Why Do Online Valentine’s Day Shoppers Spend More?

February 10, 2014 Dawn Mortensen

Online Valentine’s Day shoppers will spend 31% more than those who purchase items related to Valentine’s Day in a physical store, says the National Retail Federation. Broken down to amount spent per shopper, the average person will spend $133.91, but the average online shopper will spend $175.80.

There are many potential reasons for this; online shoppers may be more likely to buy multiple gifts that are shipped to different addresses, or they simply tend to choose more expensive gifts. Shipping and gift wrapping services would account for part of the more than $40 difference.

Search and You Shall Spend

Another possible reason for the extra money online shoppers spend is that they’re more likely to find and buy the gifts they’re looking for if they’re shopping on sites with a good search function. Rather than wandering through aisles of pink and red stuffed animals and cardboard heart boxes of chocolates, online Valentine’s Day shoppers can go to their favorite gift sites, type in search terms, then refine the results until they find the gifts they want to buy.

FTD, Interflora, Samuels Jewelers, The Diamond Store, Lovehoney, Harry and David, Gourmet GiftBaskets and Vermont Teddy Bear are all sites that have Valentine’s Day related gift items. And all are powered by SLI search, which means the search results are incredibly relevant because of SLI’s advanced learning technology. You type a word or two into the search box, you see relevant items, you click the one you want, you go through checkout and you’re done. On these sites, most customers find what they want within the first five search results provided.

It’s not surprising that a great user experience leads to more money spent at that site. Lovehoney saw 16% higher average order values (AOVs) after improving their site search. PartySuppliesDelivered.com saw 18% higher AOVs with SLI search. Boden had a dramatic increase of 215% in revenue per visit, and other SLI customers have seen similar results, like a doubling in the conversion rate for customers searching for recipes and products at KingArthurFlour.com.

Great search makes for a great shopping experience when looking online for a gift on Valentine’s Day – or any day.

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