Whether you are just about to start an online store or you have been swimming in e-commerce waters for a long time, increasing sales is probably your ultimate goal. But unfortunately, growth isn’t always guaranteed.
Businesses, like everything else in life, have ups and downs. Even industry giants likeTarget experience noticeable peaks and valleys. However, although fluctuations are inevitable, there is no excuse to despair or give up trying.
In 2018 alone, global online sales reached almost $3 trillion, increasing the share in total retail sales by over 15%. With every minute, the future of online shopping is looking brighter. The good news is that you too can ride this wave of opportunity and the only thing you need is some effort and research.
You are already on the right path because in this post we will share the six strategies you can use to increase your online store sales.
Choose the right ecommerce platform
Choosing the best ecommerce platform for your online store is crucial if you want to maximize your ecommerce sales. Although you could hire a web developer to get your store started, such costs can often hurt your budget.
Choosing a pre-built ecommerce platform can save you money as well as time. This double-edged sword is dangerous, however, as there are numerous options available to you. So the main question is – How do you know which is the right one?
Almost all platforms have a monthly fee. Depending on various factors, the expenses will vary. Also, you should include processing fees associated with a platform. However, you should never sacrifice some of the necessary features for a lower price. Take into consideration all the pros and cons of each platform to get the best bang for your buck.
Another factor to think about when considering an ecommerce platform is its plugins and integration capabilities. Many of them, like Shopify, offer plenty of tools for your business. Your business requirements will be a crucial factor when deciding on the plugins that will work best for your online store.
Develop a content marketing and SEO strategy
Every e-commerce business should consider blogging consistently to better connect with customers and rank better on search engines. If you are already a blogger, think about actively featuring your blog on your ecommerce store.
However, there are also other ways to use content marketing:
· Create long-form content, guides, ebooks, and white papers to help clients use your products more efficiently.
· You can start a podcast to showcase your expertise and build a stronger community.
· Guest post on other websites and blogs to create brand awareness and generate backlinks, which is a crucial aspect of SEO.
Why guest posts? Link building is a fundamental element of helping your site rank better on the search engines. When you earn high-quality links to your pages from other websites, you will definitely help your site rank higher.
Another important factor for SEO as well as for repeat purchases and customer trust is brand awareness. The more people know and trust your brand, the bigger your sales will be. To improve brand awareness, concentrate on quality. In other words, produce unique, high-quality content.
You can also partner with other companies in your industry, use paid ads, as well as be active on social media. If you are still unsure about how all this works, hire a digital marketing agency for professional solutions.
Engage your followers across all channels
Customer engagement is a fundamental metric to track when it comes to online sales. Your engagement depends on the number of interactions you receive from your subscribers, fans, and followers. The best places to build engagement are the established social media platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, or YouTube.
Examples of engagement include the following:
· responses to social media posts
· Facebook likes
· blog comments
· answers to polls and surveys
· email replies
If you don’t have enough time to cover every single detail, there are different automation tools out there that can ease this task. For example, there is a LinkedIn automation tool with auto-responding and auto-emailing systems, allowing you to automatically send personalized messages and replies to your connections.
And just like tracking your followers’ engagement is crucial, it is also important to increase your engagement with them. When people leave comments on your Instagram posts, do you reply? What about your emails? Simple replies to comments or emails can go a long way and they even create conversions. After all, communication is a two-way street.
The experience you provide is incredibly important for your business. If you offer your audience a positive experience, you will boost your online sales. When people know you appreciate them, they easily become your fans and eventually – customers.
Get more sales with email marketing
The secret of healthy business lies in repeat business. How can you achieve this? With email marketing.
In a world where competing on price is a norm, being able to directly contact customers to encourage repeat business is more important than ever. Other channels like Facebook and Instagram come and go but you can always count on your email list. Email marketing is not hard and if you do it smartly, it is definitely not spam.
Find prospects’ email addresses to build your email list and then use it to create a relationship with your customers. Give your customers a sneak peek every now and then, tell your story, and make them feel like a part of your family. Although this strategy may not lead to an instant ROI, it will surely increase your conversions in the long run.
Be truthful in your sales copy
While this may seem too obvious, it is surprising how many websites write about non-existent properties of their products. Not only is honesty in your copy fundamental to your brand’s reputation, but it also encourages and nurtures trust in your company.
Never make promises you cannot fulfill because nowadays the average customer is hypersensitive to marketing lies. Be truthful, approachable, and upfront in all your sales copies – from the homepage to your email campaigns.
This truth also applies to how you position yourself as a business. Ever run across a website that is obviously run by a single individual, yet it features copy more suited to a global corporation? Such an approach not only makes you appear foolish but also damages your company’s credibility.
If you are a small business, be proud of and straightforward about it. After all, most consumers like small companies precisely because of the more individualized, personal service they offer. In the business world, it is never a good idea to pretend.
Use tiered pricing model
Let’s imagine that a person is purchasing clothes. They have three options to choose from – the first is the cheapest, the second has the highest price, while the third has a mid-price range. Most of the times, they will choose the mid-priced one.
This strategy is called asymmetric dominance effect and companies use it to make customers buy what they (businesses) want. We often avoid the cheapest and the most expensive option, so the middle-tier option remains the most appealing. This technique is also called ‘decoy pricing’ and you can use it to increase online sales with a tiered pricing structure.
When you add the third, most expensive price to your pricing structure, you nudge people toward choosing the mid-range price option – the one you actually want them to buy. And while some buyers will choose the most expensive option, most people will consciously or subconsciously avoid it and opt for the middle-tier option, which is precisely what you wanted from the start.