Coupon Code Discounts are one of the best marketing tools around for your Spiffy Store. Customers love using coupon codes to get a special deal on their next purchase.
We’ve just added some new options to our Coupon Code Discounts that we know will help you increase your sales and gain new customers.
Firstly, you can now create a coupon code that is limited in its use based on the email address of the customer. In other words, you can now create a coupon code that can be used only once for each customer. You might be having a promotional sale on a new line of products, and you want to be able to offer a 10% introductory discount to your customers when they purchase these new products.
The new limited-use coupon code allows you to do exactly this. Any customer can use the coupon code for their first purchase of these items, and get the discount, but on subsequent orders, the discount offer will no longer be available.
Our second update to the Coupon Code Discounts is similar, except that it limits the use of the coupon code discount to only new customers. This is a great way to attract new customers. You’re able to offer them a discount or free shipping on their very first purchase, which introduces them to your store, and hopefully leads to repeat purchases in the future!
These new options are now available on all plans that include the Discounts and Coupon Codes feature, and for other plans, it is included as part of the associated add-on.
For more information and a step-by-step, check out the documentation on setting up Coupon Codes in our knowledge base.
Sendle is the sustainable shipper specifically designed for small business. As the first 100% carbon neutral shipping service in Australia (and now the US and Canada, too), they work hard to reduce shipping’s harm on the planet. Sendle, like us, thinks that everyone, everywhere should have the opportunity and tools to build their dream business.
Each year 1 billion parcels are sent across Australia alone. And, each one of those parcels has an impact on the environment. In addition to a heap of packaging waste, tons of CO₂ are emitted into the atmosphere with every delivery. It’s a huge problem.
By shipping with Sendle, you’re part of the solution. Every time you send a parcel, Sendle offsets the carbon emissions by investing in environmental projects. So far, they’ve helped preserve pockets of native forests in Tasmania’s Central Highlands, helped protect the Australian Long-nosed Potoroo, and are helping restore wetlands and native forests in Australia.
For us at Spiffy Stores, efficiency is the name of the game when it comes to shipping. Relying on manual processes to fulfil orders can be a recipe for disaster when things get busy.
Using shipping tools, such as our fulfilment integrations enables you to book a courier and print shipping labels automatically as part of a streamlined workflow. By simply doing this, you could get parcels out of the door 200% faster than you could by manually entering information for each parcel.
Like our other integrations, when you ship an order, your customer is automatically notified with the tracking information, you can print out all of your labels in one batch…and you’ll also be able to check on the status of each parcel until it is successfully delivered.
The difference with Sendle though, is that you can get discounted rates with a free upgrade to Sendle Premium, providing great discounted rates… as well as the peace of mind that your deliveries are 100% carbon neutral. You can take advantage of their 250g options for small or light items, Sendle Express is guaranteed cheaper than Express post, and you buy compostable satchels from them that break down in home compost (worms love them!). Plus, they’ve got dedicated customer support available 24-hours a day, 5 days a week if you need a hand.
We’ve just integrated with Aramex/Fastway, to help you automate your shipping processes.
Aramex (formerly Fastway) is a popular carrier for many businesses, as they offer an affordable and reliable courier service that operates all over Australia and New Zealand.
Previously with Aramex, you would need to manually book a pickup, and manually add in all of the address details. This manual process can be quite time consuming.
We’re always on the hunt for way to save our merchants time and money, so we’ve now developed a direct integration with the Fastway/Aramex system.
If you already have an account with Fastway/Aramex, you can then easily enable this integration in your store’s admin, you can directly submit your orders to Fastway with the click of a button. Your customer is automatically notified with the tracking information, you can print out all of your labels in one batch… and you’ll also be able to check on the status of each parcel until it is successfully delivered.
Of course, this new integration will save you a lot of time, and we hope that new free time will be spent marketing your store. It’s the difference between a successful store and an er… not so successful one.
We already have merchants using the new integration, and so far the feedback seems very positive. If you’re using it and encounter any problems, just let us know by emailing us at email@example.com or calling us on 1300 727 334 to discuss.
