There are thousands of online shops out there. Making your shop stand out in a saturated market is not an easy task.
For years, I worked for brands like Jimmy Choo, River Island and Childrensalon, helping them make their shops irresistible for their customers. Now I help girl bosses like you, to make build killer shops that get a lot of traction and turn strangers into raving fans and customers.
I’m super excited to share the 6 ways to make the most of your online shop. A shop that makes people fall in love with your brand and wants to buy EVERYTHING. A shop, they can’t wait to share with all their friends and family.
1. Choose a platform that’s right for you.
There are so many solutions you can choose from. In my corporate career, I designed sites for Magento (Childrensalon) and custom CMS (like Jimmy Choo). Now, I work with small businesses and WordPress and Shopidy seems to be the best option for them in most cases.
To choose the best solution for you, think about your products, customers volume and functionalities you need. You can have a custom website design for all of these platforms so it’s consistent with your branding and business.
2. Get clear on your ideal customer and their way of shopping.
Depending on who your ideal customer is, you may need a different layout or solutions. Nowadays, people tend to browse shops on their desktop computer, but finish the purchase on their phone. That’s why you need to make sure your website is fully optimised and easy to use on any device.
Some people love to add stuff to their basket as they go and then delete items they don’t want before the purchase. Others save everything in their Wishlist and then only buy an item or two at a time.
By getting understanding who your ideal customer is you can anticipate their behaviour. It’s also worth checking your analytics and seeing how customers interact with your website. You can see what solutions are needed, where you’re lacking and what you could improve.
In e-commerce, design is super important, but what’s most important is actually the whole user experience. If customers are irritated by the experience, they won’t buy, and won’t come back. That’s why you need to make sure the whole process is fun and easy for them, or you’ll lose out.
3. Present your products in an irresistible way
Online shopping is a lot different than going to the physical store. You can’t touch or smell items, can’t take it in your hand to have a look at all the details. Often, you can’t see the real color, which can be a deal breaker.
Showing your products in an irresistible way means high-quality photography that’s edited to reflect the item’s true atributes. It’s also being creative and showing them in a live environment to give a better feel for the size, color or even smell.
Have a look at how I retouched the product photography for M.O.T.D. Cosmetics, to reflect the real potential of their makeup brushes.
4. Make buying process easy and intuitive
The complicated buying process is the top conversion killer! Make sure your store is accessible on any device, allows different types of payments and the whole experience is easy and intuitive.
Use different analytics tools like heat maps or Google Analytics to see at which point it gets confusing for your customers. Then simplify it.
For example: if your discount code box is in on the basket page, you may want to move it to checkout, right before the payment details. It makes it so much more logical and reduces confusion. One thing you don’t EVER want to do is force your customers to leave checkout page for any reason. There’s a great chance they won’t come back!
5. Communicate and follow up
Connect your store with an awesome newsletter provider, like MailChimp. There are few ways you can then use it to WOW your customers.
Send out Promotional newsletters
Send out promotional newsletters with items dynamically chosen for each customer (you don’t want to promote an item someone’s already bought and irritate them!). E-mail marketing still is one of the most powerful ways to ask for sales.
Confirm orders like a PRO
Beautifully designed order confirmations and follow-ups for your shop are other ways to make a killer impression on your customers. Depending on what you sell, you can show your clients how to use the product they’ve bought, answer questions they might have and anticipate their needs. I can assure you, they will be THRILLED and think your brand is worth sharing with their friends.
Ask for a review of your shop or simply check in with your customers and see how they get on with the product they bought from you. This way, you are doing a lot to make the relationship last and build trust. Your customers will see you really care and they will want to buy from you again.
Recover Abandoned Cart Sales
When someone added items to their basket but didn’t buy, you should be sending an e-mail reminding them of their unfinished transaction.
According to GoDaddy.com: “An average website loses 69 percent of sales to abandoned carts.”
Those are hot leads we are talking about! Professionally designed and set up Abandoned Cart e-mail will help you recover a lot of sales you might have lost otherwise. It’s absolutely CRUCIAL that you have it set up in your store.
6. Offer easy to find information and support
Customers may have questions about the buying process, your product or support in your shop. Make sure you give them easy access to information and support.
Frequently asked questions section is a great way to give information, without spending time on replying to every e-mail. When setting up right, it’s pretty much self-sustainable and can be automated to a large extent.
For example you can have links to your FAQ section in your store, in your promotional e-mails and in auto-responders.
Your auto-responders can be smart enough to scan the e-mail content and work out when someone has a question, to send them to the right direction. If you’re still doing it manually, you’re probably frustrated and wasting your time.
You can set up a marketing conversation software like Drift on your website (I LOVE them!). This will make a small box pop up at the right bottom of the screen, greeting your customers and asking if they need any assistance. It’s largely automated and you can set up different answers depending on what your customers write in their messaging (I seriously can’t even begin to tell you how amazing it is!). You can get your whole team on it and even connect it with Slack. You don’t miss anything important and will be able to assign it to the right person depending on the message type.
Design is huge when it comes to e-commerce, but it has to be purposeful and thought through.
It’s not only to look pretty but to attract the right people to your shop, touch the right pain points, present your products in a way that’s irresistible and make the buying easy.
During the years I worked for big fashion brands I sat in a front row, watching how their websites perform and which strategies work. Of course, it can be a little different for different industries, but one thing stays the same: give your customers the experience they are looking for and sale will be a result of that.
I really hope this post will help you improve your shop! If you’re ready to assign that task to a professional, just contact me and get your custom quote.
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Do you have all the important things implemented in your store?