Chronicles Put the Rooster Tile Near the Chicken Towel
Chris was the marketing manager for a uniform catalog. Taking the lead from fashion catalogs, he repaginated by outfits. Every product presentation would now show a jacket with a coordinating top, pants and shoes. The hope was to increase average order sizes.
The result? Lower sales and gripes from customers. "I'm confused." "I can't find the shoes I usually order." "Can't you put all the lab coats in one place so I can compare?" His customers shopped by function, and needed to see the products in functional (not fashion) groupings. When Chris repaginated by function, sales shot back up.
To contrast Chris' experience:
Brenda was director of a catalog of mixed apparel, gifts and décor. When she came on board, the catalog's pagination grouped all the apparel, jewelry, home décor, etc. Simple, functional, easy to find.
But Brenda thought she could do better. She reorganized the catalog by theme, color and style. She grouped, for example, animal-themed products and sophisticated-style merchandise. And she created beautiful, color-coordinated spreads of mixed products. Sales rose.
Brenda's customers shopped for aesthetic and emotional reasons. Her new pagination caught their eyes and their pocketbooks.
The Inside Back Cover
One catalog mantra goes like this: "30 percent of people read a catalog from back to front, so put top sellers on the inside back cover (IBC) spread." True? Most of the time, yes. Ah, but true for you? Well, not for Bill.
Bill put a great-selling product on the IBC. Its sales fell. He put a medium-seller on the IBC. Its sales fell. Big photo, small photo, themed-product spread, mixed-product spread — none of that mattered. The gift audience of older ladies apparently read the catalog only from front to back. For Bill's catalog, the IBC was never more than an OK spread.