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The DTC Playbook: 10 Essential Plays to Accelerate Direct-to-Consumer E-commerce Growth

The DTC Playbook
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With the modern consumer facing an unprecedented proliferation of new brands, marketplaces, and in-your-face advertising, it has become critical for growth-focused DTC companies to create better customer experiences.

That’s why Ohi has published The DTC Playbook: 10 Essential Plays to Accelerate Direct-to-Consumer E-commerce Growth.

This complimentary playbook provides DTC decision-makers with best practices to:

  • Create next-level pre and post-purchase experiences
  • Leverage instant delivery to meet customer expectations
  • Expand and enhance your e-commerce tech stack
  • Enable subscriptions to boost customer retention
  • Adopt sustainable e-commerce

Ready to take your direct-to-consumer channel from good to great?

Ohi Partners with Beverage Makers Cann and Magic Mind to Offer Ultrafast Local Delivery

New York, NY – Ohi, the next-generation instant commerce platform that enables brands to meet their customers’ expectations of superfast delivery in under two hours, today announced it has partnered with beverage makers Cann and Magic Mind to offer ultrafast local delivery to the brands’ customers in selected markets. Consumers in major metro areas across Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, New York, and New Jersey can now order two-hour, same-day, and scheduled delivery of Cann’s bubbly, all-natural Unspiked non-alcoholic social tonics. Consumers in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and New York can now order Magic Mind, the world’s first productivity drink, and receive their order in less than two hours or schedule their delivery for whenever is most convenient for them.

“So many consumers are looking for alternatives to alcoholic beverages to enjoy when relaxing or socializing and for energy- and performance-boosting drinks that help keep them focused,” said Ben Jones, Founder and CEO of Ohi. “We’re proud to partner with both Cann Unspiked and Magic Mind to offer an incredible, on-brand instant commerce experience that includes superfast, environmentally friendly delivery of their products to customers and subscribers and to help them reach, convert and retain new audiences.”

Cann Unspiked 

Cann Unspiked is a refreshing, bubbly tonic that combines fresh, not-from-concentrate juice with an adventurous herbal twist and a touch of agave nectar for sweetness. The low-calorie, carbonated beverages contain no alcohol, offering a fresh drink experience that’s unexpected, uncomplicated and unashamed. Made with only natural ingredients, Unspiked is available in 12-packs of Lemon Lavender, Blood Orange Cardamom, Cranberry Sage and Grapefruit Rosemary flavors as well as a Variety Pack. Unspiked subscribers can choose delivery of their favorite flavors every 15, 30, or 60 days.

“We’re thrilled to partner with Ohi to give our customers in a growing number of neighborhoods an excellent Unspiked experience that includes local delivery on their preferred timeline, whether that’s within two hours or on a regular schedule under one of our subscription plans,” said Greg Schatell, Senior Manager of Product Strategy for Cann. “We chose Ohi because the company’s data platform and micro-warehouse network help us meet the instant delivery needs of the majority of our customers in major urban areas and we’re looking forward to expanding that delivery footprint throughout 2022.”

Magic Mind

Each shot of Magic Mind contains a magical combination of 12 active ingredients designed to stimulate focus, creativity, energy, and motivation while decreasing stress and post-exercise inflammation in the body. For a long-term boost in cognition, energy, memory, and mood, Magic Mind recommends drinking the beverage consistently for 7–10 days. Magic Mind subscribers can choose to receive deliveries of 15 or 30 bottles every month.

“Years of scientific research went into developing Magic Mind, so keeping our brand story and product benefits front and center throughout the entire post-purchase experience is important to us—and Ohi allows us to do that,” said William Hicks, President of Magic Mind. “We’ve also always worked to offset our supply chain emissions and even offer carbon offsets to our customers. By partnering with Ohi, we’re able to stay true to our sustainability mission by offering near-instant local delivery of Magic Mind to our customers without having to pay for overnight shipping or create and use any extra packaging.”

Ohi’s nationwide network of micro-fulfillment centers allows brands to offer best-in-class post-purchase experiences while retaining complete control of their brand story, data and customer relationships. The company’s inventory and order management platform provides SKU-level demand insights that drive efficiency and savings for brands, while its reusable, sustainable packaging helps merchants reduce their carbon footprints.

For more information, visit Ohi.com.

