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Is there something worse than having no traffic to your online store? We think there is: having traffic, but no conversions, which probably means that you’re not attracting the right audience to your site.

There are plenty of different sources you can use to generate traffic, but not all sources will generate high-quality traffic, the kind you’ll need to make conversions.

So instead of focusing on attracting irrelevant traffic, let’s focus on driving the right visitors to your site.

Here are some ideas you can consider.

Blogging

Creating content about your products is about solving your customers’ problems.

If you already have customers, try to determine what your highest quality customers have in common. Look into their purchase frequency, average order value, and retention to find out who they are.

Then, use Google to figure out what problems these people have and what would drive them to your store.

Some products may be harder to sell through blogging so consider this first before deciding that blogging is right for your business.

If creating blog content is a good fit for your market, then you need to create a strategic plan. Look at what the competition is doing and try to find out where your audience hangs out.

Put yourself in your customers’ shoes to figure out what words would they use to find solutions to their problems.

Social Media

Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Snapchat, Google +, you name it.

There are plenty of social media platforms you can use to drive traffic to your online store, but it definitely doesn’t make sense to use all of them.

With more than 2 billion monthly active users, Facebook is clearly the most popular social media platform in the world.

As of September 2017, Instagram reached 800 million monthly active users, so we recommend combining Facebook and Instagram to get more high-quality traffic.

You can use Facebook to build a community and to run ads. With advanced targeting, you can reach any audience you want.

Instagram is great for finding influencers that would be willing to feature your product. Before picking out an influencer, do a little bit of research about them first to see if their style and tone matches your brand. Then, reach out to them and tell them about your proposal.

Video

Online videos are a massive trend right now, and one that you should take advantage of to drive more high-quality traffic to your online store.

Aside from being the second most popular search engine in the world, YouTube is also the most popular platform where you can upload videos.

From kids to elder people, it seems that everyone is watching YouTube videos nowadays.

Now, the trick is to narrow down this massive audience so that the right audience will watch your videos and then access your online store.

Here’s the process you should follow:

  • Write down five main keywords that you’d like to rank for;
  • Do your research to find out what channels are already ranking for those keywords;
  • Determine the topics they discuss in their top videos;
  • Figure out if you can create video content that’s similar (but better) to theirs.

If you use this tactic, then YouTube may even recommend your videos to the users who already watched the top videos you found.

Quality Over Quantity

Rushing to get your first visitors is not always a good idea, especially if they turn out to be not interested in your products.

Instead, it’s best to focus on getting high-quality traffic, even though this means it will take some time. Traffic acquisition is not cheap because either way, you’ll be spending time or money. So our best advice is not to waste any of those resources on attracting low-quality traffic.

Posted in Online Marketing CRO By: shop manager

When it comes to making a purchase, we’re nothing but rational when we make that decision. That is because our brain is incredibly complex. What influences your customers’ decisions are cognitive biases.

Cognitive biases represent tendencies to think a certain way, even if most of the time they are not the most rational ways of thinking.

It’s important to be aware of them and how the human brain works because it will help you market your products more efficiently.

Here’s how you can use cognitive biases to sell more.

Availability Heuristic

This cognitive bias refers to the fact that people tend to rely more on their recent memory. It’s like a mental shortcut.

This means that people will use recent information to make decisions and form new opinions.

You can apply this concept to your online store by taking advantage of what’s happening in the world and the latest news to market your products. For example, if you sell smartphone accessories, you could have taken advantage of the iPhone X release to create new cases or some cool accessories.

Barnum Effect

This states that people will supposedly believe descriptions that are tailored to them, when in fact, they can be applied to a wide range of people.

That’s why horoscopes seem so incredibly accurate.

You can apply this cognitive bias in eCommerce by creating the message with just one person in mind, which is your ideal customer.

For example, you may be selling protein bars that are sugar-free, so your message will target women who pay attention to what they eat, avoid sugar, and go to the gym as well. This is specific and general at the same time, because there are probably thousands of women in this situation. But it’s only a matter of making each woman feel as if the message was specially crafted for her.

Hyperbolic Discounting

This cognitive bias emphasizes the fact that people tend to prefer immediate payoffs, rather than later ones.

If we’re given two rewards, we’ll prefer the one that would arrive sooner, even if the second one would be much larger.

