The retail e-commerce landscape is alive and thriving. Statista anticipates a 246.15% increase in worldwide ecommerce sales, from $1.3 trillion in 2014 to $4.5 trillion in 2021. That’s a nearly 300% lift in online revenue in under ten years.

One of the growing trends in ecommerce is through limited duration, “flash” style sales. Promotions like “Daily Deals” and “Online Doorbusters” have proven to have a 57% increase in likelihood for an online shopper to click-through, according to Shopify. Entire websites are now dedicated to this style of shopping. Sites such as The Clymb, Beyond the Rack, Fab, Gilt, HauteLook and Jetsetter have crafted their commerce structure around this flash-sale based model.

At roboboogie, we spent over three years optimizing the web experience for The Clymb, and learned a lot about what makes this special breed of shoppers tick.

To help us better serve this customer base, we mapped the behavioral tendencies of the customer we uncovered through our test and iterate approach to design. We then categorized those learnings to develop our understanding of what makes up the anatomy of a flash-shopper in today’s commerce landscape.

Check out the four biggest characteristics we uncovered, as well as some experimentation recommendations:

  • Impulsive

    Make it urgent

    impulsive face icon

    “I get an adrenaline rush saving big on the brands I love.”

    A/B Test:

    • Copy variations and CTA tones that create a sense of urgency
    • Location and prominence of quality remaining indicators
    • Use, placement and prominence of countdown timers
  • Thrifty

    Celebrate the deal

    thrifty face icon

    “As long as I am scoring deals, I can justify any of my purchases.”

    A/B Test:

    • Order minimums for FREE shipping qualification
    • Location and prominence of promo codes in check out
    • Prominence and location of savings and discount messaging
    • Product bundling
  • Distractable

    Less is more

    discracted face icon

    “I hit all my favorites. If I don’t quickly find something I like, I move on.”

    A/B Test:

    • Methods and interfaces that streamline login and registration
    • Quantity and location of informational and branded content
    • Options for streamlining checkout process/flow
    • Location and prominence of cross promos and recommended products
  • Moody

    Right time, right place

    moody face icon

    “I shop in the morning to quickly scope the latest deals and again at night to browse.”

    A/B Test:

    • Time-based personalized messaging
    • Balance of urgency messages and helpful guidance
    • Various nevigation methods supporting various shopping modes
    • For differences in desktop and mobile preferences

Hopefully our learnings helped shine new understanding on your customer base – or your own shopping habits. Either way, we hope we’ve equipped you with some new tools to help create more happy customers online.

Have a different perspective about flash shoppers? Drop us a line!