I'm a sucker for a good website that ticks all the boxes of user experience, personality, ease of use and appealing visuals. If you can make your website so enjoyable that even my judgmental ass wants to come back and look again, you're doing something right.
I'm constantly showing my colleagues these sites and being distracting so I decided i'd spare them for once and show you these sites, and why I think they're so damn good.
(Note) I haven't put any of our clients in this list as to not come across as bias, but you should seriously check them out on our results page because they are all killing it.
I'm not exactly one of those people who gets excited by new linen but The Sheet Society almost damn made me one. There website boasts a beautiful layout with clever, informative sections about quality and material, a strong use of 'homely' language but most importantly, subtle and clever conversion tools.
What stood out the most to me though, was the beautiful use of visual imagery. Buying sheets seems mundane but the way The Sheet Society utilises visual stimulation is brilliant, making the 'messy bed' look almost appealing and creating unique spaces in it's shots that you end up wanting yourself. They fully capture the appeal of the bedroom and almost make you envious of the models in the shots. Never sleep on making your product appealing through visual appeal, so many of us buy because of FOMO.
2. NZ Muscle
Does Chaos work for an ecommerce store when everyone's trying to be simplistic and eloquent? Yes, yes it does. NZ Muscle is a great example of ignoring every piece of opinionated millennial advice and understanding your market. While it looks like crazy mix of words, colours, call outs and general mayhem, it's one of the best online shopping experiences you can have. But the best part for me, is how they develop loyalty.
NZ Muscle does a great job of celebrating their regular customers through not only a brilliant points system that actually works, but identifying products that are relevant, and following through on that incredible experience all the way to opening up your box and getting a personalised message inside. Knowing the company actually cares about you is so special and if you are overlooking elements of your buyers journey to be amazing at others, you're risking a lot. The best companies in the world focus on their customers experience (think Apple when shopping from their website). NZ Muscle is dominating the Supplements scene for the same reason.
If you ever want to just look at something aesthetically pleasing and feel envious, go look at Koala's website. This is one of the most visually stunning and UX optimised websites I have ever seen. From their gorgeous colour pallet, to layout, to language, this is a smorgasbord of skin tingling design. The thing I wanted to note however was actually something else they do incredibly well, which is selling their unique offer so convincingly.
People hate straying from status quo, and mattress shopping has always been one of those things that just is how it is. Trying to convince people to buy and trust a mattress of the internet seems foolish but Koala is killing it. Their guarantees, explanations of processes, reasoning and cleverly worded benefits mean by the time you get to the checkout, you're entirely convinced you've been doing it wrong your whole life. And just check out how GOOD that product page looks. Oh LORDY.
Niche products and services usually do quite well in ecommerce, but not many ever expand to a global size, or even big enough to make a bump on the markets they exist in. Few and Far Collective is an example of a niche product that is smashing it in the apparel industry due to unique, creative product with a strong social presence, brilliant website user experience but most importantly, incredible honesty and transparency.
The personality of Few and Far Collective is tied heavily to it's founder Steen Jones and this has not only generated a loyal following, it has created a community who jumps at every drop and buys out almost every line. Steen is beautifully honest and transparent all over the website and social media, and this has fostered a strong sense of trust that carries over to sales. Want an example? Recently he opened up about being scammed and how he was running a sale to try recoup the money, and within 4 days they were 75% of the way to the goal. Now that's called fostering a loyal community.
It's hard to not know who Hallenstein Brothers are now in New Zealand. They are dominating the male clothing scene for a variety of reasons, but when it comes to digital? They're on another level. Their ecommerce experience has got better and better over the years, up until the point now where you can literally design one of their iconic suits based off the occasion you're shopping for. That's tailor level service, on a website.
What Hallensteins does so well, is how diverse yet thematic they are. Their social profiles share the brand story, while the website delivers the products to match. There isn't much a weakness in their arsenal, from social, to EDM, to website, to in-store experience. Their ecommerce experience was ahead of the curve five years ago and it still is. Being diverse in your digital presence benefits your ecommerce greatly because it gives you a trustworthy appearance, and makes you discoverable in so many different ways. Sales can come from anywhere, it's up to you to be present where the customer is.
There's a lot of things you can draw from all these ecommerce stores, but if there's one thing I want you to take away, it's to not be scared of being different and experimenting. You can guarantee all these stores took a chance on what made them special, not fully knowing if it would pay off. The only people who lose, are those who don't push the boundaries. Don't get lost in the traffic, or these guys might just steal it.