the body shop

5 Tips for Black Friday Shopping

by Jamie Sanford on November 22, 2015

It’s that time of year again, when everyone gets together to celebrate gluttony and the joining of Native Americans and the Pilgrims, and then use all of that carb energy for shopping at ridiculous hours.

BLACK FRIDAY.

I have only done the Black Friday thing once, getting up at 4am to go buy a television. It was a hot deal at the time and we still have the TV, so 7 or so years ago, it was worth it to freeze in the parking lot of that 6th Ave Electronics. However, since then, I have not had anything that I needed so badly that I wanted to get up that early, or stay up that late.

Online shopping is another story, I had some GREAT buys last year online, and I think it will only get better this year. I know that people will be doing both in-person and online shopping, so here are my Top 5 Tips for Black Friday Shopping.

1. Evaluate your needs, right now.

What do you really need? When we bought a TV on Black Friday, we were replacing a ye olde television that had seen better days. If you’ve been thinking about replacing something for a while, Black Friday is definitely a good opportunity to purchase that item at a reduced price.

2. Evaluate your gift list.

As mentioned in my post on starting your holiday shopping early, there’s no shame in the sale game. If you can get a great gift for someone and can save a little money in the process, then have at it. Review the list of gifts you still have to buy for the holidays, and see if you can match up your list with a Black Friday opportunity.


3. Do your research.

Black Friday is full of tricks and vague language. In addition, the sale items can at times be inferior. If you want a 1080p flat screen TV, the one on sale is probably 720. Look around online for the item you’re interested in, figure out the specs that are important to you, and note the prices of items that meet your requirements. This will give you a clear look at how good the sale prices really are.

4. Sign up for emails and connect on social channels with your favorite retailers.

If you aren’t already receiving emails from sites you shop at often, or if you don’t get emails from brands you are already a fan of, now is the time to sign up for emails. You can always unsubscribe from these emails later, and it’s worth it to get the alerts to all of the holiday special offers. I recommend Amazon, Ulta, and The Body Shop in particular, they are some of my favorites. Ulta has exclusive LORAC palettes for Black Friday, and The Body Shop always has some hot deals as well.

Also, connect on Facebook or Instagram with your favorite brick-and-mortar retailers. Exclusive offers are often available through one channel only, and while it might bog down your newsfeed for a few weeks, you can always un-like after the holidays, and get a few hot deals for your trouble.

5. Have fun!

This was also the last tip in my early holiday shopping tips list, but it really is the most important. Stressing out like mad to save $50 on a Blu-Ray player is not worth it. If you know that going out at 4am to shop will make you cranky, stay home and wait for Cyber Monday specials to flow into your inbox or Twitter feed on Monday morning. If you love the rush of standing outside big box stores for a hot deal on a Crock Pot, then you should definitely do that. Enjoy the process!

Let me know your tips for Black Friday shopping in the comments!

{ Comments on this entry are closed }

The Body Shop Hemp Sale | Brand Experience Project

by Jamie Sanford on June 6, 2013

Click here for all posts in the Brand Experience Project.

I will be back in a few weeks with full brand explorations, but this week I wanted to acknowledge and discuss a sale from earlier this year at The Body Shop.

I received this email on April 19, at 11pm. I don’t remember if The Body Shop has done this in the past, but it really is taking the cannabis culture celebration of 4/20 to a wonderful place.

I started using Hemp products from The Body Shop somewhere in 1999-2001, after being exposed to the Hemp Hand Protector. It’s super moisturizing, and I love the smell, although I’m sure it isn’t for everyone. The hand protector retails regularly for $20, so a 4 items for $20 special was INSANE and I could not resist.  I purchased 2 hemp lip balms, 3 hemp hand protectors, 1 hemp hand wash, 1 hemp foot protector, and 1 hemp hand oil. I got all 8 items for $40, which is a truly hot deal.

Here’s the brand experience question about this event. Do you think The Body Shop took a chance by embracing the obvious connection to the celebration of 4/20? I’m sure there are people who would see this and be turned off because they are anti-drug. The same path could lead me to think that maybe they would not immediately get this reference and skip over the email.

The hemp branding on the packaging isn’t exactly hiding the connection, so if you know what a marijuana plant looks like, putting the pieces together isn’t too tricky. Maybe The Body Shop decided they didn’t care about this a long time ago. You can click reference to buy medical marijuana here.

For me as a customer, I see this as genius, because I get a kick out of the idea behind the sale. Also, I received 75% off on products that I love, so it was that much better.

What do you think of this sale event and the possible repercussions? Let me know in the comments.

Save

{ Comments on this entry are closed }

The Body Shop | Brand Experience Project

by Jamie Sanford on April 4, 2013

Click here for all posts in the Brand Experience Project.

