It’s a highly competitive world out there these days. Anyone and everyone can easily and cheaply set up a website and begin a career as an entrepreneur in eCommerce. You can sell anything if you know how to target your market. As the orders start trickling in, though, you may be wondering how on earth you can open the flood gates. How can you turn your startup into a highly regarded profit-making business? Where does your money come from? Your customers. So who are they?
Most marketers know the importance of profiling their customer. After all, we are all bombarded by countless messages and communications every day. How do you get heard above all the noise? You speak the people that want to hear what you have to say. Once you’ve profiled who that is, you can create highly targeted campaigns that are written in the right way to spur that all-important call to action. So how do you profile your customer?
Your website is the key to successfully identifying who a customer might be. All the answers are there if you use the correct tools to collate them. Make sure your website has the following data generators so you can start building an accurate customer profile:
Too few eCommerce sites are taking advantage of the free sharing buttons that many WordPress developers can provide. Blog writers know these are essential for spreading the word. If your customer shares a product page on their social media pages, then you will be able to see that has happened. Use a counter on the page so that each share is included in the count. Now you know which products are most interesting to your customers.
Connect With Us – Social Media
Too many businesses mistake the sharing buttons as a connection button. These buttons usually take a visitor to their own social media account – not your social media pages. Use ‘Connect With Us’ buttons on your side bar for every page that you can. Why? Because your customer might have a question your website doesn’t answer. It’s like having an ‘email us a question’ button. The difference is that the social media connection takes your customer to another page. That page promotes your products and services. It’s another chance to get that sale. It will also build your reputation and authority in their minds as they continue to engage your business.
This might be one of the simplest ways to boost your sales. Adding something as easy to use as the Shopify live chat app can provide customers with an informed and helpful member of staff to talk to. Think about retail outlets. Boutiques, in particular, tend to have a salesperson ‘hovering’ around watching your every move. They might wait for you to perform three actions, like browsing three different garments. Or they might simply be counting to one hundred before they approach. They’ll ask ‘may I help you find what you’re looking for?’ When will your live chat app pop up and ping your customers? Transcripts of the chat can inform you with rich qualitative data about customer behaviors and preferences.
Surveys, Competitions, Feedback Forms
Engage your customers, and they will gladly hand over their email addresses to you. Offer them opportunities to participate in surveys, competitions and feedback requests. Why would they go the extra mile for you? As customers that are already following your business through social media, they already like you. They’re interested. Offer incentives for their input like freebies, cashback or discounts. The customers that follow you are the ones you want to sell to again as part of your CRM program. When you have their email address and permissions, you can regularly communicate directly and privately with them. Most importantly, they will be providing you with data about the thoughts and opinions on your products and services.
Comments and Reviews
Off customers a chance to leave comments and reviews of your products. Even negative feedback is highly valuable. You can respond to try and help resolve the customer’s complaint. Most importantly you can identify where you’re going wrong and action corrections. It might be a product that is substandard in quality. Or something about your ordering system is not what your customers want. Welcome the feedback, thank them for their time and fix it.
How Do You Use Yours?
Ask the customer for their story. You can approach via email or provide a link directly on the product page. Future customers regard previous customer experiences more highly than anything else. Why not publish user videos and comments about how the product works for them? Chances are this will show other customers how your products can solve their problems. Isn’t this what marketing is all about?
Newsletter, Freebies, Deeper Access
This goes much further than just collecting email addresses. You can quickly learn a lot about customer behavior by analyzing which of these campaigns has the most success. Newsletters are often subscribed to through your own website. You might use a side bar button or a pop-up. Freebies can be promoted through your Twitter messages and can be used to draw new customers to your business. Offer deeper access to your content or promotional offering to engage your customers further. This might provide you with opportunities to upsell, cross-sell and re-sell again and again. You can test campaigns on this small, ‘privileged’ group and learn more about their buying process and behaviors. Best of all, as they are highly engaged, you can use them as a focus group for product development.
Every business owner should be checking and recording their website analytics daily. This data should be time lined against each of the campaigns you’re running too. This measures the success of your marketing. It also helps you identify the geographic and demographic qualities of the customers you’re attracting. Best of all, it will highlight those exit pages and the bounce rate for your website. When you can see what is turning off your customers, you can fix it to engage them enough to stay and convert to a sale. How well do you know your customers?