To make this feature accessible to everyone, the Fastway/Aramex integration is available to all stores. It’s included in our Pro plan, and available as an add-on on all other plans in the Accounts -> Add-ons section of your store’s admin. It can be enabled in the Preferences -> Fulfilment Services section of your store’s admin.
We’re excited to announce that we have now released product reviews, and they are available and included in every Spiffy Stores plan at no additional cost!
We have been working away updating themes to include a way for your customers to add reviews, and for them to be displayed beautifully in your store… and most themes are finished! The last theme we’ll be updating (the Adelaide theme) should be available next week.
With the addition of the built-in mail after purchase email, you should be able to generate a ton of product reviews. These reviews are also indexed by Google and can be a great way for you to generate some buzz around your store and your products.
Reviews and the mail after purchase email function are included in all plans and it takes just a few minutes to set up.
To activate reviews in your store, you’ll need to firstly ensure you have updated your theme to the latest version. We have instructions on how to do that here.
If your store has a custom design, or updating your theme seems a bit difficult… it’s likely you’ll want us to do this for you for a small fee. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org requesting that we update your theme to include product reviews, and we’ll let you know when we can book you in.
Once your theme is up to date, you can then enable product reviews in the Products section of your store’s admin.
You can enable the mail after purchase function in the Preferences -> General Settings section of your store’s admin.
You can add a logo or edit the automated mail after purchase email in the Design & Assets -> Email Templates section of your store’s admin.
We’ve made product reviews available to all stores for many reasons… but the main one is that they can make a huge difference to your store’s performance. How? You may ask…
8 reasons why you need Product Reviews in your store now!
Reviews can help your store increase sales, and can help you to convince customers to leave more of them. Read on to get started.
1. Product reviews help create more informed customers
Product reviews can contain a lot of extra information that can’t be found anywhere else. Reviews can mention things like durability, colour, sizing, and so much more.
It’s personal insights such as “a little narrow for my wide feet” that help customers to be informed and find products that they will love.
2. Valuable insight helps you to improve
Reviews can also help you better understand your products. You can spend hours using a product, but chances are your customers are going to notice things you never would. That means your customers can give you ideas for improvements, or even excellent ideas on how to market your products.
3. Increased transparency
It can be scary allowing customers to openly review you, but showcasing feedback – good or bad, shows you have nothing to hide, and value your customers opinion. The ability to reply to a review also allows you to acknowledge that you’re not perfect, or your products may not be perfect for everyone. Replying to a review can also show that you have faith in your product range.
And you needn’t worry about those odd negative product reviews – 68% of consumers trust reviews more when they see both bad and good review scores.
4. Increased trust
The immediate benefit of reviews is that they can make your future customers feel that much more confident. The more reviews you have, the more convinced a shopper will be that they’re making the right decision.
5. Social proof your products
We all want one everyone else has, right? That’s how trends work.
Product reviews can make every one of the items you sell super desirable. Instead of seeing every positive product review as a great piece of feedback, see it as a vote in a popularity contest.
Additionally, if customers share products they’ve reviewed across their social networks, it’s more exposure for those products and your brand.
6. SEO benefits
User-generated content provides Google with the thing it loves most: content, and lots more of it than mast store owners can generate themselves. Product reviews are usually full of really relevant, rich keywords, to help further build context around your eCommerce store. This can dramatically improve your Google rankings.
Plus… not sure if you’ve ever seen them, but you will see stars displayed under product listings in organic search results. These result in an increase in click-through rates. This is also one of Google’s ranking factors, so – yes… this will also help you reach the top spots in search ranking.
7. Increased Visibility in Google Shopping
Google Shopping is extremely competitive, and the addition of stars to your product listings can make all the difference when it comes to attracting the attention of potential customers.
8. More conversions and bigger baskets
As a result of your customers being more informed, more confident, and more trusting they’ll be more likely to convert. Not only that, but they’ll probably also buy more. We’re talking more, bigger sales.
According to statistics, reviews produce an average of 18% uplift in sales, and customers who visit a site and interact with reviews spend 11% longer on the site than those who don’t.
