Here at Gekkoshot, we have been building and optimising websites since 2006. Therefore, through years of “practice makes perfect”, we can confidently say, we know a thing or two about what works and what doesn’t. Below, I have compiled a list of 20 top tips that we believe every successful e-commerce business must know.
1. Show Genuine Gratitude Towards your Customer
We’ve all heard the age-old saying “manners cost nothing” and it’s true. A simple “thank-you” or act of gratitude can make us feel so much more appreciated. So why would our customers be any different? In fact, as many as 75% of customers say they have spent more with a company simply because of their kindness and gratitude.
“Remember getting a birthday card with £5 in it from a relative? Just the idea that something came in the mail for you (other than an invoice) creates an almost unheard-of experience for your best customers. Tell them exactly what you appreciate about them. Promise to partner with them for greater success. Say “thank you.” You’ll have clients for life if you start every year with this practice.” –
2. Focus on Building Consumer Trust
Trust is the glue that holds any long-term relationship together. Therefore, earning your customer’s trust is the first step towards creating brand evangelists who will recommend your products or services to their families and friends. Which is a fantastic asset, considering 81% of people said that their family and friends directly influence their purchasing decisions according to Forbes.
3. Build a Model that Generates Return Sales
Successful e-commerce businesses are successful because they are able to convince their customers to return on a relatively regular basis to make subsequent purchases. This can be achieved as a result of their specific business model such as a subscription service, the products they sell are replenishable, they are able to execute effective email campaigns and/or customer loyalty and rewards programs.
4. Develop a Loyalty Program
A loyalty program targets your customers who invest a significant amount of their time and money into your company ahead of your competitors, even if their product or service is less expensive or more convenient than yours. Usually these customers are rewarded with something money can’t buy and are typically treated with more attention than your standard customers.
As many as 84% of customers say they’re more likely to stick with a brand that offers a loyalty program. Not only that, but it costs 5x more to acquire a new customer than it does to retain your current ones. Even more interestingly, your current customers are likely to spend 31% more than new customers and are 50% more likely to try your new products. – HubSpot
5. Develop a Rewards Program
Unlike a loyalty program, a rewards program targets customers who are interested in earning credit towards future purchases. Larger transactions yield larger rewards by definition. These rewards don’t always have to be monetary but they can operate very similarly. Again, unlike a loyalty program, typically these customers are treated no differently than any other and the benefit is limited to receiving and redeeming the reward credit.
So, off the back of showing genuine gratitude and building consumer trust it is also wise to implement a loyalty or rewards program that encourages and entices your customers to come back for more. This is a fantastic way to increase your conversions.
6. Expand the Lifetime Value
2020/21 saw an influx of businesses moving online. Making it more competitive than ever and price isn’t the only determining factor in a customer’s purchasing decisions. E-commerce companies must implement a customer-centric approach and find out when, where, why for how much and how often do your customers make purchases. By answering these questions you will be able to continually sell your products and services for longer and at a much faster pace.
One way of tracking this behaviour is through the use of rewards and loyalty programs.
7. Get New Customers from Loyal Fans
Your customers are linked to a network full of like-minded people who are almost certain to be as interested in the products or services you are offering as they are. So if you are able to turn your current customers into loyal fans by showing gratitude, building trust and developing loyalty programs they are more likely to share their positive experiences with their networks. In turn, generating you, a huge pool of new leads.
8. Leverage Customer Reviews
Whether you’re on the hunt for a new mobile phone or a hotel stay in Italy, it is unlikely that you’ll purchase on a whim without reading through several reviews before making that purchase decision. In 2016, 90% of shoppers read at least one review before deciding to visit a business. Therefore it is imperative that you are leveraging reviews and asking your customers for their feedback.
9. Offer Targeted Upsells and Promotions
When past customers are writing a review, they are actively thinking about your business and the positive experience they’ve just had. This is the perfect time to offer another great experience.
Be smart about which products/services you are targeting. Look at the customer’s purchasing history and place tailored products in front of them at key moments like this.
In terms of promotions, email still drives the highest ROI out of all B2B marketing strategies. Email campaigns are the best way to run targeted and personalised promotions that yield the highest rates of conversions.
10. Create Urgency and Scarcity
One of the best ways to drive e-commerce sales through email marketing is by utilising urgency and scarcity for a specific product that needs a boost.
