Use the following tips to attract customers in a crowded field
As an e-commerce startup grows it is natural encounter challenges. However, there are some things that you can do to ensure that your growth is as smooth as possible. Here are four tips that can help your e-commerce business grow and succeed.
Be varied with your marketing
It is only natural that at the start of a business’s life it will use a relatively limited range of marketing techniques and strategies. This comes from the inclinations of the entrepreneur starting the business, and typically draws on their skills and preferences. And if you are having success with your early channels that is a good thing to draw on. However, relying entirely on limited forms of marketing will eventually hinder your progress.
A great example of this is when a business relies too heavily on pay-per-click (PPC) advertising. While e-commerce sites can see excellent results using PPC, it ties them into a very expensive form of marketing without a long-term strategy. In this instance it is advisable to look into putting budget into search engine optimization (SEO). Unlike PPC, which is typically a short-term and quick-win strategy, SEO plays the long game.
Through PPC your website reaches the top of the ranking because you have paid for that advertising space, whereas with SEO, you put in the work and those high rankings are awarded to you by Google.
You might need to develop a new marketing strategy for your business. If you are not sure how to start, consider hiring a business plan consultant, who can guide you through the process and share useful pieces of advice.
Move your site to a better CMS
One major challenge for e-commerce businesses as they grow is that they become too large and successful for the initial platform that they have chosen. When entrepreneurs start their e-commerce site, they may choose a simple and cheap selling platform – there are many content management systems (CMSs) that specialize in smaller companies. For example, Big Cartel and Shopify are popular with startups for their fantastic usability and fast setup.
However, as a business grows it may find that these platforms have limits that hinder growth. You may find that you need a CMS with a broader range of features and customization possibilities, and if so, you may want to move to a specialist e-commerce CMS such as Magento. Magneto is the most popular e-commerce platform in the world, and it is actually easier than you might think to transfer your existing business from a smaller platform.
If you do not have the technical expertise to do this, you can work with experts or providers who will help you build your own powerful multi-vendor marketplace website. Whilst this will be an expense, it will allow your business to thrive.
Make your site the best that it can be
It is the belief among many e-commerce site owners that your product is the end-all and be-all of the business. This leads some to think that the only thing you need to ensure that your business is successful, is a high-quality product at the right price. Now, of course it is true that your products are important to your e-commerce site, but you shouldn’t overlook the look and content of the site itself.
Investing in fresh and high-quality content is extremely important. Not only can it benefit your SEO rankings as discussed above, having the right content in place is a fantastic way to boost conversions and sales.
You might be surprised to learn that recent research shows a customer may visit a site as many as 38 times before they place an order – this means that they are constantly checking back and looking over the details at length before they buy. Having great content will make them feel at ease and more confident in your site.
Add customer feedback to your site
One of the major challenges facing an e-commerce business is the need to win the trust of the user. It can be daunting clicking onto an unfamiliar website, and many users will be concerned about whether or not they should place at order with you.
One of the best ways to instill trust in your business is to have customers’ reviews on your site. This shows users that real people are using your site and this can be the comforting knowledge they need to make a purchase.
Written by: Mike James, BOSS Contributor