Wanelo currently touts itself as the top digital mall where clothing and fashion related brands can reach a wide range of millennial shoppers who have grown to value a shopping experience that is entirely accessible via their laptops and smartphones versus spending time at a traditional store. While the social shopping network is doing better business than ever before and its user base continues to grow, if it weren’t for a key strategic move the company made a little over a year ago, things may not be looking so good today. In the earlier versions of Wanelo, shoppers actually had to leave the application once they had found a product that they liked and then complete the purchase process on the merchants own sight. (Sigh)
That all changed in November of 2014 when the digital mall partnered with over 200 brands to begin to let users complete purchases without having to leave the Wanelo app. At the time, Wanelo was offering roughly 20 million products in their online marketplace. The 200 brand sign initially converted more than 500,000 products to be available for in app purchase. That number has since grown tremendously as Wanelo has now shifted their focus and aim for almost all of the purchases associated with the application to be completed “in-app”.
In reference to the recent movement of Twitter and companies such a Spring & Curate revolving around the addition of e-commerce capabilities, Wanelo CEO Deena Varshavskaya said,
“They are concerned about millennials that are getting harder and harder to reach.”
The movement of these companies doesn’t worry Varshavskaya because she is confident in the focus that Wanelo has put strictly on e-commerce. Only time will tell if their “loyal” users will stick around or leave for future similar applications and networks.
Now let’s dissect the strategic change Wanelo made in their operating system. They found that the conversion rate for customers finding the product and actually purchasing was 3X higher when the purchase took place in-app versus being redirected from the product page on Wanelo to brand own website. The functionality of the change seems to cater more toward the human physcolgical process more than anything. People have hard time letting go of money. That is a simple truth. The less effort that is associated with making a purchase, the less the buyer has to thing about spending money and the easier (more likely) the purchase becomes. Simplifying the purchasing process on Wanelo’s application and web services uses the same logic as waiving a credit card versus swiping a credit card. Studies have shown that waiving a credit card over a card reader takes less energy and provokes more purchases at higher dollar amounts than when shoppers have to slide the card through the machine. The less effort required, the easier it is to get customers to let go of their hard earned cash.
The idea that Wanelo users are more comfortable with purchasing products and are more likely to do so versus traditional online or instore shoppers could be huge for marketers. If you work for a brand and haven’t started to explore the possibility of selling your product through Wanelo, I would suggest you do so. You may be surprised at the change in customer behavior you see.
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