Great Courses site review; product & other miscellaneous ideas
An A/B Test Idea
I do like this page, because it’s very clean, simple, elegant.
But, the “Save Story” is all over the place (3 different locations). Even though Great Courses visitors are probably highly intelligent, my past experience says that
showing the “Save Story” is highly effective.
I would test this here with an A/B/C test.
• Test Case A is the current layout (control case).
• Test Case B removes the “72% off for a limited time” message from where it is now, and adds “Save 72%” right below the struckthrough price and
• Test case C removes the “72” off for a limited time” message, and adds “Save $155” right below the struckthrough price and regular price.
I suspect that test case B will result in a higher conversion rate from this page.
An A/B Test Idea
This is not a “typical” A/B test, but, it could prove valuable.
In testing I’ve done with Private Label Credit Card promotions, we made the following offers:
• Offer 1: On a $250 item, get 10% Off, and FREE SHIPPING.
• Offer 2: On the same $250 item, get 15% off (no free shipping).
Results: Offer 2 should have won, because it’s a $37.50 value. Offer 1 was only a $32 value ($25 discount + $7 shipping charge). Reality: Customers have the
perception that shipping is more expensive than it is; and, when you give a discount combined with free shipping, the perception is that this is a better deal.
Comparatively, Great Courses could try a 50% discount promotion coupled with FREE SHIPPING; to see if it converts better than a simple 70% discount. For a $255
investment video, it might go like this:
• Offer 1: Get 50% Off, and FREE SHIPPING (a $127.48 + $15 = $142.48 total value)
• Offer 2: Get 70% Off (a $178.47 value)
Offer 2 should convert better – but you don’t know until you test it. If Offer 1 converts better – we end up selling more, AND we save money.
Add PayPal and Bill Me Later ASAP!
I suspect that adding PayPal will have a minimum 9%
increase in web revenue, possibly as much as 14%.
We experienced these numbers at JTV.
I did the ROI / sensitivity analysis on PayPal
implementation at JTV, and managed the
PayPal customers typically spend more. It’s a trust
issue. They also convert better – no getting up to
find your wallet in order to get your credit card.
PayPal’s own promotional marketing will drive web
traffic to our website.
My Account needs “My Preferences”
Give customers a way to tell us what their favorite
We can use this information to create better crossselling suggestions, and to guide us in developing
This will improve customer interaction /
Please tell us a little about the course topics you prefer. A rating of 1 means “no interest”,
while a rating of 10 means “I’d buy new courses on this topic right now!”
Now, tell us more about the media format(s) you prefer.
1. On product details pages, add a button for “Add to Wishlist”. Enable customers to email a link to their wishlists to other people.
2. On product details pages, add a button for “Give as Gift”. The benefit is mostly “suggestive”; the checkout process would only change slightly.
3. Create a Great Courses channel on Roku. The channel would allow customers to preview selected courses, but would require a payment to view
the entire course. See the Amazon Instant Video or HBO Go channels for examples of how this would look / function. These channels would, of
course, prominently promote www.thegreatcourses.com.
4. Set up blog.thegreatcourses.com as a way to create more site visits, improve Google Page Rank, and create fresh content that Google will crawl
and provide SEO value. Also, set up a Forum area – for the same reasons, and to generate more interactivity and learn about our customers.
5. Buy “Greatcourses.com”, if the price is right (registered by Marchex Sales LLC with Enom, Inc., until 4/1/2014). Backorder?
6. Run an SEO Audit by Alexa, in order to improve onsite SEO. Each Site Audit examines up to 10,000 pages of your site and delivers actionable
recommendations to help you optimize your site and SEO. http://www.alexa.com/pro/advanced?site=thegreatcourses.com&ax_atid=5c4c0f66098d-4fda-9b59-57ef40e973a2
7. Create an annual, unlimited streaming access plan for $X,xxx / Year.
8. Add Live Chat capability.
9. Review Adwords campaigns. The term “Online classes” produced no results for TheGreatCourses, neither in PPC nor in natural search, at least not
in the first three pages. Same for “Online courses”.
10. Consider promotions that include charitable contributions. For example: “A portion of this sale will be donated to the American Cancer Society”.
(I’ve found that items in our eBay store tend to sell better with this promotion). This would make a nice A/B test.