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    January 13, 2022
    9 minute read

    Innovative Shopping Experience Examples From Global Brands and Retailers

    by: Lavender Nguyen

    Today, retailers and global brands use several methods to provide the best omnichannel shopping experience for their customers. 

    According to Digital Commerce 360:

    • 71% of top 100 retailers allow shoppers to save products to a wish list;
    • 81% display customer reviews on the website;
    • 79% offer live chat; and 
    • 87% start allowing online returns.

    Let’s take a closer look at shopping experience examples from some of the world’s top, innovative brands and what we can learn from them.

    1. Califia Farms — Providing Engaging Content on Product Detail Pages (PDPs)

    Califia Farms has succeeded in enhancing shopping experiences and growing sales by providing better product content on PDPs

    According to Califia Farms’ Director of Ecommerce, Leonard Ortega, engaging product content is at the core of the brand’s digital transformation.

    The brand partnered with Salsify to create a single source of truth for all of their product data to ensure their PDPs have the most up-to-date and consistent assets. 

    For example, when shoppers click unsweetened almond milk, they can see ingredients, key benefits, nutrition facts, and product reviews.

    They can also click and zoom out product photos to visualize how an unsweetened almond milk bottle looks in real life

     

    Source: Califia Farms

    To replicate Califica Farms’ success, you should invest in a product information management platform to centralize your data, including product data, customer data, and other types of data.

    This ensures everyone in your business can have access to data anywhere at any time, and your product content can be distributed accurately and consistently across channels. 

    Additionally, survey your existing customers to determine what information they want to know when buying from you. 

    Consider:

    • Ingredients
    • Sources of ingredients
    • Specifications
    • Ratings
    • Reviews
    • Certifications from trusted third parties, etc.

    You may also want to consider using enhanced product content like high-quality photos and videos to take your PDPs to the next level.

    2. Walmart — Leveraging Technology to Improve Omnichannel Shopping Experiences

    In November, Walmart reported Q3’s total revenue of $140.5 billion, and their ecommerce sales grew 8% to about $17.3 billion. Even as customers return to stores as the pandemic eases, Walmart has still seen strong growth in online sales. 

    One of the most critical factors for Walmart’s success is their laser-focus on technology and digitally enabled shopping experiences. 

    For example, the retailer updated "signage on the exterior and interior of stores to reflect the Walmart app icon, creating an instant omni-shopping experience in the customer’s mind," shares Janey Whiteside, Walmart's EVP and chief customer officer.

    Walmart also changes how customers shop with a wide range of retail innovations like online grocery delivery, pickup towers, “Check Out With Me” service, automated shelf scanner, store maps, and more. 

    Whiteside says that Walmart constantly innovates their in-store, online, and mobile experiences to meet and exceed customers’ expectations. “We want their time with us to be enjoyable, and we’re working hard to create ways for them easily toggle between shopping channels — or use them together,” she adds.

    3. Warby Parker — Using Live Chat to Provide a Better Customer Service

    Not only ecommerce merchants but also retailers have been using live chat to assist customers better. 

    Take Warby Parker as an example — the sunglasses and prescription eyeglasses brand provides a live chat popup on their website.

    The chat service is available every day from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m., making it easier and more convenient for customers to get answers to their questions in real-time.

    Source: Warby Parker

    On the live chat widget, Warby Parker displays frequently asked questions like “how do I submit my prescription?” and customers can click each question to view detailed answers.

    When customers enter a keyword into the search bar, they’ll see more questions and answers

    Source: Warby Parker

    Using live chat, Warby Parker can reduce customer service requests, connect with customers during shopping, recommend products, announce promotional offers, and more.

    According to Forrester’s Consumer Technographics’ survey, 42% of US online adults said it was important for retailers to offer live online chat on their websites, up significantly from 27% in 2019. Brands have a huge opportunity to “influence purchase via chat with capabilities such as product recommendations, inventory availability, and in-store appointment scheduling,” the market research firm emphasized.

    4. IKEA — Pursuing Digital Transformation to Provide Customers With What They Want

    IKEA leverages digital transformation expertly in product development and retail store experiences, and their strategies always start with understanding customers.

    The world’s largest home furnishings retailer aggressively conducts market research to determine customers’ needs and expectations.

    Since 2014, they have implemented a Life at Home project in 35 countries and published comprehensive reports on what homes mean to customers every year. 

    Using insights from market research, IKEA developed products that people will need to live happily in their homes.

    For example, IKEA Home Planner allows customers to build virtual kitchens, bathrooms, or offices using their own home dimensions and products on IKEA’s website.

    Once customers complete their design, they can add it to their cart and order online. 

    In the IKEA app, customers can use the Shop & Go feature to use their own mobile device to scan, pay for items and skip the checkout line in the store.

    This makes the shopping experience completely seamless and consistent.  

    Digital transformation helped the retailer ​​secure “high growth for ecommerce which went from 7% of revenue to 31% in 3 years,” says Barbara Martin Coppola, CDO at IKEA Retail, in an interview with Harvard Business Review

    5. Sephora — Offering High-level Personalized Omnichannel Experience to Differentiate the Brand

    Sephora is the master of using personalization to give customers the best cross-channel shopping experience.

    The personal care and beauty brand reigns supreme at the #1 spot on Sailthru’s Retail Personalization Index in four consecutive years from 2017 to 2021. 

    Sephora understands well that every customer has a personal perspective on their beauty. So, the brand strives to provide the customer with a better experience and help them find a perfect fit for their needs. 

    For example, Sephora allows customers to virtually try on products from multiple categories from their smartphones (Sephora Virtual Artist). 

    The brand also develops a voice experience on Google Home called Sephora Skincare Advisor, offering customers a convenient way to find skincare solutions from the comfort of their homes.

    Look to These Shopping Experience Examples for Inspiration

    A seamless shopping experience across channels is no longer a nice-to-have but a requirement for all brands and retailers to sustain growth.

    Learn from the shopping experience examples from these top brands and start growing sustainably. 

    If you’re looking for a definitive guide to product page optimization to enhance your ecommerce experience, download our free product page toolkit.

    DOWNLOAD TOOLKIT

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