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August 17, 2009

Guide to eCommerce: Usability, Upsell, Cross-sell, & Conversions – Part IV

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Amazon Web Services

In part 4 of the Guide to E-Commerce we will look at other ways you can drum up business, other than search engine traffic.

Why settle for just one way a customer can reach and purchase your products?  There are a number of ways you can increase sales and promote your products other than people finding your site on a search engine.

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Leveraging your current customer basis is essential for any e-commerce site.  A current customer has already purchased from you, understands your company/products, most likely had a positive experience, and are more likely to purchase from you again.

There are a few ways you can go about implementing an e-mail marketing strategy.

  1. Gain Feedback: You do not necessarily want to sell, sell, sell.  If all you do is fill up a users inbox with nothing but product offerings, you can almost guarantee that that user will get annoyed and unsubscribe immediately.  Try sending out a customer satisfaction survey.  This can be a great way to learn what customers think about your site, company and how you conduct business.  On a broader scale, if you listen to what customers are saying and making improvements on your products and services based on their feedback, you can bet that sales will follow.
  2. Cross-sells: Once a customer has purchased, send out a email thanking them for their purchase and include some complimentary products that go with what they just bought.
  3. Specials/New Product Promotions: Holiday promotion emails are a big part of a online store’s strategy.  Send out a blast to your current customers notifying them about the upcoming specials, savings, and promotions.

Mobile Alerts

With mobile technology really starting to develop, mobile marketing is becoming a mainstream marketing tactic.  More and more people have smart phones or blackberry’s that come with unlimited text and data transfer.  Try setting up a mobile marketing campaign and text your customers with promotions, shipping status updates, or even customer polls. MobileStorm and Broadtexter are a few companies that allow you to setup mobile marketing campaigns.

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Gift Cardsgiftcard

Especially around the holidays, gift cards are a simple gift for anyone.  Allow users to purchase gift cards through your site.  Give multiple delivery options such as printable gift cards, physical cards, or e-mailed directly to the person.

Affiliate Programs

Affiliate marketing is a huge business.  People can make a pretty good living off of selling other companies products. Create an affiliate program using Link Share or Commission Junction and allow other people to sign up for your program and sell your products.  It is like having your own salesforce promoting your products without the overhead!  Yes, they will receive a percentage of every product they sell, but a sale is a sale.  Just think about the lifetime value of a customer.

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<< Guide To E-Commerce Part III


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