Shopify Ecosystem

DTC Diagnostic Part 3: Website Analysis


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Welcome to part three of our four-part deep dive into the marketing strategies of DTC sneaker brands Atoms, Vessi, and Cariuma. 

If you haven’t read the first two parts, start by catching up with our Facebook Ads and Email analysis

For this section, we’ve partnered with Oddit to analyze each of the brands’ websites. Oddit provides simple, to-the-point website audits for direct-to-consumer brands wanting to boost conversion and strengthen brand loyalty. 

The Oddit team has highlighted areas for improvement from each brand’s website and offered quick-win solutions they can apply ASAP. 

P.S. Look for tips from the Pilothouse team throughout! 👀

Let’s Jump/Run In: 

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The homepage is most users’ first interaction with your brand. Make sure your H1 is big and clear, plus make it known that you’ve got over 3,000 five-star reviews. 

A prominent header and social proof helps start users off on the right foot (get it? 😆)

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Pilothouse Tip: The banner “Free Standard Shipping over $80 + Free Exchanges for the United States” should follow users as they scroll down the page. Make it a sticky banner! 

Color Options: 

Vessi has great colorways, but the two-tone circles make it confusing.

Flipping back and forth between colors creates decision fatigue and as a result, sales are lost. 

Consider integrating a variant selector that shows the physical shoes to reduce a user’s need to switch back and forth between colors. 

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Pilothouse Tip: The testimonials on Vessi’s product pages are easily lost at the bottom. We’d suggest moving them farther up the page so users have a better chance of seeing those five-star reviews. 🤩

Category Pages: 

For category pages, it’s important to make actions easy to understand and click. 

This page explains the product types and provides a selector that scrolls users down, but doesn’t display the products. 

Further, it’s unclear that the three sneaker types are buttons. 

Adding the sneaker images grabs the user’s eye while eliminating the need for shoppers to make their own interpretation of what “Everyday,” “Weekend,” and “Cityscape” shoes are. 

Less interpretation = more sales

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The brand’s reviews look like they’ve scraped together text from friends and family. It’s not believable. 🤨

Display robust and real reviews with more context.

Similar to Vessi, Cariuma has thousands of great reviews. Make them known! 

Pilothouse Tip: On the homepage, Cariuma features their best sellers. It’s a great move. People want to know what everyone else bought. Include this on your own site! 

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Great press is more impactful when users can see what publications wrote about the product. 

Pick the most household logos and display a pull-quote to build strong brand equity! 💪

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Pilothouse Tip: Similar to Vessi’s website, we’d suggest implementing a sticky banner and bolding “Free Fast Shipping and Extended Returns” so customers don’t miss it!  

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Product Pages

There are certain “rules” guiding how specific elements in eCommerce are expected to work. One example is a brand’s logo redirecting to the homepage. 

Product pages are another example where it’s best to keep things simple and expected.  

The current page, with product details on the left, is better suited for products where features are the selling point, rather than visual aesthetic. 

The Oddit layout works well specifically for visual products because people read from left to right, so they’ll see the product image FIRST. 

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We’ve said it once and we’ll say it again… DISPLAY REVIEWS. 

When you have this many strong reviews, utilize them as often as possible. They’re especially beneficial higher up in the funnel when you’re still building trust. 

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Limited-Time Offers

It’s important your limited-time offers aren’t lost in the weeds. 

We’d suggest adding a delayed pop-up with a clear message and easy exit points to help transition users into a “checkout” mindset faster. 

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The cart is a great place to upsell especially when there’s reason to spend more money.

A free shipping upsell is great because it feels like a value-add, not just another promotion. 

Atoms could take it a step further and recommend products that are often bought together. 😎

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Pilothouse Tip: Atoms’ homepage hero graphic says “Comfort You Can Count on.” 

The brand’s largest competitive difference quarter sizing. This is unheard of in the footwear industry. 

Instead of competing on “comfort” which is a difficult attribute to own, they should use this space to make quarter sizing better known!  

Product Pages

Currently, the product pages end with reviews. 

Increase add-to-cart by giving users somewhere to go! 🛒

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Homepage Reviews

Whitespace is your friend, but too much can make the text feel unimportant. 

Increase the review font size, and tweak the yellow bar so it looks and feels like a tab selector. 

Adding lines to represent the five reviews makes it a clear action point. 

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Pilothouse Tip: On the homepage, we’d suggest Atoms makes it more obvious what their differentiators are. 

This small paragraph briefly explains what makes them great, but the text is easy to miss. 

Further, we’d suggest swapping out this image. It doesn’t make sense to write “laces that you’ll never need to tie again” but feature someone tying their shoes. 😬 

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CTA Buttons: 

Your CTA’s should be easier to spot than the Eiffel tower. 

Giving core actions like “Shop Now” much higher contrast will boost conversions and help create a better-branded experience. 

We’d also suggest testing the price directly in the CTA button.

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That’s all for this round of DTC Diagnostics. 

We’ll be finishing off the series next weekend with a look at each brand’s Google strategy! 

If you liked what the Oddit team had to say and you want personalized insights to enhance your brand’s website, you can start your own Oddit today to get one free quick win to improve your UX instantly.  


United By Blue Generates Over 80x ROI With SMS Marketing

SMS is booming, and strategic D2C brands like United By Blue are all in with Yotpo SMS

The platform empowers United By Blue to create personal, 1:1 conversations via text, enabling the brand to grow, segment, and target their audience with custom-fit messages.

United By Blue attracted over 1,000 SMS subscribers on the first day of launch, and continues to foster meaningful relationships with these subscribers through Yotpo’s SMS flows. 

The brand’s customized welcome flow — which is personalized based on purchase historyhas seen 23x ROI, and their abandoned cart flow — reminding shoppers of the items they left behind — resulted in over $50k in revenue.

By engaging each customer at the right time, with a message that is unique to them, United By Blue has generated over 80x ROI.

Want to learn how they drove such high engagement and revenue with SMS?

Read about United By Blue’s SMS marketing strategy, and get their advice for launching an SMS channel in Yotpo’s case study here.


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Our most recent All Killer No Filler podcast featured Pilothouse Copywriter Alora Bossy and Email Campaign Manager Graham Battie. 

They broke down how to ace copywriting for email campaigns, and gave a behind-the-scenes look at a few success campaigns they collaborated on.

Our biggest 🤯 moment? 

In 2021, $18B in sales will be left in abandoned carts.

Email flows are your opportunity to improve your customer service experience and secure those sales. 

Speak to your customers based on where they are in their journey with the most relevant intent-based language – this will increase your conversions. 

This could mean creating custom abandoned cart flows for specific product categories, or even specific products. The more relevance and congruence you can create in your CX, the better your recovery rates will be!

The pod includes a detailed breakdown of this strategy, plus more insights on: 

🚀 Prioritizing content based on actions customers take on your site.

💰 Why referral programs are the best way to mobilize your most loyal customers.

✅ Inside a recent mother’s day email segmentation campaign.

📱 The future of AI and copywriting.

🎧 Listen Here! 

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Special thanks to our friends at Pilothouse for their insights on this topic.
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