This post is contributed by Dion Beary of ecomdash. Dion writes about e-commerce for ecomdash, an e-commerce automation software system. He has more pairs of Chuck Taylors than any one person needs.
The internet is capable of some amazing things. From allowing workers to order Taco Bell through Slack, to 360-degree tutorial videos from Lowe’s, tech-smart companies are falling over each other to find new ways to attract and delight customers online.
Interactive online shopping is being embraced by companies from Macy’s to Northface to IKEA. Since customers aren’t able to physically interact with products when shopping online, creative digital experiences serve the purpose of inspiring confidence in the buyer.
Interactive content is on the rise across the industry. Sellers love the chance to go viral while the increasing brand awareness and growing metrics. Expect page views to rise and shoppers to spend more time on the site. With that in mind, let’s take a look at four great examples of unique digital experiences that e-commerce sellers can employ on their sites.
If there’s one thing I can’t resist, it’s a good Buzzfeed quiz. I absolutely need to know my Hogwarts house, which Friends character I should marry, and what pizza topping I’m most like. And I’m not the only one. The site’s quizzes regularly rack up well over 20 million views.
Buzzfeed’s former viral/lists editor, Summer Anne Burton, zeroed in on why digital quizzes are so popular. She said that the appeal of tapping into secret desires or hidden characteristics is a major draw of the quizzes.
Harnessing this desire to discover our “true” feelings can be used by e-commerce businesses to help customers determine what to buy. Ideas could include “Which Perfume Scent is Best for You,” or “What Your Dad Secretly Wants for Father’s Day.”
Luckily for us, Buzzfeed opens its quiz creator to the public. They’re easy enough that anyone can make one. Fire one off on your social media channels and don’t forget to include a link to buy the product in the final results.
Clickhole is a parody website built by the same team behind The Onion. Its goal is to satirize shallow viral content created solely to be sharable. You know, the kind of stuff that Buzzfeed posts.
One of my favorite types of content on Clickhole is called Clickventures. They’re creative, silly, choose-your-own-adventure stories that ask readers a series of questions as they navigate through an imaginary world.
You can build this kind of content with any CMS and smart internal linking. Allow customers to navigate through a pretend dinner party using your kitchenware, or invite them on an imaginary hiking trip while you show them how your store’s products can help them at every step of the way. Clickventures will allow potential buyers to imagine themselves using your products in real-life situations.
Virtual and Drag and Drop Creators
Drag and drop tools aren’t too complicated to create. Now, the more variation you want to add, the more complex the task becomes, but it’s not as if this is a technology only available to businesses with million dollar budgets. Investing in adding a virtual designer or drag and drop creator to your site will boost engagement and conversions.
Roomstyler has taken this idea and ran with it in a pretty cool way. They allow users to create digital rooms, feature them on their site, and link to products featured in the rooms. This helps DIY decorators create their dream rooms and easily find the online purchases they need to make it happen.
Adding a component like this to your website will help any seller in the creative or DIY space. Customers will feel more confident in their purchases if they have an easier time envisioning what it will look like in the future.
Social Media Hangouts
Social media is so revolutionary because it gives anyone, from corporations to presidential candidates, a chance to forgo the traditional media channels and speak directly to interested audiences. But social media can seem overwhelming. What are some ways you can snap, tweet, or hashtag your way to more customers?
- Live video streams. Show your customers your products being created or used. YouTube, Instagram, and Facebook all have live video capabilities. Make sure your followers know to subscribe to your page’s push notifications to always know when you’re going live.
- Q&A’s. There are no stupid questions. Block off an hour here and there to answer any questions your customers have about your area of expertise.
- Twitter chats. Gather up your industry together to discuss a weekly curated topic. Choose an influencer to be a guest curator and draw tons of new eyes to your brand.
There you have it! These unique, surprising, and fun methods to engage customers could make you the next blockbuster seller in your space. Give some of them a try, or use them as inspiration to come up with your own ideas.