Showing posts with label ecommerce. Show all posts
Showing posts with label ecommerce. Show all posts

Friday, 12 March 2021

Some eCommerce Promotion Ideas to Boost Your Online Sales

 For reasons we don’t need to go into, it’s a pretty mixed bag right now for ecommerce businesses worldwide. Online retail in general is booming, but we’re slap-bang in the middle of a period where people are hesitant to spend their money.





Hence, anything you can do to boost and market online sales during this difficult time is something you probably should be doing.

For those willing to do what it takes to weather the storm, here’s a brief rundown of just a few ecommerce promotion ideas that are guaranteed to boost your online sales:

1. Contests and giveaways

We’re all powerless against a freebie - especially in times of financial turbulence. Organising a contest can be a great way of nurturing engagement, boosting interest in your products and attracting new customers. Even if the prize isn’t particularly lucrative, contests and giveaways never fail.

2. Flash sales

This is where you host a strictly time-limited sale with the kinds of major deals and discounts you wouldn’t normally offer. Perhaps for one day or even just a couple of hours, you make limited quantities of certain items available at seriously low prices. Again, a great way of pulling in the punters and attracting new customers to your store.

3. Free samples

If anything you sell is perishable and is at risk of expiring in the near future, it’s far better to give it away than to allow it to go to waste. This can be made an ongoing element of your sales and marketing strategy, offering free samples on a first-come, first-served basis to the customers in your mailing list.

4. Introduce multi-purchase deals

One of the most effective ways of maximising the size and value of every sale is to incentivise heavier spending. More specifically, through the introduction of multi-purchase deals - ideally on a long-term basis. You buy three products, you get a fourth item for free - a tried, tested and trusted approach to boosting sales.

5. Stop charging for shipping

With more online retailers than ever before offering free shipping as standard, you cannot afford to continue charging for shipping in the current climate. Feel free to impose a modest minimum spend to qualify for free shipping, but make sure free delivery is one of your online store’s key selling points.

6. Assemble product packs or bundles

This is more or less the same as a multi-purchase deal, only in this instance you decide what goes in the package. You group a bunch of similar or relevant items together, you package them in an attractive bundle and you sell them at a lower price than the combined individual product costs.

7. Improve your loyalty scheme

More importantly, think about introducing a loyalty scheme if you don’t already have one up and running. And don’t make the mistake of offering lame or low-value incentives in return for loyalty - make sure repeat business is rewarded fairly and generously.

8. Leverage user-generated-content (UGC)

Last up, now could also be the perfect time to begin leveraging the value and appeal of user-generated-content. Along with being more impactful, influential and memorable than any brand-created content, it’s also 100% free of charge! Ask your customers to submit content you can publish (perhaps on the basis of a modest incentive) and they’ll usually be more than happy to do so.

Friday, 23 October 2020

The Rise and Rise of mCommerce

 Once again, the extraordinary value and importance of mCommerce has been illustrated in the numbers alone. As of right now, approximately 1.6 billion people are known to be using mobile devices to make purchases online. Or to put it another way, that’s more than 25% of the entire population of the world. 





Not only this, but as the popularity of mCommerce continues to grow worldwide, traditional eCommerce by way of desktop and laptop computers is seeing something of a decline. Nothing particularly dramatic, but a 15% in 2019, compared to the year before. During the same period, transactions originating from smartphones doubled.

Quote these figures to the average business owner and chances are they’ll be anything but surprised. After all, mCommerce didn’t exactly come out of nowhere and nor is it a secret that the modern world is addicted to mobile. But what is interesting is the way in which so many business owners still seem entirely unsure as to how to adapt and engineer their content for success in the mCommerce era.

Smooth and Simple

As a rule of thumb, the key to success when it comes to mCommerce is to deliver a smooth, simple and seamless experience for every customer. Easier said than done, but nonetheless essential.

Speed and simplicity are the two most important attributes demanded by today’s consumer. For example, approximately 65% of mCommerce shoppers are unwilling to wait more than 4 seconds for any given webpage to load. If it takes longer than this, they’ll head elsewhere. When they do, close to 70% stated that they’d be far more likely to go through with a purchase, if the mobile experience as a whole was on-par.

