Using Data & Design to Beat Competition & Drive Demand on Ecommerce

Dave Wright

October 28, 2020

How can data become a game-changer for brands seeking to drive traffic to their detail pages or websites? And how can powerful design help brands win at conversion?

I partnered with Enlisted Design CEO Beau Oyler to consider these topics in a Cleveland Research Company webinar on Oct. 13. While Oyler and I couldn’t be a more unlikely duo, combining Pattern’s data and Enlisted’s design has been nothing short of incredible for brands. Below are the main takeaways from our discussion.

Data science, applied

I started Pattern with the idea that we could apply data science principles to moving products. Our primary skill—and where we have the most fun—is using data to help brands understand where they sit in the market and what might be their next opportunity. When we first started, we couldn’t have anticipated the success we’ve seen using this data-driven focus.

Before we get into the specifics of our data-driven models and what they mean for brands, I’d like to first invite executives to consider how they’re staffing their ecommerce teams. While I often hear from CEOs who claim their ecommerce teams aren’t that good, I’m finding that idea is largely flawed. Companies often expect a small team of 3-7 people to manage everything regarding ecommerce, including D2C sites, marketplaces, logistics, price erosion etc. All of these issues are compounded with extending global footprints. The amount of work that this small team needs to figure out is simply untenable.

How to drive traffic

Ecommerce Equation to Grow Revenue | Pattern

The revenue equation for ecommerce is simple: revenue is generated by multiplying traffic, conversions, and price. For now, I’m going to focus on driving traffic and how to repeat that traffic for customer lifetime value.

Driving traffic The first factor to consider is the macro drivers of traffic—the countries where you can decide to invest your money—and their Gross Merchandise Volume (GMV). The U.S. market is huge, but is dwarfed by China, an essential area to focus on if you want your brand to stay relevant in the next decade. Japan and European markets are also relevant while India and Russia are less so. Examining these macro trends helps brands understand where they can get the most traffic for the least cost.

Gross Merchandise Volume for Ecommerce Regions | Pattern

Keywords and keyword phrases, driven by search, are the most important underlying components of traffic in ecommerce. Pattern’s patent-pending concept, Laddered Destiny, helps analyze how brands fare in the keyword searches most relevant to their product and niche. It also looks at SEO words and bigrams to consider and uses lemmas to ensure brands are using the right root words in their product listings.

Laddered destiny to grow ecommerce Laddered Destiny helps us answer questions like, “Which keywords could you win?” While, for example, a new brand probably couldn’t win the keyword “probiotic” on day 1 on Amazon, it could perhaps win “probiotic for women” or “probiotic for women over 40.” Laddered Destiny helps brands focus on such niche keywords that other brands largely ignore.

Laddered Destiny to Grow Ecommerce and Rank on Keywords | Pattern

We can look at the data Laddered Destiny provides us for Whistle, a brand that creates GPS trackers for pets. We can see which keywords Whistle is currently winning—or showing up in the top 4 search results—in blue. In the case of the screenshot above, Whistle is winning the search term “dog gps tracker.” This keyword phrase is high in both relevance and volume. The yellow dots represent keywords and keyword phrases that Whistle’s similar competitors are winning but Whistle is not.

Laddered Destiny to Grow Ecommerce Revenue and Rank on Organic Keywords | Pattern

On the bottom of the model, in the more niche areas, we can see Whistle dominates less in the lower relevance keywords, like, as pictured above, “gps tracker.” Since the right side of the graph focuses on keywords that appear in a high volume of searches, this may be an interesting area to which Whistle can expand.

Using Laddered Destiny to Grow Ecommerce and Rank on Organic Keywords | Pattern

Laddered Destiny also provides insight into which words and bigrams brands should consider. It compares lemmas to ensure brands are hitting the right root words in its product names and descriptions. Interestingly, the top recommendation for the Whistle product is “dog,” a word which currently does not appear in the product title.

The valuable data Laddered Destiny gives us helps brands know which keywords to focus on, where to budget advertising money, and which products to develop next. We’ve found that the difference between diving into this data at a deep level and ignoring it can be absolutely game-changing, but it’s not magic—in order to be successful, the product itself has to be phenomenal. It needs to be highly relevant along with having great reviews and a good price.

How Laddered Destiny Works for Ecommerce and Keyword Ranking | Pattern

How design comes into play

While my remarks focused on how brands can drive traffic to their products, Oyler focused on how brands can convert this traffic into sales through compelling design.

“The data and analytics can all get us to that moment of introducing the brand or the product to the consumer, but then how do we win to convert that to sales?” Oyler said. “That’s where design becomes our greatest advocate and our greatest conversion tool. That’s when design becomes far more than just aesthetics; it becomes a tool for sales.”

