Head of Interaction and Service Design at @DigitalDWP
3 Things to Help an Online Shop
WHY ONLINE SHOPS NEED HELP
Theoretically online shops or any other business should not need help when setting up to start producing sales. The owner of an online shop should use their own initiative to find someone to do, or at least put have a marketing plan in their business plan.
Most businesses turn towards an online shop for extra sales, some online shops are setup on the “fly” or they are setup purely for expansion. It does not matter which way they have gone about setting up, they will still need marketing correctly for people to start buying.
Gone are the days where you could just throw something together on the web and start making money from them, online shops are now a make or break service. If you do not put your all in to what you are trying to do with the right marketing steps in place you are looking to fail.
Prior Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance – The 6 P’s.
PLANNING AHEAD – AND THE REASONS WHY
Why do you need to pre-plan? In four words – So you don’t fail.
These days you will find multiple people or companies doing the same things, selling the same stock just at different prices. You then have to ask, what can I do different to make customers buy from me?
Research the current buying trend
Research who your customers are likely to be.
Find out what’s happening in the industry before anyone else.
The three things above will help you out in your pre-planning before setting up your online shop.
THE WORLD HAS GONE CUDDLY
Usability has come along way on the web since the days of the first e-commerce sites. Static blocks with no interaction and simple buy now and checkout buttons should be a thing of the past.
Amazon and Play.com are two great examples for getting it right. Their usability is incredible. They make you interact with the site which in turn gets you to look around more and on your return you buy something else. The two websites literally cuddle you and make you feel comfortable, but most of all they get you to interact.
Interaction on the web has come a long way. There are now so many ways you can interact with other people on the web, looking just at blogs and online video (Viddler and Youtube) alone, the amount of posts made on other’s content is incredible. If an online shop was to let you say something about them or in particular their products it would increase your users staying time and because they have interacted they are more likely to talk to people about it thus, virally expand your presence offline as well as on.
Interaction + lots of online cuddles = Happy users.
THE 3 THINGS
There are more ideas running through the old noggin of mine to keep me sitting here and writing all day long. These ideas are for the people who haven’t thought about marketing their own e-commerce site or in fact people who have drawn the short straw and not spoken to an SEO/SEM consultant on how to expand their online business.
Relevant Items – Having relevant items on item pages will draw users in to making an extra buy. If you know your industry well enough you should know two items which suit each other and could be bought together. Whether talking about a DVD and a book or a dress and a pair of shoes, relevant items can be brought together on a page.
Higher Tier Networking – Get other people to do your marketing for you. If you are running an exclusive high end online shop with expensive items these are usual bought by people who can afford them. Upper class individuals entertain other upper class individuals or know a lot of them. Ask them to mention your shop because of it’s great customer service or excellent pricing, the news will spread and soon you will have more higher tier customers spreading the word.
Google Product Search – Froogle was dis-continued by Google some months ago yet Google Product Search has continued (go figure). The stats are still un known to me yet I still use the product search system myself so would expect others to as well. Products are fed via XML in to the product search and a user can search in various different ways, relevance and cost being two.
I have ideas running through my head almost constantly. The three things above should be obvious to anyone, yet some people need it bring to their attention of just how to start people buying on their website.
This is my first post about SEO/SEM, I will start to talk about it now and explain why I have not talked about it before.
I am going to add some contact details on to the about page shortly if anyone has any questions.