As an e-commerce entrepreneur, you want to see your online store grow. You’ve got a great product and a solid SOMETHING, but you don't see the sales you want. You haven’t got the time or money to invest in a long, calculated marketing campaign. You want to see results fast. With that in mind, I present to you 11 simple ways to boost your store’s growth almost instantly! Read on...
11 Ways to Boost E-Commerce Growth
Paid traffic might have a reputation as extortionately expensive, but if done right it can be both relatively cheap and highly effective. Here’s how:
- Paying for ads is a great way to get your brand showing up in relevant and therefore targeted searches. As your ads are guaranteed to appear as soon as you’ve paid for them, you will see results quicker than if you committed to a long campaign.
- Feeling nervous? With paid traffic, you can limit your spend for each campaign, so set yourself a limited budget and see how it goes. It’s also a good chance to let you get a feel for the ropes before properly setting sail.
- Another benefit of e-commerce growth? A/B testing. Otherwise known as split testing, this lets you create two separate adverts which you can then show to real users to see how they perform. Once you get the results back, you just choose the ad that performed best — it’s as simple as that!
Target existing customers.
Take a look at your current marketing strategy. A lot of you might find that it’s aimed at getting new leads, on chasing new customers rather than looking after your current ones. Sure, an important part of a business growing is in reaching a wider audience.
But you’ve got a whole load of existing customers who you know are willing to spend money in your store. As the below shows — if they’ve bought something once, they’re probably more likely to buy something again.
So how will this boost your e-commerce store?
- The great thing about this tactic is that you don’t need to waste time or money sourcing customer data. If someone’s bought something from you before, all that information should already be at your fingertips.
- Consider offering your audience a discount on a product they’ve shown interest in before. This is a great way to create loyal and regular customers for your brand.
Diversify your content.
Another surprisingly effective means to grow your online store quickly is through the use of videos. 52% of marketers claim it is the content with the best ROI, so if your brand hasn’t diversified into video yet, it’s high time you do. Here’s the how and why:
- A video is a great way of visually demonstrating the features and qualities of your product directly to your customer. They’re not required to read anything, they can just sit back and let you do your thing.
- You don’t need to be an aspiring Steven Spielberg to create great video content. They can be as simple as you like, as long as they show the benefits of your product. For example, check out the how-to video below for a spiralizer. No technical wizardry, no fancy effects — just a straightforward demonstration of the product and its features.
Optimize your site for mobile.
The benefits of optimizing your website for user experience cannot be underestimated, and this is particularly true for mobile devices as well. More and more consumers are using their mobile or tablet to make purchases.
If your e-commerce store isn’t optimized, customers will browse to your site on their mobile… then immediately leave because it’s not user-friendly.
- Most e-commerce stores come pre-made for mobile devices, but be sure to check with your current or prospective platform first.
- If you have the time, experience or money, consider building an app for your store.
- An app creates a one-stop shop for your customers that is convenient, faster, and already contains all their information. This means you not only cater to new customers, but also your returning customers as well.
Ramp up your discounts.
It might seem counter-intuitive, but offering more special offers and discounts is a great way of speeding up your sales growth. Reducing your prices, even temporarily, is a sure-fire way of tapping into consumers’ love of getting a good deal.
- Concerned about your profit margins? No need. Simply increase the base price of your products, then apply your discount as needed.
- Once you’ve lured a customer in with a special offer, the chances are they’ll see something else they might like when they’re browsing. Be sure to place adverts for suggested items alongside the reduced price to increase the value of their cart.
Consider product-wide discounts too, as ASOS have in the below ad. A discount on a specific product is all well and good, but 20% off all dresses? That’s a lot of choice for the customer and makes for an offer that’s too good to refuse.
Add a sense of urgency.
FOMO, or “fear of missing out”, is something all of us experience. Just as people want to see a film before it stops showing in theaters, so too do they want to take advantage of a deal before it expires.