Design for Ecommerce Growth | Pattern and Enlisted Design

Enlisted Design, which Pattern recently acquired, has seen indisputable success by redesigning, rebranding, and relaunching brands. One such brand is Joyfull Cheese Co., a private label co-manufacturer for Whole Foods invested in a proprietary brand launch by Enlisted and grew sales by 60% in just 18 months.

Perdue Chicken tells a similar story. After Enlisted redesigned its packaging and relaunched the brand, it saw a 7% lift on their multi-billion dollar business. Pet food brand Organix also benefited from Enlisted’s services and now enjoys a 90% share in the organic pet food market.

“We use data to understand the consumer reaction to the current brand, and then use that data and go into testing to create better experiences and better manifestations of a brand’s story,” Oyler said.

The strength of branding and design when applied to data

So, what’s the secret? How can rebranding and new packing completely transform a brand’s presence and sales? Oyler said it comes down to crafting an emotional connection between the consumer and the product. While the function of a product is important, competing companies quickly come to adopt similar feature sets and price points. The DNA of a brand communicated through design, however, is much more difficult to replicate.

“Where we find the most success is where we bring both the function, or the data of what a consumer is searching for, and we add the emotion through the form factor, through the color, material, finish,” Oyler said. “We create products that are not just function based but lifestyle-led, so that when a consumer sees the product, they look at it and think, ‘I want that in my life.’”

Pattern Design Best Practices | Pattern and Enlisted Design

Stance, an apparel brand that sells socks and underwear, recently revamped its product and packaging with Enlisted’s help. Oyler said the goal was to create a packaging experience consistent with Stance’s core DNA, which includes sustainability. Enlisted redesigned the sock packaging to use 50% less plastic, 50% less paper, and all soy-based inks.

But do these subtle changes pay off? Absolutely, Oyler argues.

“When you look at pre-launch, post-launch for Stance’s packaging, you see that the consumer adoption is much greater because, yeah, it looks better, but it also communicates better, and it communicates to the core DNA of who stance is,” Oyler said.

Need help incorporating data and design to tell your brand’s unique story? Contact us using the form below to learn more about how Pattern can help your brand beat the competition.

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Global Ecommerce: Weekly News (6th September 2022)
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Global Ecommerce Weekly News: 6th September 2022

Get up to date with this week's ecommerce headlines from around the globe. --- Amazon News --- Amazon announces new inventory and distribution service, AWD Amazon has launched Amazon Warehousing and Distribution (AWD), providing inventory and distribution services to its sellers as a means of addressing current supply chain issues. AWD is now available for sellers using Fulfilment by Amazon (FBA), i.e. outsourcing their fulfilment to the platform. Amazon has plans to expand the service outside the platform in 2023. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/02/amazon-introduces-new-service-to-help-solve-supply-chain-challenges/) Amazon Web Services (AWS) launches in the UAE AWS, Amazon’s cloud-computing platform offering, has launched its second region in the Middle East and now provides its services in the UAE. The move will now allow anyone in the UAE who utilises cloud technologies to harness AWS’s advanced platforms and APIs. An estimated $11 billion USD is expected to be added to the UAE’s GDP thanks to the implementation, with an average of 6,000 external vendor jobs to be created annually. AWS is now available in 87 zones across 27 regions, with sights set on expanding further across Australia, Canada, India, Israel, New Zealand, Spain, and Switzerland. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/08/30/amazon-web-services-launches-region-in-uae/) --- Other Marketplace News --- Lazada to launch in Europe Alibaba-owned ecommerce platform Lazada is set to launch in Europe, marking a refreshed internationalisation push from the company. The move follows toughening economic conditions and performance in Southeast Asia, advancing the need to tap overseas markets. In Europe, Lazada will face tough competition from giants like Amazon and Zalando. Lazada’s exact entry strategy is to be confirmed and will be reliant on macroeconomic and market conditions, according to Lazada CEO James Dong. [Read more on DigitalCommerce360](https://www.digitalcommerce360.com/2022/09/01/alibabas-lazada-to-take-on-amazon-zalando-in-europe-push/) Chinese ecommerce giant Pinduoduo to launch cross-border platform in the United States Pinduoduo, a Chinese ecommerce giant rivalling Alibaba and JD, has announced it will be launching a new cross-border ecommerce platform. The marketplace is set to launch in the United States next month, as part of the company’s larger push into new markets. Pinduoduo found success in China thanks to its rock-bottom price offerings and harnessing of social commerce marketing, emulating strategies similar to fast-fashion giant Shein. [Read more on Yahoo Finance](https://uk.finance.yahoo.com/news/pinduoduo-launch-international-e-commerce-034129263.html) Alibaba launches its biggest B2B sales event, ‘Super September’ China ecommerce giant, Alibaba, has now launched its month-long B2B sales event ‘Super September’. The event provides 40 million buyers and 200,000 suppliers with the ability to connect on the platform, showcasing a ‘virtually unlimited’ number of products. The event hopes to foster new cross-border business relationships to tackle supply chain challenges currently faced by businesses. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/01/alibaba-launches-super-september-b2b-sales-event/) --- Other Ecommerce News --- Klarna’s losses quadruple in first half of 2022 BNPL provider, Klarna, has reported losses of $581 million USD for the first half of 2022. This figure is almost four times larger than a year earlier, where $129 million USD in losses were reported. The company attributes the losses to employee costs, technology investments, and rising credit losses. Klarna’s figure reporting comes amidst worsening economic conditions, fresh legal and regulatory scrutiny, and pressure from Big Tech competitors. [Read more on The Financial Times](https://www.ft.com/content/483451db-9221-4ca4-83a6-b4ddc6bfcfbb) [Read more on the Guardian](https://www.theguardian.com/business/2022/aug/31/klarna-losses-more-than-triple-as-consumer-spending-slows) One fifth of Snap employees to be laid off amidst poor financial performance Social media platform Snap (‘Snapchat’) has announced it will be laying off 20% of its employees and closing out a number of projects following a year of poor financial results.The move will see 1,200 employees globally lose their jobs, saving the company an estimated $500 million USD in costs. Snap is currently valued at $20 billion, an 84% decrease from its valuation of $130 billion last year. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/01/snap-to-lay-off-20-of-its-workforce-and-wind-down-a-number-of-projects/)