About Ohi

Ohi is the leading instant commerce solution for direct-to-consumer and enterprise brands looking to grow their business by enabling powerful post-purchase experiences. Leveraging its proprietary, data-driven inventory management technology and robust microwarehouse platform to forward position inventory within city centers, Ohi enables brands to offer a premium, environmentally responsible, instant or scheduled delivery experience to their customers.

About Cann Unspiked

Cann Unspiked is the only non-alcoholic drink that loves to party. Founded in Los Angeles by Stanford and Harvard graduates Jake Bullock and Luke Anderson, Cann Unspiked delivers the same award-winning flavor as traditional Cann (#1 selling micro THC-infused beverage globally) without the added THC and CBD. Available direct-to-consumer nationwide, it’s a delicious, flavorful, and refreshing alcohol alternative for when you don’t want to drink, but you still want a (great) drink. Cann Unspiked is vegan, gluten-free, low in calories (30-35 per 8oz can), crafted with all-natural ingredients, and available in the original four Cann flavors: Lemon Lavender, Grapefruit Rosemary, Blood Orange Cardamom and Cranberry Sage. There are no artificial sweeteners, flavors, or preservatives.

The Cann brand is backed by innovative and forward-thinking celebrities with diverse backgrounds in wellness, activism and philanthropy, including: Gwyneth Paltrow, Kate Hudson, Baron Davis, Rebel Wilson, Rosario Dawson, Darren Criss, Casey Niestat, Tove Lo, and Bre-Z.

For more information on Unspiked, visit www.drinkunspiked.com or @drinkunspiked on Instagram.

About Magic Mind 

After nearly a decade of research alongside a team of doctors, researchers and PhDs, Magic Mind released the world’s first productivity beverage. A magical combination of 12 active ingredients helps consumers get into their most productive and fulfilling flow-state. Matcha works alongside nootropics (like Phosphatidylserine, Citicoline, and Lion’s Mane Mushrooms) and adaptogens (like ashwagandha and turmeric) to help you accomplish more while stressing less. Magic Mind is designed to be consumed daily on its own, or can be taken alongside your typical coffee or tea ritual to help counteract the negative side effects that come with standard caffeine intake. Think: fewer jitters, no procrastination or crash, hyper-focus, and zen-like energy. Enjoyed by entrepreneurs and creators around the world, Magic Mind has quickly become a beloved daily ritual for thousands of subscribers. Backed by renowned private investors like Justin Kan, co-founder of Twitch, and Alex Snodgrass, chef and NY Times best-selling author behind The Defined Dish, it’s no wonder Forbes dubbed Magic Mind “Silicon Valley’s New Morning Elixir.”

Deliver Drinks Faster: How DTC Beverage Brands Can Benefit from Instant Delivery

Many beverage brands jumped on the direct-to-consumer bandwagon during the pandemic, and brands that were already DTC made big returns. And as more people ordered drinks online, these DTC early birds were the first to disrupt the beverage industry. 

Plot twist: the game is no longer only about having an online presence or selling directly to consumers; consumers now want beverages faster.  

This early success attracted a slew of new DTC-focused players, creating competition within a niche market. Even large omnichannel beverage brands had fear of missing out, so many also began selling DTC to stake their claim in a growing market. Meanwhile, marketplaces like Amazon, with Prime Now delivery, were already leading the fast delivery trend. 

All of this has resulted in the present situation: if your DTC beverage business doesn’t provide instant delivery, your beverage business will cede market share to competitors who do.

Why DTC Beverage Brands Need to Harness Instant Delivery

With  Amazon, Walmart, Instacart, and quick commerce marketplaces like GoPuff delivering drinks within one to two hours, why would any customer be interested in ordering directly from a beverage brand’s website? 

These top retail giants have set the bar for convenience very high, driving up consumer expectations by delivering many of their essential and not-so-essential products within an hour or two. 

And if your DTC beverage business doesn’t upgrade to Amazon-like delivery speed, you will eventually lose customers to leading marketplaces like Amazon, Walmart, or other big companies that are on top of their instant delivery game. 

Beverage delivery challenges

While the one to two hours delivery window isn’t an unrealistic standard to meet, most direct-to-consumer brands lack the fulfillment capabilities to provide rush delivery all on their own. Even when brands have an in-house micro-fulfillment warehouse, fulfilling orders comes with its fair share of challenges such as warehouse rent and equipment, labor, utilities, insurance, materials, inventory management software, shipping, etc. 