The email should be very specific and personalised. You do this by segmenting your email list down to the customers who have purchased this product or similar in the past or to people who have signed up to your waitlist but have not yet bought.
11. Build a Great Brand
Another way of creating loyal customers is by building a great brand. As an e-commerce site this is crucial for setting yourself apart. Anyone can offer free shipping, most can offer competitive prices. But it’s the company that builds the strong brand that will last. Just think of Amazon or Nike. When it comes to creating a strong brand, consistency is key.
12. Utilise the Power of Social Media
Think of social media as much as your shop window as it is an insight into the heart and soul of your business/brand. The key to success is high quality content that not only showcases your products and business culture in the best light but also is of value to your customers. What problems do your customers have? How does your product or service solve the problem? This diverse approach to content marketing will ensure your audience stays engaged and loyal to your brand.
13. Leverage the Power of User Generated Content
Social Media and user generated content (UGC) campaigns go hand in hand. UGC could be the fastest way of converting your audience into paying customers. According to the Nielsen Consumer Trust Index, 92% of consumers trust organic, user-generated content more than they trust traditional advertising.
Just take Aldi for example, they ran a giveaway for the chance to win a year’s supply of shopping vouchers. To enter, all users had to do was like the Facebook post and share a photo of their DIY home bar using the #AldisBarHunt hashtag. The result was over 11,000 comments, 1,900 shares, and 12,000 reactions. That and tons of photos to use in future promotional messages.
14. Don’t Invest in Facebook Ads too Early
You may have heard a lot about Facebook ads. Like social media campaigns, they are great for exposure, however, if you are operating with a limited budget we highly recommend focusing on Google ads as this captures individuals who are actively seeking out the product or service your business offers. Getting your product or service noticed at this moment of intent is almost certain to boost your conversions and put you ahead of your competitors.
15. Simplify the Shopping Experience
We’ve all found ourselves on a site that is frustratingly difficult to navigate at some point or another. And what happens? We immediately click off right?
In order to keep visitors on your site and increase your conversions you have to make the shopping experience as clear, easy and seamless as possible. The key to this is professional web design and excellent mobile optimisation. Without a properly mobile optimised website, Google will not rank your e-commerce website highly.
16. Remove Friction
We have been building and optimising websites for over 14 years so believe us when we tell you that friction kills conversions. This is because we are a nation so used to having everything at our fingertips, immediately. Our attention spans and patience are as low and as thin as ever before.
Studies show that a slow website can increase cart abandonment by 75%! But the good news is that reducing friction is one of the most effective ways of increasing conversions and we can help!
17. Promote your Product on Packaging
How many times have you seen dominoes boxes being delivered to a neighbour and contemplated scraping all cooking plans to order one for yourself? Basically, if you’re not promoting your product or service on your packaging then you are missing a huge marketing opportunity for your e-commerce business.
18. Use the Power of Remarketing
Have you ever searched for a product or service, forgot all about it, and then noticed it popping up across all your social media channels over the next few days? Freaky right? But excellent for business. One of the most clever marketing tools of the 21st century is the power of remarketing. Remarketing allows your website to track each customer back to various channels which means they will be shown ads for whichever product they spent time mulling over.
“remarketing allowed us to increase our repeat visitors by 50%, boost conversion by 51%, and increase time on site by an insane 300%! Remarketing helped make our SEO 7x more awesome by keeping us in front of interested consumers and compelling them to take action.”
19. Let Data Drive your Strategy
Big data will enable your e-commerce company to improve decision making, enhance their performance, products and operational processes and gain a competitive advantage. Not only that but it also enables insights into your customers behaviours and prompts the discovery of actionable insights.
20. Over-Deliver in All You Do
“The definition of ‘under-promise and overdeliver’ is a strategy in which product or service providers aim for superior customer service by doing more than they originally said they would do.”
An example of this is delivering ahead of schedule or including some freebies in the package. When you overdeliver your customers immediately feel better about spending money with your company, which improves trust and loyalty and will overall lead to additional sales and perhaps lead to referrals as they recommend your excellent customer service to friends and family.
As you can see, there are many different ways to boost your website’s exposure, increase conversions and retain customers. However, the best results will only occur when every point works in unison.
Here at Gekkoshot we specialise in all of the above, specialising in Web-Design, SEO and Social Media. We love what we do and our clients do too. So if you would like help with any or all of the above, then Get in touch today for more information.