Purchase path changes

17 Jul 2006 - 4:55pm
10 years ago
2 replies
923 reads
Robert Hoekman, Jr.

The purchase path on our site is ... well ... a little cluttered. (Major
understatement.)Marketing is really stuck on the "throw everything at the
wall and see what sticks" approach to upselling, and all the users we've
tested all resoundingly say the same thing: "It's too busy. There's too much
information. It's really crowded. I want to just get what I need and get
out." And on on.

>From everything I've heard, though, every time the company has put up what
it considers a more organized page, sales drop, they panic, the page gets
rolled back, and that's that.

I suspect this is because our repeat customers have memorized the purchase
path and are just flying through it, and that any change in that process
trips them up. New users are mostly where the complaints come from.

My belief is that the changes made previously were too significant - too
much change at once. I believe that if we were to design an end-goal
purchase path and roll it out in pieces - one tiny change at a time - things
would go a lot more smoothly and would ultimately result in a more effective
purchase path. (I also believe that if they hadn't panicked, sales would
have gone back up soon enough and eventually improved.)

The problem is that I need to convince marketing that this is true. So, I'm
wondering if anyone here can point me to studies on these types of issues.
Any insights from your own experiences?

Thanks in advance for any info.



17 Jul 2006 - 5:18pm
Juan Lanus

Althought this is not what you are asking for, please let me suggest a
I've seen something similar many years ago in Amazon, I think.

The idea is to build a completely new, ideal, purchase path and let it
live together with the old one.
Whenever a client aims at the purchasing way throw a dice and take him
to one path or the other according to a predefines proportion, that
you wish to be 100% users to the new system.
In the page where the diversion occurs put a banner saying, more or
less: "Hey you customer, you are heading for our new path. Click here
if you don't wish so. We'll take you to the usual stuff". And set a
cookie for to remember user's choice next time.

Optionally, near the end of the new path offer the client a free lunch
if he takes a survey.
Juan Lanus

18 Jul 2006 - 7:50am
Peter Boersma

Juan Lanus said:
> [..] throw a dice and take him
> to one path or the other according to a predefines proportion
> [..]
> And set a cookie for to remember user's choice next time.

And this process can be supported by so-called A/B or multivariate test
software like Memetrics (http://www.memetrics.com/). Their software has been
used to streamline on-line sales processes before.

Peter Boersma | Senior Experience Designer | Info.nl
Sint Antoniesbreestraat 16 | 1011 HB | Amsterdam, The Netherlands
p: +31-20-530 9100 | m: +31-6-15072747 | f: +31-20-530 9101
mailto:peter at peterboersma.com | http://www.peterboersma.com/blog

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