Furthermore, fulfilling and shipping beverages safely is another challenge, especially delivering glass bottles over long distances via services like UPS/FedEx, which charge by the weight. There’s always the impending risk of breakage, resulting in losses and, worse yet: unhappy customers. 

And if it’s a drink that requires refrigeration, for instance, a kombucha, then there are the absurdly high costs associated with shipping weight, extra-packaging materials, and expensive cold packs.

In short, traditional delivery options require beverage brands to spend a significant amount of extra time and money.

That’s where instant commerce comes into play 

As your instant commerce partner, Ohi will help your DTC business stand toe-to-toe with Amazon or big-box stores like Walmart.

Traditional e-commerce fulfillment is harmful to the planet, as orders travel by plane or ground over long distances. 

On the other hand, Ohi’s instant commerce solution is fast, sustainable, and cost-effective. Because we keep our inventory “hyperlocal” in micro-fulfillment centers across major metropolitan areas, this helps our partner brands deliver drinks within two hours or same-day. In addition, it’s vastly more cost-effective as there’s no long-distance delivery involved. 

After your beverage business teams up with Ohi, we will first analyze your product demand at the SKU level. Then, a dedicated team will continuously work with your operations team to ensure there is always sufficient inventory across Ohi’s nationwide micro-fulfillment centers. 

In addition, our technology will constantly monitor delivery speed and consistency, adjust courier efficiency, and other factors to guarantee your customers always receive their ordered beverages within the delivery window they selected.

Top DTC-Focused Beverage Brands Benefiting from Instant Delivery

Olipop 

Olipop is a leading fizzy tonic brand. The maker of a new kind of soda makes their sodas from all-natural ingredients, combining the benefits of prebiotics, plant fiber, and botanicals.

Although Olipop has a powerful omnichannel e-commerce presence, the brand believes that a direct-to-consumer strategy is vital to its success. And to meet its high customer experience expectations, the brand required a D2C/DTC fulfillment partner.

After teaming up with Ohi, Olipop’s ROI has undergone a steady boost. Olipop now delivers its consumers fast delivery of its sparkling tonic alongside a fantastic post-purchase experience via Ohi’s platform. 

In addition, many of their customers order subscriptions regularly now. With Ohi, Olipop customers can schedule and reschedule deliveries within seven days and three different time windows.

Olipop saw a 150% increase in customer lifetime value (CLV) and a 140% lift in lifetime orders for Ohi-shipped orders (versus non-Ohi).

The notable increase in repeat purchases highlights the value of “fast, free, and flexible” delivery for customers and shows just why Olipop’s customers have rated Ohi 4.6/5 stars for exceptional service.

Health-Ade

Health-Ade is one of the country’s most prominent pro-biotic kombuchas that encourage people to #followtheirgut.

The DTC-focused beverage brand was looking for a better alternative to traditional 3PLs in its major metro areas to reduce fulfillment costs while offering a fantastic customer experience.

Traditional e-commerce fulfillment was not a good match for Health-Ade: they realized that delivering glass bottles over long distances via UPS/FedEx using a traditional 3PL would be impractical. In addition, there is the risk of breakage, high delivery weight, and extra-packaging costs. Lastly, kombuchas need to be refrigerated to retain freshness and probiotic qualities, demanding the use of expensive cold packs.

Ohi enabled Instant commerce for Health-Ade to help them deliver Kombuchas to their customers within a week of deployment. And Health-Ade’s customer lifetime value (CLV) has since increased by 49% on orders shipped with Ohi (versus standard FedEx/UPS), reflecting how valuable the instant delivery experience is to customers.

Athletic Brewing Company

A leading non-alcoholic beer brand was looking for an instant commerce solution to improve its customer experience and enable D2C growth.

With its wonderful-tasting, non-alcoholic brews made from premium quality, all-natural ingredients, Athletic Brewing Company is spearheading a craft beer revolution. Founded by co-founders Bill Shufelt and Jon Walker for “the modern beer drinker”, these low-alcohol beers are for people who aren’t willing or able to withstand the effects of alcohol intake. 

