30 December 2019 | 40 Comments
Lately I’ve been puzzling over two aspects of the Stonemaier Games webstore–things that other webstore owners may contemplate as well–so I thought I’d mention them to you in case you have a strong preference or feedback. There are two polls on this post.
Add-On Only Products
Most of the products on our webstore range from $20-$60, with a few dipping below or above that range. We use 4 different fulfillment centers around the world, but the majority of our direct orders are in the US, many of them from Stonemaier Champions (who get free US shipping; international Champions get a $10 shipping discount per order).
We currently don’t sell many promos through our webstore, mostly because we only list a small number of our total promo options there (most are sold through Meeplesource). The reason is that first-class packages cost around $3 in postage, plus another $2 for labor and materials. So if I offer a $5 set of promo cards on our website and a Champion orders them, we lose money (the cost of making the promos).
However, there is a nifty workaround that you’ve probably seen on Amazon and other stores: We could use a Shopify app to offer some items as add-on only. That way we can still sell small items and promos.
My concern is that this could be frustrating for customers. Imagine if you bought Wingspan in the spring, you’ve already purchased the European Expansion, and today you learn about the new swift-start promo pack (it’s currently a normal product, but imagine it’s an add-on only item). Would it be frustrating to be required to buy something else just to have access to that promo? Or would you just add it to your cart and return to it when there’s something else you want on our webstore?
Abandoned Cart Emails
A while ago, Shopify recommended that I activate a function called “abandoned cart emails.” You’ve probably seen this–you go to a webstore, add a few items to your cart but don’t finalize the purchase, and then you get an email from the store a few days later reminding you that you have items in your cart.
I’ve had this happen a few times, and my feelings range from appreciation (sometimes I get distracted and forget to complete a purchase) to ambivalent (I decided not to buy the items, and I delete the email and move on).
But last week I got an irate email from a customer saying that they didn’t request a reminder and were super annoyed that I would send them an email without their permission.
Now, that’s an extreme reaction to a harmless email. But when I dug through their ire, I found a nugget of truth: An abandoned cart email could come across as a nuisance, particularly since they didn’t opt into the reminder.
Shopify recommends these reminders because they increase sales–as you can see in the image here, 10% of our abandoned checkout recovery emails were successful over the last 30 days. But I really don’t want to annoy our customers, so for now I’ve deactivated that feature until I learn more from people like you. What do you think?
What do you think about these methods? Thanks for your thoughts in the comments and the polls!