Thanks to web builders like Shopify and WordPress, everybody seems to be a business owner nowadays.
Well, not to discourage you, but 90% of e-commerce businesses start and fail in the first 120 days.
But you knew how hard it was going to be the moment you launched your very own business. And now that you are live and established, it’s time for you to increase online sales thanks to this simple guide that uses trending marketing strategies to deliver proven results.
Some of these tips are as old as time itself, such as email marketing, while others are fairly new technologies we are excited to implement in our advertising efforts.
However, these tips were handpicked through statistics to ensure you are only receiving advice that actually works.
20 proven strategies to increase eCommerce sales
It may be overdramatic, but it’s accurate: customers live in constant fear.
Their hard-earned money needs to be traded with something as valuable. They need to make sure that what they are getting is 100% worth its price tag before they click BUY.
Reducing fear that holds customers back has always been one of the top priorities of marketers around the world when it comes to increasing eCommerce sales.
There are hundreds of ways to reduce this sentiment, but here at topflight, we like to stay afloat by adapting to the latest trends.
And, as mentioned in one of our previous articles, there’s nothing that spells “future of marketing” quite like Artificial Intelligence.
Invest in chatbots that “cut off the middle-man”: this rising technology will allow your customer to find out what they need to know about the product without having to wait for a human operator, or relying on your website’s information (or lack of thereof).
Let’s put this into numbers:
- They can cut operational costs by 30%
- Chatbots have been used by over two-thirds of customers in the past year
- Nearly 80% of businesses have expressed some interest in using chatbots
2. Email Marketing
Email marketing is one of the oldest strategies that somehow still works. And it works wonderfully for businesses of all shapes and sizes!
Email marketing works so spectacularly well because:
- It’s affordable
- Everybody uses emails
- You are targeting people who have already shown a degree of interest in you or your products
- It’s easy to measure
- It keeps you in touch with your audience.
3. Improve your UX
User Interaction is an art form. Your average web user expects to find the information they were looking for almost immediately, according to this research by Truelist.
The ROI on UX investments is 9,900% and 70% of shoppers abandon their carts if the UX on your website is poor.
That should be enough to convince you to invest in UX.
UX is a direct improvement of customers’ experience. The process works because it overhauls your website with their needs in mind, allowing you to develop a stronger and deeper connection with your audience.
Topflight’s UX team is always happy to provide you with some free of charge advice. Just get in touch to book a free digital consultation.
4. Invest in product retargeting
So, this eCommerce sales strategy is actually a lot more controversial than meets the eye.
Retargeting ads allow your business to show targeted ads to the users who visited your website and didn’t complete a conversion – purchase an item, fill in a contact form, download a file, etc.
The simplest way to think about these ads is to imagine them as the online way of converting regular window-shoppers into buyers. Using simple tracking codes, retargeting ads entice past visitors to return to your website by showing them relevant ads as they browse on Google and Social Media or search for related terms on Google. With retargeting ads, your brand and products stay at the forefront of past visitors’ minds.
Simple? Not quite.
This strategy works wonders, which is the reason we have included it in this list. However, it relies on cookies for data capture and storage, which is a controversial topic in light of the harsher and harsher GDPR laws that come out every year (in Europe).
And we are not sure whether or not these laws may spell the death of product retargeting – however, while it lasts, there is no reason why you shouldn’t implement this powerful weapon in your arsenal.
They are as annoying as they are effective. Pop-ups are a great growth hacking technique and one of those things we’d like to call a “trick in a marketer’s sleeve”.
They are those things that intrusively appear on your screen when certain conditions are met, such as exit attempts or when you scroll down the page.
Pop-ups are incredibly effective for:
- Motivating the visitor to not abandon their cart
- Building an email list
- Downloading a resource
- Gather user data
What makes a pop-up less annoying isn’t an exact science. Great copy, for example, is mandatory to avoid having the customer picture you like a desperate seller.
But you have to not be obtrusive for sure.
Well, here are a few tips, if you choose to include pop-ups in your website:
- Have them appear only several seconds after a customer visits a specific page, or if they are leaving a page.
- Be easy to dismiss! Make sure the button to close the pop-up is easy to find. It won’t look good on you if you try to cheat your way into a sale.
- Offer something concrete with your ad: Why would I put my email address on your relatively unknown website? Why would I give you my data? Remember that you are essentially asking for commitment, hence you need to give and take.
Don’t be demanding. One thing is asking for an email, another is asking for name, surname, address, birth certificate, marriage license and credit card digits.
6. Scarcity tactics
Greed isn’t just a sin: it’s an asset.
We are greedy by nature and some more than others. We are hardwired to gather resources that are scarce, and often, we get way more than we can need in ten lifetimes.
