After days, weeks and even month of hard work, your ecommerce website is finally ready to conquer the online world. From an idea in the back of your heard, to the process of turning concept to the reality of a published site, here you are, ready for the next step: getting sales.
Easier said than that in an increasingly competitive online world, but just because the road to success might require a lot of work, and a smile or two from lady luck, doesn’t mean your site won’t be among the few ones that will make it to the top.
Here is a brief SEO guide for ecommerce websites including 5 tips that could help you along the way:
1. Bring targeted traffic to the site
It is important to make sure you understand what targeted means. If traffic is the key to a website success, qualified traffic is its holy grail. Whilst thousands of visitors to a website is what we all ultimately strive for, nothing is more important than ensuring that the visitors who come to your site are actually interested in the products or services you specialize in.
That means that traffic for the sake of it is not sufficient. What you really need is qualified, targeted traffic!
There are many ways qualified traffic can be brought into a site and they all fall under the category of internet marketing:
- SEO or search engine optimization will ensure that the content in your site and the structure of your site is aimed at providing your user with an optimal experience and a wealth of information visitors are looking for. SEO is a complex process which requires a lot of work and an adaptability of thoughts some people possess more than others. For that reason, you might want to enlist the help of a professional firm specializing in SEO.
If you choose to do this yourself, then be prepared to set aside time and effort in order to familiarize yourself with the requirements of SEO.
- Advertising: A sometime expensive process, advertising represents the quickest way to bring qualified traffic to a site. There are many advertising platform you can choose from including google AdWords, Facebook ads, pay per click systems etc. The idea is to test the waters so to speak by going small, to see where any dollar you might spend in one platform will generate more traffic for your site in another.
2. Upsell and cross-sell products
An often-neglected area of online ecommerce sites, upselling and cross selling products within your site can be one of the best (and most economical) ways to maximize revenues.
We all know how tough it is to not only bring visitors to a website but to turn them into customers and the idea that they should be able to come in, click on the BUY HERE button and then be allowed to leave doesn’t make any sense.
You have worked hard to bring them to your site, you’ve convinced them that your product is what they are looking for and they have made a purchase. Now is the time to tell them about the other products or services you specialize in which might be of equal benefit to them. Say you specialize in health supplement and your customer has just selected a one month supply of one of your products.
An upsell campaign might present him or her with the opportunity to earn discounts on a 3 month purchase instead. Another one might be to offer further discount if the order is marked as auto renewal.
A cross-sell campaign might tell them that the particular product they have just purchased might work even better with this other one.
Upselling and cross-selling is a unique way to increase sales revenues. Make sure you use this system in your own e-commerce site.
3. Don’t let abandoned carts go to waste
Customers, for a number or reasons often choose not to complete a purchase on sites. E-commerce sites will usually have the necessary tools to list abandoned carts and as a savvy business owner, you should at least try to find out why the cart was abandoned in the first place. The good thing about an abandoned cart is that you already know who the customer is and the details of his or her email.
A simple set of recovery emails can go a long way in turning these abandoned carts into actual purchased. Here is a sequence of emails you could send:
- Thank the customer for initiating a purchase and remind him or her of the products that are waiting in the cart.
- Remind them how uniquely impactful these products can be and how they have made a difference in the lives of so many other people who are using them.
- Offer an incentive, like a discount code valid for a number of days only.
There are also specialized recovery tools which you can use. These tools come at a cost but claim that through their appropriate use, they can help you recover up to 50% of all abandoned carts.
4. Work on your content, fine tune your descriptions, add photos, videos
Make sure your SEO tags and titles are informative and accurate. Don’t rely on automated descriptions pulled by your e-commerce management software from the content of your products page.
The idea that once a product page is up, there’s nothing else that can be done to improve it is false. On the contrary. Search engines actually like regularly updated content.
5. Use social media
Making used of social media is an important aspect of a successful eCommerce business.
Recent research indicates that social media platforms such as Facebook generate more traffic than google. As the world begins to incorporate the use of social media in their online activities, so should you.
Many companies with limited advertising budgets start on Facebook and for good reasons. Using FB ads has been shown to boost sales by up to 37 percent for some and it would be a mistake not to try.
Facebook targeted audience can help define a customer base that is going to be highly interested in your products and services and the more targeted your audience the less money the ad will cost.
Spending less for more qualified traffic is a win-win situation and considering social media is driving sales more than ever, it is an advertising platform you should definitely not pass.
As final thoughts, it is important to remember that e-commerce sites have the potential to be highly rewarding in terms of revenues earned from sales. The mere fact of putting a site out there is not sufficient though.
As a business owner, you will be required to apply both time and effort to ensure that your site becomes successful. If you are prepared to do the hard work, follow the guideline above, then you will give yourself the tools to succeed where many others have failed.
It’s up to you!
Erica Silva is a blogger who loves to discover and explore the world around her. She writes on everything from marketing to technology, science and brain health. She enjoys sharing her discoveries and experiences with readers and believes her blogs can make the world a better place.
Find her on Twitter: @ericadsilva1.