Unsatisfied with the traditional 3PLs fulfillment functionality as they were not D2C-friendly, Athletic Brewing partnered with Ohi.

After teaming up with Ohi, Athletic Brewing has seen a 30% lift in repeat purchase rates (Ohi-shipped orders versus orders that ship via FedEx/UPS). Athletic Brewing customers rate Ohi an average of 4.7/5 stars.

The above-discussed success stories sum up the difference instant delivery can help make. 

Deliver Drinks Faster!

85% of consumers will shop elsewhere for better options when delivery speeds are too slow. Slow delivery speed remains a primary reason for shopping cart abandonment. However, instant delivery is said to have contributed to higher conversion rates. In fact, it is the biggest motivator for 68% of shoppers.

The beverage market is ripe for rapid expansion; however, if your DTC business doesn’t keep pace with the marketplaces and large retailers, you’ll inevitably lose market share. 


About Ohi
At Ohi, we’ve flipped the script for e-commerce fulfillment, transforming it from what is traditionally seen as a cost center into a growth engine. Brands join the Ohi platform to deliver powerfully fast, brand-focused, and memorable post-purchase experiences that enable them to grow. Want to learn more about how Ohi enables instant commerce? Get in touch today.

Instant Delivery: How Top D2C Brands are Leveraging ‘Speed’ as a Competitive Advantage  

News flash: the slow and steady tortoise no longer wins the race.  

The modern shopper’s need for fast delivery has intensified, thanks in large part to the expectations that industry bellwethers like Amazon, Walmart, and Target have helped shape in the past couple of years.

Direct-to-consumer brands and smaller retailers literally have zero chance of protecting (much less growing) their market share without similarly adopting the ways of the speedy hare. 

Fortunately, the emergence of instant commerce and micro-fulfillment players like Ohi empowers them to close the gap and even out-compete many leading marketplaces when it comes to e-commerce fulfillment.

How top DTC brands are leveraging instant delivery

Instant delivery is way more than just a ‘nice-to-have’. It’s a must-have upgrade, and it’s very much mandatory if you want to meet your customers’ expectations.

A 2021 global consumer insights survey by PWC revealed “fast/reliable delivery” as consumers’ #1 overall consideration when shopping online.

And businesses who don’t upgrade to at least Amazon-like delivery speed will eventually lose out to Amazon or other big retail companies that are solving for instant commerce.

Happy customers help you grow your brand’s bottom line. According to proprietary Ohi research, the D2C brands that are leveraging instant 2-hour delivery had 24% higher repeat purchase rates compared to same-day delivery and an astounding 61% higher repeat purchase rates when compared to standard UPS/FedEx.

Instant delivery is game-changing for D2C-focused brands, and here are a few success stories that illustrate that very point.

Top DTC Brands Benefiting from Instant Delivery

Olipop’s CLV has grown by 150% with Instant Delivery 

Olipop is a leading fizzy tonic brand, the maker of a new kind of soda made from all-natural ingredients, combining the benefits of prebiotics, plant fiber, and botanicals.

Although the brand has a solid omnichannel presence, they believe a direct-to-consumer strategy is crucial to growth. 

And for that purpose, the brand needed a D2C/DTC fulfillment partner to meet its high customer experience expectations.

Olipop’s ROI has steadily increased since teaming up with Ohi.

Thanks to the flexible and fast delivery of its sparkling tonics on Ohi’s platform, Olipop now provides its customers with a tremendous post-purchase experience that matches its excellent pre-purchase experience. As a result, many of their customers have repeat subscription orders; with Ohi, Olipop customers can schedule and reschedule deliveries within seven days and in three different time windows. 

For Ohi-shipped orders, Olipop experienced a 150% higher customer lifetime value (CLV) and a 140 percent increase in lifetime orders (versus non-Ohi).

The significant increase in repeat purchases highlights the significance of “fast, free, and flexible” delivery for customers and explains why Olipop customers rate Ohi 4.6/5 stars for exceptional service.

Ovira more than doubled its repeat purchase rate

For centuries, women have endured painful periods (dysmenorrhea), pains associated with endometriosis. Ovira is a DTC-focused company devoted to helping women end this pain. Ovira’s revolutionary device, Noha, minimizes pain using pulse therapy. 

Because period pain can be spontaneous and unbearable, Ovira wanted a fast delivery of the Noha device.