In eCommerce, you can take advantage of this cognitive bias by offering express shipping, even if it costs more. People are willing to pay for it if it means they’re going to get the products sooner rather than later.

Humor Effect

People tend to remember funny memories and they’re also much more eager to share them with other people.

You can use humor to sell more but only if it feels natural and authentic. If you think you’re forcing it, better not do it at all.

Halo Effect

If we had a positive experience with a certain product, then we’ll be more likely to buy other products from that brand.

For example, you may be extremely pleased with your iPhone, and you decide to buy a MacBook as well, even though you could’ve simply bought a laptop from a different brand, with the same specifications.

You can use this cognitive bias for your online store by determining what your store’s greatest quality is. Is it a particular product, its personality, or the experience you provide for your customers?

Find out what sets you apart and use that to create the halo effect.

Conclusion

Appealing to your customers’ logic and reason will not put you in a competitive position. Instead, take advantage of these cognitive biases to persuade your visitors. Look beyond price and product pages, and you’ll start selling more.

Posted in Best Practices Ecommerce By: shop manager

Online shopping has become a common practice for most people who have access to the internet.

Statistics show that, in 2016, more than 1.6 billion people purchased goods or services online. So whatever it is you’re selling, you need to get the word out and start promoting your products to drive traffic to your site and make sales.

In this article, we’re going to show you how to do it.

1. Use Email Marketing

Email marketing is still one of the most effective marketing channels you can use for your online store.

Once you have a sequence set-up, you can automate your email campaigns with the platform of your choice. Here are some email ideas you can use:

  • Send out a weekly newsletter where you talk about some of your new products or an offer you have for them;
  • Email new subscribers by offering them an incentive to make a purchase;
  • Send personalized email based on what your customers already purchased or the items they added to their wishlist.

2. Use Instagram

Instagram is one of the best social media platforms you can use for your online store because of its visual focus. Not to mention the fact that in September 2017, it reached 800 million monthly active users.

Besides sharing images and videos with your products on your profile, you should also tap into the power and influence of bloggers that have a massive following. Reach out to them and see if they would be interested in promoting your product. This tactic works great especially if you sell clothes or accessories.

3. Run a Contest On Facebook

Contests are easy to put together are they are also extremely effective at getting your brand in front of a lot of people with little effort.

The prize should be the product that you want to promote or you can even create a bundle of similar products to give away. To gain as much exposure as possible, organize a “like, share, comment to win” type of contest.

4. Start Blogging

Hubspot found that the more you blog, the more traffic you’re going to bring to your site.

To blog effectively, write content around your products. For example, if you’re selling dresses for special occasions, you can write a post about what to wear to a wedding and how you can style different types of dresses.

The possibilities are endless here. Just take each major product category you have on your site and start creating blog posts around them.

5. Create Facebook Ads

As an advertising platform, Facebook gives you plenty of options that you can use when running ads. We recommend using the Custom Audiences option because these type of ads allow you to tailor them to a very specific audience.

For example, you can create ads to target website visitors that have viewed a specific product in the last month. You can also run an ad to target users that have engaged with certain ads in the past.

1, 2, 3, Promote!

Whether your online store has been up and running for some time now or you’re just getting started, these tips will help you easily promote your products and drive traffic to your site.

Combine all of these ideas for maximum results and to get ahead of your competition.

Posted in Online Marketing By: shop manager

Email marketing remains, until this day, one of the most powerful marketing channels you can use to drive sales to your online store.

The reason why it’s so effective is because a person’s inbox is personal. They already permitted you to send promotional materials, transactional emails, coupons, or anything else that will make them loyal to your brand.

However, don’t think that email marketing is solely used for making sales. It’s also about building a relationship with existing and potential customers.

The majority of your site’s visitors are new and will not return. Luckily, you can use email to make them come back.

Here’s how you can launch a successful email marketing campaign for your online store.

Step 1 - Choose The Right Email Marketing Platform

The email marketing platform will be used to save your email list and to send the emails.

Here are some popular options you can consider:

  • AWeber;
  • MailChimp;
  • Constant Contact;
  • Campaign Monitor;
  • GetResponse;
  • ActiveCampaign.

Most of these platforms come with either a free plan or a free trial, so you’ll be able to test them out before deciding which one you’re going to use.

Step 2 - Build Your Email List

The more people you’re going to have on your email list, the more successful it’s going to be.