The sooner it ends, the more urgent it is for your customers to buy. Combined with a pressing call-to-action, these ads are guaranteed to make your audience act quickly.
This ad from Skinny Mint is a great example of this tactic. With urgent, punchy language and just a three-hour deadline, you can bet their sales spiked after this. Consider using phrases such as:
- Only a few places left on this spa break...
- Hurry! Offer ends this weekend…
- Once it’s gone, it’s gone!
Step up your promotions during holidays.
The holidays are the perfect time to boost your online store’s growth. Events like Christmas, Thanksgiving, and Black Friday are perfect to capitalize on. More and more people are buying online, both to avoid busy shopping malls and for the offers. People also traditionally spend more during the holidays, so you need to make sure they’re spending it in your store.
- Make sure to offer your best promotions and discounts during these times. Plan for the year ahead, taking into account both regional and national events.
- It’s also worth changing your ads and e-mails to target specific holidays. For example, describing an item as “the perfect Christmas gift” will reel your customers into making a purchase, boosting your sales quickly.
- Consider the offers your competitors are making. Can you match or even beat them? Or can you offer something they don’t, like guaranteed next-day delivery or free personalization?
Automate to recover abandoned carts.
You could be missing out on a huge swathe of sales right now, but only by an inch. Research has shown that roughly three-quarters of carts are abandoned before consumers make the final purchase. That’s a lot, but it’s not out of reach.
- With automation tools such as MailChimp or Oberlo, you can arrange for automated e-mails to be sent out to users who leave before paying. This can contain one-off discount codes or freebies if they buy now to sweeten the deal.
- For an example of this, check out the DoggyLoot e-mail below. They let the customer know that their product might sell out soon due to popularity, giving a sense of urgency to the transaction.
- If your current e-commerce software doesn’t allow for these tools, consider upgrading to another e-commerce solution like Shopify Don’t miss out on those abandoned carts!
Focus on your best products.
The Pareto principle, when applied to sales, states that 80% of your profits are derived from 20% of your products. It makes sense then that you should push people to your most popular items. Not all of your customers know what they want to buy, particularly if they’re looking for gifts rather than something for themselves. It, therefore, helps to give them a little nudge in the right direction.
- Include the best seller section on your home or landing page and give customers tips on what they might like. Things are popular for a reason, so capitalize on it!
In your e-mail marketing, be sure to highlight the most popular sellers of that month. Keeping it fresh means your customers aren’t seeing the same products over and over again and keeps them informed of the current trends.
Start a competition.
Competitions are a great way to rapidly grow your e-commerce business, both in terms of leads and in brand exposure.
- Your prize doesn’t need to be a trip to the moon (or even a trip to Costa Rica like the ad below) — it can be one of your products or even tickets to a local gig.
- People love free stuff and will do almost anything to get it. This includes liking and sharing posts, so it’s the perfect opportunity to get your brand’s content going viral.
- Competitions and giveaways are also a great way to gather contact details for future marketing campaigns and get your brand immediate attention — all at a relatively low cost. Getting customers to sign up to an e-mail newsletter for a freebie is a very effective method, and well worth considering.
Up your social media game.
Social media is the here and now… and the future. In 2017, 2.46 billion people were active on social media platforms, and it’s not just for individuals either.
- Did you know? Approximately 75 million businesses have an Instagram account. And they’re not just posting photos of their food either.
- With regular, useful content and continued customer engagement, they are all growing — and you can too.
- Instagram is fast becoming a vital component of any e-commerce marketing strategy. Developments in the pipeline include shoppable posts, letting users scroll through images and make a purchase at the click of a button. Exciting stuff!
Don't forget to make sure your delivery processes are on point. You can do it by implementing order management software.
The landscape of e-commerce is changing, and fast. Change with it, and you will see your online store grow from strength to strength. Follow these tips and stay ahead of the game, and see your e-commerce business soar!