According to research made by Oracle, 86% of buyers would pay more for a better brand experience. At the same time, according to Salesforce, only 36% of buyers feel like retailers know them. So the main question is how to increase the number of users who find the website to be made for them, hence increasing their willingness to spend more.
Our answer is to do a user research and create user personas that would reveal the main opportunities. Since examples help understand the process better, in this article you can read about our experience when building user personas for a luxury clothing store in the USA.
When we started the CRO research we didn’t know much about the website's target audience since the description of “luxury clothing company from the USA” can include many important details. The first step was to understand the basics and nothing is more basic than demographics.
By using Google Analytics data we found that the main transaction makers were men from USA. However, more interesting data was found when analysing the age of customers — about 65% of all transactions and more than 60% of revenue were made by gentlemen in the age group of 55–65+, which points to a different website using and purchase behaviour, when compared with younger audience i.e. in terms of knowledge of how to use specific functionalities.
The next step was to find as much as possible related to purchase behaviour. So we started with a customer survey in order to understand where do they look for ideas and inspiration before making a purchase. And again, we were surprised that with an ability to choose more than one option the most popular choices were “Catalogs” and “Fashion Magazines”. In the same time, only 6% of respondents make purchases on catalogue released by the client while the majority of respondents make purchases on the website we did the research for.
Another valuable finding from the customer survey was that more than half of respondents make purchases on the website multiple times per month. Therefore, special attention should be paid to emphasize “New” collections or items and users should be able to find specific items and overlook categories without extra effort.
Finally, we wanted to understand how users consume products provided by the brand. By data of online orders was found that TOP 3 most bought products were shirts (1), jackets (2) and pants (3) which in total made almost 70% of all orders. Because of the high purchase data these categories can be used when planning monthly promotions, seasonal campaigns or deciding on category blocks on the homepage.
After understanding the main characteristics of the website users and their interests, we wanted to find out more about the reasons why they are buying clothes exactly at this store and what are the main pain points that distract users from making a purchase. At this point, we read LiveChat transcripts, Surveymonkey post-purchase surveys, analysed User Interviews and Heatmaps, watched a lot of user session recordings and talked with Customer Service.
Our summary of findings revealed that there are 3 main reasons why customers prefer this store.
When analyzing the complaints and questions, we discovered three main pain points.
Thanks to this information, we were able to divide two customer types to focus on when planning a user journey:
User Persona #1 who:
User Persona #2 who:
In this phase, we prepared a summary of other factors that might affect purchase decisions but are not crucial when planning conversion rate improvements — what professions users have (customer survey), how they spend their free time (customer survey), how seasonality affects purchase behaviour (Google Analytics) and what customer characteristics can be found in social media (Instagram) e.g. how customers feel when they are wearing the brand and if there is a social proof that might affect buying decision.
The final step is to summarize all the insights. After user research, we had a clear understanding of what is the main target audience of the website, what users expect from the store, what motivates them and what stops them — a lot of helpful information to consider when planning website improvements. The next step was to plan the user journey but this already is a different case study.
If you have other tips and tricks for building user personas share them with us by writing to firstname.lastname@example.org !
Case Study: User Personas building for a luxury clothing company was originally published in Scandiweb Stories on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.