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Why “Where to Buy” Buttons Are Actually Hurting Your Brand’s Sales

As a brand manufacturer, and as a consumer yourself, you’ve likely encountered “Where to Buy” buttons when shopping online. Some brands choose not to sell their product on their own site and instead use the button to direct shoppers to other places where their product can be purchased. There are a few reasons brands elect to implement this, but in our experience, the risks of doing so greatly outweigh the benefits. Here’s what you need to consider.

where to buy buttons

Why Do Some Brands Use a “Where to Buy” Button?

REASON 1: Brands are wary of developing their own eCommerce platform for fear of channel conflict.
Sound like you? We encourage you to give this a quick read.
REASON 2: Brands are hesitant about selling direct to consumer and whether they’ll see success.
Sound like you? We encourage you to give this a quick watch.
REASON 3: Brands know that selling direct has its benefits, but they are reluctant to take on the task of establishing and managing a DTC operation.
Sound like you? We encourage you to give this a quick read.

Here Are the Possible Risks.

Because of the hesitancies listed above, some brands choose to use the “Where to Buy” option. However, it’s important to remember that you’re losing control by sending consumers away from your site to make a purchase. Even though you think you’re giving a clear CTA and path to conversion, here are the possible risks that you may not have considered:

  1. Losing the Sale to a Competitor
    By directing your consumers away from your own site, you run the risk of leading a consumer directly to a competitor product. In fact, over 50% of traffic sent to a retailer site to purchase end up buying a competitor or unrelated product. This means that you’re not just losing the sale — you’re serving it to your competitors on a silver platter.
  2. Missed Opportunities for Additional Sales
    In addition to losing the initial sale, sending customers away also discourages them from making additional purchases. If they had stayed on your site they may have continued browsing for other products. But by disrupting the process, you lose out on that opportunity. Furthermore, on your site you get to manage the additional buy options, pairings, or bundles offered to users to encourage them to add more to their carts. However, once they’ve navigated off of your page, those pathways are up to the retailer.
  3. A Longer Path to Conversion
    There’s no golden rule when it comes to clicks. Some research indicates that consumers are only willing to put up with 3 clicks to check out, while other research says that 25 is the limit before they give up (wow, they must really love that product!). But the truth is that nobody is ever upset when something is quick, easy, and painless. So it’s important to consider that each additional step that you add to the checkout process increases the risk of the purchase never being completed (especially if that particular consumer is one of those “three-click” type of people).
  4. A Negative Customer Experience
    59% of respondents already use a brand manufacturer’s website for researching products and usually make their purchase there as well. If you’re making consumers navigate to another site to complete the purchase, you’re disrupting the buying experience — possibly provoking negative feelings toward your product and your brand overall.
  5. Loss of Control Over the Buying Process
    We all know that consumers base a lot of their purchasing decisions off of pricing and customers reviews. These are two things that you as a manufacturer can’t control on a retailer’s website or shared marketplace. Keeping consumers on your site, however, allows you to maintain control over what they see and experience throughout the buying process.
  6. Loss of Visibility Into the Buying Process
    Once the consumer has left your site, you lose the ability to track their behavior. Without these valuable insights, it can be incredibly difficult to identify high-performing or underperforming products, discover why the customer is making or not making a purchase, optimize organic search or referral traffic, prevent cart abandonment, or provide in-depth customer service based on your customers’ needs.
  7. Wasted Marketing Spend
    You’ve already invested time, effort, and money into your marketing and media strategy to get a customer to your website. Why would you want to immediately send them away? You’ve done the hard work, and you deserve to benefit from it.

The Solution is Clear.

55% of consumers prefer to buy directly from the brand if given the option. If you’re not offering a direct to consumer experience, you will miss out on the ability to deliver a seamless experience for your customers, the opportunity to gain valuable insights, and the chance to build significant brand loyalty. Learn how Ally can help you get started selling direct to consumer today.