June 17, 2016
“Profit or perish… There are only two ways to make money: increase sales and decrease costs.”
Competing in the world of online sales is no small undertaking. After all, you are competing with the likes of Amazon and Wal-Mart; multi-billion dollar corporations. If you hope to survive the dog-eat-dog world of digital retail for more than a New York minute, you’re going to need to employ some powerful tools that can drive sales and brand awareness.
Thankfully, this is the age of technological innovation and, in that age, new tools, applications and engines are constantly created to help small business compete with the monsters of the merchandise industry.
If you are on the hunt for some new weapons in your fight for prosperity, look no further. Here are five handy tools to help you boost your bottom line.
For those selling online goods, you already know you need reviews; you simply can’t survive without them. Today, nearly all consumers research potential purchases before making a final decision. When these folks are busy sleuthing and probing your product, they are most likely to turn toward firsthand customer reviews; 90 percent of consumers will read these evaluations before buying. The bottom line is that the less reviews you have, the less sales you will make.
Yotpo is an indispensable tool to help you get folks to post about your product. Yotpo is an effective content marketing platform that identifies the perfect time to send e-mails to consumers who have purchased your product to request a review. Additionally, Yotpo brands each review with a “trust badge” indicating whether the review came from a consumer, reviewer, or merchant, along with other information to help instill faith in potential buyers. The company claims its e-mails receive a 40 to 50 percent open rate and a six to 11 percent response rate. And with additional benefits like Q&A forums, gamification tools, and other engagement elements, Yotpo is a powerful partner in your online sales force.
If you are selling products to consumers, you need a customer support system to help deal with issues as they arise. If you neglect unhappy customers, they can completely tarnish your brand’s reputation by spreading their poor experience on social media. That’s a can of worms that you don’t want to deal with.
Groove is a customer support platform that can help you manage your customer’s experience with ease. Since the system is designed to appear and function much like a typical e-mail account, the learning curve is extremely short. With this software, you can create and manage a multitude of tickets, monitor performance metrics, and even integrate with other online services like Slack.
If you think you don’t need a customer support tool, think again — as your sales increase, so will the number of customers contacting you. And you can only juggle the calls and e-mails for so long before someone slips through the cracks and decides to declare war on your company through posting negative reviews. Investing in customer service is one of the greatest ways to increase sales. That’s how Zappos attained legendary status among its die-hard customers. Do your business and customers a favor and check out what Groove has to offer.
3. Facebook Advertising
To make sales, people have to know you exist. And what better way to let the world know about your offerings than on the social platform that houses roughly 1.7 billion active users?
Facebook Ads provide small business owners with a plethora of tools to create the most compelling ads possible for the right audience. Individuals can be targeted on Facebook by their age, gender, interests, location and various other factors. You can even create look-alike audiences once you have targeted the correct individuals.
Facebook Ads are more than just text and images. You can incorporate calls-to-action, videos and various other compelling elements. Since Facebook Ads work seamlessly across various devices, you can reach people no matter their preferred screen size.
4. Hello Bar
Once you have managed to drive folks to your site, you need a way to catch their attention. Many sites still rely on intrusive pop-ups that can complete destroy a user experience and turn them off your site.
Hello Bar is a fantastic alternative that can direct users to the most important content, offers, or deals, without interfering with UX. Hello Bar implements a subtle, yet salient full-width bar across the top of your website that will remain present no matter where the user goes. This is a great way to drive users to convert without interrupting their experience on your site.
Hello Bar also offers abundant data on the total impressions and click-through rates your CTAs receive. Additionally, this service allows for messages to be A/B tested to ensure you are putting out a relevant and refined message to your audience – this helps to maximize the tool’s effectiveness tenfold.
Not everyone who shops on your site is going to buy. Shopping cart abandonment rates have increased approximately 15 percent between 2010 and 2015. To recover these sales, you have to follow up with these folks. Sometimes, it could be something as simple as forgetting to click “Place My Order” before leaving the site. That’s easy money that you’re missing out on. To help you regain those sales, checkout Rejoiner.
Rejoiner is an e-mail automation platform which sends out communications once a certain event has occurred; in this case, shopping cart abandonment. Rejoiner can send out e-mails in accordance with a time limit you set after the triggering event has taken place. And since the system is automated, the only effort required is the initial campaign setup. After that, Rejoiner will help you recover plenty of sales that almost got away.
For online retailers, sales are everything. Considering that your business cannot make it without consumers buying your product, it is wise to invest in some of the best tools available to help you reach your business’ peak potential. Don’t let your brand succumb to the fate of so many before it. Employ these powerful tools today, and help your business, and revenue, expand.
What are your favorite tools for increased conversions? Which of these tools do you plan to implement?
Conscious online marketer, web executive, and multi-faceted writer Tina Courtney has been creating and fostering online innovations since 1996. Tina has assisted many clients in maximizing online production and marketing efforts, and is a staff writer for SiteProNews, one of the Web’s foremost webmaster and tech news blogs. She’s produced and marketed innovative content for major players like Disney and JDate, as well as boutique startups galore, with fortes including social media, SEO, influencer marketing, community management, lead generation, and project management. Tina is also a certified Reiki practitioner, herbalist, and accomplished life coach. Learn more on LinkedIn, Facebook and Google+.