If your online store has already made sales, then you can add your customers to the email list. To grow it, even more, you can use these ideas:

  • Give away free content. This will act as a lead magnet. For it to work, the free content you’re giving away needs to be related to the product/s you’re selling. If you’re selling women’s clothes, for example, you can create a winter lookbook so that your customers can get inspired.
  • Run competitions. These represent an excellent and easy way to get a high amount of email addresses. The only downside is that there’s always the risk of generating subscribers that aren’t actually interested in your products.
  • se an opt-in form. You can place the opt-in form in your sidebar, on your about page, inside your blog posts, in your footer, or as a pop-up. To make it compelling for visitors, offer an exclusive deal or discount they can use for their next order.

Step 3 - Segment Your Email List

Once you have grown your email list, you need to use segmentation to make it even more effective.

An email marketing campaign will bring you the best results if you segment your list based on people’s interests, products they purchased, or actions they’ve taken on your site.

This way, you’re going to avoid sending out emails that are irrelevant to them.

Each email marketing platform will provide different segmentation options, so look at their documentation first to see what features they offer.

Step 4 - Establish Goals

Once you’ve segmented your email list, you need to set your goals and determine exactly what you want to achieve.

You will need to set different goals for each segment in order to create a successful email marketing campaign. For example, the strategy you’re going to use for new subscribers is going to be different than the ones you’ll use with current customers.

You should also keep this mind when crafting the campaign emails.

Step 5 - Create The Email Copy

Only after you have segmented your list and set your goals you can go ahead and start creating the email copy. With all of the above in mind, you’ll have a much clearer idea of what you want to communicate to your email lists.

When you’re done with the copy, it’s time to create the campaign in your email marketing platform of your choice and schedule it.

Track and Test Your Email Marketing Campaigns

Besides the total number of subscribers, you should also track the following:

  • Open rate;
  • Bounce rate;
  • Click-through rate;
  • Opt-out rate.

Set up Google Analytics to track all the links you’ve added to the emails. If you do not see the results you’ve hoped for, use A/B testing for your email, including the subject line.

Take the liberty to experiment with your campaigns and don’t forget to use segmentation to get the most out of email marketing.

Posted in Online Marketing Email Marketing By: shop manager

Recent statistics show that more than 60% of online shoppers will abandon their cart during the checkout process. Because of this, you should focus on optimizing your checkout page as well, not just the landing pages, call to action buttons, or product pages.

You can easily implement the tips we’re about to talk about in this article by understanding what drives your potential customers away.

By applying these ideas, you’ll be able to improve the amount of revenue your online business is generating.

Let’s get right into it.

1. Establish Trust

In most cases, people don’t really have a reason to trust your company when they’ve just discovered it on the internet.

That’s why you need to build trust by displaying credit card logos and security seals.

You’ve probably seen these logos and badges before when shopping online, and you probably didn’t realize it at the time, but they did influence your buying decision.

There are multiple security seals you can use, such as TRUSTe or VeriSign Secured. But you should test this out with various choices to see which one works best for your online store.

Another way you can use to establish trust is to provide contact information on the checkout page. Your visitors will feel like they can actually talk to someone if they have last-minute questions or if something goes wrong during the checkout process.

2. Guest Checkout

One of the main reasons why people abandon their carts is because they’re being forced to create an account. If a customer is pleased with the experience they had with your online store, they will most likely come back and create an account.

Our advice is to provide the option to checkout as a guest. You can, however, ask them only after they’ve completed the order if they want to create the account.

3. Remove Friction

There’s nothing more annoying for online shoppers than having to go through a complicated checkout process.

Imagine that you found a product you wanted for a long time, and it has a fantastic price. You’re excited to buy it, and you add it to cart. Then, the next thing you see is a landing page that has plenty of form fields you need to complete with your personal information.

The email address and the physical address are mandatory, but what about other fields?

Remove any fields that are redundant and make the checkout process as easy as possible.

4. Add a Progress Bar

Uncertainty can increase your cart abandonment rates. People can’t know how long your checkout process is going to take and what may happen after they click that “next” button.

Adding a progress bar will eliminate the uncertainty your customers may feel because:

  • It motivates them. Your customers will know how much they’ve completed because they will see the progress they made.
  • It will tell them what the next step is. That way, your customer will know that they have the chance to review their order before placing it.

