Is it Fun to Buy from You?

If we imagine the shopping experience as a maze, this is what it should look like:

It should have very few twists and turns, be quick, easy, and enjoyable. Shopping from you should be FUN. This means any unnecessary hassles need to be eliminated.

This is NOT what the maze should look if I want to buy from you:

Jack Nicholson in The Shining, maze scene. Photograph: Allstar/Cinetext/Warner Bros

So let’s stop frightening the small children, shall we?

I’ll tell you right now, as soon as my buying experience becomes a hassle, I ditch what I have in my cart and LEAVE. If I have to wait for someone to open that glass case with the watch inside for too long, or have trouble even finding someone to ask to do it, NO THANKS. I didn’t need a new watch that badly. If the line to use the fitting room is too long, or the line at checkout stretches out for a mile, there is a good chance I’m going to change my mind about the evening dress I’ve picked out. I could get one just as good somewhere else, thankyouverymuch.

If I’m buying online and you won’t let me see your prices without signing up for every e-mail spam service imaginable, nah… I’m good. Changed my mind.

Likewise, if I have to contact you for your shipping rates and wait for your response, I will not bother. I will move on because I prefer the instant gratification of buying RIGHT NOW. I have my credit card out and everything, you’re seriously going to make me WAIT?

Other online hassles that will lose you my sale:

It’s unclear what you are actually selling.
Don’t show a picture of a necklace, bracelet, and earrings, if only the earrings are for sale. That’s misleading and uncool unless you make it VERY, VERY CLEAR that only the earrings are for sale, in your title and the first sentence of your product description, not buried way at the bottom.

Likewise, clear photographs help a bunches.
Fuzzy photos, or a thousand “props” will make it harder for me to see what I am actually shopping for. Remember, it’s your job to make this easy for ME, not the other way around.

Your asking me to do other stuff besides buy.
Your one and only goal with your images and product descriptions should be to MAKE SALES. By putting things like “Like my Facebook Page for discounts!” in your product descriptions, you are post-poning that goal. I see things like this and think, Oh. So I should go check out her Page for some coupon codes first… After doing that you’ve lead me to Facebook, one of the world’s biggest distractions. I may or may not come back to your shop, after all, my friend Debbie just sent me a message asking for some much-needed boy-toy advice, STAT.

Easy-breezy, hassle-free shopping is fun. Having to jump through hoops and solve advanced calculus problems in order to make a purchase is not.

What other ways can you make the buying experience easier for your customers? Please share in the comments below!


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12 thoughts on “Is it Fun to Buy from You?

  1. Heather October 31, 2012 at 8:07 am Reply

    Good point and I see so many places online violating these rules! I do sometimes post a photo of the matching bracelet seen with the necklace in the last photo of a listing but I’m quite clear that it is sold separately and I provide the link to it, it has helped get me buy up sales! As for providing my facebook link, it’s in the message to buyer AFTER they’ve already bought something, so they can check it out later, much smarter :)

    • MegansBeadedDesigns October 31, 2012 at 8:18 am Reply

      Great tips Heather! I would say, YES, include a link to an item that could easily be paired with the current one. That actually makes the shopping experience EASIER because then the customer doesn’t have to look around for a pair of matching earrings, or whatever.

      Also, waiting until after the transaction to promote your social links is exactly the way to go! It’s also a great way to get buyers hook onto your social networks and therefore, more likely to buy again.

      Thanks for sharing!

  2. twistedpixelstudio October 31, 2012 at 8:48 am Reply

    I too use links to other items in my shop. I do aceos and jewelry featuring my photos and will give them the link for the full size item. I also BACKLINK off etsy as much as I can to my shop to make it easier for people to get to me. I hate having to click through a kazillions links just to get to where I am going. On my blog, even if the picture is not something from my shop I backlink it to my shop and let people know!

    • MegansBeadedDesigns October 31, 2012 at 9:28 am Reply

      Oh yes I can’t tell you how many blogs I have been on that are by Etsy sellers, and I see images of of cool stuff I WANT TO BUY, but I can’t find a link to get to their store anywhere! Not exactly the most effective way to promote.

  3. Lora Cheese (@LoraCheese) October 31, 2012 at 9:48 am Reply

    Great post, Megan! I am just starting out and need all the help I can get. Loved all the replies too! Thanks all!

  4. Vivid Please October 31, 2012 at 9:58 am Reply

    Interesting post Megan! I’m sure this will be super helpful for a lot of sellers out there :)

  5. yankeeburrowcreations October 31, 2012 at 10:49 am Reply

    great reminders…I hate having to sign up to each site before I can buy…

    • MegansBeadedDesigns October 31, 2012 at 10:54 am Reply

      Yes, that is the WORST.

      Unfortunately by selling on Etsy, we also are making people sign up to be Etsy members in order to buy from us, so I try to be as helpful in explaining the registration process as I can be with new visitors as not to lose any sales.

      Hopefully soon Etsy will implement a guest checkout option, but until then we have to do the best we can.

  6. Porsha Deun October 31, 2012 at 2:57 pm Reply

    Awesome tips!!!! I was going to tweak some of my descriptions (as well as pictures) this weekend and you gave me some things to keep in mind!!! We sellers sometimes forget that we are buyers too and have trouble remember how we shop as buyers and to put that into our descriptions!!!


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