Over the last few years, I have dabbled in the e-commerce space and have owned a few different stores. Although finding things to sell takes a bit of digging into, the return can sometimes be substantial if done right.
With the eCommerce business being the fastest growing market projected to hit 4.058 trillion in sales in 2020, many have been stepping into this industry but get stuck along the way in various aspects, one being how to boost their sales. Just like Daren DeMatas rightly said, “Building an e-commerce business takes more than choosing a brand name, writing product listings, and starting to sell products online. Even the best business ideas can flop…”
This is something I have at times struggled with, and continue to work on to boost the revenues of my stores over the different quarters.
In the e-commerce industry, consumer habits change continually, and this is the reason why methods that once worked soon become obsolete. In other words, to continually gain new customers and generate sales, you just have to keep up with new trends. There’s no magic to it.
Having studied and analyzed the dynamics of the business and have used my connections to connect with some of the best in the industry, I have come up with easy and practicable tips that will help you boost your store sales.
Whether you’re entirely new to E-commerce or have been in the business for years, the tips I have shared here will hopefully work perfectly for you.
Here are 5 smart ways to boost E-commerce store sales:
- Simplify your checkout process
- Ensure that all buttons are functional, especially the back button
- Kill the idea of offering too many choices
- Put Email marketing to good use
- Use paid traffic
Simplify your checkout process
Simplifying your checkout process eliminates the friction associated with the “wear and tear” of potential buyers.
This practice is arguably one of the easiest and effective ways to boost E-commerce store sales. In fact, one company recorded about $300 000 000 increase in sales right after simplifying their checkout process. What did they do? They simply provided people with the option to check out as a guest.
Popular E-commerce sites like Apple, Nixon, Amazon and a few others use this tactic to greatly increase their conversion rate. You can see how they have done that comprehensively here. I love the way Catalin Zorzini, Founder of ecommerce-platforms.com, has grouped these great sites up and explained every single step they’ve taken to set their checkout page right. He gives fantastic advice on what you should and shouldn’t do, for example he states, “one of the most common reasons for basket abandonment is forcing users to register their details before they checkout”. He then discusses how you can go about fixing it. I can hardly recall a time I’ve worked on a checkout page without making reference to his post for inspiration.
One of the most common reasons for basket abandonment is forcing users to register their details before they checkout.
Catalin Zorzini Ecommerce-Platforms
Other ways you can go about simplifying your checkout process:
- Reducing the number of form fields that customers need to fill in before checking out.
- Enabling checkout for un-registered customers (guest checkout).
- Keep the back button functional
- Offering too many choices
- Include a progress bar – This will greatly reduce the number of people that will back out of the checkout process. Knowing when the process will finish has a way of getting customers across the finish line.
These are really important tips to keep at the back of your mind at all times. Try them out on your store, and you’ll experience a rise in sales.
Ensure that all buttons are functional, especially the back button
Ask top level sale killers to put their arms up, and you’ll surely find resubmissions or automatic redirects sticking its arm highest. Less than a handful of customers will go ahead to restock the cart on your store once there’s a redirection and they lose their items. To avoid such situations, be sure to maintain a smart cart that will save customer items whether they navigate away from the cart or mistakenly follow a link out of the checkout page. While this may seem too ordinary a task to make any difference to your store, I consider it one of the easiest ways to boost E-commerce store sales.
Kill the idea of offering too many choices
Not too long ago, Frank, a friend of mine asked me to help him take a look at his Shopify store. He complained of a decline in sales he had started to notice shortly after improving the mobile experience and adding extra products to his store. Immediately, I suspected the problem was from the new product categories he had added. I did some little tweaks here and there, and sales climbed up again. He had created the problem of choice unknowingly!
“Choice,” is a straightforward expression of free will, and customers love when they can find this expression. However, making too many choices available for customers could reduce sales. In fact, according to analysis carried out by Shopify: offering more products for sale will often get more people to visit your store but will cause very few to buy.
Well, you don’t necessarily need to take down your extra products if you already have them up. Simply sorting the products well enough to reduce the complexity associated with choice over a variety will boost your e-commerce store sales. Just categorize your products “seductively”. This tip worked for Frank, it will definitely work for you too.
Put Email marketing to good use
Email marketing is one of the most reliable and profitable ways to boost your E-commerce store sales.
It can be simple or complex (not difficult) depending on what E-commerce marketing strategies you apply. For example, you can simply get across to people who abandoned their shopping carts and get them to buy.
