Online shopping has been around for more than two decades now, and even eCommerce giant Amazon is nearing its twentieth anniversary, having opened its virtual doors in mid 1995. Clearly, eCommerce is no longer a new concept or even a niche consumer market anymore: according to the US Census Bureau, over $260 billion were spent online in 2013, which represents almost 6% of total domestic retail sales. Calling eCommerce an important trend is not breaking any new ground, but small business owners are increasingly making use of integrated, streamlined platforms to offer their products through an online store.
At TexTivia, we have a number of excellent options for eCommerce platforms, and we specialize in helping our clients build and manage their own online shopping presences. But how do we actually use eCommerce to enhance our customers’ success? It is not sufficient simply to set up an online store and wait for orders to roll in. Below are six great ways of boosting your own eCommerce conversion rates and profits.
1. Proper eCommerce Website Creation
First and foremost, your eCommerce website should be well built, inviting, and clearly focused on encouraging visitors to shop. Make sure your site is clean in appearance to minimize distractions and lower the chances of diverting your visitors’ attention away from your products. This starts with your website’s home page, which represents your first and most important opportunity to drive visitors to browse your store.
It is crucial to tailor your home page call-to-action strategy around your eCommerce presence. This includes adding prominent links or buttons above the fold suggesting that visitors “Shop Now” or “Visit Our Online Store” and even listing featured or on-sale products directly on your home page. It is also important to check your site’s analytics, specifically visitor flow, to confirm that users are making it from your home page to your product pages smoothly.
2. Suggestive Sales
Once your eCommerce site visitors have navigated to your product pages, use your eCommerce website design to recommend other products to them. Suggesting “like” products will point your visitors to items that are similar to the one they are currently viewing, which increases the likelihood that they will find what they want. This technique is only effective if the proper time is invested in ensuring these product pairings are as relevant as possible.
Another great way to increase your ticket amount is by using suggestive sales to recommend other products which pair well with the one being viewed. For example, if you are selling bird feeders on your eCommerce site, suggest a mounting stand and a bag of bird seed to go along with the feeder. This not only raises the chances of selling these associated products, but it also adds a personal touch to your site’s user experience.
3. Allow Customers to Window Shop and Share Your Brand
Integrating social media into your eCommerce website is another great way of boosting your sales and success. Pinterest is a great social platform for promoting products in this way because it allows your site visitors to express their interest in specific items by “pinning” them for their family and friends to see. Facebook’s “like” feature offers similar benefits as well, opening the possibility for viral growth as your products are shared and reshared around these social platforms.
Even if a visitor who socially shares an item on your site does not buy that item, your brand is still being promoted within their network, and this sharing will drive more traffic to your site. Also, chances are good that a friend or family member will purchase this item as a gift for the visitor who first socially shared it.
4. Social Discounts
It is also possible to offer your customers a small discount for “liking” your brand on Facebook, “following” your brand on Twitter, or otherwise helping you promote your brand on a social network. Not only does this encourage a higher buyer-return rate, but it is also a fantastic way to ensure that your brand is being seen by new potential site visitors.
5. Email Marketing and Coupon Codes
Developing and nurturing a core group of dedicated clients is a very important part of finding success with your eCommerce website. Making effective use of email marketing is a great way to build a sales relationship with your customers. Through email marketing and online coupons, your promotions will work to drive repeat business.
One way to design a promotional campaign is to send a discount code to your customers via email. By alerting your customers that this code can only be used a fixed number of times, you create incentive to buy and to buy quickly. A second approach to email marketing is to send codes to your customers that increase their discount as they spend more money on your site. This gives incentive to buy more to receive higher savings, further raising your ticket amount.
Establishing a remarketing campaign through Google AdWords is a fantastic way to stay in contact with Internet users who visit your eCommerce website. Any time a visitor adds specific items to their online shopping cart but does not go through with the sale, this user will see text-based ads across Google’s Display Network. These ads are designed to be as specific as possible, reminding the user about the exact product they were about to purchase.
Even if your users do not add items to their cart, your AdWords campaign can be set up to note the general categories of products they have viewed on your site. A specific ad for each of the categories your users have viewed will then appear as these users browse other sites on Google’s Display Network. With monthly strategy meetings and updates from TexTivia, your remarketing campaign will be a useful tool in helping to maximize your online sales.
Experiment and Find What is Most Effective for Your Business
It is important to note that these six eCommerce suggestions are in no way comprehensive: in fact, there are dozens of ways to promote your site, enhance conversion, and increase ticket amount. However, the tips offered in this post are fantastic starting points for getting your eCommerce website off of the ground. Ultimately, the most effective Internet marketing solutions will be found by trying various strategies and using analytics to determine which are working best for your business.
Call us today at 888-866-4233 to schedule a free consultation and learn more about how TexTivia can manage all of your eCommerce needs!