E-commerce has grown to be a multi trillion company and is growing by the day. With the effect of the COVID pandemic there was a giant boost of online shopping and now that we are getting to the new normal the numbers are not going anywhere. Online is the future of retail. People have found that the ease and convenience of shopping in the comfort of their own home is the future. With the emergence of new online shops daily making sure that yours is seamlessly designed with the consumer in mind is going to ensure success. Here are some tips that you can use to make sure that you will beat your competition and increase your profitability.
Optimize the Buying Process
The first thing that you are going to need is a beautifully designed website that entices customers to shop. When you have an up to date website customers will have more confidence when shopping with you. A website can be pricey however so working through sites like wordpress will let you create your new website at a fraction of the cost of hiring a developer. Another thing that you can focus on is Optimizing your Checkout experience. When a checkout is not optimized there is a 21% chance that your consumer is going to go on to an alternative. We want to ensure that there is the least amount of shopping cart abandonment possible cause the bottom line is that it is lost revenue.
Now that we live in the time with prime shipping, shipping time is crucial in ensuring consumer happiness. It is stated that 87% of customers feel that they take that into consideration when shopping for an item or when looking to reorder from a website. We all know that customer acquisition is a lot more expensive than keeping an already existing customer. We want to do everything in our power to ensure that the customer has a seamless experience and will be happy to come back and shop more. A good way to do this if you are a company is working with fulfillment centers. Companies like Complemar have multiple locations that are strategically located around the United States to ensure fast shipping times. They will also take out all of the grunt work of packaging and shipping them yourself. With all of that taken care of you can then focus on progressing your company more.
E-commerce is not going away anytime soon and it is only going to grow. If you have a brick and mortar location and do not have an online presence it is time to put a little work in. This will lead to increased revenue and being able to reach customers that were previously inaccessible. Customer satisfaction key in this whole process and if you implement some of the ideas that were mentioned in this blog you will no problem growing into a successful e-commerce company.
When it comes to fulfillment the warehouse is crucial in the success of the company. It all ends in the warehouse, packaging the customer's products to picking the item off of the floor to send it out to the final destination, the warehouse is essential in making sure your company works efficiently. An optimized warehouse is something easier said than done, with so many moving parts just one hiccup will ruin the flow for a product. Here are some tips that you can use to make sure your warehouse is running as smoothly as possible.
Making sure that you are tracking specific performance measurements is crucial when trying to run a warehouse at maximum efficiency. If you are not tracking performance indicators, there is going to be no way to see if you are doing a good or bad job. Putting software in place to make sure these metrics are tracked automatically will help in the automation process and can then see the positives and negatives without taking time out of your day. Using the software to correct improper or bad practices will save you money and speed up the process of all items going through the facilities.
The physical layout of your warehouse is crucial in its success. Making sure that items are placed strategically will ensure that you will be able to package or pick the items in the fastest way possible. Tracking the movement throughout the warehouse can also be beneficial in minimizing the time between picks. One last thing that is important and can be overlooked is the size of the rows. Thinking about the width of the rows to ensure your machines can fit through and can get by each other without causing a traffic jam is going to make sure that everything will be moving as efficiently as possible.
Making sure that your equipment is all up to date and in good working order is one of the most crucial things that you can do to make sure you don't run into unexpected problems. Of course, some problems may arise, but it will mitigate most of the risk. Making sure that equipment will also ensure that your employees will make sure that they can do their job without increasing their physical workload. Equipment breakdowns can cost you a lot of money in time and productivity. Ways to prevent this are doing weekly checklists on your equipment and also making sure your equipment isn’t getting overused.
Optimizing your warehouse is a lot easier said than done but with planning and infrastructure put into place it can increase your productivity and in the long run make your money. This is something every company should think about and having yearly updates and meetings can ensure that you will not fall behind on your duties and provide your customers with the best experience possible.
When it comes to ways that you can promote your company and push out content one of the most convenient ways is to start a blog. No matter the amount of blogs that can be seen there is always something your company can say that may help out others that are in your industry. There are great benefits to starting a blog other than the clicks that it may generate on your website. Whether your company is B2B (Business to Business) or B2C (Business to Consumer) a blog should be a staple in your marketing plan, no matter if your company is a startup or has an established audience it can always be beneficial. Here are 3 reasons why if your company doesn’t have a blog you should start one today!
If you look around you will see that every other company is writing a blog. It would be silly if you are the only company that doesn't have one. When it comes to beating the competition, a blog may be the thing that wins over customers because they will feel more connected to their product because they have been reading their blog for some time. When you don't have a blog you are staring at a disadvantage and to be as successful as you can be we need to use every trick in the book and one of the most important things that you can do is connect with your audience and get them talking, one of the best ways to do that is giving them content.