By the end of 2020, total mCommerce value in the United Kingdom alone is expected to hit an incredible £42 billion. What’s more, mCommerce will also account for at least 45% of all online sales – its highest figure to date.

So it’s abundantly clear that mCommerce isn’t going anywhere but skywards for the foreseeable future. Hence, now really is the time to invest as heavily as necessary in creating a premier mobile experience, built in accordance with the following key principles:

• Creativity. However you choose to go about it, your mobile website needs to stand out from the crowd, delivering a strong and true reflection of your brand. It shouldn’t be a generic, watered-down version of your primary desktop website.

• Visuals. Most mobile shoppers expect the kinds of high-quality visuals that make it quick and easy to see what it is that’s on offer and whether or not they want it. Creative imagery having much greater impact than standard stock photography.

• Adaptability. It’s no good to provide a mobile experience that’s outstanding on the customer’s Samsung smartphone and pure garbage on their iPad. Quality mobile web design means ensuring your content and layout can adapt to all devices, without exception.

• Simplification. Ideally, the customer should be able to find whatever they’re looking for and complete the entire purchase process in just a few touches. The slower and more complicated the conversion process, the less likely it is to happen.

• Speed. Last up, capitalising on the value of impulse purchases and generally maintaining the attention of modern audiences means providing a lightning-fast mobile experience at all times. When mobile site speed isn’t up to scratch, it’s game-over.

Thursday, 5 December 2019

The Four Biggest Ecommerce Changes You Can Expect In 2020


Every year brings its own unique shifts and changes to the online retail landscape. 2019 looks to be no exception to the rule, with a handful of ecommerce trends set to dominate the months ahead.

So whether you’re running an online business or are simply a spectator on the sidelines, here are the four biggest ecommerce shifts you can expect to see this year: 



Social Selling
First up, the key to success on the world’s leading social platforms has always been to avoid the hard-sell at all costs. And it still is, but this doesn’t mean that selling on social media isn’t an incredibly effective strategy for the savvy business. It’s the classic case of selling without selling - finding ways to promote your products, your services and your brand without resorting to the hard-sell. Images and videos showing your products in use, influencer recommendations, exclusive deals and discounts - there’s a lot you could be doing to promote your products subtly yet effectively on social media.

Multi-Channel Selling

It’s also worth remembering that today’s consumer doesn’t make purchases exclusively through one online channel. A recent survey has found that around 90% of consumers still shop offline, 45% use branded online stores, more than 75% have made purchases on Amazon and around 35% use eBay. This means that irrespective of the demographic you’re reaching out to, it simply makes sense to sell your products and/or services through a wide variety of channels. If you’re still selling your wares exclusively through your own website, it’s time to think about getting your eBay and Amazon stores up and running as quickly as possible.

Smarter Payment Processing

The simplicity and seamlessness of the payment process can be the ultimate deal-breaker for today’s consumer. They’ve made it right through to the final payment process, but it’s still spectacularly easy to lose them at this late stage. In fact, research suggests that of the 70% of shoppers who abandon their carts before making a purchase, the majority cite issues or inconveniences regarding the payment process. In this instance, ‘smarter’ payment processes means simplified, streamlined and accelerated payment processes. A checkout process with as few mandatory fields to fill in as possible and a variety of payment options to choose from.

Custom Packaging

Last but not least, consumers are placing heavier emphasis on the appeal of product packaging than ever before. Along with the elimination of unnecessary packaging and the exclusive use of recyclable/recycled materials, custom packaging is also making its mark. To such an extent that almost 70% of shoppers admit being impressed and engaged by brands that take their packaging seriously. If you lack resources to come up with your own custom packaging in-house, there are plenty of third-party specialists who can help.

Saturday, 12 January 2019

The Five W’s (and One H) of Perfect Product Descriptions


By its very nature, the term ‘product description’ is misleading. The reason being that one of the biggest mistakes you can make is to simply describe your products, rather than communicating their primary selling points.

