9 Things Every E-Commerce Business Should Be Doing To Succeed
Having an E-Commerce business can be very stressful and you may think you are doing everything possible to succeed. However are you unsure on certain areas of your business or unsure what your website should include? In this article I will be discussing 9 points which you should be doing in order for your E-Commerce business to succeed.
An E-commerce website needs to include so many things now days, it can become confusing as to what yours has and what it needs. Most people just presume that all you need on an E-Commerce website are products and once you have a wide range of them, your website will be fine. Unfortunately this is not the case, you need many more things on your website in order to maximise sales from the site and gain more customers.
I am now going to discuss nine points which are critical in order to have a successful E-Commerce Business.
1. Provide Great Service
The first point and the most important point is to provide a great service to your customers. This is such a massive point, because if you are providing a great service then there is no reason why a customer wouldn’t buy from you again. This goes for any business, if you can offer a truly great service then word will get around about your business and before you know it you are gaining more and more customers. On top of that you will also have customers for life.
2. Online Chat
Having an online chat feature on your website can be great as it means you can interact with customers. Having regular interaction with customers will really help your business because it means you’re getting regular feedback from your customers. For example if you find that a lot of people are asking the same question about the same product then this would mean that there is an opportunity for you to add new content to your website.
Here are two examples of how an online chat feature could look on your website. Another very important reason to have online chat is that it is proven to increase conversion rates from visitors to sales. The reason for this is that when a person is just about to make a buying decision and has a question about something, they can instantly ask their question. Once they are satisfied they will continue to checkout. Making this communication easy for them will result in an increase in sales.
3. SEO Basics
Adding basic SEO can also really help your E-Commerce business. If you add SEO to every product category and product it will help with where your website ranks in Google. If Google can see that every product and category is optimised with SEO then they will be able to see your website is, in fact, informative. Basic SEO that you can add to each product and category is to add Title Tags, Meta Descriptions and Meta Keywords. For the Title Tag you want to make sure that it is specific to the category or product. You also want to add a descriptive Meta description, which includes what the product is and a USP. By this I mean if you can offer free delivery or a special offer you can add it to the Meta description. More information on SEO can be found here: How To Get The Most Out Of Your SEO Campaign
4. Good Images
One of the biggest and most important points to having a successful E-Commerce business is to have good images on your website. You want to make sure you have category images and product images. The reason why images are so important is because people will not buy unless they can see what they are buying. People love to see images and they would rather see a product image than just a default image saying ‘Image coming soon’. You are much more likely to sell a product with a great range of images than having just one generic image.
This is a great example of a very good image. You can see the main image is very detailed and then at the bottom they have another 4 images which again are very detailed. Not only are the other images detailed but you can also click on them and make them as big as the base image.
5. Unique Detailed Descriptions
Having unique detailed product descriptions can really help your E-Commerce business. When a new potential customer is looking through your products and finds one which interests them they will go into that product and read the description. If your product only has one description line then it is unlikely the customer will buy from you. They may have questions about the product, and if your description does not offer answers then the customer will feel let down. When writing a product description it is very important that you include the special features of the product, what the benefits of the product are and then technical information if necessary.
6. Ask For Reviews
You may not feel comfortable asking for reviews but this is something that has to be done! So many people now look at reviews before buying, so if you get the chance to gain more reviews then do it. If you can get a review section on your website it will be very beneficial to your business. This means that when a customer goes on your site they can have a look at what other people have said about your business and products.
Once you have enough reviews you then need to make sure you display the information in a clear way. The easier the information is to read, the better it is for customers. In this example you can see that it’s got a rating of 4.1 out of 5, so any customer looking at this product can see that it is rated as a very good product. Reviews play a crucial part in influencing a buying decision especially online.
7. Build an Email Database
Building an email database can be very easy to do and at the same time very rewarding. You may think that building an email database is hard and time consuming but in fact it can be very simple to do. First you can add an email subscription section on your website so that all the customer needs to do is enter their email address and then click enter. This means there is no work for you to do. Another way to build an email database is to add an email section onto the ordering section of your website so that when someone is making an order they will be forced into adding their email address, meaning you will be able to add it to your database. You would have to give the customer an option if they want to receive news and offers but even if they don’t click this you will still have their email address for your database!
Here is an example of how you can layout an email section on your website so that customers can sign up for updates.
8. Email that database!
Once you have built your email database you now have to email that database! There would be no point of spending time building the database if you’re not going to use it. When you send emails out to your email database you can send them emails about special offers, any new products which you have started to sell or any new news about your business. In all the emails you send to your database you need to make sure there is a Call to Action included. This means that once the person has read the email there is then some action to get them back onto your website.
9. Be Active On Social Media
Being active on your social media accounts will help considerably with your E-Commerce business. The more you can get your business out there, the more people will hear about your business and look on your website. Being active on Social Media also means you are much more likely to build stronger and long lasting relationships with customers. If a customer has brought from your business and then likes you on Facebook and sees that you post regularly, they will feel more of a connection with your business. Once a connection has been made the relationship will then start to build.
If you follow the above advice there is no reason why your E-Commerce business won’t succeed. If you have a High Street shop and are unsure how to maximise sales using E-Commerce read our article on High Street vs. E-Commerce: How Retailers Can Maximise Sales.
You may have noticed that a lot of the points revolve around the customer and their experience. If a customer has a great experience on your website and buying from you, there is no reason at all why they wouldn’t come back and use your business again. It all comes down to offering them a great service and building a long term relationship with them.
Article by: Adam Jones