It’s not enough to create strong products if your target audience cannot find them. To turn a profit quickly, you need an eCommerce website that looks fantastic, functions seamlessly, and attracts as many customers as possible. Launching an online store is the first step to unlock your business potential. You also need to develop a targeted marketing strategy to drive the right traffic to your website.
Follow these best practices to sell products online and unlock your eCommerce marketing capabilities, fast.
1. Give shoppers deals and incentives to spend
The number one reason customers abandon online shopping carts during checkout is that they find the shipping, taxes, and other fees too high. These “excessive costs” account for 60 percent of abandoned carts, according to email marketing solutions provider Moosend.
Offering coupon codes, sale items, or shipping discounts—all of which you can manage with Square Online Store and Square Marketing can help grow your customer base quickly as you start to sell products online.
For example, outdoor clothing retailer The Buffalo Co. offers free shipping on orders over $100. The company also offers a 10-percent-off coupon to customers who sign up for its newsletter, which promises to alert readers about deals and special offers before anyone else.
2. Retarget existing customers with targeted paid ads
On average, consumers abandon a staggering 65 percent of online shopping carts, according to ReadyCloud CRM. Sending automated abandoned cart emails can help remedy this. Consumers open 45 percent of abandoned cart emails and click through 21 percent of them. In addition, half of those click throughs result in a completed purchase.
Serving targeted Facebook ads to shoppers who viewed products without making a purchase is another way to capture lost sales. You can use ads to direct traffic back to the product pages where shoppers dropped off. The average advertising conversion rate on Facebook is nine percent, according to WordStream, an online advertising software provider.
Next, turn Instagram followers into customers by adding shoppable Instagram galleries to your website. It doesn’t take much effort to launch a captivating website if you already have an Instagram account for your business. Import your Instagram photos so shoppers can securely check out directly from the image on your website.
Simply import your Instagram feed and tag images with products from the product catalog. Importing Instagram photos also enriches your product pages with lifestyle imagery and creates a cohesive multichannel experience for shoppers. Remember to include your domain in your bio to ensure your Instagram profile is buyer friendly. After followers see your product in their Instagram feed, they’ll be able to find the same photo on your website to complete their purchase.
3. Encourage customers connection through various communication channels
Customers value open lines of communication. When you sell products on your online store, going the extra mile to show that there’s a friendly, real person behind the digital storefront is doubly important.
Adding your email address, a contact form, and social media buttons to your online store tells visitors that you want to hear from them.
The online store of Avant Garden, a florist based in Delafield, Wisconsin, takes this a step further, providing a phone number customers can call for assistance with their order or to make delivery arrangements. Because some of Avant Garden’s arrangements can’t be shipped, its eCommerce website takes advantage of Square’s in-store pickup button.
Giving customers a way to connect with you after the transaction is just as important. With Square Online Store you can easily manage product reviews. Determine how long after an order is placed to send an automated email requesting feedback. While prebuilt product review templates are available, you have the freedom to customise your email to represent your brand. Once feedback starts trickling in, approve or reject reviews and instantly publish them on your product pages to start gaining trust with more shoppers.
Finally, if you’re aiming to sell products offline in the future, the smoother the integration between your online storefront and in-person operations, the more money you’ll make. Overly complex checkout processes account for 28 percent of abandoned shopping carts. Square Online Store seamlessly integrates with Square Point of Sale and automatically syncs your online and in-store orders, items, and inventory—so you’re ready to sell in person when the time comes.
Getting online is the first step. Set your business up for success now. Start generating revenue quickly using all the built-in tools available in your Square Online store.
4. Focus on customer retention
Consumers today are savvy - and have high expectations of the brands and businesses they support. Customers who are loyal to your brand and have a high level of engagement with your businesses are extraordinarily valuable. In fact, they are five times more likely to purchase again and also more likely to make a referral to your business.
It makes sense to set a target for the number of transactions you would like to see generated from repeat customers. Repeat customers require less spend in the long run, it’s seven times more expensive to attract a new customer than retain an existing one.
A customer loyalty program is a great way to show your customers that you value them and offer them incentives to keep them coming back. Loyalty programs keep your brand at front of mind and allow you to stay in touch with regular emails about points accrued and special offers. These special offers might include discounts on favourite products, free shipping or special bonuses with purchases.
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5. Create local promotions
Using geographical location data is a great way to connect with and stay relevant to customer groups and segments of the market. Many customers carry out extensive online research before heading into a brick and mortar store.
With this knowledge, your stores can be designed and set up to showcase the products that have generated the most interest online. Use your product information management system to enable customers to check product availability in their local store so they don’t end up leaving your shop front disappointed and empty-handed.
6. Elevate your eCommerce email marketing strategy
Millions of emails are sent every day. And in Australia, the amount of emails that are opened sits at around 20%, with the retail industry having the worst open rates. It is no longer enough to send a basic email to increase engagement and get your messages in front of potential customers.
Now is the time to lift your game when it comes to emails. There are a number of ways you can elevate your emails beyond the ordinary:
Ensure emails are related to a customer’s online activity by letting them know more about a product they showed interest in
Demonstrate that you know who the customer is and what makes them unique by offering them products related to those they have bought
Send a coupon, discount code or special offer that can be redeemed with a purchase
Build engagement through emails with customer-generated content by sharing reviews, feedback and images shared by buyers and patrons
Use automation to send emails at particular points along the customer journey such as when a product has been left in the cart
Send birthday greetings, or a special offer to commemorate a customer’s subscription anniversary
7. Create personalised experiences
A personalised shopping experience leaves your customers feeling as though you really know them. It’s one way you can provide customers with what they consider to be “good old-fashioned service”.
Personalisation can help drive sales, as your interactions with them are built around what you know about them and what you anticipate they might be interested in.
This can be done by using what you know about your customers; their age, gender, location and transaction history, to let them know about products and offers that you think might be of interest to them. 77% of digital marketers agree that personalisation related to purchase history has a high impact on return on investment.
8. Optimise your product selling pages
Although the number of people viewing your pages and products is an important figure, what is critical to get to grips with is the conversion rate. That is, understanding how many people are going ahead and making purchases. Taking steps to ensure a high conversion rate will help you work out where improvements could be made.
If products are being viewed but not updated with size or colour selections, your website workflow might be hard for customers to follow. If items are being added to carts, but the sale is not completed, there could be a problem with your payment system.
Don’t let problems with your products pages or transactions screens let you down and cause a weak spot in your eCommerce marketing strategy. Make it as easy as possible for customers to seal the deal!
Get started today with Square Online Store.