An article about developments in the UK bean bags market and, in particular, the way in which investment in online resources is helping to improve the customer experience at the same time as growing the category.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Paul Norris has been involved in the online marketing field for some time now and has a detailed knowledge of consumer goods ecommerce. He was part of the external team that advised Bazaar Group during the development of the new BeanBagBazaar website.

The UK consumer’s favourite bean bags website has just undergone a major systems overhaul that was driven by one aim – to make it easier for customers to find the right beanbag for them and to make the differences between their products, and those of competitors, much more clear.The website in question, BeanBagBazaar, is owned by the Bazaar Group and has been the most-visited site for over 5 years. In fact, it’s reckoned that over 100,000 UK households own at least one of the company’s bean bags.Competition has been fierce in this category for a number of years as a result of the ease with which businesses can set up websites and begin trading relatively quickly. Of course, it’s often difficult for consumers to properly assess the relative quality or even size of products when they can only see them on a website. Fortunately, many of these businesses have either declined or gone out of business and it’s generally true that the bigger remaining players are the better ones. Mind you, this hasn’t stopped BeanBagBazaar, who believe that their product quality is well-ahead of the sector average, in upgrading their website to try to emphasise this difference with better detail photography, videos and descriptions.The company see this process as part of the same innovative approach that they bring to product, whether that’s in relation to on-trend colours, animal-shaped children’s bean bags or their designer printed range called Icon. They must be doing something right, as a quick look at the homepage tells you that they have an ‘excellent’ rating from TrustPilot, the independent customer review service.  Indeed, reviews themselves are very complimentary with phrases like “Would highly recommend both service and product” and “A great choice of beanbags, the checkout payment was very easy and the delivery was superfast”.The systems changes that have made the new website possible were very extensive and took 8 months of planning and implementation before the site finally went live in September 2012. Central to the design brief were the development of a fast, but involving and informative, customer journey and the ability for the site to work just as effectively for the user regardless of whether they interacted via a pc, a tablet or a smartphone.The company also expects the website to not only keep them at the top of the bean bags marketFree Reprint Articles, but to also convince customers that the quality of the search and buying experience is as good as they would expect from major online sites such as John Lewis and Asos.