Trying to compete online without product reviews can be an uphill battle. Customers are beginning to expect reviews as standard. So take advantage of our new feature, and you’ll see a whole host of amazing benefits that will help you continuously adapt and improve.
There are many ways to collect reviews, and we’ll have another article or two on collecting product reviews in the weeks to come.
Success as a merchant means getting a million little details right, and Spiffy Stores is continuously working on improving every single one of them for you… one step at a time.
If you’ve ever tried to ship to an invalid address, you know if you get it wrong, it costs you both the time and money to resend the order to your customer. Getting customers to complete the checkout process… let alone enter their address properly is one of the great challenges for web-based sales.
We think we’ve just made that process a little bit easier for all our Spiffy Stores merchants.
From today, we’ve included at no extra charge, an address autocompletion capability during checkout which offers customers a list of verified address suggestions based on what they’ve already entered for the address.
This feature has two great benefits;
Firstly… it makes it easier for the customer, as they don’t need to enter as much information when completing address details. Less effort for the customer means there’s a better chance that they won’t abandon their order, and go through to complete the payment for the order.
Secondly… it means that the addresses are more likely to be correct, and that means that orders are less likely to go astray and get lost because of incorrect or incomplete addressing.
How many times have you seen a customer just enter Sydney or Melbourne as their location, regardless of which suburb they may actually live in? That must be a nightmare for Australia Post and the courier companies to sort out.
So we know that address completion is a really good idea, but why is this Spiffy Stores feature even better value? Not only do you get an address autocompletion feature at no extra cost, but you get a service that is backed by the ultimate source for Australian location data.
Some competitors offer their own address autocompletion features, but you may not know that these services are generally based upon Google’s own mapping services. The problem with this is that the data provided is not always of the highest quality. For example, we checked out our own office address and to our surprise Google located us in the wrong suburb!
Spiffy Stores has been able to leverage Geoscape G-NAF, which is Australia’s authoritative geocoded address file. It is built and maintained by Geoscape Australia using authoritative government data, such as State and Federal authorities and other semi-government bodies such as Australia Post.
What this means is that you’re getting access to the highest quality data, absolutely free. It’s worth noting that this kind of service is also available from a number of 3rd party providers, but you could end up paying hundreds of dollars a month for exactly what your getting included with your Spiffy Store at no additional cost.
Go and add a product to your cart and “checkout” the newest Spiffy Stores feature!
Our poor tech team has been locked in the dungeon, tasked with coming up with ways to make our software as flexible as possible, but keeping things simple. With this new feature it may be just be time to let them out!
We often have to reach out to our merchants to find out what problems they are facing. We then work on solving those problems by creating new functions or tweaking existing ones.
One of the problems we’ve identified affects merchants who create unique handmade products… so if this affects you… keep on reading!
You may have been struggling with ways to provide your customers with customisation options, so they can customise a product exactly how they want it. Often this has required delving into the code to create custom fields on products to collect all of the info needed. In other cases, you’ve been able to use the Product Variations combined with Custom Options to offer options, but this can cause the product to load very slowly, as every possible combination needs to be loaded.
There is definitely room for improvement there.
To solve this problem, we’ve created a new add-on called Infinite Options. Infinite Options allows you to sell products that are infinitely customisable. You can create drop down, number, radio, checkbox, text, and long text fields with ease, and apply them to a single product or collection of products.
Infinite Options works on any device (desktop, laptop, mobile device iOS or Android or tablet). Every Infinite Option is purely descriptive. If you offer a customer a choice of options using an Infinite Option selection, the option choice becomes part of the order and is added to the product description in the cart, but it does not affect the price of the product, nor does it affect inventory management. If you want to create fields that do affect the product price then you’ll want to create Product Variations or Custom Options in addition or instead of using Infinite Options.
If you need stock tracking on the option, then you’ll need to create those options using Product Variations.
Why offer customisable products?
Customisation of products enhances the user experience by providing them with the ability to personalise your products. It usually leads to more conversions for the ecommerce business providing personalisation options to their customers.
When you allow your customer to personalise a product, they are turning from passive buyers to active partners. They are contributing to the product development process. The mere conscious effort of helping to create the product can prompt a customer to buy it.