Ohi seemed like the perfect instant fulfillment partner Ovira sought to meet its customers’ need for convenient and fast delivery.

Having teamed up with Ohi, Ovira now delivers delightfully fast, on-brand, and memorable post-purchase experiences that enable brand growth. 

With instant delivery as part of its post-purchase customer experience, Ovira’s repeat purchase rate has more than doubled (+120% for Ohi-shipped orders in comparison to orders shipped via FedEx/UPS). In addition, Ovira’s customers who ordered with Ohi rated us an average rating of 4.7/5 stars. 

These numbers clearly emphasize what it means for Ovira’s customers to have instant pain relief products.

Health-Ade’s customer lifetime value topped 40%

To minimize fulfillment costs while providing a great customer experience, one of the country’s most popular kombucha brands sought a better alternative to conventional 3PLs in its major metro areas.

Health-Ade, established in 2012, has quickly developed a nationwide customer base that adores its kombuchas for their delicious taste, an exciting variety of flavors, and countless health benefits.

Kombucha has special handling/transport requirements because it must be refrigerated to maintain peak freshness and probiotic qualities.

Traditional e-commerce fulfillment wasn’t a good fit for Health-Ade: they realized that delivering glass bottles over long distances via UPS/FedEx using a traditional 3PL wouldn’t be viable. First, there’s the risk of breakage. And then there are the ridiculously high costs associated with shipping weight and extra-packaging materials and the need to keep the kombuchas cold, typically necessitating the use of expensive cold packs. 

Health-Ade required more efficient handling of e-commerce fulfillment in its most critical metro areas.

Ohi delivered on all that and more.

Ohi enabled instant commerce for Health-Ade allowing them to deliver Kombuchas instantly to their customer base within a week of deployment.

After partnering with Ohi, Health-Ade has seen its customer lifetime value (CLV) increase by 49% on orders shipped with Ohi (versus standard FedEx/UPS), showing just how valuable the instant commerce experience is to customers.

Health-Ade’s customers have rated Ohi an average of 4.6/5 stars for service excellence.

Athletic Brewing Company experienced a 30% increase in their repeat purchase rate

Athletic Brewing, a non-alcoholic craft beer brand, was looking for a faster and more reliable fulfillment partner and had been unimpressed with traditional 3PLs’ fulfillment capabilities and overall lack of D2C-friendliness.

As impressive as Athletic Brewing’s products are – beers brewed from high-quality, all-natural ingredients for “the modern-day beer drinker”- they needed an instant commerce solution to kick their customer experience up a notch and drive meaningful D2C growth. 

After learning how Ohi could elevate their customer experience and drive significant ROI while keeping its powerful brand front-and-center, the brand turned to Ohi’s instant delivery solution.                                                                                            

Athletic Brewing provides its customers powerfully fast, brand-focused, and memorable post-purchase experiences via the Ohi platform.

Athletic Brewing now enjoys a 30% uptick in repeat purchase rates on Ohi-shipped orders compared to orders delivered through FedEx/UPS. Additionally, athletic Brewing customers rated Ohi an average of 4.7/5 stars.

With Ohi’s shipping options – 2-hour, same-day, and next-day delivery – the DTC-focused brand delivers great-tasting beers to its customers alongside a custom-branded post-purchase experience. 

Customers receive real-time tracking information via email/SMS (tailored to Athletic Brewing’s brand guidelines), allowing them to track their orders to their doors.

So how does Ohi do it? 

We keep our inventory “hyperlocal” in micro-fulfillment centers in major metropolitan areas. This enables our partner brands to deliver their products to customers within the same day or two hours – in time for a spontaneous dinner, a late or early morning drink, or to relieve period pain. 

We’re proactive – our dedicated teams analyze your brand’s product demand at the SKU level, consistently working with the operations team to ensure there’s sufficient inventory available across the micro-fulfillment networks. In addition, Ohi’s account managers work with brands to ensure seamless procedures while identifying ways to boost efficiency and ROI for our partner brands.

Our technology constantly monitors delivery speed and consistency within the Ohi network, modifying courier utilization and other factors to ensure customers get what they ordered within the chosen delivery window. 

And because we keep our inventory as close to customers as possible, our packaging and last-mile shipping are also more environmentally friendly. 

