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FabFitFun needs to step their game up...

FabFitFun needs to step their game up...

by john roman

A year ago


I always struggle to find Birthday and Christmas gifts for my wife.  It seems like it was a lot easier 10 years ago.  About a year ago, I was up in Toronto touring the 3PL we use for Carnivore Club Canada subscription orders.  During our visit, a GIANT section of their facility was occupied with FabFitFun boxes.  There was ALOT of boxes.  I was familiar with the brand already and was aware that they receive much more web traffic than any of our sites/brands.  Seeing how many boxes that were flowing into the Canadian market confirmed what I had already assumed...they were crushing it.  


Fast forward to yesterday.  I was chatting with Curtis from our Toronto office who was with me that day on the tour, and he mentioned that he orders FabFitFun for this girlfriend and she really enjoys it.  I have never purchased a subscription box for Colleen before (she has been regifted dozens through the years from my peers sending to me for feedback/thank you’s) and decided to pull the trigger on FabFitFun (while on a slack video call with Curtis).  He sent me a referral link (gets him credit on his account and I believe I get a discount on mine if used).  This is where the experience started to go into the category of NEEDS IMPROVEMENT.  One would assume (you know what they say about assuming) that FabFitFun, arguably a leader in the subscription space, would be doing everything right…


I clicked the link Curtis sent me and the FabFitFun site had a banner now at the top letting me know I would be saving on my purchase and that the coupon code would be auto-applied.  However, when i switched from quarterly to annual payment, this all went away with no explanation.  It was clear I would not be receiving a discount on the annual but it was not clear that the referral coupon link was only for quarterly payment.  This seems like a small thing, but the small things add up.  With the massive traffic FabFitFun receives, a small tweak here to keep expectations clear to a potential buyer might improve conversion rate a fraction of a percentage.  This does not seem like a lot, but with volume, this equates to thousands of dollars a month (possibly a day with their traffic).  I kept moving along the purchase journey.


From a CRO viewpoint, I do love the flow of their site.  In no time at all I was entering my credit card information to proceed.  However, I hit a roadblock.  When I clicked the final PURCHASE button, nothing was happening.  Nothing was as if there was an error with my information, but none of the form boxes were red or errored out, so I had no direction on what went wrong.  I attempted a few more times (at this point screen sharing with Curtis) because I was so surprised/shocked.  Eventually, we came to the conclusion that my Chrome autofill had to be creating some sort of issue.  


I ended up opening up Internet Explorer to see if that would work.  Same issue.


Next up, Brave Browser, but since it's built on Chrome code, I was not hopeful.  Did not work either.


At this point, I am frustrated as I have spent around 20 minutes trying to purchase and cannot.  I give up and decide I will just try later.  I got hit with a retargeting advertisement on Instagram about an hour later and decide to attempt purchasing on mobile.  Works like a charm this time and the purchase is made!


The next part is super frustrating.  When I went to the site the first time I browsed the gifting section and they only offered gift cards which didn't make sense.  Why would you not just offer the box straight up?  Perhaps this is a limitation of their platform and they don’t have the development skills to code a solution?  This is why I proceeded in just signing up for the box.  Surely they were going to have a gifting piece somewhere in that flow...


For a moment, it seemed like they did.  They asked me for the name and address of where it was being shipped.  But, right after that, I was bombarded with the longest questionnaire ever asking me things about my wife’s preferences (with a wonderful disclaimer that customization was really not too much of a thing, so they are just collecting data it seems).  I hammered through that trying my best to answer correctly.  This is a huge flaw in their flow.  There 100% should have been some sort of ‘Is this a gift?’ section where this could all be sent to the gift recipient to fill out (and fill out accurately).


There are some shipping expectations outlined and as expected, she might not receive her first box by her birthday which I had assumed.  Again, they are really missing the mark when it comes to the gifting experience.  


This morning (around 7 am EST), I decided to jump on their site’s chat.  I can not be the only person to have gone through this so perhaps they have a PDF or something I can print to give to my wife letting her know that she will be receiving FabFitFun for a year.  Props to them, I was chatting with Customer Service after only 2 minutes.  Unfortunately, they did not have anything I could print out.  I guess I am going to create something.  I am really just shocked at how horrible their gifting experience is.  For both BattlBox and Carnivore Club, we have gifting sections that make it very easy for someone to buy our product as a gift.  Yes, we also have gift cards, but ONLY having gift cards on a subscription box site is very 2015.


The PDF or something to print request? We have multiple versions to share with our customers when they request it.  This was NOT something we created just to create, it was after dozens of customers requested this.  


FabFitFun needs to step their game up...

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