Regardless of whether you run a new business or have been operating for a significant period of time, more ecommerce sales are bound to bring a number of benefits to your retail store. Only a few out of all ecommerce stores succeed at what they do. Even stores that initially succeed are unable to keep the momentum for a longer period of time and eventually succumb to the pressure of the job at hand.
Businesses go through declines and plateaus, which can seriously daunt the prospects of growth and kill whatever success rate owners want to achieve. While being patient is a virtue that business owners should possess at all times, it is also necessary for them to be apt at selling. Periods of decline or periods of no-growth are part and parcel of running a business, and your eyes should always be at the end goal.
If your ecommerce store is failing to generate the revenue or the profits you desire from it, then it is time you went back to the drawing board and reinvigorated your design, branding and selling strategy. Your previous strategies may have worked for you when you started, but these strategies do turn stale with time, which is why you need to replace them with more advanced and updated plans.
We believe that all ecommerce businesses can succeed with the right strategy and right dose of patience. In this article, we take a look at some actionable strategies and ways to sell more and make more money on your ecommerce platform. Go through these tips and reap the rewards you always expected.
Target Existing Customers
When businesses have trouble increasing their sales, they always put the burden of the problem on their inability to attract new customers. New customers, as lucrative as they may sound, shouldn’t be the only potential source of revenue for your organization. You can generate revenue from a number of other sources, including the customers that currently work with you.
Do not think that customer acquisition is the only way out of the conundrum or sales plateau that your ecommerce business currently faces. Instead of focusing all your energy on customer acquisition and wasting some precious time in the process, you should look to improve your customer retention strategy.
Customer loyalty is a trait that businesses wish to achieve from their customers and is one that comes with retaining and treating repeat customers with respect. Loyal customers do bring a lot to the table for businesses today, including:
- They add more items to their shopping cart and are likely to shop more than some new customers would for the first time. This is probably because of the trust factor.
- Old customers tend to have a higher conversion rate and are also known to be good at buying stuff, since they already know you.
- Loyal customers generate more revenue per visit than new customers do. This again ties back to the first point that we mentioned. Since they have already shopped from you, loyal customers don’t have any last minute hiccups while clicking the purchase button and trust you for your deliverables.
Do not get us wrong when we say that loyal customers matter more than new customers. Obviously, no business, online, hybrid or in the physical world, would like to close their doors to a new customer but the matter of fact is that it is much more cost efficient for you to go after your current customer base and position your products and new offerings to them. The reason behind this being the trust factor that has already developed.
Marketing departments have to spend a lot on acquiring new customers, but they don’t have to market as much to ask a loyal customer to shop for items they are interested in from their stores. And since loyal customers can spread positive word of mouth, satisfying them is bound to bring you a ton of new customers as well – talk about hitting two birds with one stone.
A quick run over the ecommerce stores present today will tell you just how many entrepreneurs and store managers do not opt for video, when it is known to be the number one catalyst for interest online. More than half of all marketing experts across the globe agree that videos have the highest engagement level and provide the best return on investment in comparison to other mediums of investment.
Websites with videos and other interesting graphics can have users spend 88 percent more time on the website. A user that is barely around for 5 minutes on your website will not spend want to 9 and a half minutes just because you have added videos and exciting graphics.
The higher engagement levels you achieve through the use of video in the ecommerce store are bound to bring you new sales prospects. Videos tend to resonate more with people and can help guide consumers where pictures or other graphics including infographics cannot.
Products that require guidance to operate or use can benefit from adding a video tutorial alongside their interface to help all kinds of users understand the dynamics at play and work on them accordingly. Live demonstrations of the product in use are always beneficial and attract the average ecommerce visitor in ways more than one.
Pictures with Testimonials
Customer testimonials offer a great solution to bring traffic to your website and get the attention of your users. With the growing number of customers sharing horror stories of online experiences, customers are getting even more skeptical of the online world. Users only want to head to an ecommerce store that they know can be trusted for the best policies possible.
