Website vs Web shop
Does the reality of a slick eCommerce site match that of its promise and potential and does it improve the Customers’ experience?
We launched our Clubhouse Trophies web shop in April 2018. It was a very exciting time for us.
The all singing, all dancing eCommerce site promised all sorts of benefits for us and the complete trophy shopping experience for our customers.
It was a chance to really compete with the market leaders in our field, taking them on at their own game. It also encouraged us to refine and hone our branding and marketing as part of the deal. It was our way of stepping out into the big wide world.
Scores of hours went into the design, look and function and even more into the loading and maintenance of products. We didn’t mind, it was a labour of love!
But, alas, it was an unrequited love…..
As a small family business, we found that we struggled to find the time required for maintenance of the site and the 1000+ products we had loaded.
Keeping on top of the marketing effort and finding the content required to maximise the capability of the site was also a struggle.
The worst and most worrying problem, however, was that by trying to embrace as many potential customers as possible, we had inadvertently built a wall between us and them.
We pride ourselves on collaborating with our customers. It’s what sets us apart. And our new web shop was encouraging a completely impersonal transaction.
Our customers’ experience suffered too. The large part of our customer base is buying for large presentation events and tournaments. They found that bulk buying was difficult as the site couldn’t offer flexibility and ideally needs the input of the retailer. They missed the personal touch and the flexibility that collaboration affords.
So, here we are in 2021, launching our new website (clubhousetrophies.co.uk). No singing, no dancing, no loading and maintenance of products. Just a simple handful of pages explaining what we do, offering links to catalogues and promising you that we will give you the best service and price around, if you give us the chance….
…and now we have the time to write the occasional blog too!!
· Web shops, run properly, require dedicated resource and significant investment in marketing, something that we as a small business struggle to provide.
· We thrive on being agile, something the eCommerce sites can’t offer.
· We enjoy working closely with our customers and our customers benefit from this contact. Web shops do not facilitate this.
· We’re not the big and shiny types!