A great example of this? The “Toilet Paper Shortage” during the early stages of the Covid pandemic.
Well, causing a global pandemic to sell more of your product may not be the most suitable solution, for the average eCommerce owner, so we can instead use something called scarcity tactics.
In simple words, show the customers that not everybody gets to have your product. Not only this will increase your eCommerce sales, but it will also make you look more desirable!
Some noteworthy examples of scarcity tactics are:
1) Limited edition: Products that are actually produced in very, very little quantities and are advertised as such. Normally, you can even inflate the prices of these items significantly to justify its actual scarcity and signal a sense of importance.
2) Only a few left in stock!: By showing stock sizes, you are pitting customers to compete against each other: Essentially, you are telling “Look, it’s going to be either you or someone else!”
3) Time constraints: Whether it’s a discount that runs out in 24 hours or a product that is available for a short period of time, time constraints work: they reduce the amount of time a customer has to think about buying your product.
4) Vaulting products: Every time Netflix announces one of their movies is leaving the platform, that movie receives significantly more streams than ever before.
5) Product rotation: Product rotation is a technique in which a marketer adds and removes a number of products so that they can all receive a better spotlight as they leave. To sell more of a particular product, try announcing you are going to remove it. Always works.
7. Invest in relationships
2022 spells the death of loyalty schemes. Businesses capable of keeping up with current trends are investing in Netflix-like subscription models to receive a steady source of revenue.
Netflix, Amazon Prime, National Geographic, Dollar Shaving Club… The examples out there are endless. Even Porsche created a subscription program where you can lease one of their high-end classes.
So, to increase eCommerce sales, you have to make your customers pay for their loyalty by installing a subscription method.
Of course, you need to give something to justify for the price tag.
Here are a few examples of what you could be offering in exchange for a membership:
- Discounts on select items (or your entire catalogue!)
- A monthly, free delivery
- Access to an exclusive, members-only part of your website where you can interact with other members
- Access to a learning platform or something similar.
- A more customised experience using state-of-the-art data analysis.
Obviously, you need to find out what works for you. Remember that every marketing strategy starts with knowing who you are selling to!
8. Paid traffic pays off
More people finding your website means more people will buy things on it, obviously!
Strategies such as SEO, social media and so on are only beneficial if you have time on your side.
However, if you can’t afford the wait, then Pay Per Click is your ally.
PPC is simple: You pay, customers find you and buy your products. You now have a larger budget to get even more customers.
Rinse and repeat. The algorithmic nature of PPC ensures a consistent quantity of sales, provided that you are selling things people want.
Although our PPC service page will help you learn more, the benefits of PPC, compared to any other marketing strategies, are:
- You only pay for what you receive.
- As it is deeply rooted in SERP strategies, you will receive the right audience at all times.
- Complete control over your marketing campaign.
Recommended read: PPC Hacks to run a successful Google Ads campaign
9. Upsell your products
You can encourage existing customers to buy more products from you through upselling. Amazon is a great example of an eCommerce capable of constantly upselling you products you may not even need nor have considered.
This is done through suggestion boxes.
In this example, the suggestion box was created while searching for a camera. Amazon smartly places an SD card and a bag right next to the camera because the two items upsold are much cheaper than the camera.
By placing an inexpensive item next to a pricier one, the card/bag will look significantly cheaper, as stated by selling psychology. And, even if I previously did not consider purchasing a $12 mouse, I am now much more motivated to pay for it since it’s such a small amount, compared to the money I am spending on the camera.
Supermarkets place “impulse buys”, such as candy and sweets, right next to the till. These items are cheap and will not bother the consumer, but they effectively increase your revenue almost effortlessly.
Interested in sales psychology? Have a look at our article on neuromarketing in the digital world.
10. A simple check-out process
Although part of UX design, a simple check-out process is mandatory even if you choose to not invest in one of the services.
18% of customers who leave their carts do so because of a messy checkout process.
And worst of all, this is such an easy fix! You need to make sure that your e-commerce features:
- A form that only requires the bare necessities: When a customer puts in their info, you should only capture whatever is needed – to get rid of fields such as job title, date of birth and anything else not deemed absolutely mandatory for the functionality of your business.
- Multiple methods of payments: Paypal, credit card and gift cards are the bare minimum.
After that, although entirely optional, you may want to look into things such as Klarna, vouchers or even cryptocurrencies!
- A registration form, so that returning visitors only have to input their details once.
To increase eCommerce sales, you should look into:
- AI-powered chatbots, such as Lobster or Smartloop.
- Email marketing
- Subscription plans
- Great UX design
- PPC as an alternative to SEO (For more info, refer to PPC vs SEO)
- Scarcity tactics
- A simpler checkout process
- Product retargeting
- Product upselling