A couple of weeks back you might have noticed a floral explosion on my social media feeds. I had attended the launch of the new Foschini For Beauty online store at The Gin Bar in Cape Town, which had been transformed into a spring wonderland with an abundance of floral displays covering nearly every corner of the room. As far as first impressions go, this one definitely peaked my curiosity for things to come.
Okay okay one more. This is just one of the mindblowing #floral arrangements @okasie created for the #FoschiniForBeauty launch this afternoon. Also, those little #BlissBalls on the table are just about one of the best things I’ve eaten, ever. #9LivesBeauty #Flower #Flowers #Okasie #Foschini #launchparty #MediaLaunch #pressevent #blogger #BeautyBlogger #beauty #pretty
We got wind about this new website a while back and I had been waiting eagerly for the final reveal. The extravagance of the launch party itself naturally swayed my opinion but I was thoroughly excited when I first saw the site presented at the event. The look and feel is clean, modern and attractive, with beautifully styled headers introducing each section.
I was instantly curious to try it out and see if the shop could possibly make my life easier.
The website does a good job at making navigation as quick and easy as possible. The site has been divided into various categories like makeup, skincare, fragrance, body etc, and their search function at the top of the page also works well to help you find what you’re looking for, with recommendations popping up as soon as you start typing.
Once you’re in a category you can further narrow down your results by selecting certain brands, filtering it according to price, release date, name etc, and you can also adjust a price slider at the side of the page so that you’re only seeing results within your budget. This last feature is pretty clever, showing the cheapest and most expensive price within the category, and allowing you to adjust the slider along the bar. I would like to have the additional option of putting in a maximum price here so that the site only serves up items matching the amount I can spend.
Another cool feature is the option to compare products. So if, for instance, you’re looking for a new mascara you can select three products, click on Compare, and it will show the product prices and details next to each other. I would love to see a user review section added here, allowing you to compare user ratings of the different products as well.
I went straight for the makeup brushes and chose two from the new Real Techniques Bold Metals collection. These are just soooo pretty! When I added the items to my shopping bag I was surprised and thrilled to also receive a free Real Techniques core collection set with my purchase! This was one of the special offers they were running on the site, and the gift was automatically added to my bag since my purchase qualified. Yay!
I hadn’t browsed the Special Offers section on the site beforehand so my gift came as a very pleasant surprise. They have some really nice offers running at the moment, with new additions added each day, so make sure you browse this section first. It might just influence your decisions.
The TFG Mall
The biggest win for me though, and what sets this apart from other online beauty sites, is the concept of the TFG Mall. This allows you to cross shop from all their online stores, with product going to one bag and one checkout point. That means you can buy from @home, Anatomy, DueSouth, Fabiani, Hi, Markham, Relay Jeans, Sportscene and Totalsports, and pay for all the items once. Cool, right?
As is expected from a new site I did pick up a few hick-ups.
Their stock on store at the moment is a bit limited but I am sure this will improve as the site grows. At the moment though you’ll see category listings in your menus without any products underneath them.
Registering and Paying
The process of registering and paying was also a bit difficult.
I was issued a media voucher for R500 at the event, so I made sure my total purchase value was just over that amount in order to cash in on their current Free Delivery special, offering free delivery on purchases over R500. Here’s the snag though: if you apply the voucher and your total is reduced under R500, you are still charged for delivery, even though you’ve technically paid more than R500. Yeah, frustrating.
They also don’t have an EFT option. You can only pay with a credit card or a TFG store card but if you don’t have either of these you’re left hanging, as I was. Luckily I could use my husband’s details but I do think many people could struggle with this point.
Something else I would love to see is a message assist option. I’ve seen this on a few sites, where a message box pops up asking if you need assistance, allowing you to chat with from customer care or technical support. At the moment you need to phone their customer care line with any issues and while this service was super quick and effective, I would prefer to do everything online, not over the phone.
I did like the confirmation email that I received upon placing my order, and the fact that the order number in the mail is hyperlinked, taking you straight to your Order Details on the site. Clever.
All in all though I had a positive experience using the site. I ordered the package on a Friday and it arrived on my desk the next Tuesday, neatly boxed and in a good condition. I think I would definitely shop there again.
Keen to try them out? Head to foschiniforbeauty.co.za