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9 Simple Methods to Increase Your Ecommerce Sales

by: Tim Richardson

on: 26th April, 2016

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We’ve all been at that point where we are seeing traffic come into our site on Google Analytics, but you don’t seem to be getting many conversions.

But why? You’ve got an array of attractive images to sell your product, compelling and beautifully worded descriptions, so what else can you do to boost your ecommerce sales?

Let’s take a look…..

1. Free Shipping

For those of you that already do this, great, you are already one step ahead in the game, you may skip to the next point. Those of you that don’t, it’s something you should look into.

I remember a time when I ordered a new mouse for my computer, I found two that were exactly the same, with the same total price, which one did I end up buying? The one with free delivery.

Why do this when the total price is the same?

Because I feel like I am just paying for the product, I am just paying one price, not two prices, now tell me, which looks more attractive;

ecommerce better to have free delivery

 

Both exactly the same total price but the with free delivery, you only pay one price, and you feel like you get something for nothing.

It also doesn’t help that many websites don’t clearly tell people about delivery costs, pPeople don’t like being hit with additional charges.

If you went to a shop, got to the checkout, then Bam! There’s an extra charge to pay, wouldn’t that put you off?

A study by Statista, showed the biggest reasons people abandon their carts.

• Reasons for online shopping cart abandonment 2012 - Statistic

As you can see, unexpected additional charges top’s the list by a significant margin, so if you can’t justify free delivery, make sure people know the cost before they get to the checkout.

2. Discounts

This may seem like an obvious one, but there are so many options that can easily be missed, there are options I never thought of until I read about them, here are some ideas you can put into action;

Hurdle based discounts

Discounts where the customer needs to meet certain conditions (or hurdles), to qualify for the discount. Can’t offer free delivery, as it’s not profitable on small orders?

Why not offer free delivery on orders over X amount? If you need to spend £20.00 to get free delivery, and your basket total is £15.00 on products plus £3.00 for delivery, wouldn’t you buy something else to make up the difference?

The more you buy, the bigger the discount

This encourages people to buy more, as they feel they get better savings when they buy more e.g.
Spend £50 for 10% off order
Spend £75 for 15% off order
Spend £100 for 20% off order etc.

Buy X get discount on Y

Let’s say you‘re a hardware store that sells hammers (among other things), someone buying a hammer is likely going to need nails (makes sense right?) Offer a discount on a box of 50 nails when bought with the hammer, they spend a more, you get more.

Money off next order

Giving money off next order can help bring happy customers back to you. Include ‘10% off next order’ in parcels, and encourage people to shop with you again, if they’re happy with your service, why wouldn’t they come back?

Limited time discounts

For your straight forward ‘X amount off product’, have an end date on the offer, this creates a sense of urgency and the idea of “if I don’t buy it now, I will miss the offer” mentality, that will help increase sales.

3. Video

videos for better engagement on ecommerce website

You’re on an ecommerce website looking at a product, what would you rather do, read a 500 word product description, or watch a two minute video about the same thing?

Video is an engaging medium to connect with your customers and give them information about your product, let’s face it, people can be lazy, and having something makes it easier to learn about your product can only help.

It also allows you to show, rather than tell, it is going to be much easier for you to show someone how your product works in a video, than describe it in words.

A study showed people were 64% more likely to make a purchase after watching a video.

If money is tight, and you aren’t sure you can afford professionally shot videos, don’t make half-baked efforts as a low-quality video will reflect badly on your product.

You can either test it with a couple and see what difference it makes on conversions, or get a table a well-lit room and find the best camera you have to film it, see how it turns out, if it’s good, give it a go.

4. Live chat

Customers who use live chat are significantly more likely to convert and is generally more convenient for them to use.

Some people won’t want to phone and unlike email, customers get quick answers, keeping them on the website. It also gives you a chance to sell the product more to them.

A study found 77% of e-retailers that use live chat considered it a critical communication method.

benefits of having live chat on websiteImage source: https://moz.com/ugc/heres-how-to-create-a-product-page-that-converts

Having live chat on your site won’t just help increase conversions, it will also help with business, it can help cut down emails and phone enquiries, it’s just an easy convenient tool for helping customers.

For more tips on how live chat can help check out this blog on KissMetrics.

5. Have multiple payment options

use multiple payment options, paypal, sage

Image source: www.vietnamairlinescorp.org

A 2009 survey of 2000 British adults found that 50% of those who regularly shop online wouldn’t complete an order if their preferred payment method wasn’t available.

You see that, 50%! And just because their preferred payment option wasn’t there.

Some people don’t want the hassle of typing in their card details when they want to buy something, and would much prefer to hook up and checkout with their PayPal account.

This once again comes down to customer convenience, the easier you make it for them, the more likely they will buy.

6. Offer more than your competitors

No, we aren’t talking about better pricing or better bundles (though that can certainly help), we’re talking about providing a better service than the competition, such as better returns policy, longer product warranties, free returns etc.

This is particularly effective when selling a common product. All things equal, if a company is offering 28 days return policy versus 60 days, which sounds more appealing? This can even work if you’re charging a little more as well!

7. Abandoned cart email reminder

boost ecommerce sales with abandoned shopping cart reminder

According to a study from Baymard, 67.45% of online shopping carts are abandoned before the customer completes a sale.

That’s two-thirds! There are multiple reasons for this (see graph under Free Delivery), and you aren’t likely to get back everyone, but this can be a very effective way of pulling back some of those people to the cart.

By using shopping cart recovery emails, BlueMonkey were able to recover 13% of their abandoned orders, that’s huge

I would advise sending a maximum of three emails per abandoned cart, one 24 hours later, and follow ups in one and two weeks time, see how it helps.

For more tips on how to create a great email check out this blog post on Shopify.

8. Product reviews

get product reviews on ecommerce websites

Consumers trust other consumers. It’s nothing against you, but would you trust how great an item is from the seller?

Reviews give people real world experience and answer pain points they may have, they give an unbiased view of why the item is (or isn’t) good.

61% of customers read online reviews before making a purchase, they are detrimental if you want to boost sales through your ecommerce website. 

They also have an SEO benefit, creating unique, fresh content, along with helping you rank for long tail queries, it makes your product stand out in search engines, especially if using a manufacturer description.

9. Cross-sells and up-sells

Cross-sells

This is when you Suggest other products that accompany the ones they are buying. It’s like saying;

“Hey you’re looking at this, you know what goes great with this?”

ecommerce website cross sell

Image source: https://www.groovehq.com/support/upsells

Let’s say you sell laptops, it’s a portable computer, so chances are they are going to want to take it places, why not show them some laptop bags?

This is even more effective when coupled with the ‘buy X, get discount on Y’ that we discussed earlier, buy the laptop, get the bag 50% off a laptop bag.

The best places for showing this are the shopping basket, give them some suggestions just before they checkout.

You could also from their recent browsing/purchase history, send them customised emails showing related items that may be of interest, much like Amazon do.

Up-sells

These are when you offer an upgrade on an item, like an extended warranty or a better version of the item, such as a bigger TV. It’s like saying to your customer:

“That’s a great item, but how about this one? It’s better!”

ecommerce website upsell

Image source: https://www.groovehq.com/support/upsells

The rule of thumb for this is, only offer items that are no more than 25% than the one they are looking at, as they become less effective if you go higher.

These suggestions will depend on your industry, and there will be other effective methods out there you can try, start with some of these and see how they work out, why not tweet us about it (and maybe share some of those lovely profits).

If you need any help marketing your ecommerce website, implementing the points mentioned in this blog, or want to look at more advanced tips, why not drop us a message 🙂

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