How The North Face Optimized Its Gift Guide By Leveraging Customer Experience Intelligence

Although we’re slightly past mid-summer and have got quite a way to go before the mercury significantly drops, it’s never too early to start thinking about the holiday shopping season. Aside from which products you want to highlight and which promotions to push for the season of gift-giving, you’re keenly going to need to fine-tune your digital strategy. Otherwise, a UX left unoptimized for the holidays won’t reap the sweet bump in holiday conversions.

Optimizing the customer experience (CX) for the holiday shopping season begins with… you guessed it, your customers. There is much you can learn from the data on your visitors’ behaviors during the holiday shopping season — make sure these insights don’t go to waste! Our case study with one of our top clients, The North Face, shows that the proof is indeed in the pudding, as our granular insights informed key CX changes for the 2018 holiday shopping season.

The North Face & Its Primary Holiday Shopping Challenge: The Gift Guide

The North Face is a top-name brand that offers outdoor gear, particularly activewear and equipment to athletes, the athletically-inclined and anyone who wants to go on adventures and look stylish doing so.

Originating as a San Franciscan storefront, the brand has been investing heavily in its online customer experience to better serve the digital community of North Face aficionados. We worked with the gear company to help the team optimize a key digital asset for its 2018 holiday shopping season: its online holiday gift guide.

This gift guide is an annual online experience that helps customers find the right gifts through a wide index of products designated for the holidays. This content serves a critical purpose in aiding Q4 sales and maximizing the mighty potential of the season.

The gift guide was strategically set to go live in October, right before the high tide in holiday traffic, which granted the digital team ample time to analyze the digital engagement of early-bird shoppers. Through a granular analysis of digital interactions, The North Face was able to continue its strategic approach to its holiday shopping campaign, as it directed its UX findings to adjust the experience prior to initiating its gifting-centered marketing campaign.

The North Face is well-known for its outdoor and sporting gear.


Putting UX Analytics to Use

As part of its analysis of the Gift Guide, the digital team surveyed customer interactions on a per-page basis, to reel in a comprehensive understanding of the guide’s performance. The team specifically was on the lookout for frustration and friction points in the customer journey

The team looked at exposure rate, which takes into account how far down a page a user is scrolling and considers a zone seen when over half of it was viewed by a user. 

The North Face continued the UX analysis by studying the click recurrence (which measures engagement and frustration), the click-through rate (calculation of pageviews and clicks) and attractiveness rate (attractiveness of an element, dealing with clicks after exposure). What they found allowed them to make UX decisions rooted in data, which lead to several improvements.

The digital team at The North Face used heat maps and a variety of unique metrics for measuring the user experience of its Gift Guide.


Findings & Actions Taken to Yield an Improved User Experience

The digital team at The North Face analyzed the exposure rate of various elements of the guide, which sets forth how far down a user scrolls. It also dictates that a zone is seen once over half of it was viewed by a user. 

This analysis displayed a low exposure rate of the category CTAs, pointing to a need of adjusting the CTAs above the fold to improve their exposure. This UX change proved to be an improvement, as it brought the exposure rate of the CTAs up by 50%. This resulted in an increased visibility of each gifting category.

Heeding the click recurrence, the team unearthed a frustration stemming from multiple clicks on the hero image. This pointed to the fact that the hero wasn’t entirely clickable, so the team made it so, not just the product. This brought down the click recurrence of the hero to a satisfactory rate, with far fewer clicks since all of it was clickable.

The click recurrence metric also informed the team that there were multiple clicks on links to head to the Women’s Gift Guide page — even though users were already there. Through this insight, the team placed a header title to the page to make visitors aware of their presence on this destination within the site. Consequently, this action also reduced the click recurrence. 

As far as merchandising optimizations go, the digital team observed the click-through rate and attractiveness rate of each gift category. Through these, they were able to discern which categories were the most popular, as well as the importance of the position of these categories on the page. As such, the team moved the most popular ones further above the page to access the most popular items quicker.

The gift guide left users unbeknown that they were already on the Women’s Gift Guide page, unlike this clear-cut section on the website.


