at all, just blends right in. The product copy is super-hard to read and small. The product detail pages were not particularly well done. Their header could use a lot of work, no phone number. The product pages weren’t that super well done.
Now I still purchased, of course, because I wanted to be all cool like this dude. So I thought there was a lot of work they could have done in their product pages using more social proof and making their Add to Cart button stand out and doing a little bit more on the product detail pages. Now I went to their category page. I thought, “How are they laying out their category pages?” Across the top of their jeans page…I’m wearing their jeans, I actually bought a pair of their jeans…they had a phenomenal sales video about how their jeans are made. I thought it was really well done.
I probably wouldn’t do this giant image and come on, with the hats. If a hat doesn’t block out the sun, if it’s a fashion hat, I personally am against it. It’s like, “Dude, there’s better use for that fabric than,” yeah, whatever. Anyways, I’m against fashion hats, so I didn’t like that so much. Just a personal preference. But I loved the story about how their denim is produced and I thought it was really well done, that for a particular category of product, they had content that I could consume about that category. So they get content marketing quite well.
I purchased from them, okay? I was really hoping that they would be doing some kind of engagement or relationship-building or something on the post-purchase confirmation page. Nothing. No love at all. No, “Join our social Facebook page,” none of that. Nothing on that post-purchase confirmation page. On the thank you e-mail that I got, it was also very plain, very vanilla. Just, “Hey, thanks so much for your order. We’ll let you know when it ships.” No kind of, “Join our Facebook community,” or, “Take a picture of your product on Instagram,” no, “Refer us to friends.” No kind of marketing in the post-purchase email.
I did get an e-mail that told me my product shipped. That was it. Then literally a week later, I got this e-mail being like, “Yo, we got some new stuff in.” Beautiful imagery. My demographic. Beautiful imagery in their emails and then four days later, I got another email. The emails they’re sending out are quite well done. Nice, beautiful imagery, calls to action, buttons.
The emails are good, but they’re not using any discounting. They sent me no post-purchase pre-arrival emails to engage me and get me excited about the product. They never asked me for a review, they never asked me for social proof, they never asked me to shoot a video telling them what I liked about their product, they never asked me to take a survey. They didn’t re-target me on Facebook or Google or Instagram. No re-targeting at all. Just emails with no discounting. If there was a discount, maybe I would have purchased again. Basically it seems like their position is, “Hey, we’re super cool, our products are good, be cool like us.” That’s the sales pitch, is, “Be cool,” and it works.
So how’d they do? How did this company do? I thought they did pretty good. They had some things right, they didn’t do some things as well as I would have. I thought they needed a lot more social proof. As a fashion brand, what you’re selling to people is, “Be cool. Look at how great all these other people look and how much these other people like this product.” Social proof, they could use a lot more of that.
Product offer pages could have been a lot better. So much more they could do on that product offer page to optimize it, make it convert better, make me more likely to consume the content on that product offer page and purchase from that product offer page.
Content and relationship-building, they did zero. Not a single post-purchase email that was like, “Thanks so much, this is who we are.” Take that content that’s on their Our Story page, that’s on their category pages, put it in your post-purchase automation sequence. I’m sure they don’t even have a pre-purchase automation sequence where, when someone opts in, they’re probably not emailing them to engage with them and build a relationship. So that’s really seriously lacking here.
Dynamic email sequences would really help. They could a do a lot with dynamic post-purchase email sequences, emailing me based on my behavior. If I bought a shirt, maybe I want another shirt. If I bought jeans, maybe I want another pair of jeans. None of that stuff is happening and it could be. And no re-targeting at all. Not a single re-targeting ad that I saw and re-targeting past customers is gold. That is the best way to increase your lifetime customer value, is to make additional offers to customers where they are hanging out on social media.
So one thing I forgot to mention that they did pretty well was they had a really nice package insert, came with it, looked real good, it said, “Thank you so much,” nice high quality. When I pulled it out, I think this insert could be done a lot better. It just says, “Nice to see you. We appreciate your business. We take pride in building quality pieces. We’d love to hear from you. Let us know how it looks.” But it’s a lot of wasted space. There’s no incentive for me to take action. They’re not asking me to do anything, but it was nice to receive that. I did enjoy that they did have a package insert that seemed deliberate and some nice packaging.
Then within that, they also had my invoice. One of the things I appreciated on the invoice that I thought was well done, especially for a clothing brand where things might not fit, is they gave me a little slip that I could send stuff back to them if I wanted, if it didn’t work out. They told me their terms as well, “Hey, we accept returns within 20 days,” yadda yadda. So they’re doing some things right. Package insert, well done. It could be improved, but hey, they have it and that’s better than not having it.
Would I buy from them again? Yeah, I would because I like the product. I thought the product was well done. Although this whole long shirt thing, have you noticed this? I did not sign up for this long shirt trend. I’ve seen it. I was in Australia at an event and everyone had these super long shirts and I was like, “I will not be a long shirt guy.” Then I bought these shirts, they don’t tell you when you’re buying them that they’re super long and they’re super long. So what are you going to do? So Buck Mason, great brand. Hope I didn’t offend you. I think you could do a lot of stuff better. I do think your clothing is phenomenal. Ezra here from SmartMarketer.com. Catch you in the next one.