10 Things You Can Do for Your eCommerce Business Today to Have an Amazing 2018
(And 1 Thing You Shouldn’t Do)
It’s almost 2018, and despite the naysayers, the world still hasn’t come to an end. So, we at Datacrushers put together a list of things you can do today to boost your business going forward into 2018. It’s simple and straightforward, and if you do it right, the results will be rewarding.
Let’s dive right into it.
10) Email Marketing Campaigns
Email marketing is your conduit to connecting with your customers and driving sales. It’s a good idea to create a plan detailing who to email, when, and with what offer (or offers) depending on their value to your business. Here are some practical steps you can take to boost your sales through your email campaigns.
– The Right Relevance: Discounts are great, but what’s helpful is to offer customized discounts to shoppers who deserve them based on their purchasing habits. For example, you would want to create a tiered system of offers based on the amount of money spent during the holiday season by your regular shoppers.
– The Wake-Up: Now that Q4 is behind us you would or should have a much larger CRM full of potential clients. Go ahead and create segments of customers who have purchased within the past 90 days (holiday shoppers) and send them a special deal to get them out of the deep winter hibernation back over to your site. Including product recommendations based on what they purchased during the holiday season is a great idea.
– The “I came, I saw, I left” Crowd: OK so this one is a tough nut to crack. These are the visitors who A) You managed to collect their email. B) They abandoned their cart. What do we do about them? Well, the best thing to do is to send them an email after the holidays reminding them about their recent visit, the product they abandoned, and inviting them to come back to your site. Here too it would be wise to send them a little “perk” to get them active.
9) Multiselect Navigation, Site-Search, & SERP
Multiselect Navigation is just a fancy way of saying “Product filter” in order to appear sophisticated. Did you know that many of the top eCommerce platforms do not provide “multi-select” filtering in the site search results pages – out of the box? Product filters are important because they allow your visitors to narrow down their product search more efficiently – especially if they don’t know what they are looking for, and need some parameters to work with. Let’s say I want to buy socks for myself, and I don’t know where to begin. If I head over to the “Socks” section of your website, and you provide a product filter, I can begin to narrow down my search based on things like price, style, brand, and material.
But let’s say I know exactly what kind of socks my feet desire. In this case, I might jump straight into using the embedded search bar on your site to go straight to the product page. Why would I do this? Because I have what is known as “Intent to purchase” which means I’m ready to spend here and now, and the sooner I find my socks, the sooner I’ll be going through checkout to complete my purchase.
Now, how does this tie into your Search Engine Results Page (SERP). You can use your SERP to find out what words or terms visitors are using to come to your website and find items on it. That data can be used to sharpen your omni-channel marketing campaigns, and hone in on new customers and existing shoppers alike.
8) Natural Language Processing & Site Search
The number one issue that derails most site-search attempts, is human error. We, humans, tend to frequently misspell words when frantically slamming away at our keyboards while searching for the things we want to buy. This is where Natural Language Processing (NLP) enters the picture. NLP works to provide exactly what your customers want by connecting the dots between what’s typed, the concept of the query and what’s relevant – all while ignoring typos and contextual mistakes.
- On a website that has site-search but no NLP, if you search for “Th Wht Ribbit” your search will turn up nothing, and you will be left feeling disappointed.
- On a website that has site-search and NLP, the same search for “Th Wht Ribbit” will present you with “The White Rabbit” as this is likely what you meant to search for in the first place.
If you don’t already have site-search and or NLP, now would be a great time to integrate these features as a part of your eCommerce platform.
7) One Step Checkout
Optimizing webpages for checkout is important. Many eCommerce merchants frequently overlook this aspect of the customer experience. This neglect costs merchant’s tons of money because shopper frustration usually ends in abandoned revenue as these potential customers would rather spend their money somewhere that has an easier checkout process.
The best way to avoid this is to limit the number of pages at checkout to 1 single page, with no more than 12 fields that need to be filled out by the customer. Those fields should only concern their name, address, city, state, country, contact info, and payment details. Followed by multiple payment options (more on that below), “Submit order” button and Viola!
6) Alternative Payments
In the year 2018, there is no reason any eCommerce merchant should be limiting the payment methods their shoppers can use to make purchases. When we say, “Limiting the payment methods” we mean to the big four credit-card companies. Especially because younger consumers are wary of credit-cards, and are always looking for new and exciting ways to “Stick it to the man.”
This is where companies such as Affirm, Bread, and SplitIt, enter the picture. They all provide shoppers with consumer-loan financing or split payments via your credit card at the point of sale, and in some cases, at physical retail stores as well. Each of these services allow shoppers to make large purchases by breaking them down into manageable payments with a low APR. The end result for merchants? Higher conversions, and happier customers.
