14 Ways To Increase Online Sales
How to Increase Online Sales
To increase online sales for many business owners might seem relatively elusive. After all, having an eCommerce website is surely enough to increase sales, isn’t it? Wrong! Online sales won’t grow on their own and so, you need to do a few things to ensure you increase lead generation, sales and your profits.
1. Learn About Your Target Audience to Increase Online Sales
To ensure you make better decisions, you need to have a clear understanding of your audience.
When you have online customers, you have to take a different approach when owning a bricks-and-mortar store.
You need to take the right steps to learn all about them.
Now obviously you started out with an objective to sell a product or service and had a target market in mind before you built your site.
However, was the plan an exact match or are you actually appealing to a different consumer from a positioning pov and is your advertising not quite targeting correctly?
Using analytics tools with your online store and a point-of-sale system, you can learn about the purchasing behaviours of your audience and what they like.
You can incorporate online chat, ask your audience questions through social media and send them emails.
It’s vital that you use all channels to connect with and learn about your audience.
PPC or Facebook Marketing can provide easy-to-read demographics of those who interact with your adverts. This enables you to watch who has responded and who engaged in a product image or video.
You will see a breakdown for the time of day, day of the week and their age group, and sex.
Try a small amount of ad spend with several ads, and watch those who engaged, you will soon pick up what advert works (then you can invest harder) and which products resonate with different consumer targets.
Facebook does have an older demographic, and if targeting a mum aged 35 yrs to 45yrs, then this is the place.
Therefore, utilise Instagram marketing to notch the age bracket down and you will see where the real balance (age, sex) is coming from.
Any analytics tool will enable you to determine how those who purchase your products or services are finding your online store.
When you determine how they are finding you, you can then focus your marketing efforts in the right place.
If you blog about keeping active and you run a health and fitness store and you find that traffic increases as a result of your content, then that’s where you can focus your attention.
To understand Facebook analytics more, we have detailed how to discover more, in this learn about digital marketing blog.
2. Increase Online Sales By Identifying Your Unique Selling Proposition
What makes your products stand out? What can you offer that competitors cannot? Is there a story behind the products you offer or your business?
Once you identify what makes your product, you should focus on that and make sure that your audience recognises it.
Do you offer more competitive prices? Is your customer service reviewed better than competitors?
You should ensure it is clear across social media platforms, you can even turn it into your tagline and include it in email marketing.
You have to give people a reason to use you instead of competitors and if you can make them aware of why you are unique then they are more likely to use your business instead.
3. Increase Online Sales with Seamless Customer Experience
It’s imperative that you make things as simple and problem-free as possible for customers.
When they want to purchase online, they need to find what they want and order it in a few clicks.
If your analytics show that people are browsing your site and then leaving without making a purchase then the customer experience could be the issue.
You can identify the reasons through surveys and even going through the process of purchasing and comparing it with competitors.
Are items too difficult to find? Is the purchase process too long-winded and consists of too many steps?
So, look at navigation around your website, the search function, and even the checkout process to ensure everything is as streamlined as possible.
In another issue, we discuss what actually makes a strong eCommerce store, discover on-page metrics to get right to increase online sales.
Plugins like Hotjar can show the average movement of all users across your site, allowing you to see where they mostly navigated and clicked to.
You can see if they are getting lost, or simply exiting at check out. Exiting at the last post can be down to product imagery, price, and available payment options
4. Make Customer Service a Priority
Customer service is a big thing to customers and when it comes to deciding whether to purchase, their decision will be based on this.
You should ensure that customers can clearly see how to make contact with you and you should provide as many contact methods as possible.
Just because you are an online shop retailer, you should not hide.
Have all contact details clearly available and you will be trusted more and an increase in online sales will come.
Make contact details clearly marked on the home page and header and on the top of each product page in the eCommerce store.
Furthermore, when customers make contact, you should ensure you respond.
You can turn a bad situation into a good one if you deal with issues quickly and efficiently, so it pays to invest in customer service.
The same here applies to contact on social media, contact from these sources should be jumped on.
Complaints expressed on these channels should be handled straight away.
Don’t try and divert them off and have them email you. Other followers will perceive this as you trying to hide a problem.
Answer some of the queries publicly and then gradually move them onto email or the phone.
5. Increase Sales with a Web Chat or Bot
Customers want a personal experience and they value communication.
A website chat feature will enable you to respond quickly.
You can even add an autoresponder to let customers know when you are available while you can use virtual agents to answer common questions.
