DTC Boardroom

DTC Boardroom Kuro Footware

September 17, 2022

Welcome back to another installment of the DTC Boardroom series, where we ask our podcast guests to dive into their personal picks for the most exciting strategies and tactics to help brands WIN BIG! 🙌

Today’s guest is Sean McGinnis, President and Integrator at KURU Footwear, a DTC shoe brand that makes stylish shoes for foot pain.

Sean has been a digital marketing leader and business executive since 2006. He’s led customer acquisition and lead gen for Fortune 50 and start up companies across a wide breadth of products and services.

Today, Sean shares how KURU Footwear increased their conversion rate (CVR) by 95%. 🤯

Let’s dive in 👇

Every DTC brand has only three main ways to grow revenue. You can either:

  1. Increase visitors,
  2. Increase average order value,
  3. Or increase the conversion rate of your web store.

Improve any of these main vectors, and your revenue will increase accordingly. 📈

I will share with you the specific actions we at KURU Footwear took to nearly double our conversion rate between 2019 and 2021.

🚨 First, a disclaimer.

Since joining KURU, one way we’ve increased CVR across the website has been to focus on more qualified traffic. I’m going to discount that specific tactic and instead focus on the conversion rate of our Direct Channel in Google Analytics.

Between 2019 and 2021, we increased the conversion rate of that specific channel by 95%. We’ve done several things to achieve those improvements.

1️⃣ Increased font size

When guests land on your website, they want a clean and clear experience. No hidden pathways and no inaccessible information.

One of the first things KURU did late in 2019, increased the font size across the site. We upped the font by FOUR sizes and darkened the text. We applied this change to every section of the website.

Remember that many visitors will be viewing on mobile, so the mobile user experience is key!

We used archive.org to take a peek back at what our site used to look like… On the left, you’ll see our prior approach, and on the right, our current.

After making this change, we saw our overall conversion rate increase by more than 10%.

Legibility and accessibility matter. 👏

2️⃣ Persistent free shipping banner

As a modern shoe brand, KURU has always offered:

  • Free shipping,
  • Free exchanges,
  • Free returns on all orders in the US.

That message was shown across the site but not in a particularly obvious location.

In Spring 2020, as COVID began, we tested a persistent FREE SHIPPING bar at the top of the website. 👇

When we added this black bar, conversion rates skyrocketed 20%+ higher immediately. Ensure your most important messages are everywhere on the site (or at least in the most obvious location).

3️⃣ Site speed improvements

Over the last two years, we have strongly focused on improving our site speed. The first few seconds a visitor is on your page impacts their impression of your brand and their chances of conversion!

For ease of use, we use the site speed measure in Google Analytics as a proxy and measure it weekly. It’s one of our most important measures. 🎯

Across the year 2019, we averaged 7.43 seconds. We reduced that to 5.04 seconds for 2021.

We still have a long way to go before hitting our goals, but that improvement significantly drove increased conversion rates. 📈

The above three factors are the main drivers of our conversion rate improvement between 2019 and 2021…

But, there’s one other factor we discovered late in 2021 that we are now actively managing: inventory levels.

4️⃣ Inventory levels

For the last two years, we’ve suffered difficult times due to inventory shortages during the summer months.

To address this, we analyzed the financial and conversion rate impact of top sellers that were out of stock. 👀

In an attempt to minimize the noise and isolate the impact, we looked at the in-stock rate of our Top 7 styles across the website. We correlated that stock level with the buy-to-detail rate (Google Analytics > Conversions > Product Performance > Buy-to-Detail Rate) of our non-brand paid search traffic segment.

The correlation between those two data point ranges was between .80 and .87 (depending on whether looking at weekly or monthly data).

To solve that problem and improve our website’s conversion rate, we’ve focused on keeping our best sellers in stock as much as possible. ⭐️

Not every brand can manage inventory levels this way, especially those with a broad SKU assortment and lengthy lead times. Still, our inventory levels have been a strong focus area throughout 2022.

Paying to create demand (website traffic) you cannot fulfill is a recipe for disaster.

✨ Conclusion

Not all of these action items will apply to your brand, but these have been the foundation of how we’ve improved our conversion rate over the last three years.

As we migrate from Magento to Shopify Plus (scheduled launch in September 2022!) we’ll embark on another, more traditional UI/UX redesign project to improve our conversion rates even further! Exciting times ahead!

If you have any tips your brand has used to increase your conversion rate, reply to this email and we’ll share our favorites!

Happy Saturday! 👋

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