If you’ve an online business or shop, there’s scope to improve it and increase your sales. You can make small changes on your online shopping website to make your customers happy. This can translate to more sales and success. Here are some tips to help keep your online business thriving. ~ Ed.
With over 50 percent of American shoppers preferring to do their shopping online, now is an excellent time to put your business online (if you already haven’t).
While having an online business is full of rewards and unique opportunities, there are also some challenges that can make or break your success.
Whether you’re a startup or have had an online business for a few years, these tips may be helpful in keeping your business thriving.
An Overview of Contents
7 Things to Consider For Customer Satisfaction and More Sales
Without happy customers, you have no sales, and without sales, you have no online business. Consider making these changes to improve your overall business.
1. Ditch the Extra Costs
If you’re experiencing a lack of sales and have noticed more abandoned shopping carts on your sight, your customers may be turned off by some of your extra costs.
Between 60 and 80 percent of customers will load up an online shopping cart and never complete a transaction. While there are several factors to consider, extra costs and fees play a significant role in losing a potential sale.
While there are separate costs that you, as the business owner, need to have (such as shipping), there are a few ways you can make your fees seems less like an extra cost:
- Offer a special promotion for new customers
- Explain all costs upfront
- Offer free shipping for orders over a certain amount
The goal is not to make your customers feel surprised by the “hidden” fees.
2. Don’t Make Your Customer Create an Account to “Check-out”
Your potential customer has the virtual cart filled up and is ready to check out. As they click the button to finish the order, they are asked to “create an account.”
Even though some customers will gladly create an account so that they continue with the check out process, others may abandon the cart and never come back.
Most online shoppers choose the method of shopping because it’s fast, convenient, and requires very little effort. The more steps you require your customer to take, the less likely they are to complete an order or return to your online store.
You can either give your customer the option of purchasing as a “guest” or have a one-click type system where your customer can create an account once, enter in info, and then store it for later purchases. It may take some time the first time around, but faster future transactions may attract customers; just be sure that you clearly explain the process.
If you want to learn more about your customer, you can easily send a follow-up email thanking them for their order and asking for feedback; “wasting” their time with questions during the checkout process might kill a sale.
3. Provide Fast Shipping and Easy Returns
In a survey, many online shoppers reported that they hated having to wait for a delivery and that returns were often a hassle. Another way to boost your business and create a repeat customer is to ensure fast shipping and make returns as easy as possible.
Since many shoppers are hesitant to buy unless they know the return policy, make sure you clearly post any information about returns and if you decide to provide fast shipping, don’t hesitate to boast about that feature on your website.
4. Make Information as Clear as Possible
Online shoppers have a variety of tech experience. Some can navigate a website with no problems, while others struggle to find information that is clearly posted. While you don’t have control how well someone can navigate the web, you can make sure that your website is organized and easy to navigate.
Want to know how to increase conversions and continue to thrive as an online business? Make sure that you post and explain all essential information (like shipping, costs, terms of service) clearly. Again, online shoppers don’t like hidden fees and other information, and they don’t really want to work hard to find specific info. Make the process as easy as possible.
5. Offer Excellent Customer Service
If you make the shopping experience as simple as possible, then you’re likely to have a satisfied customer and one more sale. While many people shop online without the need to ask questions about a product, shipping, or other pertinent information, it’s always important to provide excellent customer support.
Keep in mind that some customers don’t want to call a toll-free number to talk to a customer support representative. Consider adding an email option and even live chat if that’s feasible for you. Regardless of how you create customer support, make sure that you are highly responsive as many shoppers won’t wait long for an answer before they abandon the cart and move on.
6. Make Sure Your Cart is Working
Have you ever pushed a cart around a brick and mortar store with a broken wheel? Frustrating, right? Well, a virtual shopping cart that doesn’t work the way it should is just as frustrating and may affect your sales.
For some online shoppers, adding to a cart is a day-long process. The day gets interrupted by phone calls, emails, screaming kids, or a dog that needs to go for a walk. Shoppers want to be able to add some things to a cart and come back later to finish up.
If the items go missing, if they need to sign back in, or if the cart doesn’t work, then customers are likely to abandon the cart permanently.
7. Boost Security
If you want returning customers and shopping carts that get emptied on a regular basis, then you need to make sure that your online store looks legitimate and trustworthy. If you have features on your website that don’t work it may keep customers from following through with a sale.
Every customer wants to feel secure when shopping online so make sure that your site is secure and is a safe place to shop time and time again.
As an online business owner, you have unique challenges and opportunities that brick and mortar business owners don’t encounter. While owning an online shop can be extremely rewarding, it can also be disheartening and frustrating when you see abandoned carts and low conversion rates.
With a little extra work and paying closer attention to how your website looks and works, you should see an increase in sales in no time.
Over to You
As an online business owner, what have you done to keep your business thriving? Do you have any additional tips, that we didn’t add, that you can pass on to fellow business owners or those who want to open an online shop?
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