Below are some of the key takeaways from Wright’s masterclass:
On how the new normal of online shopping compares to the old one
In the past few years, running an online store has become much more expensive, according to Wright.
“I think many of us miss the old days, even back in 2014, where paid advertising went a lot further than it does today,” Wright said.
“That also leads into another way that it’s changed: there’s much more competition online. Especially after the pandemic, stores that didn’t have websites at the time now do, and they know that they need to have that revenue stream – It’s key to any brand’s success.
“But it’s also become more exciting. I think that brands today are looking to elevate the experience for customers in more ways and making an effort to stand out, and what that means is that the customer experience is improving all the time. I’d say customer experience is better than ever, and I think competition definitely drives that and works in a customer’s favour.”
On bricks-and-mortar in a post-pandemic retail industry
While in-store shopping has been up and down for the last several years due to intermittent lockdowns and general anxiety around the Covid-19 pandemic, Wright is confident physical stores will bounce back, serving as a great counterbalance to the current issues facing online.
“The way we’ve seen customer’s interacting with Tigerlily is that when they do get notified of shipping delays of online orders, they are going into our stores,” Wright said.
“There’s been a flow-on effect from having had the stores closed, and everyone opened online stores so the customer could shop. But because of that demand, there’s delayed shipping, and so now that the stores are open again, the customer doesn’t want to deal with delayed shipping and is going back into stores.
“It’s been really interesting to see.
“Another thing we’ve seen is that if you are selling across different channels, customers are expecting the same brand across both of those channels. So you really have to have your [online and physical] strategies aligned.”
On knowing which marketplace to invest in
It’s easy to choose which marketplace to sell your products, according to Wright. Put your product where it makes sense.
“You have to ask yourself, what’s your brand’s identity? What marketplace does your brand belong on? Is it a brand that can be sold on eBay and Amazon?” Wright asked.
“Are you selling computer screens? Sell on Amazon. Are you selling clothing? Sell on The Iconic.
“For Tigerlily, there’s no one thing that we’re doing right now. Our discounted product is going on a particular marketplace, they’re discount apparel-focused, and our full price product course won’t be going on there. Our full price product is staying on various other aesthetic marketplaces that we feel aligned to the identity of the new ranges that are coming out.
“Think of those things and I think you’ll be successful in marketplaces.”
On creating connections with customers who don’t want to shop in-store anymore
As the Covid-19 pandemic enters its third year, Australians have learned that being in high-traffic, public locations can put them at risk, despite the best efforts of shopping centres and retailers to keep customers safe.
And, according to Wright, many shoppers are still hesitant to enter stores, and who will continue shopping online for the foreseeable future – putting pressure on retailers to give a good experience on both fronts.
“It’s actually all just about meeting the customer where they’re at,” said Wright.
“It’s not easy catering to the customer who doesn’t want to come in-store and create virtual styling programs, and then also…allowing customers to come [in-store] and have that face-to-face interaction.
“It’s not an easy feat, and there’s a high bar, but I think it’s one that we all just need to keep working towards.”
On the one thing brands can do to up their e-commerce game
While spending money on online advertisements is often seen as a quick way to gain new customers and sales, if the experience of transacting is difficult, those sales may dry up quickly.
Wright thinks the best investment an online business can make is to give their website an update.
“Your website is your online presence. It is your entire digital existence, and if there’s something you’re going to invest in, it needs to be a good experience on the website,” said Wright.
“And you need to do that first before you’re heavily investing in ads, because if you do have a higher conversion rate, or if it’s average order value you’re focusing on through upsells, once you have [a better website] in place, then every dollar you’re spending on ads is going to be more effective from there.”
The Inside Retail Masterclasses were brought to you by Adobe.