How do I get it?
Infinite Options is available for free on our Plus and Pro Plans, and can also be added as an add-on to our Startup Plan for a small monthly fee. Again you’ll find that our fees are substantially lower than the competition. It can be found in the Preferences -> Infinite Optionssection of every store today.
To make Infinite Options work elegantly in a storefront, we’ve made some changes to our popular themes. We’ve released updates to our Simple, Adelaide, Melbourne, Darwin, Sydney, Bendigo, and Vintage themes to support the new fields… so they should all display beautifully in the latest versions of these themes. If you’re using an older version of one of these themes, you’ll need to update your theme. If your store is using a different theme, you’ll need to contact us for assistance if the fields aren’t displaying correctly.
Surcharges for payments by credit card are now fairly common in the Australian market place, and came about from an RBA review into the payments system, which recommended greater transparency for consumers.
These sort of regulations, however, do not exist overseas… especially in the US. This means that support for adding surcharge payments to orders is basically non-existent, and is not really likely to be added in the near future by US-dominated ecommerce platforms.
In case you hadn’t realised, Spiffy Stores is 100% Australia owned, so of course we’re more concerned with meeting the needs of our Australia based merchants. Today’s announcement demonstrates this point.
So we’re happy to announce that our payment surcharge options now include the ability to add a percentage surcharge to all PayPal transactions, in addition to our existing credit card based surcharge options, which allow differing surcharges based on the credit card brand.
Perhaps one of the important lessons we’ve learnt from the global pandemic is that maybe there are some things we don’t really want to get from overseas! It’s been a reminder that there are benefits in looking at local solutions for many of our needs.
Shouldn’t this also be true when you are considering what platform you choose as the basis for your own business?
I guess the bottom line is that with Spiffy Stores, you’re going to get a platform for your online business that is aligned with your needs as a business owner. The same can probably not be said for the US-based platforms that you may be considering.
Hope everyone is doing well in these “interesting” times. Has anyone else noticed that Netflix seems to have fewer decent movies than ever? Are they taking advantage of the fact that some of us are trapped in our homes?
Netflix bitching aside, I should get to the real purpose of this article… which is to let everyone know that we’ve added a new wysiwyg text editor to stores that allows you easily lay out your text, make text bold, italic, differentcolours etc.
That’s not it though… you can change alignment, add bullets, add links in, and do pretty much all of the other stuff you can do in common desktop editors.
Oh… and you can also add in images and rotate & crop them inline… as well as adjust the size, brightness, contrast, and a bunch of other stuff.
Just to make sure the new editor doesn’t break stuff that you’ve created using the old editor, it only shows up on new products, pages, and articles that you’ve created in the last week or so.
We know this feature has been around for ages, and it may seem that we’re a bit slow bringing it to our software. Conversations about the editor usually ended with someone screaming “x#$%&* no way! it makes the code too messy!”… which is exactly why we have delayed this release.
The text that you add for your products can be used in many ways… such as when you connect your store’s product catalogue to Facebook, Instagram, or one of the shopping portals we support. They don’t want to deal with messy code, and neither do we. The great news is that we’ve almost perfected cleaning up this code so products aren’t rejected.
The editor is still a work in progress, so please let us know if you run into any issues with your product feeds, or with the editor in general.
Over the past months, the Spiffy Stores team have been flexing our creative and technical muscles hard to bring store owners and developers a simple but full featured new Spiffy Stores theme.
Now, we’re excited to introduce you to the result of all that hard work — and open up a whole new set of possibilities to stretch your creativity.
It’s called Simple – and it’s the newest premium Spiffy Stores theme available for free on all Spiffy Stores plans.
Simple is designed to be exactly what it sounds like – super simple.
Simple represents years of feedback from store owners and developers of all types who want more flexibility and control when it comes to themes, as well as keeping the overall look as clean as possible… but still containing the features built in to our other themes.
That’s a delicate balancing act!
The real power of Simple becomes obvious once you apply the theme and see the options available in your Theme Editor.