Fast & free wins the race!

Many of the world’s top marketplaces and big retailers are already looking beyond same-day delivery and upping the ante once again with sub-hour delivery options.

And with 15-minute delivery becoming a thing in New York City and elsewhere, your D2C brand crossing the finish line in 3-5 business days just won’t suffice any longer. The race will have been long over before your brand reaches the line.

About Ohi
At Ohi, we’ve flipped the script for e-commerce fulfillment, transforming it from what is traditionally seen as a cost center into a growth engine. Brands join the Ohi platform to deliver powerfully fast, brand-focused, and memorable post-purchase experiences that enable them to grow. Want to learn more about how Ohi enables instant commerce? Get in touch today.

Get Sticky: What is Customer Stickiness and How to Achieve it with Your DTC Brand

Acquiring new customers is only half the battle. You have yet to convert the newly acquired lot into second-time buyers and reduce customer churn. 

Once you bag that second purchase, your focus should shift to expanding and increasing these customers’ lifetime value (CLV) even more. And to achieve that, you need to ensure you provide a customer experience so good that they want to stick around – a “sticky” experience. 

Jes Kirkwood, a content strategist and storyteller, writes that customer experience is one of the two core pillars of customer retention; the thing is, you can’t grow if your customers don’t stick around. 

But what exactly is customer stickiness and how is it related to customer retention and customer loyalty? 

What is Customer Stickiness?

To define it simply, customer stickiness is when a customer continues to shop at your e-commerce store because something about your online store compels them to keep coming. It could be free and fast shipping, your product quality, your pricing, pre and post-purchase customer experience, emotional appeal, discounts and promotions, etc. 

No one sells cold drinks in cold weather better than Coca Cola. Coke  remains one of the best known beverage brands, winning hearts and taste buds since well before the classic Coca-Cola days. The beverage brand has successfully created a sticky brand experience centered around ‘émotional appeal,’ via adverts – and it works well.

How is customer stickiness related to customer loyalty and customer retention? 

Customer stickiness is the launching pad for customer loyalty and retention both, because sticky customers are easier to turn into lifetime customers who are loyal to the brand. How do you think Coke managed to create a cult-like customer base? 

It’s important to remember however, that customer stickiness is a result of a key benefit or value customers derive from a business – something they can’t get elsewhere. 

It focuses on fostering new relationships with customers, while customer loyalty strengthens pre-existing relationships and develops after stickiness.

As for retention, that’s when these customers continue to choose your brand because trying out new products or brands is far too inconvenient. 

So, how can you make your DTC brand create a sticky brand experience? 

Once you get a customer to go from one purchase to two purchases, you increase their chance of making yet another purchase by 95%. Give these customers a reason to come back and  stick to your business with these tried and true ways:

Be proactive about your post-purchase customer experience

A report by Salesforce shows that 80% of customers say the experience provided by a company is as important as the products and services they sell. And 42% said they would break up with a brand because they didn’t get customer support. 

This shows just how important a winning post-purchase experience is, especially if you want to increase customer stickiness. Here are a few ways your brand can create a sticky brand experience for shoppers:

a) Customer onboarding 

The post-purchase period is a crucial time for you and your customers. It’s the most important step in the customer life-cycle – an opportunity to build relationships with shoppers. 

In fact, 88% of buyers in a survey said they’re more likely to remain loyal to a business that provides welcoming, educational onboarding content. 

Customers who you’ve rolled out the red carpet for are more likely to continue buying your products in the long haul. 

b) Spice it up with fast & free delivery

Fast and free delivery has become an essential component of a winning post-purchase experience. Almost all the major retailers, online and offline, are beginning to add the element of speed to their service. Amazon, Walmart, Instacart, Target, etc. leverage fast and free delivery to make their customers stick around.   

Ohi helps its partner brands create a sticky brand experience by enabling them to offer customer-pleasing post-purchase experiences such as sustainable and instant delivery. 

c) Keep customers in the know with real-time order tracking & on-brand updates 

For many brands, the customer experience journey comes to an end when they make a purchase. That sort of attitude is a no-go in today’s fast-paced e-commerce world. The customer journey doesn’t end following the purchase; it continues with shipping, tracking, product updates, returns, reviews, and other post-purchase services.

d) Simplify the returns & refunds process

IKEA is a great example of a company that offers sticky returns and refunds policies. Shoppers have 365 days to exchange or return their products. This makes for a stellar value proposition, because it’s considerably longer than the usual 60 days.