Optimizing Holiday Shopping Campaigns

Holiday shopping campaigns, much like many other retail campaigns, require a keen understanding of customer intent and engagement. Customer journeys are never stagnant, so you’ll notice that they alter — even among some common trends from season to season. That’s why you have to constantly monitor them, otherwise, you’re not getting the full picture of how customers and potential customers navigate your website, their frustrations and conversion opportunities.

Looking to granular analytics, the kind that can provide on-page behavior and interactions per element is a cure to the UX ignorance of your site. That’s because this kind of digital analysis doesn’t only show, it tells, particularly the correct implementations to your digital experience. This will assure you don’t remain in the dark on your UX during for the holiday shopping season for 2019, which is fast approaching.

 

Lapeyre Chooses Contentsquare to Boost its Customer Experience Strategy

French homeware giant Lapeyre chose Contentsquare to help accelerate digital growth and implement a data-driven customer experience strategy. Here’s a closer look at the reasons why…

Main objective: Continued Growth, Customer-Centricity and a Data-Driven Organization

Lapeyre, a subsidiary of the multinational French corporation Saint Gobain, has partnered with Contentsquare to bolster its digital strategy with actionable insights into digital customer behavior. Lapeyre.fr is at the heart of the brand’s customer experience strategy, and the digital team was looking for a solution to measure visitor behavior and help improve customer journeys across the board.

To stay ahead in a highly competitive market, Laypeyre’s goal was twofold: maintain the double-digit growth of its online sales while guaranteeing a seamless omnichannel experience for customers thanks to a data-driven organization.

Contentsquare, a Logical Choice for an Optimized Customer Experience Strategy

There are several reasons the popular homeware store decided to partner with Contentsquare, not least the platform’s ability to capture and analyze millions of visitor sessions, and to provide actionable recommendations without the need for a tagging plan. Accessibility and ease of use were also key decision factors.

Immediate ROI and continued UX improvements

Using the journey analysis feature and the zone-based heatmaps, Lapeyre was able to start leveraging Contentsquare recommendations right away.

This allowed teams to prioritize optimization efforts but also had an impact on the testing strategy, generating uplift with fewer, more focused tests.  

The objective: continuous improvement of the User Experience (UX) on ideal purchase journeys and a steady conversion rate optimization.

The AI Alerts feature was a key decision factor for Lapeyre.


Interview with Yann Guillaud, Head of E-Commerce at Lapeyre

Contentsquare : What commercial challenges is Lapeyre facing today? Is the competition fierce?

Yann GUILLAUD : Yes, there is heavy competition. Lapeyre exists in a complex and competitive environment, at the crossroads of many different types of brands. There are the DIY/home improvement giants (Leroy Merlin, Castorama), the specialized stores (kitchen outfitters, carpentry and joinery specialists, etc…) and the furniture brands (Ikea, But, etc).

Today, Lapeyre’s goal is twofold: to grow revenue and to offer a seamless, omnichannel user experience. This is a necessity for all brick-and-mortar brands. We are focusing our efforts on acquiring revenue-generating traffic and we’ve already significantly increased our conversion rate.

We also encourage our customers to head in-store to benefit from the expertise of our sales associates, particularly when it comes to bigger home renovation projects (such as kitchen or bathroom remodels) or for tailor-made products (windows, doors, staircases). That’s why drive-to-store and in-store appointments are also an objective for us.

Courtesy of https://www.lapeyrestair.com/

 

Contentsquare : How does Contentsquare fit into your sales strategy?

Yann GUILLAUD : Contentsquare is perfectly aligned with our growth objectives and our customer experience goals. Thanks to Contentsquare and the AI alerts feature, our team is not only capable of identifying short-term and long-term growth opportunities, but also to streamline the user experience on a daily basis.

 

Contentsquare : Which teams use Contentsquare at Lapeyre?

Yann GUILLAUD : The Contentsquare platform is mainly used by the eCommerce teams, and that’s why we chose this solution. Its ease of use, which requires no prior expertise (code, etc) was a key factor in our decision.