As we start 2021, ecommerce is leading the way this year, as the pandemic continues to boost online shopping. Ecommerce sales from April to May have already exceeded sales during the 2019 holiday season by 7%. Record-breaking online shopping is expected to continue through 2021. Take advantage of these ecommerce preparedness tips to boost your sales.
1. Create a visually compelling store experience
Consumers decide whether they want to buy within the first few seconds of browsing. It’s important to provide great visuals. Make your information easy and accessible to digest, and give consumers with “proof” to make their purchase decision.
Here are some helpful tips on how to design your store to pack a visual punch:
Include a variety of in-context and product-only images
Images are essential, they help customers make purchasing decisions. When you’re creating images for your products, make sure to include the following:
Images that show products in use
Create an emotional bond and tell a story. It’s the perfect way to show your products in action or suggest a particular use for your product.
Product only shots
High-quality images of all your product angles, ideally with a white background for greater appeal.
Customize your product images
You also have a lot of flexibility on how to best showcase images throughout your online store. Here are a few options for your store:
If you have a featured product section and product images that have a square orientation, spotlight them to make them stand out.
If you sell products that have a certain size or shape, certain product images will likely look better in a specific orientation.
Product detail pages
You can also make your product images stand out further by using product detail pages.
Create a stunning first-impression and urgency to buy with a header
Provide a powerful visual image (an in-context shot or aspirational image of your product being used) and pair it with an action button to shop. You can also add an Action Button and specify the message. For an added touch, the message should emphasize an urgency to buy.
Use the Photo Gallery to feature helpful product images
You can also take advantage of merchandising beautiful product images by incorporating a photo gallery feature your Websites and Marketing.
Use promotional banners with limited time only messaging
Let your customers know that you’re having a sale or special offer so that they have a strong reason to purchase right then and there.
Your message should include content that mentions perks customers get for buying.
Showcase similar products in your store
Similar products are an excellent way to cross-promote more of your products.
Focus attention on your promotions using an announcement pop-up
This will help let customers know immediately what promotions you are running and can also guide them to specific areas of your site. They may be likelier to buy sale or clearance items.
To increase urgency, make sure to include a reason to buy now (for example, sale ends soon, limited time only, etc.) and an action button that directs users to the store products that are on sale.
Feature store categories in a compelling, visual way
Product images aren’t the only visual that needs to look great. Ensure your categories stand out.
Create a sale category
Creating a category specifically for sales helps your customers easily find limited edition sales that you may be offering. You can create a category for items that are specifically on sale and then rearrange the order of that category so it shows up at the top of the list.
Enhance a category’s appeal with beautiful images
Add a beautiful image for each category as well as a description so that it stands out to consumers and is instantly recognizable when they are browsing through your store.
Showcase select featured categories throughout your store
You can also feature select categories with beautiful imagery throughout your store.
Create and showcase categories that help consumers narrow down what to buy
Guide customers on what products they should be looking at if they’re not sure where to start.
Consider creating “new arrivals,” “best sellers,” and any “limited availability” categories at the top of the category list to immediately draw in consumers.
Focus on creating distinct groups of products and a narrowed down list of categories so customers aren’t bogged down with too many details and have trouble finding or understanding what they’re looking for.
Showcase product reviews
Your customers will feel confident in their purchase decisions if they know others have purchased products from you and gave that purchase a thumbs up.
Enable product reviews
For each of the products you sell, allow customers to provide a review that’s visible to other potential consumers. This is an excellent way to communicate your company’s social media standing.
Showcase customer testimonials
While product reviews allow your customers to rate your products specifically, you also have the option to add a more general testimonials section as well.
Adding a testimonials section in addition to your product reviews allows you to drive home what customers think about your store and your customer service.
Showcase your Facebook and Instagram presence on your store
You can highlight your social presence for added legitimacy as well as a broader connection to your customers. Enable links to your social presence — as well as any reviews you’ve received on social media.
2. Capture more customers
Once customers have found a product they’re interested in, here are a few tips to increase the likelihood they’ll purchase it.
Provide a sales price for each product
Entering a sale price for your product will show both the original and sales pricing.
Offer free shipping, local pickup or delivery
Offer customers an extra nudge to purchase by providing free shipping and showcasing it on your store. This is also a great way to prevent users from abandoning their shopping cart if they are surprised by the cost of shipping.
If your customers are local to the area, it’s becoming more common to offer local pickup and/or delivery, especially in response to the ongoing pandemic.
Recognize gifts and offer free gift wrapping
Many purchases are meant to be gifts. Allow your customers to specify this in the check-out so you can prepare the order appropriately.
You can ask your customers to provide the recipient’s name, as well as describe what you’ll do if the order is a gift (e.g. include a gift note so we can place this in the package).
Also, as a way to stand out from competitors, you can also offer free gift wrapping. You can provide this for all products and specify this in the check-out instructions mentioned above.
Offer gift cards
Gift cards offer a perfect gift option for any customers that may be looking for quick and easy gift options. Check out our guide for steps and considerations on adding gift cards to your store.
Highlight your limited edition items
If your business tends to offer seasonal or limited edition items, you should showcase those products.
Create and share coupons
Coupons are another great way to incentivize users to buy now. Learn more about how to create coupons.
To showcase the coupon, you can also highlight it in the promotional banner on your site.
Add an email subscription form coupled with a coupon incentive
A newsletter is a great way to connect with your consumers and provide them email promotions on new products, on-going sales, and any new worth noting.
3. Expand your sales by selling everywhere
Besides selling on your online store, you may want to consider selling on popular marketplaces like Amazon, eBay, Etsy, etc. and social networks like Facebook, Instagram that draw billions of users every day.
Sell on Facebook and Instagram
The use of mobile devices around the world is increasing and more people are turning to social media for finding new products to purchase.
Sell on marketplaces
In addition to selling on your online store, it’s also a good idea to sell where your shoppers will likely be browsing in their free time.
These popular marketplaces attract high volumes of online shoppers and can be a big boost for your online sales. Having your products where the traffic is high can be a major boost to your online sales.
4. Engage your audience with email and social posts
The key to retaining customer interest is through active engagement with your customers. Two ways to engage with your customers are through email newsletters and social media.
An editorial calendar can be helpful when planning what you’d like to send and when.
Not sure where to start? We recommend this guide for creating your editorial calendar:
Social media campaigns
With a pandemic keeping people isolated, social media has increasingly become a lifeline for people wanting to stay in touch.
With Over by GoDaddy, creating a stunning social media campaign for your business is simple and allows you to make and maintain connections with your customers.
Need more information on how to create a social media campaign using Over? Check out this help guide for more information.
As with email marketing, there are some important considerations when launching a social media campaign. Here is a guide to get you started:
5. Create a winning customer experience wherever you are
Having the ability to be flexible as a business owner is invaluable. And, despite the pandemic keeping people closer to home than normal, there are times where you need to be able to manage your business on the fly.
Here are a couple of features to help you do just that.
Support your customers via chat
Chat allows you to provide instant customer service and is the perfect way to respond to any questions or concerns a customer has that may hinder them from completing their purchase.
Boost your sales this year and beyond
No one can fully predict what the new normal will look like for retail businesses, but it’s safe to say that ecommerce will continue to be an important feature for businesses into the future. Hopefully, these tips help to boost your ecommerce sales through 2021 and beyond.