Infographic:
Bazaarvoice Conversation Index – Our Thoughts From a Canadian eCommerce Perspective

Bazaarvoice recently published the third volume in their Conversation Index report.  It is a fast and fun read so I highly recommend you take a look.  Being the data nerd I am, I wanted to see how their findings stacked up against some of our own sites and what we’ve learned in the last 12 months.  A few key takeaways that I’d like to touch on…

[Infographic at the end of this post]

Facebook visitors choose engagement over shopping –  No kidding!

Last week I was out for dinner with the executive team from one of our merchant partners and among many varying eCommerce topics we spoke a bit about Facebook. The conversation index put out by Bazaarvoice confirms what we’ve been seeing on our sites for quite a while:  Customers are on Facebook to talk to you, not buy from you.

I call this the “kitchen gathering” effect.   If you’ve ever been to a dinner party you know what I’m talking about.  For some weird reason we humans love to gather in the kitchen and socialize while we drink / talk.   Unless you are throwing one of those home shopping / multilevel marketing parties then there really isn’t a whole lot of shopping happening while we hang out with our friends and socialize.  This is the main reason, in my opinion, why Facebook commerce sucks.

Late night shopping on tablets –  Not surprising!

Had you asked me 1 year ago if I had thought night time shopping was a big influence on our numbers my answer would have been a definitive no.  And why would it have been? Most of our emails still go out in the morning hours.  Most of our promotions and sales start early in the morning.  Much of our target demographic across many sites is women between 25 and 40, some mothers and some professionals.   So night time shopping really wasn’t high on the list of things we were thinking about.

Fast forward to April 2012 and this conversation index shows me something we’ve already known for a while.  The tablet shopping revolution is in full swing!  I do this myself.  I sit on the couch or in bed and while I read, I sometimes have a thought or impulse to order something.

It could be that the site I’m reading is one of the new generation publishing-meets-shopping models (like www.dealuxe.ca) or that I’m reading an article on Techcrunch about some cool new book that I decide I want to pick up.  Either way, my tablet has become a shopping device just as much as it is a content consuming device.

When we dive into our own site analytics and break down traffic and sales by hour, the data backs up the above claims.

In-store shoppers are less satisfied with their purchases –  Surprising!!

This one was actually a bit of a shocker for me.  I, among many, had always assumed that by being able to touch and feel a product before taking it home with me (after buying of course) would result in a more positive post-purchase experience.

Apparently I was wrong?  Across all age segments the data in the conversation index shows that people are generally less satisfied with in store purchases.  I hate to make even more assumptions, but could this have something to do with lack of selection in physical stores?  Forced to choose a color or another model you didn’t quite want?