When you think about it, you can describe almost any product in minute detail, without describing any of its benefits or applications. Realistically therefore, product descriptions shouldn’t be used to describe your products, but instead sell them by way of merit.

One of the best ways of penning perfect product descriptions is to focus on the Five W’s approach. Call it cliché, but it’s a consistently effective way of ensuring you communicate everything that matters to the prospective buyer.



Irrespective of what it is you’re selling and who you’re attempting to sell it to, these are the Five W’s (and One H) that can ensure you get the job done right:

WHO

First up, you need to clearly communicate who the product has been designed for. What kind of demographic are you targeting? What are the interests, expectations and priorities of your ideal buyer? Your product description should be tailored to both appeal to your ideal customer, while clearly communicating the benefits of the product to their demographic.

WHAT

You’ll then need to give a concise yet compelling account of what it is your product does and what sets it apart from comparable products on the market. Along with its basic attributes – features, dimensions and so on – your product description should communicate the purpose and value of the product in question.

WHERE

Slightly simpler, this refers to information regarding where the product can or should be used. Has it been designed for use in a very specific scenario, or is the ability to use it anywhere and at any time one of its selling points? Help build a mental picture of the product in use for your customers, by communicating where they’ll be using it if they buy it.

WHEN

The same also goes for when – what would be the ideal time for using your product and why? Has it been designed to maximise convenience or enjoyment while travelling? Is it an everyday household essential they’ll be using on a daily basis? Or is it something altogether more special for an altogether more special occasion?

WHY

The last of the W’s is also the most important – why should they purchase your product? What will it do to improve their life? Does it solve any specific problems? What makes it both unique and superior to anything else currently on the market?

HOW

Last up, the nature of the product you’re selling will determine whether you need to detail how it works. In the case of technology and gadgets in general, at least a brief overview of its method of operation could be useful.

And there you have it – five simple steps for coming up with concise yet convincing product descriptions. Once again, it’s a good idea to get out of the habit of simply describing the product itself, focusing instead on its benefits and unique selling points.

Tuesday, 5 September 2017

4 Ways to Avoid E-Commerce Annihilation


Nowadays, it’s often said that in order to be able to survive as a retailer, you need to get involved in the ecommerce revolution. But at the same time, it is hardly difficult to notice how the ecommerce field is already utterly and completely dominated by a few leading brands. Put simply, no matter what you want or need, chances are you’ll be able to easily pick it up from a leading name online.



All of which seems to leave little space for smaller online brands, considering the David and Goliath struggle they usually face. But as far as the professionals are concerned, not all hope is lost. Quite to the contrary, as there are some ways and means by which focusing on what matters can assist any online store avoid complete annihilation by the ecommerce giants.

1. Don’t Count on Low Prices Alone

It is worth bearing in mind that most consumers value other elements of the service package above low prices. Amazing customer service, extremely reliable delivery times or just a brand with a story and ethos they can connect with. Surviving as a small ecommerce business means focusing on what it is that makes your brand both different and awesome from rivals.

2. Be a Service Provider, Not Just a Vending Machine

What this basically means is the way some online stores seem to exist like glorified vending machines, while others are exceptionally rich in engaging and useful content. The difference is that the large majority of web consumers respond significantly better to the latter. Therefore, it is crucial to make all efforts to build and market your businessand brand around so much more than products alone. You have to become an all-round service provider and an online authority your clients turn to for more than purchases alone.

3. Get to Know Your Clients

Loyalty schemes are both effective and important, with eMarketer recently revealing that next to 55% of web consumers admit that their spending habits are influenced by such programs. Nonetheless, it is once again crucial to go beyond the norm in order to be as competitive as possible. Provide regular e-mail updates, carry out surveys, request thoughts, reviews and opinions, find out what their priorities are.

4. Stay Social

Last up, you need to use every scrap of information you come across regarding your customers in terms of the content you create and your effort to maintain relationships. One of the most crucial pieces of the puzzle is that of staying social – making the most use of your social media channels and building one comprehensive online presence. It is not like the CEO of Amazon has the inclination or the time to get directly involved with customers via Twitter or Facebook. As a much more personal and small business, it’s very much something that you can do and hence should be doing.

