There are a variety of additional features which can be added to the website, to benefit the content and its sales success.
The first of these formats is a pop-up, these are windows that ‘pop-up’ over the top of the webpage (Schofield, 2010). They are used in marketing to gain the attention of web users. There are four types of pop-ups; Time based pop-ups appear after a predetermined amount of time has passed. The second type are content-based, these appear only when the user is visiting a specified page which may be related to the message of the pop-up. The third variety is scroll-based, these appear when the user has scrolled a certain amount down a web page. The final type is a pop-out, these allow the user to continue using the webpage because the pop-out is at the side of the webpage rather than blocking the entire site (Gibbs, 2010).
Pop-ups can annoy visitors, especially those who aren’t familiar with the internet as they can be confusing and unexpected. In some instances they can lead to users immediately leaving the website, this is bad for business as may have prevented a sale. Moreover pop-ups can slow the webpage due to long scripts, this makes the website experience much less initiative for the user and can also lead to them leaving the website (Gibbs, 2010).
On the other hand pop-ups have proven to be successful, this is because they can influence users positively when they are well planned and not so intrusive. One success story is that of ‘Ask-Leo.com’ his site was receiving 10 to 15 subscribers per day, however after adding a pop-up box inviting users to subscribe, his site received between 100 to 150 subscribers (Storefront, 2017). This was backed up by the research of Nikki McGonigal who tested pop-ups on her food craft blog and found that that they had created over 7,000 subscribers, a 1,375% increase (Storefront, 2017).
Therefore I conclude that pop-ups can be negative for businesses because they can turn away potential customers, however when done in the correct method, pop-ups can actually maximise the success of a webpage and therefore business.
The second additional feature I investigated was vouchers, these can be provided through plugins and are timed. They are often linked to an events calendar. Vouchers are a clever way to increase the spending on visiting consumers, this is because consumers will see a percentage discount and want to maximise savings so therefore spend more (Murray-West,2011) . Moreover by increasing the average price of goods the business may look more generous than rivals and increase market share, yet not lose any money or profit. Moreover offering vouchers can increase brand loyalty and increase the chance of repeat purchases being made. On the other hand, consumers may not value discounts, especially as they become increasingly common between companies. Therefore other factors that customers value such as customer service may still be extremely important. Moreover it is inevitable that the company will lose some money in offering discounts, even if this is just the admin costs (Murray-West, 2011). In conclusion vouchers can increase sales and profits for businesses but only when the business is clever with the discounts they offer and increase the average price of the goods they sell.
I implemented two additional features for my website, I added a pop up and an events calendar with a built in timer. The pop up was created using ‘Pop-ups CC’ this had an easy way to create formats as well as apply to the site. The pop up offered the opportunity for my web users to subscribe to the website’s email newsletters for additional content. Although this plugin created a professional pop up, one limitation is that the pop up came up on every single page, this made using the website annoying. This was changed using the advanced settings of the plugin, so that it only appeared on the home screen and only once per internet session, this was much less frustrating for my web users.
The events calendar was created using a plugin called “The Events Calendar”, this allowed me to create events linked to my other social media accounts as well as set a countdown to influence consumers to spend quickly and with me not competitors. Connecting to social media allows me to create a build-up and some interest before the promotional event begins. I added a link to calendar from the homepage of the website.
Storefront Blog. (2017). 17 Pop-Up Store Success Stories You Can Learn From. [online] Available at: http://blog.thestorefront.com/26-ways-you-can-learn-from-26-pop-up-store-success-stories/ [Accessed 4 Apr. 2017].
Gibbs, A. (2015). The power of the pop-up business. [online] CNBC. Available at: http://www.cnbc.com/2015/08/21/f-the-pop-up-business.html [Accessed 4 Apr. 2017].
Murray-West, R. (2011). The pros and cons of voucher codes. [online] Telegraph.co.uk. Available at: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/money-saving-tips/8245213/The-pros-and-cons-of-voucher-codes.html [Accessed 4 Apr. 2017].
Schofield, J. (2010). BBC – WebWise – What are pop-ups, and how do I stop them?. [online] Bbc.co.uk. Available at: http://www.bbc.co.uk/webwise/guides/about-popups [Accessed 4 Apr. 2017].