When writing a blog you are able to post more content on social media platforms that can then transfer into clicks. When a loyal customer sees that their favorite company has written an article it can then take them to the website where they can read up on the news article and then browse the website. Blogs in B2C companies can drive sales by pushing customers onto the website where you can then entice them to shop with a banner ad or by talking about something in the article. Blogs are also helpful to B2B because when pushing potential clients to your website after reading the website they may stick around and learn more about your company and then request a quote. There are many ways that it drives traffic and by posting blogs you are also boosting your SEO (search engine optimization) rankings. So this means that it is going to boost you in the rankings when someone searches for your expertise online. This will put you higher on the organic listings and then more likely for people to click on your link.
A blog will also help your company have a voice. When writing blogs it is important that you are using the same tone of voice when writing all blogs, it is key that the voice is consistent. A blog can also be a mouthpiece for your company and you can greatly show off your expertise. This can help you land a client because you may be able to say exactly what they are looking for in a blog that they click on. Lastly, it gives a human aspect to your company that can make your customer relate more to your company.
At the end of the day, a blog for your company is nothing but beneficial, 82 percent of marketers say that their companies had a positive ROI from their inbound marketing efforts. Blogs are easy to set up and can be managed in-house, the only investment that is time. That may be something that you are lacking so it is also easily out-sourced, tell the company what content you need and they will make sure to publish something that will keep people coming to your website for more.
Starting a business can be extremely intimidating when looking at it as a whole. There are so many things to think about that it may be overwhelming, but it is crucial to think about everything because a few missed steps could cause you to fail before the company is even launched. Here are some tips that you should think about when you are thinking about starting your own business.
Planning is key
The planning phase of a business is the most crucial part of it all. This is the foundation and if you do not have enough research going in you are bound to fail. Creating an in-depth business plan is the only way for you to put everything down on paper in an organized manner. Some things to include in your business plan are Executive Summary, Market Analysis, Marketing Plan, Financial Plan. Those are the rudimentary blocks that all business plans are built on. Doing this gives you a guide into your company and will help you stay on track and achieve your goals.
SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-based. When creating goals the acronym is what you should be thinking of. This will make sure that all of the goals that you set for your company are going to make sense and are going to be obtainable. Making these goals are going to make sure that you are staying on track on day-to-day operations and give you something to look forward to.
When creating a new business it is crucial that you are keeping track of how much you are spending because it can be detrimental to your company if you are spending too little or too much. Sometimes less is more and if you did your research you would have found an option that is as good as something that you are using but you are spending double. Underspending can also limit the growth of your company. If you are afraid of failure and do not want to invest in your idea it limits your potential and can keep a great idea from becoming a reality.
Know When To Ask For Help
Most first-time business owners will think that they will have to do everything on their own, but we are all humans and we have weaknesses. This is where you need to recognize what your strengths and weaknesses are. Where you can recognize your weaknesses you can hire freelance workers to help you, or ask the community that you are in for a helping hand. Most people are going to be happy to help you but are just going to need to take the leap and ask for help.
Starting your own business can be one of the most difficult and rewarding things that can be done in your professional life. There are always going to be ups and downs but in the end, it is the American dream to own their business. Just remember that we are all human and mistakes are all learning experiences and with a great product or service, hard work, and a little bit of luck you can own the next big thing.
Content marketing is really the pinnacle of what marketing truly is. Content marketing is a strategy that is designed to generate revenue by creating and distributing value by creating content that attracts a defined and targeted audience. If done well this can create thousands in additional revenue and can move your business to the next level. Here are some ways you can generate revenue from content marketing!
Know Your Audience!
Knowing who your target demographic is for your item or service is crucial in having a successful campaign. This requires you to look at shopping habits and doing testing to make sure you are able to target the marketing with your products and services. At the start of every marketing campaign, there should be ample research so you know your customer inside and out. A good way to do this is to create customer personas. This is when you make a fictional character that is an ideal customer. This can help you think more like your customer so you will be able to make your marketing campaign through the lens of the consumer. This is all to ensure that you are going to be targeting the customers that are going to help you grow your company. An example of how this can be put into place is the language that is used in the content. The way you speak to a high-level executive in a B2B campaign differs significantly from if you create a B2C campaign where your target audience is teenagers. Doing research into these customers and knowing the lingo of the industry can help to ensure that the customers relate more to your content and have a more likely chance to convert into loyal and returning customers.
Unique Value Proposition
This is crucial when you are selling products because this will show the customer how you are better than the competition. It can be small things that will help solve their pain points, but it is always necessary when selling products to be able to describe why your product is innately better. You can do this through storytelling and doing research into your competitors and seeing what you do better. To get a loyal customer base it needs to be more than a great product they need to feel connected to the company. This can be through sponsorships or influencers. When someone sees their favorite celebrity endorse a product they are more likely to try it out and see if it is as good as they say. You can also tell a story through meaningful content on social media platforms where customers can see that you are actively trying to engage in the community. A great example of this is Wendy’s. Wendy’s has a very relatable way that they interact with the community on Twitter and because of that since starting up their new Twitter campaign their mentions have increased by 200%.
