Describing exactly what your customers get out of your product can be a challenge, especially when your product has the potential—as Monetate does—to do a lot of different things. So we decided to ask our customers how they were using Monetate. The result is a series of Customer Stories, the first of which was published today, featuring Free People. Future stories include RevZilla.com and QVC.
In today’s story, David Hayne of Free People describes the different ways in which one of America’s leading multichannel apparel retailers has been putting Monetate to work at www.freepeople.com. As you might expect, Free People does some typical A/B testing of standard site elements like the home page and the cart page. These tests pay off in terms of optimizing conversion rates and maximizing average order values. But Free People is also doing some fairly complex long-term testing…
This long-term testing includes a project designed to determine the net revenue effect of different shipping offers on different segments of Free People shoppers. Here’s what David has to say about the project: “the extended testing around free shipping has really opened some eyes here.”
As regular readers will know, shipping offers become a hot topic as the holiday shopping season approaches, with some experts deploring free shipping while others call it vital to the continued health of online retailing.
Free People is understandably tight-lipped about the details of their findings, other than to say “that learning has been huge for us.” And to be honest, telling you what Free People found out about free shipping for their target segments would not answer the questions you have about free shipping for your own customer segments. Every online store has a different demographic, gets orders from different geographic locations, and deals with different shipping costs relative to warehouse locations, competitor locations, brick-and-mortar stores, and so on.
So here’s the real learning that I’d like to highlight in this customer story: With the right tests you can learn a lot more about your online business than which hero shot converts best. If you design them properly, tests based on business rules can reveal vital business information that is unique to your business, and that can give you a vital edge over your competition.
There will be more customer stories in the days and weeks to come and hopefully each one will deliver its own lessons.