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Wednesday, Nov. 28, 2007 at 3:13 pm

Godin Was Right — Threadless is Better than “Seamless”

By Robert Gorell
November 28th, 2007

sewing the seeds of conversionA few months ago, Seth Godin put the word “seamless” into a better context.

…seams are important.

Try throwing a baseball or a football without seams.

Wear clothes without seams and you look like you’re on Star Trek.

Seams make it possible to get a grip.

The goal, it seems to me, is not to create things that are seamless. It’s to put the seams in places where they are actually useful.

That’s exactly what does for its customers. If you’ve done business with them before and have selected an item that’s running low in their inventory, and you abandon the checkout process before buying, they’ll send you a follow-up email like this:

Their shirts come with seams, as does their marketing. The copy is spot-on without being pushy. They seem to be doing us a favor. Threadless knows that their customers know that the t-shirt designs they print sell out fast. They don’t shout “buy now!” when we’re just browsing the products. Nope. This message is tailored for people who’ve shown genuine interest. And despite the exclamation points, it reads something like this: “Sorry to bother you, but here’s what you should know about our inventory. If you really do want to buy this item, you should probably do it soon-ish.”

(Hat tip to Rishi at the Better Retail blog for the subtle link to this via comment. Great seam!)

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Comments (6)

  1. [...] praises Threadless’ shopping cart recovery email despite the excessive use of exclamation [...]

  2. Robert: we are even know. Get Elastic Ecommerce Blog has recognized you for the threadless email.

  3. Rishi,

    Such is blogland. I guess when you’re “threadless” it’s easy to overlook the seams. ;)

    All any of us are doing, really, is giving Threadless the credit for this smart marketing tactic.

    Thanks again to you and your friend Bill for sharing this with everyone!

  4. [...] designed by customers. Other customers come on to the site, buy the T-shirts, do reviews of them, make comments. Customers engage with each other to create the “experience that is [...]

  5. Threadless looks pretty cool actually…

  6. Yeah I guess thats a clever way to put it. The seams aren’t wasteful, or wrong, just … need to stick them in the right place.

    I hadnt read Seths comment on that. Thanks!

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