How to build brand affinity for high-value eCommerce purchases

High ticket items are now regularly bought online. Websites are of critical importance, not only in the ‘research and discovery’ phase of a purchase journey but now, are also extremely important transactionally. When it comes to low-value purchases ‘little extras’ can make the difference. A consumer might get free next day delivery from their favourite clothing store or they might their car insurance because they get a free meerkat, film or pizza. But how can higher ticket eCommerce stores capture this notion of ‘little extras’ to increase brand affinity and, ultimately, their bottom line?

We would, for the sake of this piece, assume that a client has price-matched their product proposition so they don’t fall victim to ‘showrooming’ and becoming a shop window for a direct competitor or, more usually Amazon. Price aside, how do we as consumers decide on making a purchase, especially a high value one?

Firstly, we would like to know as much information about the product as possible. This is where accurate and, in-depth product descriptions come into their own. We also advocate employing the best imagery possible. This may mean paying more for a very good still life photographer but decent product imagery will speak to your products, brand and brand values more than anything else.

Secondly, and looking at the notion of ‘little extras’ what else can you provide the consumer, especially during the ‘search and discovery’ phase to inform and guide them on their user journey? A simple way to do this is to create an FAQ page. Most companies that sell high-value ticket items will often be asked the same questions — lead times, free delivery, guarantees, credit facilities etc. Deep linking to these questions from all product pages may be able to answer many of your potential customer’s questions upfront and cut out some of your front line customer services telephone calls or email enquiries.

Thirdly, if you want to take the notion of exemplary customer service to the next level you may want to consider some kind of automation when it comes to queries. A chatbot, for instance, can be pre-programmed to answer FAQ’s.

We have seen some of our clients use these tactics and they have produced some great results. Not only in terms of their bottom line but also, interestingly, the number of ‘loyal’ customers returning to their website. This, to us, interesting. One would assume that a high-value sale through an e-Commerce website might take place with 2-3 visits. The number of ‘loyal’ customers we are seeing speaks to 5-6 visits and more. We can safely assume that these visits would not be repeat ones if their experience of the brand was poor at the first touch.

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