Anyone can start an eCommerce store to make a quick buck, but if you’re serious about scaling your business in the eCommerce industry and you’re in this for the long haul, you’re in the right place.
Given that eCommerce sales amounted to 3.46 trillion dollars in 2019, with experts forecasting that it will hit 4.48 trillion dollars in 2021, it’s a smart move to start thinking about how you can make the most out of your eCommerce store.
In this Mastering eCommerce guide, you’ll find plenty of best practices that you can use to optimize your website, as well as refine your marketing strategies. These tips will help you capitalize on the fast-growing eCommerce market, and exponentially increase your revenue. Let’s get started!
In this Mobile First Era, consumers are searching for products and purchasing them on-the-go.
With global mobile and tablet browsing (50.13%) surpassing desktop browsing (47.%), it’s important to optimize your mobile eCommerce site for a seamless user experience. Here are three strategies that will help you do just that.
Since the main purpose of an eCommerce site is for users to purchase products, the process of helping users check out and pay should be frictionless.
Just like in a retail store, where there are sign boards and sales personnel to help customers find what they want, your eCommerce site should allow consumers to quickly browse through categories and find products they’re searching for.
To persuade users to buy, your website copy and accompanying images or videos should be informative and engaging.
UX refers to User Experience; by adhering to certain UX best practices, eCommerce store owners can ensure that their website is functional and user-friendly for their customers.
Here are two UX tips which will help you improve the customer experience on your eCommerce store and, ultimately, drive more people through your checkout.
You need to build trust as an eCommerce platform. Trust is the key to persuading customers to not only buy from you but also to develop brand loyalty, especially in a space as saturated and competitive as eCommerce.
Here’s how to go about building that trust:
Build a strong reputation over time by leveraging the opinions of third parties, through reviews, customer testimonials and press mentions. Imagine you’re buying a drone on Amazon - what’s the key factor in influencing your decision as to whether the seller is reliable, and will deliver? Reviews!
The web can be highly impersonal. To build rapport with your customers, make your product as relatable as possible by humanizing your brand. When customers are reminded that there’s a dedicated team of people behind your brand, they’re more likely to trust it. This can be done by including customer service tabs, live chats, and images of team members on your eCommerce storefront.
Nobody wants to make a purchase from a website that looks like a scam. Convey the fact that your company is professional and well-established company by incorporating trust drivers (SSL certification, Norton seals, and more) on your eCommerce storefront.
The customer also needs to know that their credit card information is handled safely, and that their purchase will be delivered. Increase customer confidence by including features such as a money-back guarantee, refund policy and fine print detailing the company’s policies around privacy and data protection.
As an eCommerce business, you’ll want to increase the lifetime value of your customers. The best way to do this is through following up and upselling to your customer after they’ve made a purchase.
The post-purchase upsell is a proven strategy that keeps customers returning. You can do this on your site by recommending complementary goods or offering free memberships when your customers complete their purchase.
When a receipt is emailed to your customer, you can include a discount code for their next purchase, links to similar items purchased, or any other interesting information. Remember to keep it relevant and useful, so that your customers appreciate the value you are providing.
Want to maintain top-of-mind awareness and keep customers engaged with your brand? Make use of drip email marketing campaigns or Facebook retargeting advertisements to boost brand awareness. For the latter, use deep links so that you can send your customers to a specific page featuring products which are highly tailored to their interests.
In this section, we’ll take a look at what exactly app integrations are, how to install them, and how to choose the right Shopify app for your eCommerce store.
We’ll also share some case studies of hugely successful Shopify app integrations on other eCommerce stores.
Shopify’s app integrations are essentially tools which you can use to grow your business. These apps, which you can find on the Shopify App Store, are great for streamlining your daily operations, adding new functions to your store, and growing your revenue.
It’s easy to get started with Shopify apps. Firstly, head over to the Shopify App Store to decide which app you’d like to integrate with your store. You can filter the available apps by category (marketing, sales, shipping, etc.), collections (launching your shop, growing your business, managing a POS, etc.), and also by price. Next, click the “install” button, and enter your store’s address. Finally, confirm your installation, and you’re all set!
