Wunderman Thompson Commerce enhance Halfords online customer experience
Wunderman Thompson Commerce, the eCommerce digital agency, is pleased to announce the unveiling of Halfords new digital platform for the future and overhaul of their existing website. This marks the next phase in the leading retailer's strategy to drive growth online and to its portfolio of more than 460 stores nationwide.
The redesign is the latest development to enhance the customer experience and has been deployed across the .com and .i.e. websites, plus mobile and tablet optimised sites, in less than six months.
Halfords Digital Director Clive West said: "Our new website represents a real commitment to Halfords online offer. More and more of our customers want to use the web as part of their purchasing trip with us. We've consulted extensively with them and believe the improvements we've made will increase the ease and enjoyment of shopping with Halfords.com."
Neil Stewart, CEO at Wunderman Thompson Commerce said 'With a very tight deadline for this project, the Wunderman Thompson Commerce and Halfords team have delivered a huge amount of work in a short space of time. This has only been possible due to our innovative ways of working and the team's commitment to delivering for the client. I am pleased to say that this has allowed us to deliver the new site on-time, on-budget and Halfords to achieve their business objectives.'
Halfords.com now features inspirational visuals. Wunderman Thompson Commerce have designed a no-fuss layout and easier navigation (using a custom accordion) simplified into four key pillars: Cycling; Motoring; SatNav and Audio; Camping and Touring, with a different shopping experience across all four. A new streamlined checkout with half the checkout steps and integration with Google Maps, leads to a much happier shopper experience.
In-depth customer research showed shoppers wanted to see more products, less text and only the key features while shopping. The new layout shows more products upfront with just the key details highlighted, such as customer ratings and price. Products with many variables (e.g. bikes with different frame sizes) are now displayed once, with an option to select frame size via a drop down menu.
The new website has a much more friendly, engaging and informative "voice." Halfords has rewritten over 4,500 product descriptions and more than 50 advice articles. For a seamless digital experience, communication with customers via text alerts and emails now reflects Halfords new friendly, engaging and informative tone of voice.
Halfords now have over 170 product videos for their brands as well as 50 new How To videos demonstrating Halfords service credentials, ranging from basic bike repairs to more technical videos. The videos are shown on Halfords YouTube channel and will be shared via Facebook over the coming weeks. Wunderman Thompson Commerce has re-written the Scene 7 viewer for HTML 5 so that videos on Tablet are more viewable.
Halfords has simplified their customer proposition so that now ALL orders placed online for collection at one of Halfords stores can be paid for in-store instead of only some of them. The in-store process will change as some orders will combine products which are stocked in-store with items coming from the distribution centre or courier deliveries.
Neil Stewart, CEO at Wunderman Thompson Commerce, said "We have been working with Halfords since 2005 and during this period Halfords multichannel strategy has grown significantly year-on-year. This combined with their extensive product range and store network offers a compelling array of services which meet the changing buyer behavior as online becomes further embedded in everyday life."
Other services Wunderman Thompson Commerce provided include:
• Usability testing
• Performance testing
• IBM WebSphere Commerce upgrade
• Database tuning
The Group is the UK's leading retailer of automotive, leisure and cycling products and through Halfords Autocentres also one of the UK's leading independent car servicing and repair operator. Halfords customers shop at more than 460 stores in the UK and Republic of Ireland and at halfords.com for pick-up at their local store or direct home delivery. Halfords Autocentres operates from more than 280 sites nationally and offers motorists dealership-quality MOTs, repairs and car servicing at affordable prices.
Halfords employs approximately 12,000 staff and sells around 10,000 product lines in stores, increasing to around 16,000 lines online. The product offering encompasses significant ranges in car parts, cycles, in-car technology, child seats, roof boxes, outdoor leisure and camping equipment. Halfords own brands include the in-store Bikehut department, for cycles and cycling accessories, Apollo and Carrera cycles and exclusive UK distribution rights of the premium-ranged Boardman cycles and accessories. In outdoor leisure, we sell a premium range of camping equipment, branded URBAN Escape. Halfords offers customers expert advice and a fitting service called "wefit" for car parts, child seats, satellite navigation and in-car entertainment systems, and a "werepair" service for cycles.