Global Ecommerce: Weekly News (30th August 2022)
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Global Ecommerce Weekly News: 30th August 2022

Get up to date with this week's ecommerce headlines from around the globe. --- Amazon News --- Amazon set to shut down Amazon Care Amazon is closing its telehealth service, Amazon Care, which launched in 2019 as a trial program for its headquartered employees. Later the service was rolled out nationwide for employees and other companies. The ecommerce giant has now made the decision to move away from the healthcare space, believing it was not the right long-term solution for its enterprise customers. [Read more on CNBC](https://www.cnbc.com/2022/08/24/amazon-is-shutting-down-amazon-care-telehealth-service.html) Peloton closes new deal to sell on Amazon Following a recent deal, Amazon customers will soon be able to buy Peloton fitness equipment on the marketplace, marking Peleton’s first move outside a direct-to-consumer model. According to Peloton’s CCO, there are already around half a million searches on Amazon for Peloton products every month, despite having no presence on the marketplace. Some key products include the original Peloton Bike, retailing for $1,445 and Peloton Guide for $295. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/08/24/peloton-strikes-deal-to-sell-fitness-equipment-on-amazon/) --- Other Marketplace News --- 60% of Malaysians are buying from local sellers on Shopee A recent survey of nearly 3,500 respondents found that nearly half of the shoppers prefer to purchase from local sellers due to shorter delivery times. Other shoppers decide to shop locally due to the quality of the products made in Malaysia and an interest in keeping the economy running. As a result, smaller local merchants have been able to grow their businesses, and shoppers benefit from shorter delivery times, products of high quality and supporting local businesses. [Read more on The Malaysian Reserve](https://themalaysianreserve.com/2022/08/25/around-60-malaysians-are-buying-from-local-sellers-on-shopee/) Flipkart’s social commerce platform Shopsy crosses 100 million users Flipkart launched a social commerce arm, Shopsy, in July of last year, which has now surpassed 100 million users, ahead of its target timeline being the end of 2022. This acquisition of new users has made Shopsy one of the largest platforms of its kind in the country, and is expected to onboard a further 100 million by the end of 2023. The platform is centred around boosting local entrepreneurship and powering ecommerce for consumers across tier 2+ regions where users face challenges around trust and navigation when shopping online. [Read more on Business Standard](https://www.business-standard.com/article/companies/flipkart-s-social-commerce-platform-shopsy-hits-100-million-users-1220828006851.html) Meta joins Amazon and Walmart in bid for Indian ecommerce market Amazon mentioned earlier in the year that it would be building a logistics division in-house through its purchase of a 51% stake in Ecom Express, an end-to-end logistics firm, to make ecommerce deliveries more efficient in the country. Walmart operates Flipkart in India and is set to continue its investment in the marketplace. In an effort to compete in the Indian ecommerce market, Meta has partnered with Indian ecommerce company, JioMart, to offer customers a grocery shopping platform within its WhatsApp chat feature. [Read more on Pymnts](https://www.pymnts.com/news/retail/2022/meta-joins-amazon-walmart-indian-ecommerce-market/) --- Other Ecommerce News --- Ecommerce in Spain worth €57.7 billion in 2021 Spanish ecommerce saw 11.7% growth compared to last year, largely attributed to cross-border sales. In the final quarter of 2021, ecommerce sales in Spain were at €16.9 billion euros, at least 60% of which came from cross-border sales. Transactions from foreign locations to Spain generated a turnover of €1.56 billion in Q4, a growth of 27.7% compared to Q4 a year before. [Read more on Ecommerce News](https://ecommercenews.eu/ecommerce-in-spain-was-worth-e57-7-billion-in-2021/)