5. Add an FAQ Section

Even after they land on your checkout page, customers will still have some questions and doubts in the back of their mind.

To be able to address the questions they might have, we recommend adding an FAQ section on the checkout page. If you don’t know what questions your customer may have, you can use a tool such as Qualaroo to ask something like: What’s missing from this page that would convince you to place the order?

After you have your answers, take them and create the FAQ section. It should include no more than five questions.

Conclusion

The best way to go about these tips is to test them out, see which ones make sense for your online store and can increase your conversion rate.

Every eCommerce business is different and so are your visitors and customers. Remember that even a small change can go a long way, so test, test, test.

Posted in Best Practices CRO By: shop manager

Do you want to start an eCommerce business but don’t want to hire a developer to create the site? Then you need to start thinking about eCommerce platforms.

These platforms are a popular choice nowadays because anyone can start an online store in just a matter of hours. And the best part is that you don’t need coding skills to do it.

Now, there are so many options out there when it comes to eCommerce platforms so you might not know which one to choose. Because of this, we thought it would be helpful to talk about the most important aspects to consider before choosing the best platform.

Let’s get into it.

Customization

Even if you may not have the budget to hire a web designer, you still want to differentiate your online store from others.

To do this, make sure that the eCommerce platform you’ll consider will allow you to customize every little detail and that it has a wide selection of themes to choose from.

That way, you will be able to match the design of the site to your brand.

Interface

This is extremely important for both you and your customers. The interface needs to be easy to use when you work on the website. Because if it isn’t, then you’re going to waste a lot of time trying to understand it and making it work.

On the other hand, you need to make sure that the online store itself will have an intuitive interface so that your visitors won’t get confused when they enter the site.

Scalability

One size does not fit all eCommerce businesses, so we recommend opting for a platform that is flexible in terms of options. A restrictive platform could stunt the growth of your business later on.

Look out for those which allows you to add everything that you may need later on, such as:

  • A bigger server, that can hold more products;
  • Payment and shipping solutions;
  • Marketing features, such as A/B testing, remarketing, instant chat and so on;
  • Security. Are security updates automated or do you have to keep an eye out for them?
  • Technical support. When something goes wrong, to whom will you turn?

While it may seem difficult, you need to start planning out the growth of your online store even before its launch.

Functionality

It’s crucial for your visitors and customers to have an amazing experience whenever they enter your site so you want to choose a platform that will be able to provide this. It needs to support high amounts of traffic, offer a personalized experience to returning visitors/customers, and have the option to send emails based on previous actions/purchases.

Customizing the customer experience has become a norm for eCommerce businesses.

Stock size

If you’re planning on starting small, and then scale your business, you need to choose a platform that will allow you to do this.

You also need to make sure that you won’t be paying more necessary on a platform with a high stock limit if you’re only planning on having a small array of products.

Mobile-friendly

For more than two years now, Google’s search algorithm has been including mobile-friendly as a ranking factor. That is only one of the reasons why a mobile-friendly eCommerce platform is a must.

Make sure that the platform you choose is optimized for mobile devices and uses a responsive design.

Security

Having an SSL certificate is a must for eCommerce businesses because it allows browsers to process sensitive data during transactions and while keeping it safe. A hosted platform will take care of this for you and will also make sure that you are PCI compliant.

If you choose an open-source platform, you’ll need to make sure that you cover these two aspects.

We hope that these aspects are going to help you decide which eCommerce platform is right for your business. In the beginning, don’t pay for the functionalities you don’t need and try to focus on what’s important.

Posted in Ecommerce By: shop manager

Most eCommerce businesses don’t have a problem attracting traffic to their site. They have a problem with the conversion rate.

In this case, more traffic isn’t the solution, but finding the best ways to leverage the traffic you’re already getting and converting the visitors into actual customers.

Here are five changes you can make to improve your conversion rates and grow your eCommerce business.

1. Take Advantage of High-Quality Images

When people shop online, they can’t touch the product; they won’t be able to feel its texture and quality.

This means that you need to convince them through the product images that the item they’re looking at is of high-quality. Use multiple images to show the product from different angles. Even if visitors may not look at all of them, it’s important for them to see that they have the option to do so.

You don’t need to hire a product photographer for this. You can simply take the photos yourself in the highest quality possible.

