Do you want more customers to come to your online retail store? Of course, you do, and so do millions of other online stores. But in a day and age when we have so much and selling is less about need and more about want, how do we convince those visitors to your site to part with that hard-earned cash?
We looked at what the most successful smaller online businesses are doing and asked them for the one thing they thought helped the most. Then we talked to brick and mortar stores to see where the two ideas intersected. That is because many online stores also have a physical store and many want the two to succeed beyond the current ebb and flow of buyers.
We were surprised to see that online stores need more than just the best payment gateway or latest tech display of goods. All of these strategies are part of a larger plan, but they all work because people love to shop, given the right reasons.
Give them a Reason to Come
Yes, we do mean beyond the fact you offer the tastiest handmade fudge on the net or the coolest design in beach bikes ever seen. To bring people to your site, why not borrow a page from the physical store world and host an event each month? It can be a contest like getting customers to send in photos of objects related to your store. Here is an example. You sell old fashion three-speed touring bikes on your website and want to promote them for the summer season.
Why not hold a contest to invite your customers and potential customers to send in pictures of their bikes in various locations? Add the pictures to your social media sites as they come in with a daily and weekly winner, leading to the summer winner that everyone votes on that visits your website. While they are there they can cruise through your selection of bikes, but you have given them a reason to visit you in the meantime.
Make Research Your Friend
Sometimes we think that once we have that store and website we don’t need to continue to read books about selling or go to seminars. But the truth is retail is a moving target and we never will know enough about the passion of selling. Even if your passion isn’t selling, why not continue to research what you sell as well?
A well written blog that has the occasional piece on something you have learned about your passion is going to garner new followers for you on social media. To use the bike site again as an example, you could put book reviews on books about bike care, travel notes about where to ride in various cities and maybe even a report on a bike convention you attended. Always continue to learn and add that to your voice to make your site and store uniquely yours.
Connect Your Two Stores
If you are someone who has both a physical store and an online store, don’t keep them separate. While you web based store may have customers from other cities, you may be surprised how many are local. Promote the web store in the physical store and visa versa. Cross promotion works wonders, increases your reach and gives your customers new reasons to visit both locations.