This post was born from a need to replace a tube of The Body Shop Hemp Hand Protector that I think I had for around 5 years. It was finally time to reorder, so naturally, I documented the process.

Shopping

I really like the homepage navigation callout for “What’s Hot” menu choices. These are also available in the top nav bar, but I think the immediate recognition of what is most popular is fantastic. As I’ve mentioned before, I also really like a clear and prominent mention of what I have to do to get free shipping. It’s right at the top!

My first menu choice was Skin Care/Top Rated.

Other than not seeing the relation between the description and the section name, I really like the simple and unobtrusive headers.

After adding some face wash to my cart from the Top Rated section, I used Shop Ingredients/Hemp as my next menu choice. I REALLY like the Shop Ingredients option. I think this is especially appropriate for The Body Shop.

The header on this page (the section header, not the overall site header) is great, showing a group shot of the collection, and a great description of the Hemp line of products.

I don’t find much fault with the individual product pages. Super clear, great product information. Reviews are easy to find, and the page takes into account that I already have something in my cart and tells me how much more to spend to get free shipping. I love how right underneath that, it’s also telling me how much I WILL have to pay for shipping if I don’t reach the predetermined free shipping amount.

Added to my cart. Pretty basic, and really selling that free shipping option.

I decided to check out the full shipping page, and WOW, I love this. The information given here is really precise and detailed. This is when they will be processing orders, this is how long each step takes, this is an explanation of the information you will receive—I find this very impressive.

Checkout

This was my cart. Simple layout, easy to add additional items, there is information on the loyalty program, and as before, an indication of how much more to spend for free shipping. I had what I needed so I decided to pay the $5.95. I certainly will not forget that any future purchases from The Body Shop will have free shipping if I spend more than $50. I do wish that the link to the shipping information was not grouped in with the Verisign logo. I had completely missed that and my proofreader caught it. I completely glossed over it, and when I went back to click it, it opens the shipping info in the same window, which is a pet peeve of mine. Don’t make your users leave the page from which they buy things.

Three customer types! However, my issue with guest checkout is this: Since you have to hand over a bunch of information to make a purchase, why would you not simply create an account? It’s maybe 1 or 2 additional fields. I’m guessing there is enough data regarding page abandonment when people think they have to create an account to justify telling them that they don’t have to. As always, wishing I had access to statistics.

I see this all the time now, and appreciate the step to make my order more shipping-friendly.

All of the checkout information is on one page, which is expected at this point. I especially like this more than the tabbed versions I see where it makes it difficult to look back at your previous steps. I do wish there was a link to that amazing shipping information page in the shipping section, or a pop-up containing it, because it is incredibly helpful.

I do not understand how a website that has been so well-designed wouldn’t give you the option to also print a receipt. I see that I’ll receive something in my inbox, but I don’t think the effort for a printed receipt is too tricky.

I really like the social sharing option for shopping. It’s more of a “why not” than a “why” at this point.

Here’s my email confirmation. It is clear here that if I did not create an account during checkout, I will have to rely solely on emails to track my order. This is another instance where I wish I had access to a company’s data on how many guest checkouts they have in comparison to those with accounts.

Packaging

My package arrived 6 days after my order was placed.

Although the box seems to have taken a bit of a hit during transport, I’m still pleased. I also really like the customization on the outside. I had to go back to the website to find out what Wood Positive meant. The site says that The Body Shop is committed to growing more wood than is used in their packaging.

Here’s the open box. Note the folded packing list, which arrived in fine condition. The customized packaging continues on the inside as well.

Here’s a shot of the interior printing on the box.

I found this stamp on the packing list. Someone with a number packed my order with care. I find this to be a good way to suggest personal handling without the issues that might come along with sharing someone’s name. This hasn’t stopped Neiman Marcus though.

Here is a helpful message about product delivery and easy instructions on finding return information.

There should be little bubble hearts around this image, because this packaging was SO nice. Yes, that is basic brown paper, but The Body Shop has taken the time to very securely wrap my items, and add a little extra touch with the logo sticker. This is what this project is about. The Body Shop has taken completely standard packaging materials and made me really happy because of the extra effort to treat my purchase this well.

The last image from the package opening experience. My not-too-delicate items, packaged in a lovely cocoon of basic brown packing paper. Sure, I like fancier wrapping too, but The Body Shop has made their mission to not be wasteful with packaging very clear, and they’ve done wonderful things with the packaging materials they have chosen.

Report Card

Other than some small issues, The Body Shop performed incredibly well. I will definitely be going back for more!

As always, I am interested in comments on this post and also suggestions for sites to shop on in the future for the project. Thanks for reading!

Save

{ Comments on this entry are closed }