You see an advertisement on social media from a brand that is promoting its products. Finding it interesting, you click through the ad to reach their store.
After you’re done browsing through a few of their products, you’re bombarded with an email popup asking you to subscribe to their newsletter in turn for a 10% discount.
What are the odds that you will subscribe to this brand?
Most likely, you will simply close the popup. You just discovered this brand. These are your first few visits to the store.
You’re obviously not sure if you trust them enough and are skeptical about being spammed with irrelevant emails.
But as an online store owner, you just lost your chance to turn a shopper into a customer. Simply because you couldn’t engage them enough to turn them into subscribers first.
So does that say that email popups are not effective? No.
There’s just no way to reach out to them on a 1:1 basis, except setting up more ads.
It simply says that the popup strategy your eCommerce business has been using is dead.
That’s where gamification comes in.
What is gamification?
Gabe Zichermann, the co-author of Gamification by Design, defined gamification as a play of 75% psychology and 25% technology.
It taps into the psychological behaviors of a person that impacts their day-to-day purchase decisions, providing a platform for competition and nudging them to interact with a brand on a deeper level to get value.
Now if you thought all this is unnecessary and just a hindrance getting more sales, know this – Stewart Agency doubled their email subscriptions in three months by simply using gamification.
How to gamify your eCommerce store
To successfully implement gamification, you need to understand who your target shopper is, your existing site visitors and their consumer psychology behind interacting with your brand the way they do.
And then you need to put all that data to use to enhance their experience!
Here are a few ways in which your eCommerce store can gamify the shopping experience for greater conversions and sales.
1. Gamify your email popups
Instead of the usual popups that offer a discount coupon in lieu of the shopper’s email address, create gamified popups using tools like WooHoo.
While these popups are targeted at building your email list too, they take the interaction made a step further, involving the shopper with your brand to get the coupon.
A few games that the top-grossing stores are using include:
Game of cards
Everyone enjoys a quick game of cards with friends. So let’s start by being friends with your shoppers.
Throw them a challenge to show you how good they are at cards.
The card dance game asks them to switch cards to reveal what they will win – in this case, not poker chips, but definitely a coupon they can use to get massive savings on the purchase they make.
Wheel of coupons
One of the most common and popular games that each one of us has played at some point in time, is spin-the-wheel.
Instead of the conventional email popups, target them with a spinning wheel.
Ask them to spin the wheel to win coupons – where the trigger stops is what the shopper gets. Use the wheel to offer different types of discounts – personalized coupons, in-store cash, etc.
Win a gift
Imagine walking home and seeing five gifts lying on the table. Now all the gifts have different things inside and one actually might be empty too.
Imagine having to guess and pick just one of the boxes – whatever you get, is what you take home.
Keeping the shopper guessing is a great way to keep them engaged!
Reel of coupons
Ever played the game of spinning the reel to match elements and win more coins to play more at a gaming center?
This one’s pretty much similar to that, keeping the shopper’s heart racing for what they are about to win or whether they will win.
The better the alignment of the elements in the reel, the bigger the discount they get on the purchase.
2. Gamify your web push notifications
On-site gamification is just one step towards turning a visitor into a customer.
You can get a shopper to share their email address with you when they win a coupon, but that doesn’t mean they will use it on that visit to make a purchase.
That’s where you need to gamify your strategy to bring them back to your store once they leave.
With web push notifications, you can do this easily. Send them a quick message nudging them to complete an action to win something that makes their purchase total lesser – for instance, ask them to create a wishlist!
The action you nudge though the web push notification also helps you collect more data about the shopper. You can use this data to then create more targeted and personalized remarketing campaigns.
3. Gamify your email campaign
Emails are one of the most effective channels when it comes to converting a visitor who has left your website.
So much so that it is reported to deliver a 4400% ROI on every $1 spent. So why just stick to sending the usual weekly newsletters and transactional emails when you can do so much more?
Along with your usual product recommendation or new launch message, add a little gamification to your email.
Tell the recipient how they stand a chance to win something additional for completing an action.
You could use this gamification tactic to get more reviews on your products, nudge them to create more wishlists that can be used for retargeting personalization, get more referred customers and more.
With smart apps like Klaviyo, you can automate your gamified emails to keep your shoppers engaged with the brand.
4. Gamify social media
Similarly, you could use gamification in your social media campaigns by running contests.
Use these contests to get more user-generated content, create a buzz around your brand and get more customers.
All you need to do is understand what type of shoppers your store gets and what will make them want to participate.
To make your social media gamification campaigns convert higher, leverage apps like Jumper.ai.
Instead of just participating in a campaign, the posts you make become more interactive and enable the shopper to click through and know more about the product, increasing the chances of them turning into a customer.
Does gamification really work?
The human brain is wired to interact and engage with what we find interesting or out of the box.
That’s why when we walk into a store that makes a special effort to make our shopping experience better, we go back for more. The same holds true when it comes to online stores.
While with on-site optimization you can make the shopping experience seamless, the only way to add a little fun to it is through gamification and personalization.
Stores like ICONICK noticed that active shoppers on their store were engaging more with gamified popups using WooHoo in comparison to the regular ones.
The store saw a 9.8% capture rate amidst those targeted with a game, increasing their on-site conversions and sales.
The more interesting you make the game and what’s to win, the higher are the conversions on your email popup. But what’s interesting is that you can do more than just build your email list with it.
You can increase product discoverability, reduce product page and cart abandonment, turn existing customers into repeat sales and nudge first time purchases. All without sounding too pushy!
Have you gamified your popups yet?
About the author
Vanhishikha Bhargava is the Content Marketer at WooHoo, a smart eCommerce app for creating gamified email popups that increase conversions. She’s constantly on the lookout for growth strategies and you can follow her posts here.