On the one hand, it could go as complex as preparing and putting out several campaigns that will work closely together to greatly improve sales. All the same, the aim remains to build trust with existing and all potential customers. Whatever be the case, there’re some great Email marketing apps you can use to make certain processes easier and smoother.
What we will look at here is the simple approach to growing your E-commerce store. To accomplish this, you need to have emails of people who have previously bought items from your store, or that are likely to buy.
If you already have an email list of customers (probably provided during the checkout process), that’s great! If you don’t (maybe because you’re new to the business), we’re still good but you’ll have to start by building a list. Here are 3 ways you can get people on your email list:
- Use pop-up on your site that offers people a discount
- Run ads targeted at selling a specific product.
- Do giveaways with products related to what you sell on your store.
So, once you have got the email list, the next thing to do is sell the people on the list! Here are 2 ways you can go about that.
- Upselling: This is the practice of encouraging customers to buy a comparable higher-end product. For example, if a customer bought an iPhone 6, you could upsell them to an iPhone 7 Plus.
- Cross-selling: This is often confused with upselling, but they are two different things. Cross-selling involves selling products that go alongside products they have already bought. That is products that are complementary to previously bought items. For example, if someone has bought a tie, you can cross-sell them a pocket square.
If you plan on cross-selling, I recommend you start email marketing them a week or two after they buy a complementary product.
However, keep the words of Darren DeMatas on e-commerce marketing common pitfalls where he advised, “once you build a list of potential customers, resist the urge to blast them with generic sales promos!”, as this could turn them off. Darren offers a pretty detailed roadmap on the use of email marketing to boost sales on his website, be sure to check it out.
Once you build a list of potential customers, resist the urge to blast them with generic sales promos!
Darren DeMatas EcommerceCEO
Have it in mind that upselling takes a little more effort to close than cross-selling, as it requires some more convincing. You’ll definitely need some knowledge on building customer loyalty if you plan on upselling your customers.
In any case, these two methods will help you reduce abandoned carts, and go on to record fresh sales. However, as mentioned earlier, there’s more to Email marketing than I’ve discussed within the few lines above. If you’re looking to have all the nitty-gritty of Email marketing in your fingertips, there’s no better place to go than Ecommerceceo.
Most people have crossed out the idea of boosting sales via paid traffic from their to-do list based on negative stories they’ve heard. Stories of how people have spent loads of cash on paid traffic without getting any ROI. And frankly, paid traffic can be very expensive and yield you no result, but only if you’re going about it the wrong way.
If you heard of a machine that turns one dollar into more than $1, wouldn’t you invest in it? Paid traffic is such a machine, and you should invest in it. The reason lots of people lose their money through paid traffic is that they go all the way in without testing the waters!
What do I mean by “testing the waters”? I mean spending little amounts of money running several campaigns to see which one makes the most hit, and then spending more on it.
“Spending anything within $20 – $50 on each ad variation is considered OK”
While running the campaigns and multiple ad variations, monitor the metrics to see which of them brings in the highest numbers. Once this is found, kill the rest and invest more in the winning campaign. This way, you will find boosting your E-commerce store sales more affordable and profitable.
That said, one other thing you should pay attention to while utilizing paid traffic is proper targeting. With advanced tools on great advertising platforms like Facebook, for instance, you can target people who are more likely to buy.
For example. Let’s say you sell T-shirts with stars from the TV series, Game of Thrones printed on them, and you want to run a Facebook ad to increase sales. The best thing to do is to target people who follow and like pages related to the TV series. The chances of selling are bound to be higher since the set of people already have an interest.
If your ads get to the right audience, there’s a higher chance of getting more bang for your bucks. You can generate tons of sales on your E-commerce store from Facebook ads, but there’s a lot to learn.
I love finding and trying out new ways to boost E-commerce store sales, skyrocket returns and build quality relationships with customers. And of course, ecommerceceo and e-commerce-platforms are two sites that help me achieve these.
I’ve tried out, and continue to use every tactic mentioned in this post extensively, and they work perfectly for me. If you put them to good use, they will work for you too.
Whether you’re entirely new to e-commerce, or you’ve been in the business and your sales are stalling, the way out is to try new tactics. Good thing you’ve come across this article through which I aim to help you explore practicable and highly effective methods that will increase sales on your E-commerce store.
Hopefully, reading this has provided you with the required skillset to achieve great results, all that’s left now is for you to get started.
Surely, there are several other smart ways to boost E-commerce store sales. Are there some you’ve tried that I’ve not discussed here? Which did you find to be most effective?