Recently, we shared a blog (Looks Count—So Make a Good First Impression!) that talked about the importance of making a good first impression when a customer is presented with your gift registry. At that time, we encouraged you to make your registry home page visually impactful and engaging, akin to how you would a storefront. Because as every retailer knows, a storefront is valuable real estate that should work hard to draw in customers. One of the first things a customer will see on your home page is what we refer to as your hero image – a strong visual prominently displayed at the top of the page where you present the ‘call-to-action’ to invite customers to use your registry service.
In a sense, that visual serves as the engine to power the entire gifting process going forward. And this power is two pronged:
- Registrants can quickly and easily set up their registry or gift list and add gifts. Going forward, it’s their access point to continually update, refresh and manage their gift choices.
- Gift purchasers can easily find and shop any registry list for a gift guaranteed to be opened with a smile.
But, there’s another side to all of this. Part of what motivates a customer to take action in the first place is the positive, emotional connection they make with your brand.
While that can start with the hero image, don’t stop there. Turn your attention to all the ‘white space’ below that image. This entire page is your storefront, and it should build the story of why you are a great place to register. The goal is to make this page a one-stop resource for customers. This way they won’t miss out on any useful content regardless of how they navigated your site. (In store, you can complement a page displayed on the kiosk with some printed materials – a handout of top tips or share a binder available for review.)
What to Showcase
Our research shows that there are three broad categories of information to share that demonstrates that you are there to support a seamless, hassle-free gifting process. Fortunately, aside from a product assortment that’s driving sales, you likely already have a long list of features and benefits you offer all customers to build upon (think product guides, gift ideas, any special shipping or gift wrap services, rewards or loyalty programs, etc.) Then, think about any special perks you want to provide to registry users to make them feel appreciated.
Spotlight Gift Favorites and Must Haves
It all starts here with your product assortment; that’s what attracts customers in the first place. Now guide smart choices through your merchandising and supportive advice. Even offer suggestions on quantities or how to mix and match where appropriate.
- Present (and/or display in-store) merchandise together to create a look, add finishing touches, support a specific need or reflect popular lifestyle trends
- Excite with ‘what’s new or hot’: Be sure to shout out exclusive, unique items to focus on individual styles or talk up what’s trending as favorites for those who like that positive reinforcement.
- Remind customers of product features that are valued these days – think quality (vs. disposable/throw-away) or environmentally friendly materials. Keep in mind that convenience, ease-of-use and multi-purpose features are also good gifting selling points
- As available, share product guides and usage tips. All customers appreciate helpful guidance, and registry users find this can validate a gift choice.
- Such product guides are often available from vendors as well - and easy to share by links on your site or via store materials.
Highlight Features and Benefits:
Ask yourself why customers like to shop with you…chances are you already offer services and support, advice, special offers and/or loyalty programs that customers like. During a gift planning process, these features can seem even more valued, so be sure to mention all of them here. Some examples:
- Explain your services - this can include everything from personal consultations or chats (in-store or via zoom) to gift wrap, gift card options, and more. Even consider the opportunity to be environmentally friendly and let registrants opt out of wrap or boxes.
- Talk up any rewards or loyalty programs and maybe offer automatic participation to make them feel special.
- Share policies for hassle free exchanges and returns, product warranties, etc.
- Remind them of your shipping and delivery policies – whether it’s shipping offers, curbside pickup at a store, a buy online/pick up in store or local deliveries, all are appreciated. You may even want to give added value – lower shipping rates, etc.
- Don’t forget to mention any special partnerships you have with other businesses that can add another source of value to these registrants.
Perks Just for Registry Users
This is where you show some ‘extra love’ to registry users and make them feel smart for choosing to work with you. These perks don’t have to be costly – even a small investment during this process can pay back in a big way into the future. Just be sure to focus on perks that fit into your business model and can be sustained over time.
While many benefits are usually reserved for big events like weddings or a new baby, there are ways to make every registry user feel special. A few popular perks:
- Enhance existing services and benefits: As mentioned above, reducing shipping fees, free product installations, or granting participation in rewards/loyalty programs are always appreciated and have marginal cost.
- Gift with registry. A small gift (or even a small treat or special offer) can go a long way with little to no cost to you. Explore opportunities from your vendors (or strategic partners) for exclusive offers, products, etc.
- Completion programs: These are especially popular for wedding and baby registries. Giving a discount for self-purchase of gifts still on a registry post event date not only drives more sales but often motivates a registry user to add more gifts as they know they can acquire them at a savings.
And, don’t forget to mention the universal features of your registry. The convenience of a shareable, shoppable list that is easy to manage is fast becoming a customer expectation.
How to Deliver Your Messages
Approach this with the same creative energy that you apply to any other marketing or customer touchpoint. Mirror the branding strategy you use on your website (and likely other customer-focused materials) - combine copy, images, and other visuals to make the content more interesting to review. Even a link to great information already displayed on your site will inform your
- Some copy and content is appropriate – especially when sharing tips on product usage, care, etc.
- If you already have relevant content on your site or displayed in a store, add a link or an extra copy line and make your efforts work twice as hard.
- Lists and checklists are great ways to recommend ‘must have’ gifts. Organize them by theme, purpose, etc. update them as your merchandise changes..
- Visuals or product images are great ways to perk up the materials and add color, etc.
Bottom line, your registry home page serves as the heart and engine of your registry... make it work hard for you.
As you continue to move forward with your gift registry marketing plans, let us know how we can help! We can always be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.