Friday, January 16, 2009

Proflowers Conversion Rates Explained??

In an article posted today on, the author touches on a question I asked a few days ago related to the high conversion rates over at

While the article’s focus is on the fact that “people are psychologically conditioned to ignore most ads,” Proflowers has learned to get around that barrier by not advertising in an interruptive manner. Rather, they advertise contextually and use stories that people can identify with. 

Here is an excerpt of the piece:

Telling Authentic Stories with Your Ads

In December 2008, had one of the highest conversion rates in the ecommerce business, transforming 31.1 percent of all site visitors into paying customers, according to The Nielsen Company's MegaView Online Retail study. So what is their secret? I believe that ProFlowers is so successful because its ads, particularly radio ads, tell such authentic or real stories.

If you have ever listened to talk radio, you've probably heard a talk show host endorse ProFlowers. Invariably, the host tells listeners about his experience using ProFlowers. He speaks of how fresh the flowers were and of how fast they arrived. To the listeners—who are fully aware that the host is being paid—the story about ProFlowers is less of an ad and more of a recommendation from a trusted friend. Any campaign that takes this tact, telling real stories about an ecommerce company's products and services is—I believe—welcomed by consumers. Tactics that tell these stories include:

  • Endorsements. If you can afford to have a radio host endorse your store, you will see a boost in sales.
  • Blogs. Telling your company's story becomes a form of word-of-mouth marketing that will reach an audience that would sleep through a slick television ad.
  • Buzz or promotional marketing. Consider offering free and exclusive discounts that spread by word-of-mouth.
  • Print advertising that is based on a worldview, not a product. Print advertising can still be very effective, especially if the ad fits the context of the publication and adds to the publication's theme or ethos.

Summing Up

Interruption advertising is a fading tactic that is no longer as effective as it once was. But there are still lots of advertising tactics that will help ecommerce sites increase web traffic.

Full article can be read by clicking here

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