It is undeniable that the power of online shopping is shifting the way the marketplace is doing business today. Longtime companies are having to adapt and create an online presence or risk losing their share of a thriving channel in our evolving marketplace. Brick and mortar stores are disappearing along with the idea of shopping out in person. E.g. the death of the American mall.
When creating your online presence and building your ecommerce store, it is unreasonable to assume visitors will suddenly go to your store and purchase your products. You will need a strong marketing strategy to grab potential customers that will take constant attention and execution in addition to building your ecommerce store strategically.
Let’s discuss several key factors your ecommerce store should include in order to be successful.
While desktop still rings superior over mobile for email campaign opens, online shopping is increasing through mobile over desktop. This is why it is important for your e-commerce shop to be mobile optimized for an easy shopping experience. If it becomes difficult, they are likely to close out the tab and discontinue browsing and/or completing purchases.
The increase in online shoppers is creating a decrease in patience, and convenience will win a purchase through your store. Make sure that your store has a category list within the navigational menu for them as well as a search bar if they know exactly what they are looking for.
You should have a clear logo at the top of your ecommerce store and a shopping cart icon and login box combination for return shoppers to easily log back in and view their saved items in one area.
Clearly display all forms of payment that are accepted. If you are in a global market some payments might not be accepted outside of the country you are operating in.
Your Checkout page should be easy to complete or a few potential sales could be left incomplete as the shopper has moved on to another shopping site.
Support numbers or a website chat feature should be available should any shoppers need assistance or have questions regarding your products or services.
Getting the Sale
Attracting potential customers to your ecommerce store can take some strategy and planning in order to be successful. A great ecommerce store can always fail without the marketing strategy in place to get customers to your checkout lane. Social media awareness and email campaigns are a great way to alert customers to go to your store in that moment. Create social media ads that promote a timed sale or free shipping. Offer something special for first time buyers to get an edge in closing sales. Know who your target audience is in order to create content that will grab their attention. If you are looking in the wrong place, businesses can waste a lot of time and money on marketing that isn’t converting potentials to sales.
Continuous content and educating your target audience is what will drive traffic to your ecommerce shop overtime. Use descriptive words and keywords/hashtags that will pull up your ad to potential shoppers. Include product images and unique pitches that speak to your audience. Include a newsletter signup so that shoppers can always receive news about your business in the event they are not ready to convert. Less than 20% of shoppers make a purchase the first time visiting your website, so it’s important to start a relationship through consistent email newsletters or social postings.
More often enough, online shoppers are looking at several other websites to get the best price, so it is important to research your competitors and provide pricing that attracts those shoppers to your website. Offer free shipping or a percentage off to first-time buyers, which could make your product cheaper than other sites, and create the incentive to purchase with you. During checkout make sure to grab their email address and provide a checkbox to opt-in to your email campaigns. This will keep your brand in mind for future purchases and additional income on your existing customer database.
Include options to follow your social media page on your website, email campaigns, and join online conversations with hashtags to keep your brand on your follower’s minds. Offer information to your followers without trying to sell your products. Create a knowledgebase of information with fresh content within your email campaigns and social pages. Watch a community of followers grow and refer to your website for information within your industry and become trusted and reliable.
Include the option for customers to leave reviews after purchasing your products. Other people look to reviews in order to determine if a purchase will be made or not, and providing them directly on your page shows transparency. Reviews will also be left on major review sites like TripAdvisor, Yelp, Google, and other review forums that a simple search can yield, so providing reviews is in your best interest to a successful ecommerce shop for today’s shopper. I discuss the benefits and importance of interacting with customer reviews and their impact here.
Ecommerce shops are big for business and have the potential to soar your overall sales if done with a plan in place, and research to avoid other’s mistakes in the past. Always research your industry for successful ecommerce tips and strategies before launching your shop.