Published on May 6th, 2012 | by Amy Edwards0
Top 5 tips to kick-start your online sales
By Amy @BubbleJobs
Online sales is one of the fastest growing sections of the industry. From personal auction sites like eBay to online market places like Amazon, it seems like the world and his wife is now trying to flog us something over the internet.
So what’s the secret to successful online sales? How do you get someone to part with their hard-earned cash without ever meeting them and letting them see your products? Here are our top 5 tips!
1. Let them know who you are: Unlike a well known brand, customers don’t know your online store from the next one so it’s up to you to let them know who you are. Simply creating an ‘About Us’ page with a short business description can make a world of difference, as can creating a ‘Meet the Team’ page which has photos and descriptions of team members – both of these exercises can help to make your site more personal and can make customers feel like they’re buying from a ‘real’ store as opposed to a faceless affiliate site.
2. Let them see what they’re buying: Believe it or not, customers aren’t psychic – they don’t know what you’ve got on offer until you tell them. Set your products up in a logical order on the site (ie. make them easy to find), include lots of photos and write descriptions for all your products – this is what’s going to convince customers that you have the right product for them. If possible try to include videos and/or reviews of each product – this will create a useful resource for customers – the more information you give them, the more they can feel like they’re making a good, informed decision when they decide to buy.
3. Gain their trust: Before anyone hands over their cash they want to know they’re not being taken for a ride. High street stores have the advantage of having a physical presence ie. customers know they can return in person if they don’t like the product. Online stores don’t have that so they need to build up trust indicators on their site to encourage customers to buy from them. These can be simple things like including customer testimonials and product reviews, displaying a company registration number and displaying images of accepted payment methods like Mastercard and Visa – they might not sound like much but they can make a real difference.
4. Make it simple: The key to successful online sales is making the process as quick and easy as possible – don’t give customers an excuse not to buy from you. This means you need to a. make it easy for customers to find a product and b. make it easy for customers to purchase a product – it really is that simple. Although it can be great for marketing purposes to make customers create an account before they buy, it can be a bit of a pain in the backside for customers who don’t have a lot of time. Rather than making all customers create an account, give them the option to do a ‘quick purchase’ – you might not get their details but you might get more sales overall.
5. End your online auctions at the right time: If you’ve decided to create online stores on eBay and you’re keen on selling via the auction option it’s a good idea to do a bit of research first. Believe it or not, the day you choose to end your auction on can make a real difference to how successful your sale actually is. Research has shown that items which end on a Sunday evening tend to more successful than those that end mid-week so it’s worth bearing this in mind if you’re looking to make the maximum amount of profit from your eBay store.