The Stores magazine story that accompanied its list of the 50 online retailers that shoppers like most contains several interesting facts that I thought I would pluck from the story to pass on to you.
In order of interest to me, here they are:
1. Online retailers are discounting, sometimes by only a tiny bit, and it works. Discounts cause a shopper’s buy reflex to spring into action.
2. American Eagle, No. 24 on the faves list, added PayPal to its payment options. I, for one, love, love, love PayPal because I can pay cash instead of charging. Does your Web site offer this option and others?
3. Four retailers out of the 50 on the favorites list specialize in large-size apparel. Don’t let anybody tell you that niches don’t work.
4. Home improvement retailers HomeDepot.com and Lowes.com occupy Nos. 19 and 20 on the list, but interestingly office supply retailers are not on the list at all. “It’s interesting to note,” Susan Reda wrote in the story, “that Staples, Office Depot and OfficeMax are all among the top online retailers in terms of revenue — ranking second, third and sixth, respectively, . . . yet none stand out among online shoppers as a particular favorite.” I can’t figure this one out, but if you sell office supplies, it’s a fact you may want to ponder.
5. Finally free shipping is hot amongst online retailers. Experts forecast, according to Reda, that, as the holidays approach, Web sites that don’t provide free shipping (even if it comes with a minimum-spend prerequisite) will be at a competitive disadvantage.) A personal note here: What is it with Web sites that sell small items they could stick in a No. 10 envelope and mail for 42 cents that charge $5 or $6 for shipping, sometimes quadruple the price of the item. Plate hangars are one example of this. Bandanas another.
On to the weekend now.