It, however, may not be possible for every brand to follow in IKEA’s footsteps which is why many, if not most, progressive and forward-looking e-commerce brands these days are offering VIP customers membership-styled return options. They reward high-value, loyal customers with a more personalized and flexible shopping experience to keep them coming back for more.

e) Hear your customers out – ask for post-purchase feedback

Nothing shows your customers they are valuable better than asking for feedback about the product or post-purchase experience and actually taking it to heart.

Customer feedback will help offer you insight into what aspects of your product or service are working well and what aspects require improvements.

Think of unhappy customers as an opportunity. They could just leave you bad reviews on your social media channels, or even worse, anonymously put you on blast all over the place. Instead, invite them to contact you privately to share their experiences, trusting that you are sincere about addressing any concerns.

f) Sustainable e-commerce fulfillment

Did you know that 80% of consumers in a survey said that sustainability is important to them? Meanwhile, about 60% said they want to make a change in their shopping habits to be more sustainable. 

While value and ease of purchase are still the main drivers of purchase decisions, sustainability is climbing higher on the list. Consider supporting sustainable e-commerce however you can – from carbon-neutral delivery to even more modest approaches like supporting micro-fulfillment services, as they reduce the amount of fuel that is needed per delivery and minimize the need for wasteful exterior packaging.

Differentiate your unique value proposition (UVP) & be consistent with it

We know that customer stickiness is essentially derived from the transactional value that your customers get from your business or product only — your unique value proposition (UVP).

It highlights a unique benefit or feature that differentiates your online brand from every other business in the industry, showcasing the most compelling reasons why a potential buyer should become a lifetime customer.

Whatever that value is, it’s imperative that everyone on your team knows about it. Your unique value proposition should power your sales and marketing messaging, and unlocking it should be a key point of focus for customer support and success teams.

Take Patagonia for instance. Their UVP isn’t a product or a feature, it’s their reason for existing. And their UVP adds value to their die-hard customers by helping them make a difference. 

“We’re in business to save our home planet.”

This UVP distinguishes Patagonia from its competitors by defining it as more than a fashion label. It’s a way of life and a movement committed to making a difference. Patagonia epitomizes a number of its distinguishing features in a single sentence:

  • Fair Trade Certified Clothing – produced from organic cotton ( free of pesticides, herbicides, and GMO seeds)
  • An exchange program wherein shoppers can trade-in used equipment for store credit
  • 1% of sales is donated to the restoration and preservation of the planet

What we really love about Patagonia’s UVP is that it doesn’t make the customers feel like they are being shoehorned into purchasing. They understand that together with the business they are making a difference.  

Having the ingredients alone isn’t enough; mixing them together thoughtfully is what matters most. Whether you have the best price on the market or a key feature your competitors lack, or something else entirely, reminding customers how you’re different and better will help boost customer stickiness. 

If practiced the right way, even a unique flavored syrup created by some pharmacist – yes, Coca Cola – can be turned into a world-beating brand that transcends its category.

Bottom line? 

Yes, that will eventually grow, too, (pun intended) because the stickier your customer is, the easier they are to retain. By making existing customers stickier you take an important first step toward fostering long-term customer loyalty.

Why Creating an Impactful Post-purchase Experience is Important for Your E-commerce Business

Why Creating an Impactful Post-purchase Experience is Important for Your E-commerce Business

A customer just ordered from your e-commerce store. You’re on cloud nine, and why wouldn’t you be – you just converted a prospect into a customer. But as exciting as getting orders is, you can’t rest on your laurels just yet.  

This is only the third stage of a buyer’s journey (shown below). You are now no longer accommodating a prospect looking for a solution, you are now dealing with a consumer who is looking to get value from your brand and products.

What happens after a purchase is just as important to the bottom line as the initial purchase. Data from Salesforce shows that 80% of customers say the experience provided by a company is as important as the products and services they sell. Meanwhile, 57% of customers said they stopped buying from a company because of a competitor who delivered a better experience.

And yet, most e-commerce businesses are reluctant to invest in or even properly understand the post-purchase experience. 

