Clicktale as the secret weapon during peak shopping periods

The Black Friday weekend is over for another year, and Adobe’s been crunching data on the ecommerce transactions. Online transactions for the top 100 largest retailers show that consumers spent $15.12 billion on Saturday and Sunday, and per firm, consumers spent $840 million by 10am on Cyber Monday, equivalent to a 16.9 percent year-over-year growth.

In such a competitive environment, it’s clear that posting strong results over Black Friday weekend is mission-critical for retailers. To help our customers achieve sales growth on their digital channels both leading up to and during this notoriously busy weekend we set up a Clicktale “war room”, where our Customer Service Operations group, DevOps, R&D and deployment professionals, were on hand 24/7 to provide consultancy and proactive recommendations, which our customers could test and implement on the spot.

Holiday readiness on the backend

Clicktale’s robust architecture is designed to process large, unpredictable workloads, seasonal traffic-growth and immense surges, and for exceptional peak periods such as Black Friday, our cloud-based infrastructure means we can easily scale up to meet our customers’ requirements. This year we added an additional 50% server capacity to seamlessly handle the huge bandwidth demands.

On Black Friday and Cyber Monday alone, Clicktale’s servers processed more than 5x their normal traffic. Through our platform, we captured 71 million pageviews on Black Friday alone, and the overall volume for the Clicktale Experience Cloud between Friday and Tuesday, November 28th was 620 million pageviews. An impressive achievement made possible by robust and adaptable technology.

But don’t just take it from us. Here are a few highlights from our customers:

Big wins for a big box retailer

A leading big box retailer wanted to know the most effective ways it could achieve “quick wins” and improve results on its already optimized website.

“Present us with insights on any customer pain points or opportunities – essentially, the low-hanging fruit – so that we can implement quickly,” read the email from our client’s testing and optimization manager.

Using Clicktale it was easy for the Customer Success Manager to gain visibility into the ways visitors were interacting with the website. For weeks ahead of time, the retailer was promoting its Black Friday deals with a large hero banner on the homepage, however as the Clicktale team pointed out, customers who entered the website from any other page weren’t being exposed to the banner.

With our visual reports and path analytics, the consulting team showed the retailer that its customers had a high degree of interaction with the site’s side and top menus. Based on this insight, Clicktale recommended that the retailer highlight Black Friday deals across its entire website, with links prominently located in the left-hand and top navigation menus.

The Black Friday navigation recommendation was exactly the kind of ‘quick win’ we were looking for from Clicktale,” our client’s Web Analytics Manager told me afterwards. “We implemented this change in record time – about two days – and the results were incredible. Over the next several days, we could see that the vast majority of customers who purchased Black Friday items did so after interacting with the elements Clicktale had recommended we add.”

The results were overwhelming: revenues generated by shoppers who interacted only with additional Clicktale-recommended elements outperformed those generated by shoppers who only interacted with the original banner by a scale of 8:1, indicating several dozens of millions in additional revenue over a four-day period or an uplift of 657%!

Making life easy for new visitors

In another example, one of our clients, a leading supermarket chain, was offering Black Friday deals via marketing campaigns and large banners on its site. Our Clicktale Customer Success Manager knew that most visitors to this website were returning customers. While the brand was successful at driving many new visitors to its site, once they were ready to check out, the retailer required these new visitors to go through an onerous registration process. This resulted in the vast majority of these new customers dropping out of the funnel at this point. By not offering a 'guest checkout' option, the retailer was literally leaving large sums of money 'on the table'.

Uncovering problems at the check-out

A third great example comes from a different big box retailer. We could see, through Clicktale that customers were able to get to checkout with options for “buy online or pick-up in store” items despite those items not being available for in-store pickup. With path quantification, we created a sequence to see how often this was happening.

To our customer’s dismay, within a few hours we could see that this was happening in thousands of instances! The issue stemmed from customers who were interacting with the quantity on the cart page, which was allowing them to continue to checkout for items that were out of stock or not eligible. Once Clicktale uncovered the problem, the client made the necessary optimizations to ensure that the disappointing experience wouldn’t happen to other visitors.

These are just a few of my favorite examples from Black Friday weekend. Dozens of other retail clients also saw significant digital sales growth over the weekend, and with the help of Clicktale, recaptured hundreds of millions of dollars in unrealized revenues.

With Christmas shopping still ongoing, read more about why you can’t afford to leave customer experience out of your war room!

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