We are trying to “step into the shoes” of women. To understand them and to give them what they are looking for. Interview with founders of Insightland – Katarzyna Iwanich & Irena Zobniów
Insightland is all about the power of women. Women run the agency and focus on the women’s market segment. Tell us how this customers segment, its expectations and online behaviors have changed over the last year.
Irena Zobniów: It’s difficult to speak of any significant change over the course of one year or even several years. However, it’s worth noting that online shopping has won women’s trust much faster than is the case with men. This is particularly striking with e-commerce in the fashion industry. Many of our clients’ data show that women usually make up as much as 60-70 percent of these brands users.
Interestingly and perhaps contradicting somehow the stereotypes about women’s indecisiveness, we have observed over the last years a tendency to make purchase decisions quicker. When compared to men, a shorter online store session completed with conversion – understood as purchase-making – may indicate that women have come to appreciate the time savings offered by online shopping. While visiting an online store, they often already have clear expectations and needs as well as a defined budget. E-commerce owners need to address the challenges set by customers, reach out to them, make the shopping easier and more efficient, shorten it and thus speed up the decision-making process. Prompt provision of information sought by customers increases the chances of closing the transaction and often-times translates into a higher order value at the checkout.
Katarzyna Iwanich: It’s no longer only the price that matters in the e-commerce channel. Tasteful and accurate photos not only of the entire product, but of its details as well, a full product description, its origin information – that’s what customers expect. Creativity and focusing on their users’ needs enables online stores to gain competitive advantage and win their customers’ loyalty (for example, by adding descriptors “larger than standard size, buy smaller” or “undersized”, or not restricting the filter options only to “plus size”, but expanding them by “for tall” or “petite” categories.).
It’s also worth mentioning that women more and more often make purchasing decisions not only in the women’s range, but also as regards typically male products. Orders for men’s products (clothing, footwear) are frequently placed by women. Thus, it’s the target which we should intensively consider and address, regardless of the products range or the industry we operate in.
What kind of customers are women? What makes them different and how to talk to them to get the message across? Does gender influence purchasing decisions?
IZ: Perhaps yes, to some extent. But I wouldn’t make generalizations. Definitely, when making online purchasing decisions women pay attention to other aspects than men. They study more details and take notice of the way a product is presented, its description and possible applications. Useful how-to content plays an important role in their decision making. They look for reliable, straightforward information, and not for marketing gibberish. Communication tailored to women should not only interest and inspire them, but also needs to answer all their questions and clear up any doubts.
KI: The stereotypes that women make decisions hastily, in a carefree way, and without giving it much thought still exist in the society. It’s nonsense. Before deciding to buy, woman — by far more often than men — compare products and their functions, use price comparison engines, analyze blog and forum reviews, look for influencers’ recommendations, read rankings and check out test reports. Their purchasing decisions are highly conscious and well thought-out.
You work with a variety of clients, but is it fair to say that you specialize in “women’s e-commerce?”
IZ: Yes, and this is what we deliberately strive for. With many years of work and dozens successfully completed projects, we’ve gained skills, experience and vast cross-functional know-how. Not only do we provide quality SEO services, but we also act as a partner and strategic advisor, helping our clients to build credible and female-friendly e-commerce and create brands of choice. The fashion industry, for instance, offers a huge range of possibilities in this respect.
KI: I’d even go to say that we are the only SEO agency on the Polish market that specializes in female e-commerce. I need to stress out here that it’s not that we have some magic knowledge about women (laughing). We simply attach great importance to analyzing relevant data. We look for regularities, repetitive patterns, we try to “step into their shoes,” understand and provide them with what they seek for, what they need, and solve some of their problems, give them answers. We draw conclusions from data and find universal insights in their intricate paths-to-purchase.
You mentioned the fashion industry, for which this year was quite challenging, I guess. The Covid-19 pandemics messed up a lot of plans, forced priorities and sales strategy changes. Did long-term, consistently implemented SEO strategies help the industry survive this difficult time? In short, does the money invested in SEO translate into hard numbers; is it an investment that pays off?
IZ: Paradoxically, it was 2020 that positively validated SEO investments. It was extremely challenging year for numerous sectors. E-commerce businesses fought even more fiercely for customers. But it took a different fight, for many advertising budgets were heavily reduced or completely abolished. Well-knit and consistently implemented SEO strategies proved to be lifeline.
KI: Exactly. These changes were especially seen in Q2 and Q3 of 2020. Businesses cut costs, dropped paid advertising campaigns in the first place, and reduced media spending. SEO budgets remained intact, since they produced a steady and reliable outcome. Simply put, they generated sales with relatively small financial outlays. Organic remained undefeated and showed its strength. The analysis of sales channels and detailed organic traffic at our clients’ proves that the company generated sales increases higher than estimated for this channel at the beginning of 2020. I recommend reading our recent case study for the Medicine brand. Successfully implemented SEO strategies and their impact on online business can be seen on its example.
Finally, apparently there’s nothing impossible for women. SEO without borders, meaning comprehensive customer service in various markets and languages; is it feasible? Is it the industry’s future? Are these the expectations of customers who are comfortable operating in different markets at the same time?
IZ: I don’t know if this is the future of the entire industry, but it is certainly our strong differentiator and a huge asset. Since the very beginning of Insightland we’ve focused on growth in foreign markets. Our international team allows us to successfully work not only for clients in Poland, but throughout Europe and the United States.
KI: The key to success is a dedicated and tailored strategy as well as daily close partnership with the client. Understanding the local market realities and specifics of a given sector is crucial. With our partners and co-workers on international markets where we currently run SEO campaigns, we have this knowledge. The borders do not present any problems. Our clients’ decisions, who fearlessly entrust us with new markets abroad, are the best evidence of our skills and competencies.
Last Updated on May 21, 2021 by Łukasz