All of this helps your audience find what they need with minimal effort and it may just make them purchase from you, this is a tried a tested means to increase sales out.
6. Increase Online Sales By Making Checkout Easy
It might seem strange but when people are ready to part with their cash, they are ready to part with it.
You can offer a guest checkout option for those who want a faster checkout process and you can add elements to your page so that the payment process is broken down into expanding pages so it doesn’t overwhelm people.
The buy button and shopping cart icons should be easy to spot as that’s crucial for ensuring everyone knows where the next step is.
7. Invest in SEO to Increase Exposure and Online Sales
When it comes to a bricks and mortar store, people can see who you are and find you easily.
When you are positioned online, you’re going to be competing with thousands of others. Therefore, you should ensure you do everything possible to improve your search engine ranking so customers can input their search criteria and find you.
This requires the right marketing strategy and SEO knowledge, including stand-out meta descriptions to show on google serps.
This really helps your business to thrive and improve website ranking on Google.
You may also be selling on 3rd party websites such as Etsy or Not on the High Street. If so, watch out for duplicate content. For any copy you use on your online store, make sure you supply different copy to your 3rd party sellers. There are inherent problems if you don’t do this.
8. Give Customers More Content
To Increase Online Sales you should do everything possible to provide as much information to potential customers as possible by providing relevant and interesting content.
This content (blogs) can incorporate SEO with internal linking which will help your ranking but it will also help to answer questions that people might have.
This is how our digital marketing agency, Surrey UK, made it to the 1st page of Google.
The content you create will be determined by your audience and your business.
If you sell cooking products, you give them content that offers tips for cooking in the kitchen or help with taking care of their products.
If you create consistent content then search engines will consider your site relevant.
9. Take Advantage of Customer Reviews
Adding customer reviews can have a positive impact on sales. It might seem daunting to share reviews, especially if some are negative but they can all help.
Positive reviews will work in your favour and negative reviews can even provide you with an opportunity to explain how you eventually helped the customer.
However, constant negative product reviews could also help you to change what you sell. You should make it easy for customers to write reviews because they want to be heard, regardless of whether they have a good or bad experience.
As review build-up, add them to the bottom of each product page. It provides consumer trust and proves you do actually ship goods as promised!
10. Increase Online Sales with Responsive Design
More people are now using mobile devices to purchase goods and services.
Therefore, you should make sure that your store can be accessed on laptops, desktops, mobile devices, and tablets.
This means that responsive web design is crucial as this will give them a full browsing experience on any device, making it easier for them to make a purchase when they want to.
11. High Quality Images Help Online Sales
Your images count for a lot because they will give visitors the chance to see your products in all their glory.
Therefore, invest in professional images as this will help to highlight all features.
You should ensure that all images represent the products because around 22% of product returns occur because items look different from the images.
Furthermore, you should also make sure that you offer more than one photo, 7 photos are optimum.
Standardise all photos as 2000-pixel sq., on a white background to save file size.
You may need to create a standardised format on illustrator to drop irregular photos in. The process does improve page layout and viewing experience.
12. Email Marketing Improves Ecommerce Sales ROI
Email marketing might seem old-school but it is tried and tested and it works.
Make sure you collect email addresses that you can use and then work up a plan to contact customers in segments.
You can break this down to those who might have added items to a basket but not purchased or those who have not visited for some time.
You can also offer special discounts and offers to those who might not have returned for some time. You can also create a newsletter that engages with your audience.
Ecommerce stores that market to past customers can expect 1550% ROI from re-marketing techniques.
13. Keep Shipping Costs Low
Free shipping is offered by a number of retailers but this is not something that consumers think about until they get to checkout.
If your plan is to increase online sales in Q4 and your shipping fees are high then they will abandon their shopping cart.
Cost comparison with your competitors can be done in 2 minutes remember.
Try to keep the costs of shipping low or build them into product costs so you can offer free shipping.
You can also offer free shipping for minimum orders, encouraging people to make larger purchases.
14. Frequent Social Media Can Increase Online Sales
Social media is a pivotal tool for businesses online because you can engage with people and build loyalty.
People like businesses that they can relate to and those that create a personal experience.
When you build loyalty, people will feel inspired to choose your business.
Furthermore, you can share posts and images, ask customers questions and carry out surveys.
You can respond to positive comments and even show people that you respond to negative comments and take action, all of which will paint you in a positive light.
If your online sales are struggling then it isn’t time to assume that your business is coming to an end.
It’s a sign to take action and use the above options to help grow sales and your business.
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