There’s nothing quite as fulfilling as operating your own ecommerce business. It puts you in control of your day to day, while also allowing you to put smiles on customers’ faces. But it’s far from a cakewalk. In fact, it’s getting harder and harder to cut through the crowded ecommerce marketplace to promote your brand. But that’s not to say it’s impossible.
Below are eight ways to stay competitive in the ecommerce industry.
Keep Your Site Navigation Simple
This is one of the most basic recommendations and is often overlooked. Keep your site’s navigation and design simple. Cluttered or complicated websites do more to turn customers off to your brand than you’d imagine. The bottom line is if your site is cumbersome, shoppers will jump to one of your competitors.
Plan for Scalability
Speaking of usability, the majority of web users will abandon a website if it takes too long to load. They’ll give you approximately 3.5 seconds before bailing on your e-store. If you don’t want to lose customers, you’ll need to switch to a cloud ecommerce platform built to handle lots of online requests.
Optimize for Mobile
Mobile compatibility is a must-have for any ecommerce vendor. Customers are expecting e-stores to work on mobile phones and tablets. Those that don’t will likely be abandoned for those that offer more flexibility. Google already ranks non-mobile sites below those offering the capability.
Everybody knows social media marketing is a powerful tool. But there is a big difference between good and great marketing via social media. What makes the difference? Good social media marketers post updates on all the latest sales and product launches. Customers want to hear about this stuff, sure. But what really makes a spectacular social media presence is a two-way conversation between brands and consumers. Engage your audience, by asking them to share memes, jokes and photos of themselves using your merchandise. Remember if you’re too busy to reach out to your customers, maybe you have loads of orders to deal with? You might want to have a service like victoria ecommerce in order reach out to customers and boost your sales.
Leverage Email Marketing
Your ecommerce site must offer the option of email subscriptions for interested users. Send them weekly updates on new products, blog posts and upcoming events. Believe it or not, email marketing has one of the highest returns on investment; making it an opportunity you don’t want to pass up.
Establish Real-Time Customer Assistance
While ecommerce is admittedly awesome, there are a few drawbacks you can’t avoid. Customers, for instance, won’t be able to tap a sales associate’s shoulder to ask a question or request a different size. But just because consumers can’t talk to your staff face to face, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t provide stellar service. Try hiring a dedicated staff to answer questions in real time. A good example of this would be how WatchShopping deals with their customers. If you’re interested in seeing some great real-time customer assistance check these guys out.
Bring on the Bots
Then again, real humans can’t answer questions 24/7. Sometimes they need to sleep or take a holiday. That’s where artificial intelligence comes in. Ecommerce sites are using AI chatbots more and more to field consumer questions. A shopper might ask you for a sizing guide at 3 a.m. Your AI chatbot can be programmed to deliver this without any human input. If the question is more complicated, it will flag the query to a human employee.
Retarget Buyers with Deliveries
One final suggestion is to turn your deliveries into retargeting campaigns. How do you do this? Easy! Just slip a limited-time coupon code into all your delivery boxes. When customers see it, they will feel the urge to take advantage of the time-sensitive offer. This strategy is all about turning one-time buyers into lifelong customers.
These tips will help you stay competitive in the ecommerce industry, even as challenges from newer upstarts become increasingly frequent.