Stores that compromise on policies and do not provide the given features are often unable to get the kind of customer feedback they require. Obviously, the first part of adding testimonials to your website is to ensure that the product or service you provide gets positive reviews from customers. The more positive reviews you get, the better it is for your brand, as the testimonial can only work in your favor if your brand has a positive reputation and you want to show that off.
Once you put messages from your customers online as a measure of their satisfaction and trust, make sure you add a face and use photos with these testimonials. User reviews can be an excellent example of this. Every user review posted on your website should come with a real image of the person behind and a snippet of their face.
A message from a faceless and nameless person does not convince customers anymore, especially since they know that some companies can dupe reviews to bring traffic over. By adding photos and videos to your testimonials, you can take them a step further and get the attention of all customers on your website.
You can even post videos of customer experiences. Videos obviously engage audiences in a better manner and are more comprehensive with greater details of the customer experience. The more videos you bring in, the better it is for your brand. Customers do look for reviews on products online, and only buy items that they know can be trusted and are vouched for by other users before them.
Set Design for Mobile Devices
Most business owners think that ecommerce websites are only accessed by users through computers and no one will be buying from a smart phone. The general rule of thumb is that mobile users shop from established applications, but that doesn’t stop mobile users from heading to the internet and looking/shopping for things online.
The reality is that people use tablets, mobile phones, laptops, desktop computers and other setups to shop online. The only way your ecommerce website can succeed and gain sales opportunities is if it is optimized for these trends.
Research suggests that almost 40 percent of all users buy something from their mobile phones and almost 63 percent of millennials, the biggest consumer generation in the market today, like shopping on their phones. These numbers are too big to be ignored. You cannot just factor out 40 percent of the general population or 63 percent of the millennial population through a desktop-only website design that does not respond to mobile users.
Entrepreneurs and ecommerce owners without an optimized design must probably be suffering for this very reason. The lack of an optimized design can turn employee attention away and might close the doors to a sales potential forever. First impressions last and the first impression most people have of a website that isn’t responsive isn’t good.
Another strategy ecommerce businesses can follow to attract mobile audience is to establish an application for all mobile users. Applications are easier to use for mobile users than websites, which allows them to have a better experience without the tension of the website crashing or becoming hard to maneuver.
Once your mobile app provides the following benefits, you won’t have an issue:
- Saved preferences and settings
- Benefits and rewards
It may sound like a strategy that has been beaten to death, but we believe that not enough companies today are giving customers the discounts they deserve. If you’re worried about your ecommerce sales and want to increase them moving forward, then you should definitely try this strategy, for it isn’t just safe to use, but will also give you the kind of results that you expect from it.
The process for offering a discount is itself fairly simple. Just follow the basics and you will be able to rope in consumer interest. Start by thinking of a valid discount that can bring in customer interest without killing your cash flows or without running you broke.
Once you decide on the right percentage or figure, the next step is to come up with a promotion or marketing strategy to market it in front of all users. Obviously, users need to know about the discounts you’re offering and the best way to do so is by reaching out to them on the mediums they currently use. If you have social media accounts, leverage their potential and use sponsored posts to maximize the reach of the news. Target the right demographics to ensure the best possible results.
Focus on Website Design
One of the reasons you aren’t able to turn leads into potential sales is because your website design doesn’t appeal to your customers anymore. Your website design is the face of your business and is the literal store front that represents your brand. To successfully sell to customers, it is necessary that you focus on it and ensure that it not only replicates your branding strategy, but is also ideal for selling to customers, new and old.
Some of the tips you can follow while redesigning your website design include:
- Do you see the white space on this page? What do you think of it? Does it look like missed real estate to you? No, visitors on your website need some white space to think properly, as an influx of ads, products and other content can scare them away.
- Make sure your website loads rapidly and does not have any elongated off periods. You don’t want customers to wait because the website isn’t loading. Reduce the load of pictures or videos if possible.
- Ensure that the website design is easy to follow and not too difficult. Navigation should be particularly simple.
Selling more on your ecommerce website might look daunting right now but can easily be achieved by being consistent and following the strategies we have mentioned here.