5) Mobile Optimization
On Black Friday alone, consumers purchased $2 billion dollars’ worth of goods from their smartphones. That’s without including Thursday (Thanksgiving) and the following Monday (Cyber Monday). That’s an incredible amount of money! In fact, Datacrushers clients made 65% of their revenue through mobile purchases during the five day stretch from Thanksgiving to Cyber Monday. It only happened because eCommerce merchants took the time to optimize their websites browsing, shopping, and checkout experience for smartphones and tablets. The process was aided along by the fact that both Google and Apple offer digital wallets for their products, which people use to save their credit-card’s, and other payment options in. Digital Wallets make filling in payment info a breeze – especially on websites that accept them.
4) Site Wide Personalization
One of the best aspects of concierge service, is that you get treated like royalty, and the person attending to your needs takes special care to remember your name, and personal preferences. This results in personalized service for you.
Sitewide personalization does something similar by treating your visitors like royalty and remembering their preferences. When President Donald Trump searches for “Men’s extra-long ties” on MensLongTiesAndTweets.com, the website remembers that preference the next time he comes back for a visit and serves up ties he might be interested in buying for himself. On the off chance someone reading this happens to know POTUS, please help him get some nicer ties that fit well and look good on him.
3) Product Recommendations
This really ties (Pun intended) into the previous section. In this case though, product recommendations are used for both on-site and off-site marketing purposes. So, let’s say for example, that MensLongTiesAndTweets.com sells a magical suit jacket that, through some form of sorcery, will perfectly fit the wearer. Right after extra-long ties, it’s their most popular product. Well, when the president searches for his ties, these jackets can be served up as a relevant recommendation. “Well that’s an on-site recommendation, what about the off-site recommendation?” You casually ask. Well, let’s take a gander.
If MensLongTiesAndTweets.com succeeded in collecting the president’s email address (we all know it’s “[email protected]”) either through a popup or because he has an account with them, then they will be able to send him personalized product recommendations. So, when he makes a purchase (or abandons his cart) he will see a recommendation for those suit jackets in an email.
Imagine if you will, trying to build a 250-piece puzzle of late 1980’s Michael Jackson Moonwalking during a live performance. Where would you start? Well first and foremost, you would want to get the borders of the puzzle built. So, you would begin by sifting through the pieces and separating all the ones that have a smooth outer edge.
This is exactly what we do when we segment our products and shoppers. To start the process, me must first ask ourselves a question: What exactly are we looking for, and what will we do once we find it? Product segmentation should be performed to find those items that have high abandonment rates, or even high purchase rates, and then group them together
With shopper segmentation, the aim should be to split up different groups of shoppers based on factors such as Lifetime Value (LTV) or Lifetime Sales (LTS) which we will then use to determine the unique offers we can provide to each segment via an email blast.
For example, you could use product segmentation to find out which Michael Jackson puzzles are selling really well, and which ones your shoppers refuse to buy. We could create a group called “Popular MJ Puzzles” and then proceed to address our shoppers. We can now find all the people who have not purchased the popular puzzles, label them “Abandoners of popular MJ puzzles” and then shoot them an email blast offering them a special deal on these select puzzles.
1) Guest Checkout:
We can’t stress this enough, but nothing frustrates shoppers more than having to create a user account to complete a purchase. The simple fact of the matter, is that there are more than enough ways to gather analytics on your shoppers – including guest shoppers – that don’t require them to create an account. Plus, the average internet denizen must save passwords for dozens of different websites, and creating one just to buy a few items on your website isn’t worth their time or energy. So, allow shoppers to check out as guests, without annoying hard-to-close popups that demand their email or first-born son.
-1 (Don’t do this)
Don’t email your shoppers offering them your leftover holiday ham, turkey, or whatever else you consumed. That’s just bad form, and it’s gross.
And our Christmas gift to you… #11
Cart, Search and Browse abandonment. Let’s face it, most cart abandonment tools require shoppers and customers alike to be logged in with an account at the time of shopping in order for the tool to retarget them back when they abandon their cart. With average abandonment rates hovering around the 70-90% and with over 70% of shoppers and customers browsing your site and checking out under guest mode and “not logged in” you are missing out on a lot of money. Let’s repeat that’s A LOT OF $$$!!
Well, let’s put a screeching stop to that severe loss of revenue right here, right now!
Unlike traditional “cart abandonment platforms,” Datacrushers does not require shoppers and customers to be logged-in for us to identify them and then send the various campaigns. In fact, we identify 80-90% more abandoners site wide and use Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence to identify and recover revenue loss, and discover new revenue sources across any site.
Datacrushers uses a wide range of data-driven and analytics based conversion tools to target the shopper at the right time with the most accurate and effective campaign to drive the sale.
Datacrushers is platform, language, and currency agnostic and requires only a few lines of code to get started therefore delivering an ultra-fast go-to-market with minimal set-up time and tech intervention. Based out of New York, Datacrushers has clients worldwide including, The US, China, Russia, UK, Germany, and more.