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3 Ways to Increase Online Sales

Find your online sales slumping due to a sluggish economy?

wpshoppingcartConverting sales online can be challenging especially since you can’t see the prospective buyer ‘eye-to-eye’ to close the deal nor can you answer any questions or concerns he might have about the product.

And while there are no guarantees, there is one thing you can do that might just help you increase sales.  That is to associate a sense of urgency about  the item(s) you are selling. [1]   This same type of urgency should be associated with any and all marketing channels you have available including:

  • Direct website sales (main home  page and any category home pages)
  • Email  (mailing lists, personal communications & weekly/monthly newsletters)
  • All social media (Facebook, Twitter, etc.)
  • Offline (brick & mortar store sales)

There are basically three (3) approaches to use when implying urgency.  We’ll take a brief look at each one below.

Limited Offer

We’ve all seen limited offer sales in the stores and online, particularly around holiday time or for a special event, i.e., Mother’s Day, Memorial Day, etc.  These can be event specific or time specific.  In other words, the sale can be for a weekend – Memorial Day Weekend Sale, or it can be time specific – Special 24-Hour Sale.  Each one of these implies a set time to take advantage of a product.

A ‘limited offer’ can also be used to offer a reduced price on an item – or Free Shipping.  After the ‘limited offer’ expires – the price  goes back up and/or shipping charges are added back in.

Limited Inventory

This phrase can be used to create urgency by letting shoppers know there is a limited number of items available or  there are only a few of a popular item left in stock.

When using this method, the copy/graphics should include a reference to the fact that the shopper should take immediate action or miss out on.  Some good catch phrases to use might be:

  • Limited quantities available
  • While supply lasts
  • Only 5 items left in stock (where the number is the quantity of items left)
Order Now Bonus

In addition to getting a really good price, shoppers like to get something for free.  Offering a bonus – either real or digital –  is a good way to accomplish this.  This is a particularly effective method when selling digital products.

Another approach to the ‘Bonus’ method would be to offer something for Free if the shopper buys a set amount, i.e., $50.00.  This bonus doesn’t have to be an item but might simply  be Free Shipping, upgraded shipping  or a nice discount (50%) on their next purchase.

Conclusion

Regardless of the method you use to imply urgency, the same approach should be targeted in both copy and design so that the promotion  is not  missed by the  visitors.  Information and graphics should be very specific as to the following: abovethefold

  • Type of sale with appropriate details (depending on which one of the 3 methods you are using)
  • End date  (day and/or time – there are JAVA Script countdown clocks that can be used for a visual  aid)
  • Location of copy/graphics – above the fold just like the newspaper headlines

 Shopping Carts

Looking for a good shopping cart to use on the Internet?  Depending on how you plan on selling – website or blog; one or multiple products – there are some good programs ready to go.  All you have to do is install, set-up and add the inventory.

There are different shopping carts for both websites and Word Press blogs.  Some to consider are:

For Websites

  • Zen Cart
  • Open Cart

 For Blogs

  • Word Press eStore
  • Word Press Simple PayPal Shopping Cart

If you plan on using a shopping cart on a blog, we recommend that you search the Plug-ins offered through Word Press  and select an ‘e-cart’  with a high rating (4-5 stars).  Read the reviews to see what others have to say.  And,  look for one that not only has the features you need but also is easy to use.

To Your Success !!

[1]   http://www.websitemagazine.com/content/blogs/posts/archive/2014/02/17/3-ways-merchants-can-create-a-sense-of-urgency.aspx?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=newsletter

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