Your ecommerce competition is brutal. How do you increase revenue from online sales without spending a lot of money?
You know the basics of improving your online sales numbers already. You’ve gotten advice like:
- Optimize your content (text and video) for good placement with search engines (SEO).
- Don’t post substandard writing.
- Offer special promotions for valued customers.
All good suggestions, but there’s more you can do, like:
Minimize the noise on your home page. Don’t overwhelm your visitors at first glance. You want to grab their attention, but you don’t want to throw everything at them right away. Consider highlighting a few new/discounted/popular items, but be sure links to other items or item categories are prominent. You might also feature a benefit in text or video.
Talk to your audience. Yes, you have to talk about yourself sometimes, but wherever possible, address your audience directly. (You will feel like you’re going barefoot, rather than These shoes provide incredible comfort.) It makes them feel included and welcome, and helps them imagine actually using your product.
Be prepared to spend some money. So many design and analytical and content management tools are free. But there are some things you might want to invest in. Can you afford to ship free? That’s a huge incentive for buyers – even if the costs are built in to the product prices. Prospects will comparison-shop. So be aware of how you stack up.
Make mobile work. If you do nothing else, do this. Look at your site on several types of phones to see how well it displays. If you’re trying to sell online, your site must be optimized for mobile viewing. Mobile has overtaken desktop in terms of what people use to access the internet. And they do make purchases on their smartphones.
Manage your inventory wisely. Can you find out in a few seconds where your stock levels stand? Run reports that tell you what’s selling and what’s not over a given period? If you’re not using an accounting application, you’re missing out on information that can help you discount slow-moving items and hype (and stock) your hot sellers. Talk to us about getting started.
Follow up. Consider investing in automated email technology. Autoresponders are services that you can “program” to automatically send emails to your list or a subset of it at specified intervals. You might want to send a welcome message to new subscribers and follow that up four days later asking if you can answer any questions or provide more information. There are more sophisticated applications that can, for example, dispatch emails to individuals who left items in a shopping cart or who simply visited a particular product page. There’s a very broad range of prices for this kind of service, but you can get a basic autoresponder fairly affordably.
Do your prospects know that you’re using an automated program? That you’re not sitting there watching site traffic and dispatching personal messages? Most likely. Can it work anyway? Yes.
Today’s online shoppers are way more savvy and informed than your buying audience was 20 years ago. But it’s still important to do all that you can to put your products in front of the right prospective purchasers.
Stock images courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net