First impressions (3/5)
Whether you’re stocking up for the festive season, planning the office Christmas party or prefer to buy at the last minute to get the best deals, Majestic Wine [IRDX RMAJ] has just launched a responsive design site which ticks most of the boxes.
Developed in HTML5 by Javelin Group, the site promises wine lovers an extensive range of wines, champagnes, beers, spirits and soft drinks. Scroll to the bottom of the page and you’ll find a range of other services, company info and links to other sites for those looking for a deeper dive into the world of wine.
There’s a vast amount of content on this site, but the online proposition can’t be mistaken: Majestic is in the business of providing detailed product information, and making it very easy for you to purchase. You’ll find LOTS of calls to action on this site to maximize conversion. Starting with the home page carousel – rich in time sensitive offers “2 weeks left, Shop now >” “Hurry! Special offers ending. Shop online now >”.
The registration page is intuitive, and requests the minimum data capture. I particularly like the post code look up feature – which lets me select my address from a drop down list, saving the hassle of typing my full address – perfect if completing on a mobile phone with limited time available and your thumb rather than a keyboard. Age verification is included, of course.
Returning visitors get a single ‘My Account’ dashboard with all the important info – Profile, Order History, My Favourites, Address Book (surely not just their numerous addresses, but their contacts for regular gifts), Card Details, My Reviews. This site does Personalisation very well.
There’s plenty of info on My Local (Store) too. I spotted six updates for the last week alone, and a Store events calendar for tastings.
If you’re open to suggestions, the featured wines section is a neat feature – with ratings for Grape, Taste (dry to sweet slider scale), Enjoy (serving suggestions). Oh, and customer reviews, in case you have any reason to doubt the comments of their well informed and ever polite store staff, whose personal favourites, years of service and indulgences and noted in the ‘Meet the team’ section alongside a string of well written tweets enticing followers in-store for tastings.
Any improvements here? Majestic is missing a trick not capturing mobile numbers to use for SMS reminders alongside email and postal addresses. It would be handy to link my online purchase history to my newly created online account. And the welcome email arrived promptly, but was not mobile optimised, and surprisingly did not include a Call to Action to get me on the site to start shopping.
Search & Navigation (4/5)
How is Majestic driving site traffic? Their search team is certainly up to speed with optimised mobile search – both natural and paid.
The SEO returns include deep links to the relevant landing page, rather than taking browsers to the home page and hoping they can find their own way.
On PPC, Majestic uses ad word extensions for location, click to call, and deep links, plus opening times before clicking onto the site. Google estimates 85% of mobile searches have location intent … a point not lost on Majestic. My search return include my three closest stores, distances, directions and phone numbers shown prominently.
I didn’t spot any mobile banner ads promoting the new service, nor have I spotted competitor ads, which means Majestic could well deliver strong share of voice with ads using precise targeting tactics to maximize reach of Majestic’s various customer segments on relevant sites.
Navigation is a key differentiator on mobile. Majestic offers different versions of its site depending on the device of use. For example, those planning weddings using iPads can access a neat Wedding Drink Calculator to help with planning the drinks budget (e.g. select number of guests, x 4 glasses of bubbly per person plus x glasses of red, white, beer etc etc). If, like me, you’ve got a few daughters with weddings ahead, this bit is very important. Nice touch to include the ‘Always remember to drink responsibly’ link here.
Smartphone users on iOS and Android devices are not offered this feature, which makes sense as you’re likely to use a bigger screen for this type of planning activity. Likewise, organizing a tasting and glass loan are offered to tablet users, not those on smartphones.
Any improvements? Not much. The ‘More about this wine’ videos are slow to download. It’s very interesting to hear the winemaker’s carefully considered pitch on aromas, tones and flavour spectrums, but 30 seconds is just too long to wait for the download, even when browsing on WiFi. I reckon the 90 second video rule could be applied here. The smartphone navigation could be more imaginative – with wine based icons replacing a vertical list of clickable section headings.
Categories & Product on offer (4/5)
Extremely detailed product information provided, as expected. Majestic asked its team of wine experts from across the UK to make ‘If you like that, you’ll love….’ suggestions for products across the range. They gathered over 125,000 recommendations, bringing the expert advice Majestic Wine customers receive in-store to life on the web. This feature will surely help to engage customers and drive incremental sales.
I like the detailed filters for wine category, price range (using a slider), and star ratings. Drill deeper and you can filter further by producer, bottle closure, vintage and Abv, reviews by staff or press, and media winners. Once again, this detailed info is easy sort.
Other services – party, gifts, wedding are well presented here. If you’re going through the motions yourself, and you’re juggling a never ending list of wedding planning jobs, you will love the winning ingredient here – speed and intuitive user experience. I particularly like the step by step guide to ‘Make your wedding gift list with Majestic’, including help with producing invite slips to send with your wedding invitations, and a unique web address to email guests along with the How to Order guide.
The data section for the wedding couple to complete is simple, and includes the wedding date, a useful bit of info for Majestic’s CRM database … I wonder if Majestic sends couples a bottle or two to celebrate their wedding anniversaries? Now that would surely help build long term loyalty.
Any improvement here? Again, I sense Majestic is missing a trick by not collecting mobile numbers which could be used for location based SMS alerts about offers, or mobile vouchers to drive footfall.
Payment process & check out (5/5)
Asking for money is always the delicate bit. I like Majestic’s approach and tone of voice on the trolley page: “We’re ‘glass half full’ people at Majestic, so we like to think that an empty trolley is simply a trolley waiting to be filled! We hope you agree, so let’s start shopping …”
The check out process is well designed, loads quickly and is easy to complete. The payment platform makes it easy for tablet and smartphone users to amend their orders, add promo codes, and see recently viewed items before getting to the payments section. The minimum online order value of 6 bottles, and minimum £40 order value for free delivery are clearly stated early in the check out process to avoid any last minute surprises which trigger so much basket abandonment.
All the important payment options are available, including PayPal. Can’t see how to improve this.
Post purchase (3/5)
Time will tell, as I’ve just completed my first purchase.
Prominent Facebook and Twitter links on the homepage reveal a vibrant social media presence for Majestic, with news and views on wine posted by the brand and its followers from wine regions near and far – including virtual tours of the Battersea store, photos from ‘Battle of Wine’ in Rioja to get the 12,000 Facebook followers excited about booking their own local wine tasting, or vine based posts from recent trips to, Argentina and Australia.
As expected, there’s a Newsletter sign up.
It appears Majestic got started with a native app before delivering this site. The Majestic Wine Academy in iTunes is an in-depth quiz challenging wine aficionados to scale the heights on their leaderboard. It gets very mixed reviews – an average 3 star rating – including equal numbers of 5 stars. “Fun”. “Knowledge is superb” balanced with the usual batch of critics: “Total waste of time. No wine offers no nothing”. Oh well.
The user experience is overwhelmingly positive – easy to find, navigate and use, comprehensive and enjoyable. Whilst rich in product detail and providing excellent customer service, Majestic Wine is in the business of selling wine in a very competitive sector. That’s clear to see throughout the site. Critically, the tone of voice is appropriate, and the incentives are appealing – whether providing regular prompts to pull customers in-store, or selling online with providing a hassle free check-out and payment process. This is what mobile and tablet based retail is all about.
I wonder if Majestic will share this great resource across their retail outlets by giving store staff iPads? And roll out WiFi to encourage in-shop browsing?
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