There are tons of apps available on the Shopify App Store, and the amount of choice that you’re faced with might be overwhelming. Here are three specific things to look out for when you’re trying to find the best Shopify apps for your business.
Look for apps that have a large volume of high scores across a consistent length of time. You’ll want to go for both quality (5 star reviews being the best) and quantity (e.g. how many other Shopify stores are using them). Apps with a small number of high scoring reviews might not accurately reflect the app’s capabilities, so the quantity of reviews is as important as the score rating.
Many popular apps will also provide a link to request a live demo, where you can check out how the app functions in real time. This will help you better envision what the app will look like on your store (if it’s a front-end app) or how the app will speed up and improve your processes (if it’s a back-end app).
Narrow your list down to apps that provide reliable and effective support. Different apps provide varying levels of support, from community help to email or phone support. Before purchasing an app, research the level of support provided by the company. It’s also worth reading through the reviews to check out if other users have talked about how accessible support is for any given app integration.
We’ve all heard of the phrase “content is king”, but if you ask us, this doesn’t paint a completely accurate picture.
With 211 million pieces of content being created every minute globally, it’s no longer enough to create content for content’s sake. The end goal is to create content that stands out and resonates with your customers – and in order to achieve this, you’ll need to get a lot more intentional with your content strategy. More specifically, here are our top tips when it comes to content marketing for eCommerce stores:
Do you want to increase the number of visitors to your site? To increase the number of purchases from new customers? Or to increase engagement on your social media channels? Once you’ve got your objectives sorted, come up with the key metrics that you’ll need to measure conversion rates, clickthrough rates, revenue generated, etc. – and set specific targets for each of these metrics.
If you’ve got plenty of customers posting, tweeting, or otherwise generating content about your products, don’t simply ignore them! Re-posting your customers’ photos or reviews on your own social channels is a quick and easy way of engaging with them; alternatively, repurposing these photos and reviews to use on your advertisements or website is also a smart move. (For the latter: according to data from Yotpo, displaying testimonials on your homepage can increase sales by up to 32%.)
Lead generation tools such as Oxyleads save a lot of time spent on trying to identify the most valuable prospects and find their contact information. With automated lead generation, you can skip the step of finding leads, and focus on building the relationships with potential suppliers and closing deals.
Traditional product advertising success is measured on ROAS (Return on Advertising Spend). Essentially, this boils down to how much revenue you generate after subtracting advertising costs.
While ROAS is certainly an important metric, it focuses too much on making advertising efficient and ignores what‘s really best for the business. We recommend taking merchandising, sales trends and other factors into account when deciding which products to advertise.
Instead of using ROAS to decide on which products to advertise, take a more holistic approach by looking at the product’s yield management. A product’s yield refers to how much the sale of a product is worth to your business as a whole, and this takes into account sell-through rates, product seasonality, warehousing costs, clearance termination dates and more.When product advertising and merchandising work together to overcome their traditional data silos, the whole business benefits. Advertising budget is allocated to products that will have the greatest positive impact on the business as opposed to the ones that are easiest to sell. When this happens, retailers become more efficient and effective at selling their inventory. For more information on how to connect your inventory management systems with product advertising, check out Crealytics’ Retail Intelligence and Performance Platform.
With an abundance of eCommerce platforms and resources available at your fingertips, setting up an eCommerce store has never been easier.
Optimizing and priming your eCommerce store for success, however, is a different ballgame.
The most successful eCommerce store owners will recognize that it takes months or even years of hard work to build up a reputable eCommerce store. Optimizing your website takes a significant amount of time – to do it properly, you’ll have to spend months on A/B testing, measuring your results, fine-tuning your efforts, and testing again. The same goes for content marketing – you’ll have to produce content consistently over a prolonged period of time to see any significant impact on your store.
The good news? Once you’ve put in the work to optimize your eCommerce store, you’ll be able to enjoy the significantly higher profits and revenue that will come from your improved conversion rates. It’s time to grow your eCommerce store and take it to the next level!
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