Here’s a roundup of some of the highlights of the Simple theme:
Advanced mega menus without an app: We know that mega menus are a key way to not only to “show” your shoppers around the store but also get out your marketing messages — so we’ve expanded the mega menu functionality in our other themes to create our most flexible setup yet.
A beautiful slideshow, with customisable size, colours, transitions, and fonts.
Customisable Instagram feed to show off a gallery of your product images
Customisable parallax banners on all pages including collection pages, product pages, blog articles etc.
Customisable tabs on product pages. You can break up your product pages into section for displaying different kinds of info, such as videos, size charts, shipping info, reviews etc.
Customisable popups, which are far more effective than just having a subscribe form in your footer.
Display featured products, featured collections, and blog articles on your home page…. along with welcome text, a slideshow, and your Instagram feed. We’ll also soon provide a tutorial on how to re-order and customise sections.
Integration with Yotpo to provide product reviews
Customisable announcement bars to provide important info
Choose from over 50 included fonts, or add your own custom Google font.
Colour options so you can recolour everything in the theme, or choose from built-in colour schemes.
Product sorting, list view, grid view, and unlimited scrolling options
Google reCAPTCHA to protect you from spammers
All the other features, in other themes, such as wishlists, mobile responsiveness, social media integration, image galleries etc.
How to get it
Like our other themes, the Simple theme is available exclusively to Spiffy Stores, and can be applied in the Theme Gallery section of your store’s admin. If you’re switching from another theme, you may want to ensure you download a backup of your current theme first.
You might want to read The Simple Theme Guide, as the theme has a lot of customisation options in the Theme editor, and a lot of the functionality is disabled until you enable it.
The future of Simple
We’re planning on adding a bunch more features to this theme, so stay tuned. Planned enhancements include;
Quick shop popup windows
Create unlimited custom fields on your products
Video in product images
Video in the home page slideshow
More enhanced responsive images
This is only the beginning
Finally, as you start using Simple, don’t forget that this is version 1.0 only — so you might say we’re only in the warm-up phase of pushing Spiffy Stores theme flexibility.
We’re already hard at work on a series of updates that will be released to bring even more features and functionality to this theme.
We love adding new features to Spiffy Stores, especially when they add heaps of value for our customers. Our newest addition to the family is the Product Bundle.
You might already be familiar with the concept of selling products in convenient bundles or related products. It’s great way to encourage your customers to buy a few extra items by offering them a bargain when they purchase a product bundle. Studies have shown that customers are drawn to product bundles if they see them as providing good value. Why buy the items separately when you can save money by buying them together in a bundle?
Product Bundles are such a great idea that we’re kicking ourselves for taking so long to add them to our set of core features. The Spiffy Stores core features are all included as part of our base software, and there’s no need to mess around with 3rd-party apps to get access to something that’s essential to running your business.
Product Bundles are also such a great addition to your Spiffy Store that we include them free of charge in all of our plans except for the entry-level Startup plan, where they are also available as an Add-On.
Product Bundles also have other uses. They are great for managing your inventory when you want to sell build-to-order products such as Gift Hampers. A Gift Hamper is going to be made up of lots of different products, which you may or may not sell individually. The Gift Hampers are likely to contain some products in common, but it would be crazy (and bad business) to build your hampers ahead of time, as you really don’t know how many of each type are going to be sold.
Building your Gift Hamper products using Product Bundles allows you to track the inventory levels of all of the individual products, so no matter what hamper sells the most, you’ll always know that you’re not overselling your products and ending up with disappointed customers.
Finally, Product Bundles are an easy way to offer bulk-purchase discounts for a single product. Just create a Product Bundle for the product, and then add additional variations to the bundle for the multiple quantities that you want to sell, such as a “Pack of 5” or a “Pack of 10”. Adjust the bundle quantities and prices of the packs and you’re done. Bulk-Purchase discounts done in a few simple steps.
If you’re not using Product Bundles now, then maybe it’s time to start adding them to your product line-up. If you’re not using Spiffy Stores as your ecommerce provider, then maybe it’s time to make the switch to save money, support an Australian business and get access to all our great features.