So, what exactly is the post-purchase experience (PPX)?

To define it simply, it’s how you treat a customer after they have made a purchase from your e-commerce store – the journey that commences right after checkout. 

A lot goes into designing a post-purchase experience that will convert skeptical buyers into raving fans. How do you think Amazon took over the marketplace landscape? From super-slick fulfillment to timely feedback requests, simple returns, and refunds, they’ve nailed many aspects of the buying journey – at least when it comes to a marketplace-based shopping experience.

Components of a winning post-purchase experience

Now that you know what the term “post-purchase experience” entails, here’s a look at some typical touchpoints of a post-purchase experience:

  • Fast, on-time delivery (such as through Ohi’s 2-hour, same-day, and next-day delivery options)
  • Real-time order tracking & updates that are on-brand
  • Product care tips and optimal usage suggestions
  • Simple returns & refunds process
  • Post-purchase feedback
  • Value-adding upsells and cross-sells
  • Sustainable e-commerce fulfillment

A great after-sale experience will encourage retention, increase sales, and improve your brand’s reputation.

A few good reasons why your e-commerce business needs to optimize post-purchase customer experience

In the words of Kristen LaFrance, the head of Shopify’s Resilient Retail series:

“In e-commerce, you don’t have the same face-to-face sales interaction that you would in a retail setting, so you have to take care of some of those steps post-purchase when you finally have a direct line of communication with the customer.”

Optimizing the post-purchase experience can therefore be an excellent customer retention strategy, and it doesn’t require brands to spend a king’s ransom to do so either. And with better first-party customer data, direct-to-consumer (DTC/D2C) brands should have a competitive edge here, because understanding customers better is the key to optimizing the post-purchase experience. 

Optimizing the post-purchase experience will increase customer retention, improve AOV and repeat purchase rate. 

Once your e-commerce business is relatively well-optimized, your top priority shifts to retaining customers.

Repeat customers are, after all, the holy grail of your e-commerce business, and a well-optimized post-purchase experience will help increase the average order value (AOV), reduce customer churn, and increase customer lifetime value (CLV), which all ultimately dictate your bottom line.

This is why Ohi focuses on amplifying the e-commerce post-purchase experiences for its partner brands. By enabling ultra fast delivery (including sub 2hr) and on-brand, customizable post-purchase communications, Ohi helps brands deliver a positive and powerful post-purchase experience that keeps customers coming back for more.

The impact? Ohi brand partners see significant ROI, including an average 28% increase in conversion and up to 120% higher repeat purchase rates.

It’s how you foster brand loyalty!

To build long-term brand loyalty, emphasize how your customers will benefit from sticking with your brand. Setting up a memorable post-purchase experience will help you influence how your customer thinks, and most importantly, how they feel about their purchase and their relationship with your brand.
When you deliver exceptional post-purchase experiences, existing customers develop loyalty toward your brand.

Part of the reason for enhanced loyalty is that these positive customer experiences can help foster an emotional connection, which studies have found capable of driving as much as a 306% higher LTV for your online business.

An optimized post-purchase customer experience also leads to higher customer advocacy. 

According to Nielson, 92% of customers said they trust the product recommendations provided by their family and friends.

When you offer care and support even after they have purchased from you, you give them a reason to stick with your company.

A positive post-experience results in happier customers, higher retention, better reviews, and more positive word of mouth for your company. Make absolutely sure your brand is doing everything in its power to provide the best PPX on the market and drive as many potential consumers through the entire customer lifecycle, from the minute they encounter your brand to the point where they are self-propelled advocates for your brand and your products.

What helps people, helps business – Leo Burnett (American advertising executive) 

Post-purchase experience is not limited to a post-purchase “thank you” email. And going beyond just an email is the difference between standing out and fading out in the customer’s memory. You have to push the envelope – expand your idea of what a memorable post-purchase customer experience truly entails: from checkout and order updates to fast delivery and delightful unboxing experience, to post-purchase offers and beyond.


About Ohi

At Ohi, we’ve flipped the script for e-commerce fulfillment, transforming it from what is traditionally seen as a cost center into a growth engine. Brands join the Ohi platform to deliver powerfully fast, brand-focused, and memorable post-purchase experiences that enable them to grow. Want to learn more about how Ohi enables instant commerce? Get in touch today.

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