Global Ecommerce: Weekly News (23rd August 2022)
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Global Ecommerce Weekly News: 23rd August 2022

Get up to date with this week's ecommerce headlines from around the globe. --- Amazon News --- Amazon to add mental health support to primary-care service Amazon is set to move into mental health therapy with its primary-care division, following its recent acquisition deal of One Medical. The plan is to partner with virtual behavioural therapy service, Ginger, to offer its Amazon Care users with on-demand access to mental health services, licensed therapists and psychiatrists. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/08/11/amazon-plans-to-add-mental-health-support-to-primary-care-service/) GMB union calls for £15 an hour minimum pay at UK Amazon warehouses Amazon recently offered its warehouse workers a 3% pay rise, which in comparison to the June inflation rate of 9.4% left employees disappointed. Following this, hundreds of Amazon warehouse workers stopped work last week, protesting against the minimal pay increase, seeking a minimum of £15 an hour. Recent protests consisting of employee walkouts and sit-ins aim to get a better offer out of Amazon. [Read more on The Guardian](https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2022/aug/09/gmb-calls-for-15-an-hour-minimum-pay-at-amazon-warehouses-in-uk) Amazon third-party sellers have received their first-ever holiday fee hike Amazon’s third-party marketplaces account for close to half of the company’s online sales. The company introduced a 5% fuel and inflation charge to its third-party sellers earlier this year, and has now implemented another inflation increase charge. Commencing 14 October, any seller who uses Amazon’s fulfilment service is subject to the price hike, which is set to be an additional 35 cents per item for products sold in the US and Canada. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/08/17/amazon-third-party-sellers-have-received-their-first-ever-holiday-fee-hike/) Amazon puts a pause on UK grocery shop roll-out as the cost of living increases Amazon has slowed down on its UK roll-out of till-free Amazon Fresh grocery stores following disappointing sales and the rise in cost of living. Allegedly, the company is no longer looking for potential sites to expand and if more stores are opened, they will likely no longer use a till-free system, as consumers become more cautious about spending. [Read more on The Telegraph](https://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2022/08/21/amazon-pauses-uk-grocery-shop-roll-out-following-disappointing/) --- Other Marketplace News --- Shopee overtakes Alibaba across international markets Shopee has surpassed Alibaba and taken the top spot for sales outside of China. Singapore-based marketplace saw a year-on-year increase of 51.4% at the end of Q2 of this year, while Alibaba saw a 3% drop during the same time period. This can be seen as a promising development for start-ups and their ability to compete with some of the largest ecommerce giants in the market. [Read more on Exchange Wire](https://www.exchangewire.com/blog/2022/08/18/shopee-surpasses-alibaba-in-international-sales-amazon-searches-for-entertainment-exec/) H&M reopens its official store to Alibaba’s Tmall ecommerce platform It has been nearly 18 months since Alibaba removed H&M from its Tmall platform, following H&M’s criticism of human rights abuses in Xinjiang. It is estimated that over a million people, predominantly minorities in the area, have been unlawfully detained in camps across the city. Brands including Nike, Adidas, Burberry and Converse were swept up in the controversy, however H&M was one of the first to be targeted for speaking out about the issue. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/08/16/hm-returns-to-alibabas-tmall-platform-16-months-after-xinjiang-controversy/) Klarna launches new feature allowing UK consumers to view full online order history Buy-now-pay-later company, Klarna, has launched a new feature on its shopping app, which allows UK consumers to view their full online order history, regardless of whether they purchased the product using Klarna. The feature also shows delivery tracking and aids consumers in managing their online purchases more conveniently. [Read more on The Industry](https://www.theindustry.fashion/klarna-launches-new-feature-allowing-uk-consumers-to-view-full-online-order-history/) --- Other Ecommerce News --- Online marketplaces responsible for £280 billion business turnover in the UK Nearly 900,000 UK businesses are currently selling on online marketplaces, generating an estimated £282 billion worth of sales each year. This figure represents 6% of the UK’s annual business turnover, highlighting the notable contribution that marketplaces make to the UK economy, along with the potential for further growth in this area. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/08/09/online-marketplaces-responsible-for-280-billion-business-turnover-in-uk/)