Is “Try Before You Buy” the Key to eCommerce Success?

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If you’ve ever hesitated to order shoes online because you couldn’t try them on, help might be on the way. “Try Before You Buy” is opening up new realms of possibilities for online shoppers and eCommerce businesses alike.

Mohala, an online retailer of women’s sunglasses, credits this concept as one of their primary tickets to sales success. Besides having a unique twist to their product by offering custom fits for diverse nose and facial shapes, Mohala knew they needed to get their product into consumers’ hands for them to feel the difference. “Try Before You Buy,” or TBYB, paved just the route.

Mohala founder, Ashley Johnson, noted, “The biggest advantage brick and mortar stores have over eCommerce stores is that customers can try multiple things on before they pay for it. I needed to figure out how my eCommerce business could get over that hurdle.”

A Forrester study by Shopify showed 57% of consumers say the flexibility and convenience of trying new products influences their decision to buy online. Just like the large traditional retailers, small businesses and boutique online companies need the option to implement a TBYB program. Eventually, “I think all customers are going to expect it,” Johnson predicts.

Now Mohala’s customers can have this flexibility. Using the TBYB technology of Blackcart, a software launched in 2020, shoppers can order three pairs of sunglasses to try the different sizes for a $10 deposit, pay for the ones they decide to keep, and easily mail back anything that doesn’t fit. Mohala saw a 12% increase in sales in 2021, and in the past two months sales through Blackcart surpassed their regular order sales.

Major retailers such as Amazon have already ventured into TBYB. Brightpearl, who provides retail operating system (ROS) software for retailers and wholesalers, estimated 25% of retailers globally would adopt online TBYB programs by 2019. But some proponents warn even though it will almost certainly increase sales, TBYB could quadruple the number of returns, and retailers had better be prepared for the landslide.

Will increased sales from Try Before You Buy outweigh the added labor and processing obligations that invariably come with? Is TBYB the right option for your eCommerce business? Read more about this hot online shopping trend here:

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