Then, add white space around the photo, and allow visitors to zoom and rotate the image. It would also be ideal if you could show the product placed in context. For example, if you’re selling shoes, show a photo of someone wearing them with an outfit.

2. Add Product Filters

The more choices people have, the fewer decisions they’re going to make.

If you’re selling hundreds of product on your eCommerce site, then you need to add product filters so that visitors can navigate more easily.

Give them the option to sort your products by price range, popularity, color, size, category, and you can add more depending on what you sell.

3. Use Product Videos

You don’t need a professional studio to shoot product videos. In fact, you can do these with your smartphone or, even better, by taking advantage of user-generated content.

You can kindly ask the customers who already purchased from you to create a short testimonial video about the product.

And even if you don’t have customers yet, you can grab your team and start shooting some cool videos on your phone.

4. Eliminate The Shipping Costs

High shipping costs are the number one reason why consumers abandon shopping carts, which in return leads to lower conversion rates.

Moreover, studies show that they would purchase more products if they had the free shipping option. If you can’t eliminate shipping costs, then you should at least be upfront about the costs or set a minimum spend for which you can provide the shipping for free.

5. Showcase Product Reviews

Studies show that more than 50% of shoppers read product reviews before they decide to make a purchase.

Make it easy for your visitors to find out more about the products you’re selling by adding a reviews section. You can also use the star rating system to encourage your customers to rate your products.

Send an email to them one week after they received the product they ordered and ask them to leave a review. To entice them to do it, you can give them a 5% discount on their next order.

Always Be Testing

No matter which one of these ideas you’re going to test out, remember to measure the results and see if it made a difference in your conversion rates.

In eCommerce, there’s always room for improvement, so aim as high as possible to keep moving forward.

Posted in Ecommerce CRO By: shop manager

Many business owners and even copywriters are guilty of making the same mistake: they write product descriptions that merely describe the products.

Now you might be thinking “Why is this a mistake?”.

Because the goal for the product descriptions is to engage, persuade and sell. The buyer needs to be aware of the product’s benefits and how it can change their life.

Let’s see where you need to start when writing the best product descriptions for your eCommerce site.

1. Focus on the buyer persona

The buyer persona represents your ideal customer. It’s the person for whom the product you’re selling was created.

To write the best product descriptions, you need to imagine the buyer persona way beyond some vague demographics. Think about the language they use, what kind of humor they appreciate, what questions they have about your product, and what would make them hesitant about purchasing it.

By defining your buyer persona as if they were a real person, you will be able to write customer-centric product descriptions.

2. Add the benefits

Buyers are not interested in features and all kinds of technical details. They want to know how the product can make their life better, and how it can solve a particular problem they’re having.

To make this easier for you, write down all the features and specs of your product. Then, translate each one into benefits.

3. Use a scannable format

Even if you wrote the best copy for your products, no one is going to buy them if they don’t read the copy first.

So how do you get people to avoid skimming your content and actually read it?

Here are some tips you can consider:

  • Use bullet points to attract attention;
  • Use subheadings;
  • Use a larger font to increase readability;
  • Use white space to avoid clutter.

4. Appeal to people’s imagination

Research has shown that we’re much more willing to desire a product if we can hold it in our hand. When you’re selling online, this is impossible for you to achieve.

The good news is that you can use product descriptions to appeal to people’s imagination.

The trick is simple: start a sentence with the word “imagine” and then explain how the buyer persona will feel if they owned and used the product.

5. Use sensory words

Sensory words shouldn’t be exclusively used by poets or novelists. Quite the contrary actually.

More business owners and marketers need to start using them because they help to seduce audiences while adding personality to the copy.

Our brain processes sensory words different than ordinary words as if we can actually feel the rough texture, or we can taste that chocolate cake.

For example, if you’re selling food, don’t use adjectives that refer only to the taste of the product. Go even further and refer to the sound the food makes when you take a bite and to its texture as well.

Engage, Seduce, Sell

Whatever you do, don’t be boring when it comes to your product descriptions.

Write a draft, edit, edit it once again until you know for sure that the buyer persona will understand how your product will change their life.

Posted in Best Practices By: shop manager

When you’re running an eCommerce business, it’s essential to optimize and design the site based on the users’ behavior, not just for search engines.

Today, mobile traffic for online stores accounts for more than 50% of the entire visits.

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Posted in Ecommerce By: shop manager
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