Anyone selling on line is obsessed with raising average order value but consider the news from Zalando, which revealed to Retail Week that its profits are being held back because of changing shopping habits, which includes a decline in the average basket order size as customers order more frequently.
This changing habit was not explained but Zalando did attribute it to people increasingly ordering on a mobile device because they order less on smartphones than on a computer.
This is probably not new information but it is perhaps time for on line sellers to embrace it rather than fight to get AOV up when it simply isn’t going to work. What does need to be done though is making the mobile browsing and shopping experience easier.
The call has been going out for years but it still obtains that buying goods on line via mobiles can be clunky. And while everyone worries about Amazon coming to eat their lunch, they could at least make more effort to be at least as good through functions such as Buy Now.
The companies that provide the tools used by on line sellers have made it easy for goodness sake; Klarna for instance, has made the payment process about as easy as possible as well as taken on the risk of non payment for staged payment itself.
The problem seems to be that many on line sellers feel they can’t afford all the tools they need to make buying on line convenient for the customer, or, they are simply not good at managing the shopping journey through the eyes of the consumer.
On line sellers that describe themselves as tech companies however are – notably ASOS, Zalando and Amazon. Is it really that simple? Stop worrying about being a great merchandiser and fix the tech first? Maybe so. Even the mighty Argos, which is so good at landing £1bn of its sales through advanced search tools, has several roadblocks in its mobile shopping process that must send a fair amount of business running to Amazon.
So, if your customers want to order less, more often, embrace the trend and make your site the easiest place to do business.