Date: 1st May 2020
Whether you own a bricks and mortar store and would like to start selling online, or you are a purely e-commerce business, you’ll want to make sure you maximise the traffic and sales generated through your online shop. But with all the competition out there, how do we stand out from the crowd and keep customers coming back for more?
Heather Robinson (owner of Skittish Digital), talks us through 5 ways to give your e-commerce business a boost!
#1: Focus on content
Start with your website. This is your shop window; your chance to make a great first impression and reassure potential customers that you are a trustworthy site (after all, you’re asking them to give their credit card details, so they need to feel confident in you and your products).
- Ensure product descriptions are in-depth, useful and answer any frequently asked questions your customers may have about the product.
- Images and video are key to helping your website visitors make the decision to purchase, so do not scrimp on the visuals!
#2: Be everywhere!
You need a multi-channel approach to drive a decent volume of traffic to your website. It’s also a little risky to rely on only one or two platforms, so try to maintain a presence across all platforms where your customers are likely to be. So, consider:
- Social media sites – these are great for increasing awareness of your products and your brand and creating targeted campaigns to reach your audience. Platforms that are more geared up for e-commerce are Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest.
- Search engines – and not just Google but consider Bing as well. Both have “Shopping Ads” that you can use to showcase your products and ensure they come up in search results when your customers are ready to buy.
- Email marketing – keep in touch with your customers after a purchase. It’s much cheaper to retain customers than attract new ones, so leverage your current customer database, encourage repeat sales, referrals and cross-sell relevant products.
#3: Be a stalker!
We’ve all seen them – those adverts that follow you around the internet after you’ve looked at a product on a website. And there’s a reason why advertisers do this – it works! Higher click-through rates, higher conversion rates and it’s a great way to re-engage website visitors who didn’t buy on their first visit.
Remarketing/retargeting (as it’s known) can be done through most advertising platforms (Google, Bing, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, plus other third-party advertising software). Here are a few ideas on how to use it:
- Target people who have visited your website, but not made a purchase. You could narrow this down to people who have placed products in the shopping basket, but not checked out, and then offer them an incentive to return.
- Target people dynamically, showing them the exact product they viewed on your website in the ad itself (known as Dynamic Remarketing).
- Upload your customer database (providing you have consent), to create an audience of past customers to target
- Create “lookalike” or “similar” audiences which will match the characteristics of your existing customer database but will contain a brand new audience for you to advertise to.
#4: Get personal
Personalisation makes your customers feel valued and helps to not only build a relationship with them, but will also improve your chances of repeat business. Therefore, when you are emailing your customer database, you should always aim to make your emails about the customer, include their name, the product they purchased, when they last bought from your website, etc.
A great example here is from a small independent running shoe shop, who personalised this email with my favourite brand of running shoes and the size I normally order. The button took me through to a page on their website that had already been filtered by brand and size, making the purchase really simple.
#5: Track everything!
If you are going to invest in advertising, you need to know where your sales are coming from so you can optimise campaigns and reassess how you allocate your budget. We recommend setting up E-commerce Tracking in Google Analytics which will show you how many transactions you have had, and the revenue generated from different platforms.
To set this up, simply ensure you have integrated Google Analytics with your website (the process for this will vary depending on your e-commerce platform), then enable e-commerce tracking in Analytics under the Admin section, the View column, and E-commerce Settings.
Growing your online sales can seem like a daunting task with multiple channels to manage, track and optimise on a regular basis, but providing the time and resources required are invested in promoting your website, you should see your sales increase over time.
If you require additional support to make this happen, Heather at Skittish Digital would be happy to talk you through the options and the best way forward!
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