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Retail Web Optimisation – The Framework

Updated on March 6, 2011


I have developed a framework for the development of a retail web team. In this blog I have set the framework for how a retail team can operate in this environment and the activities that need to occur.

1. Define KPIs and Objectives

Primary objective – to increase web conversion rates from browsing to purchase to fulfilment

• Increase conversion rates
• Increase cross and up sells
• Determine when to manually intervene
• Analysis of where customers choose to exit the e-commerce parts of the site

• Close %
• % of customer acquisitions
• % of customer conversions
• % of bundled sales
• % of upgrades
• % of suggestive sells bought
• E-SERVQUAL Matrix:
o Efficiency – ability of customers to get to the site and transact
o Fulfilment – accuracy of service promises including products in stock availability and delivery on time
o Reliability – site availability & performance
o Privacy – data is protected, not shared and credit card payments are secure
o Responsiveness – ability to provide appropriate support to customers as required
o Compensation – returns facilities for refunds & return shipping costs
o Contact – ability to talk to a live consultant online

The benchmark will be current statistics with a growth in sales to at least pay for the team costs.

2. How will these be measured? A Data Plan.

Retail will need to define a suitable measurement tool that allows tracking of sales, impact of any changes and real time analytics.

Tools such as Google Analytics will be helpful. Web edit will also provide data. Marketing may purchase additional software.

Once defined the Reporting Co-ordinator will be responsible for developing the reporting mechanism and defining the reports to be used by the team. This will include:

• Daily exception reporting
• Weekly optimisation reporting
• Monthly management reports

Inclusive in these reports will be all the measures of KPIs and Goals along with the web optimisation scorecard as detail in section 4.

3. Daily Activity

On a daily basis the web analyst should complete the following activities:

• Review the daily exception reporting, something that it occurring on the site that needs immediate action or change.
• Review customer transactions that could be intervened such as:
o Missing underwriting information
o Missing sales opportunity ie under insured as compared to other houses in the area
o Lost sale – vehicle was outside the underwriting guidelines
• Determine which transactions will be referred to the outbound team for immediate follow up
• Determine what transactions will receive an email direct mail piece suggesting another product, up sell offer or coupon
• Run the lists
• Review the conversion rates of each campaign
• Determine optimisation to increase the conversion rate and test and learn

On a weekly basis review:

• The web optimisation scorecard
• On the basis of these results determine action items and areas to test and learn for the coming week
• Identify products that are not performing to budget and increase optimisation in these areas
• Check for usability – if it is not simple people will exit the site, so suggest better flows and ways of flowing the customer through to the checkout process & fulfilment

On a monthly basis:

• Prepare a report on the web optimisation for the past month
• Identify wins and areas for increased focused
• Compile the scorecard and provide detailed reporting against the goals and KPIs
• Submit the report for management review

4. Reporting Tools

Google Analytics will be the primary reporting tool. The Reporting Co-ordinator:
• Will develop the reporting framework
• Will co-ordinate the data sources to ensure a quick and uniform way to report and action work
• Creation of the reporting platform for web optimisation and monthly management reports

Data for the web analysts will be gathered from:
• Google analytics
• Web edit
• Other software as determine in consultation with Marketing

The important key is to ensure that each area reports in similar ways using the same data.

5. Roles and Responsibilities

Both Marketing and Retail have responsibilities to drive the success of the ecommerce activity:

Marketing Roles & Responsibilities

• Promoting the web site through all levers including banner ads
• Web site look and feel
• Branding
• Landing pages
• Web site usability

Retail Roles & Responsibilities

• Reporting on activity
• Sales conversion
• Sales analytics
• Sales optimisation
• Test & learn
• Providing feedback on:
o Flow
o Usability
o Checkout process
o Exit points

While each area has specific roles and responsibilities to achieve a sales outcome will mean that a partnership between the functions is required. Providing feedback on the checkout process and an opportunity to increase sales conversion can only result in a change if the Marketing team agree and make the necessary changes.

To ensure success regular meetings between Marketing and Retail will need to be held as well as sharing information to ensure the best possible optimisation outcomes.


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