The three objectives that hold in any business are; (1) increasing customers, (2) increasing order frequency and (3) increasing average order value.
Objective 1 is a critical component for achieving the other objectives and it is these objectives that will result in growth for your business. In 2020, e-commerce sales totalled $498.32 billion in Western Europe (eMarketer, May 2020) illustrating the importance of online selling in today’s world.
In this guide, we will cover 5 unique ways that you can gain more customers online.
For some organisations, generating traffic to their website is the easy part. However, persuading people to convert is the real challenge. For 2020, the average conversion rate on websites was 2.86%. A conversion does not always need to equal a sale though. You can have lighter conversion goals that are focused around the user taking action, just make sure that you set goals and measure the conversions as a way of obtaining those goals.
To increase the conversion on your website, you will need to have credibility. Credibility can be created through various methods such as; generating testimonials, building case studies, creating a professional brand and delivering a smooth user experience. Each of these factors will build a level of trust between your customer and your brand. Once a customer can trust a brand, they are more likely to make a purchase.
Start by running an audit on your website to see if your site reflects a strong level of credibility. You also want to build your credibility before you consider spending on advertising to increase visibility.
In the world of online selling, content is certainly king. As a business owner, you are most likely to be very passionate about the product or service you offer. This is great news for you because it will make content creation super easy.
Using your experience and passion for the industry you operate in, you can create content in the form of a video or blog to position your business as a thought leader. Creating this type of content means you can add value to your customers through multiple platforms such as YouTube, your website and social media. The benefit of doing this activity is that it will build trust and generate more traffic for your website. When optimised correctly, blog content will help you to rank organically in search engines, generating more traffic and helping you to secure more customers. Content marketing will also help you to increase conversion rates by answering frequently asked questions that customers have about your products or services.
Many organisations are making it difficult for their customers to buy online and this will only reduce your conversion rate. Quite often simplicity is the key and less equals more. With this in mind, you should focus on making your online customer experience as simple as possible, reducing any friction that could prevent the customer from completing their purchase.
Friction could include factors such as; slow loading time, too many fields to complete at checkout, a disjointed customer journey and a lack of customer support.
Invest in design and photography
Photography is much more important if you are selling a product, however, if you are promoting a service then it can still pay dividends to invest in high-quality photography. As you build a library of images you can start to improve your website design and use the images more broadly across social media. Using stock images can be counterproductive in your attempt to get more customers. Using high-quality images that you own, is one of the best ways to build credibility for your brand.
The worst-case scenario for your business is a low-quality homepage. This is most likely the first page your customer will see and so you must have a great design, clearly illustrating your value proposition and the products or services that you offer. If you don’t, you could lose customers quicker than you gain them.
The last point in our guide feeds into all the activities you do online to generate more customers. In all your efforts to get more customers, you must be value-driven and customer-centric. This means that you should always have the customers wants and needs in mind when producing content, experiences and products. Adopting this mindset will help you to deliver on what your customer is truly looking for to increase the likelihood of a positive customer experience.
Delivering value for your customers is a great way to build trust, create a positive experience and deliver upon the three objectives mentioned at the start of this guide.
The SME Centre of Excellence is here to help your business start, survive and thrive. If you are currently looking to get more customers, our experts can support you. Reach out to our team today to find out how we can support you.