“I’ve done everything in my power to develop a beautiful website, make a great offer for my customers, and build an impeccable support system for them. Still, I’m not making enough sales. What am I doing wrong?”
You’re not the only one asking these questions. Many startup founders face the same troubles, especially if they are developing their first eCommerce campaign. They start making initial sales and they think things are going well, but suddenly they face a dead end.
There are many strategies we implement for the sake of growing our online businesses, but we fail to notice they are counter-productive in the long run. Let’s take a look at 7 common mistakes marketers and eCommerce website owners are making throughout the development, maintenance, and promotion of their online projects.
1. Your Website Isn't Conversion-Worthy
What are you trying to achieve with your eCommerce site? You want more sales, of course! That’s why you’re investing great efforts in marketing -- so you can attract many potential customers to your site. But how many of those visitors are converting? If the percentage is not satisfactory, then something has likely gone wrong.
Here are some aspects that could use improvements:
- Your website should load quickly and perform effortlessly on different devices. Test and improve its performance on tablets, PCs, and smartphones, so the experience is consistent on all devices.
- Make sure to include clear calls to action that tell the website’s visitors what they need to do.
- Explain how you solve specific problems your audience faces. They need to know how your products are going to make their lives easier or more convenient.
- Make the website really easy to navigate through.
- Make the contact information, as well as the terms and conditions as clear and transparent as possible.
2. Your Attempts to Appear Like an Expert Make You Seem Fake
If you want to elevate your eCommerce website to an authoritative position, you’re certainly trying to showcase your expertise in the industry. There is a catch, though: If you are a new face in this industry, you don’t have the background and reputation of an expert. The entrepreneurs who base their projects on their authority are already well-known names in the appropriate industry. When they launch new projects, their expertise is unquestionable. That’s why most people don’t even hope to get in touch with these icons; they are too high on the career ladder.
If you are trying to emphasize your superiority right from the start, this strategy will backfire on you. The audience doesn’t expect to get in touch with a true business star, like Richard Branson, for example. However, they do expect newbies to be down-to-earth. They want to ask you questions and they want to perceive you as a real person. Step down from that pedestal and start responding to questions and comments.
Is there a review service where your previous and potential customers have left their opinions? Did you get some posts from followers at Facebook? It will take just a few minutes for you to respond, and it's well worth your effort. That’s the type of business owner your target audience will trust.
3. You’ve Abandoned Your Initial Ideas for the Sake of Making Sales
Do you know what makes great sales? Passion. The visitors to your website should realize you offer not only quality, but great ideas as well. A successful online business starts with an idea. You had an idea that pushed you into this adventure. Have you abandoned that creative drive for the sake of delivering what you thought your customers wanted more?
Many startups are relatively successful at first, but they soon start copying the industry leaders. It’s okay to get insights and analyze the work of the leaders. However, you must never be too inspired by them. When you deliver a unique product and the website visitors recognize your passion for it, then your business will stand a chance for growth.
4. Your Website Doesn’t Have a Blog
A great blog will show your potential customers that you don’t only care about selling. If, for example, you’re selling bathroom fixtures and accessories through your website, you can create a blog that teaches people how they can design perfect bathrooms that suit their lifestyles. You can also talk about the types of products you offer and explain why the choice of one product or feature over another is really important.
A blog will elevate the trust your customers have in you. However, it will also rank you higher on search engines, especially if you implement an outstanding SEO strategy that will help your target audience find your eCommerce website.
There is another reason why your site needs a blog: you can use it to address problems and issues your existing and potential customers have. The comment section allows space for constructive discussions, which will teach you what your audience wants. Then, you can start delivering better service for them.
5. Your Marketing Strategy Is All About Social Media
Yes, you can find plenty of potential customers on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and other social media. However, that doesn’t mean you can simply ignore all other marketing channels, just because social media is effective in promoting your business. It’s very important to establish a strong presence across multiple media channels.
Enrich your marketing campaign with promotions in magazines and newspapers, on billboards, and even on TV. Yes, that may mean investing more money, but your brand will seem much more trustworthy if your potential customers see it everywhere. If you need professional writers to write promotional content for you, you can read writing services reviews to find the right agency for your needs.
If you’re still looking for more affordable or free ways to promote your online business, you can always turn to guest blogging and online press releases. Whatever you decide to do, it’s important not to limit your social media strategy to an official Facebook profile.
6. You’re Not Using the Full Potential of Social Media Platforms
Don’t get the previous tip wrong; you should definitely use social media as part of your strategy! You have probably created profiles on Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, and wherever else you think your customers are hanging out. Are you doing enough?
Think about it: Paid advertising on social media can bring you many more followers and visits at your website. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, StumbleUpon, and Reddit –all these platforms enable you to attract more audience through targeted ads. Since you can control the budget for these campaigns, you won’t spend more money than you’re ready to invest.
Speaking of potential, have you started launching YouTube videos? If not, it’s time to start doing that! People on the web certainly appreciate written content, but they will be much happier when you present captivating videos that boost the brand awareness and explain what your products and services are all about. You can start showing how the customers can use the products you sell, or share vlogs (video blogs) by real customers who are reviewing the website and the products they got.
7. You Don’t Have a Clear Marketing Plan
Your main goal is to sell as many products as possible, and convince visitors to your website to convert and make that purchase. You want to make sure your previous customers return for another purchase. But how exactly are you achieving that? Do you have a specific marketing plan that drives you forward? Yes? Good. If not, you definitely need one.
You should make continuous efforts to increase awareness for your brand through multiple channels. Think about organizing contests, hiring social media influencers to promote your website, or promoting series of TV commercials that tell a story. All these activities should be synchronized and well-planned, and contribute to your overarching goals.
If you want your online business to grow, then you have to anticipate the market conditions and develop a marketing strategy focused not only on the present, but on the future as well.
When There Is Lack of Growth in Your eCommerce Campaign, You Need to Take Action!
There's a silver lining to this situation: you've already recognized the lack of growth. That means you’re a responsible business owner who doesn’t leave things to chance. Now, you need to identify the problems that are preventing your website from making more sales.
Recognizing these 7 common causes of a struggling website will help you to analyze your online business and find solutions. When you make the needed changes, your eCommerce campaign will start moving forward.