Over the last decade the eCommerce industry saw a steep rise and is almost at its peak as social distancing slows down offline sales. This is the time for online stores to flourish. But the increase in demand inevitably leads to an uptick in supply and competition. Luckily, the World Wide Web does not have any limits, and there is a space and place for any offer. The question is how to find it? And how to make the most out of your reach?
In this article, we will cover a few strategies, approaches, and steps to improve your eCommerce performance and increase sales whether you offer kitchen gadgets, computers, fine jewellery, or anything else.
1. Reconsider your online store SEO
Organic traffic is something every online business strives to build as it is the most cost efficient digital marketing strategy in the long run that doesn’t require a proportional influx of funds in order to expand. But in order to grow your Organic reach, you will need to deeply analyse your competitors and users’ search queries in order to find a “gap” in the landscape (Search Engine Results). Many businesses take the strategy of “repeating” the optimisation and, oftentimes, the website structure of their “dream” competitors (the websites and brands they would want to become). However, following your competitors is almost a straight up guarantee that you will remain second (or 32nd) instead of getting to leading positions.
You should aim to find keywords and an SEO strategy that is different from the competition yet aligned with your target audience’s search behaviour. However, the most effective choice would be to think about professional SEO services to help you perform independent and accurate competitor research in order to build a bespoke and efficient strategy.
2. Know your weaknesses
Most of the time when talking about “growth” or “improvements” many business consultants and motivational speakers refer to leveraging your strengths. While this definitely should not be ignored, knowing your weaknesses when it comes to eCommerce performance is just as (if not more) important.
Be attentive to your failures and dedicate a good amount of time on identifying your underperforming areas, especially when it comes to conversion rate. What is your average session duration? How many pages do users visit per session? How does your cart abandonment look? Do users come to less “preferred” or lower rated products? Use heat maps (like Hotjar) and analytics tools to identify your drop-offs. Traffic is important only when it generates sales. But you would agree that traffic without conversions has hardly any value at all.
3. Build your customer loyalty
Returning customers is a dream for any business. A loyal customer base can create a more stable revenue stream and simplify business forecasting that will essentially help you grow overtime. There are a number of steps that can help you win more returning customers (and be recommended by them):
Everyone likes feeling special and everyone likes to win. Providing your customers with positive emotions and pleasant experiences, these days, is just as important as having a good product. This doesn’t mean that you actually have to drop your prices. If you are the one who is setting them, just make sure to take discounts into account when setting your margins. Collect your clients’ birthdays, don’t ignore holidays, keep track of your competitors’ initiatives, and care, care, care.
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4. Keep your online reputation intact
No matter how small or big your online store is, sooner or later it will fall under the magnifying glass of review websites or social media (even if you don’t have an option for reviews available on your website). Keep track of all comments or reviews and make sure you actually address your audience. Saying thank you for a good review or sending apologies (and suggesting solutions) for bad ones can make a dramatic difference to your reputation.
Nowadays, users are more advanced than ever when it comes to researching products and brands before placing an order. Keeping your online reputation intact can make a huge impact on your eCommerce sales and conversion rate. Unless completely inaccurate, don’t delete bad comments and don’t fight with customers. Embrace them and learn from the feedback. Criticism can help you improve your operation, customer support, or even identify business pitfalls or inefficient partners.
But, of course, focus on collecting as many good reviews as possible. Encourage and remind your customers to leave you a good products review. Just don’t be too pushy.
5. Keep your online reputation intact
In order to steadily increase eCommerce sales and grow your reach, aim to provide as much value to your target audience as you possibly can. And this should not end with your products. Content is what creates a community and a buzz around your online store. Tips, how to’s, articles, videos, tutorial, reviews, questionnaires – there is so much you can produce to light up your customer engagement. The more valuable information you can share, the stronger your bond will be. Additionally, high quality content is a driving force of social media marketing and SEO strategies. Plus, this is another way to showcase your products in all their beauty without “space limitations” of your landing pages.