Wednesday, 20 July 2016

Some Top Tips For Making Money Online



First, the good news: absolutely anyone can make money online if they learn how to go about it. The not-so-good news? It takes time, effort and a lot of trial and error before you get it right. If you’re a start-up online business with a very limited budget then you will naturally want to do as much research as possible before taking the plunge. This way, you can maximise what assets you have.


 
Here are some of the key strategies you can employ to set you off on the right foot:

Research the Market: You may think you have a great product that’s going to sell like hotcakes, but how do you know until you’ve tested it out? Don’t waste time and money by taking your idea straight to market until you have ironed out any kinks, or found out if there is even an audience for it. Get feedback by carrying out market research with potential customers. 

Why not try running a campaign on crowdfunding platforms such as Kickstarter to gauge pre-orders? This way, you will know the potential of your product and also get some idea how to market it online.

Know Your Competitors: Do your homework and find out everything you can about your competitors in the market – both larger and smaller players. What kinds of customers are they targeting and what kinds of services do they offer and is there anything you can learn from the way they do business online? Is there anything unique you can bring to the table? Once you ‘know your enemy’, you can work out ways to differentiate your brand, and this leads us on to the next point.

Marketing Plan: Once you have discovered both what your competitors can do well and what they are lacking, it is time to develop a sound marketing strategy that plays to your relative strengths. Your action plan should begin with an idea of what you want to achieve (whether that’s a turnover figure, customer numbers and so on), and then you can break it down step by step in a way that will help you achieve this. 

Assuming you are working to a limited budget to begin with, think about getting your head around free marketing methods such as blogging, social media or article marketing. If you do this right it can really pay off, but it does take time so be patient.

Build A Strong Website: In this day and age, not only is it absolutely vital for a company to have a website (particularly, of course, if you want to do business online!) but you also have to spend a great deal of time making it look professional and update it on a regular basis. 

Make sure that your products and services are clearly displayed and described and don’t over-clutter it with unnecessary images, text or videos. Above all, ensure you invest in a good check-out system that makes it easy for clients to buy your products. If it’s slow, the modern customer can quickly lose patience and go elsewhere.





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Saturday, 27 October 2012

Is e-commerce the safest place to be?


Electronic commerce or ‘E-commerce’ has largely monopolised the consumer market over recent times. Using the growth of the internet and online networks, companies have been able to extend and reach out to a much wider market place. The likes of Amazon and EBay are prime examples of businesses solely reliant on e-commerce. However, the recession has provided added difficulty and competitiveness in an already driven consumer industry.


On the whole, the consumer market has taken a massive hit since the start of the recession. With nearly 500,000 businesses ceasing to exist in 2009, the majority of these small or medium businesses, the outlook has always looked bleak for the high street companies. The targets of maintaining rather than growth are seen as far more realistic and sensible objectives under the current climate.

Marketing consultants have outlined the need to retain your current customer and supplier base as they are arguably the most important assets when experiencing tougher times such as these. Nevertheless, there are signs that the consumer market is still a place where success is a genuine goal that can be accomplished.

As a result of all the negative press currently associated with the closing of businesses and loss of profits, it may come as a surprise that at the end of 2009, e-commerce experienced a rise in sales of 14%; this occurring at the peak of the recession. The desire for savings and ease of use has seen the consumer swap, or so it seems, to the online market place.

Many an E-commerce market consultant believe the ability to get free shipping and clear promotions can lead to online success. People are now looking for bargains and savings they once would not have; a task much more easily achievable in the comfort of your own home than walking up and down a high street. This changing focus of the customer is already being exploited by some companies and will without doubt be looked at by many more as they look for a solution to their current problems.

Furthermore, the evidence for new and growing e-commerce companies is there for all to see. Amazon is now a worldwide brand after its journey began when it was founded in 1994. With net income for the last quarter in excess of $130million, share prices rocketed up by nearly 15%. Nonetheless, it must be stated that everyone should not try and form a direct copy of Amazon.com. The necessity to appeal to your own customer and be in some way unique is just as important if not more. It is crucial to function in a way that will add the most value to your consumer.