Research and Information
Every campaign is not going to be successful, but the important thing is that you can learn from the mistakes that you have learned and gained data. Having data on your audience will make sure that the next time you are running a campaign you will be able to better target your audience. So no matter what there is not a failed campaign because you can always learn as a company and keep the data, so you don’t repeat it. This can also be for the campaigns that are incredibly successful, you can see why it worked so well and replicate it. When a marketing campaign is based on research and statistics it is stated that they have a over 150% ROI, so it is crucial to do the dirty work before creating content.
Content marketing is not going away anytime soon, with more and more companies moving out of brick and mortar stores it makes it easily accessible for your customers to go onto your website or social media pages at a click of a button. It is crucial that you are active in content creation because even working on a small budget it can generate revenue and pull in potential leads and customers
When it comes to running marketing campaigns there is a plethora to chose from, there is traditional print advertisement, there is social media advertisement, but the one that I will focus on today is email marketing. This strategy has been around for many years and can have great results if done correctly. Email marketing is a great way to reach many people in a controlled environment where you can easily target your audience. In this blog, I am going to talk about best practices when it comes to sending out emails and making sure you will draw in as business as you can.
When it comes to email campaigns the first obstacle is making sure that they open your email. Having a targeted tagline that draws in your audience will make sure that you will a high open-rate. From then on a good rule to follow is to make sure that campaigns are targeted directly towards each market segment that you see fit. This will make it more likely for customers to perform the action that you are asking from them if it is answering the email and setting up a meeting or clicking on your website and viewing the products that you have for sale. Another way to ensure that the most amount of people are going to view your email is knowing what schedule works best with professionals. When sending out an email campaign the best days to do so are Tuesday and Thursday morning. This is when you will the best opportunity for conversions.
Automation is key when it comes to running a marketing campaign, if you are sending out emails one by one it becomes a time-consuming task that may not have any success. Email marketing works in bulk, the more emails that you send out the more likely the prospective customer is going to open your email and perform the task. A good rule is to use a platform that will automatically send out the emails that are pre-written to the list of targeted potential customers. By using this you can easily scale your operation to the size that you see fit and can increase the number with just a click of a button. Automation also creates the opportunity for A/B testing. A/B testing is when you send out two emails that are quite similar to each other with a few small differences and seeing which one performs better. Then you can make sure you are using a tested email to ensure the best results. One last thing that Automation provides is clear data, most platforms will provide analytics to make sure you are getting the results you want. Putting in all the effort of a campaign and not knowing the result can be confusing and really a bad investment. When using a platform all of the data will be able to be viewed in an organized manner and will clearly show you what is working and what isn’t working.
When it comes to marketing campaigns they take time to master and takes a lot of trial and error until you come up with the best one that will provide the optimized results. Don’t get discouraged if you have a campaign with a lower open rate, that just means that one thing may have to change. You need to stay patient and stay organized. Keeping track of all data will ensure that your future campaigns are successful!
With millions of people buying products online the thought of conversion rate is always at the forefront of your mind. A conversion is when a customer goes onto your website and does what you intend them to do, with this blog I am going to be talking about how you can get customers to buy your product at an increased rate. The fear of missing out is something that all shops have so here are some tips that you can implement to make sure that you are selling as many of your products as possible.
The internet is a fast passed environment and you need to make sure that your customer is aware of that as well. They will be more likely to buy a product if they know that a sale is going to end soon or there is a limited amount of product. This is why you see large retailers run sales that may only last a few hours. This is to incentivize customers to buy their product when they first see it. This is called FOMO or Fear Of Missing Out. This will create a sense of urgency for the customers and make them more inclined to buy your product. A good example of this is to put a counter on your website that is counting down that tells the customer that the sale is going to end soon. Another way to achieve this is to have a banner underneath the product that states “10 items remaining”, even if you have thousands of products in inventory putting this under the product and having it countdown, then resetting it is a great way to make customers more likely to buy the product the moment they see them.
Social media is a great and cheap way to sell your products, if utilized correctly the ROI on a campaign is extremely high. One way that you can do this is to link your website to your social media posts, so when a prospective customer sees an item that they like on Instagram for example, they can click on the post itself and it will send them directly to the page on your website where they can then buy the product. They will be more inclined to buy the product because on social media all of the information can be found under a post and maybe even reviews if other consumers have talked about it under the post. Another way that it can help is that they can visualize the item better and then in return feel more comfortable buying your product.
Accurate Images or Descriptions
When customers are reading a product description and viewing the images this is where you can sell your product. Having professionally taken images and an accurate description can win over most of your prospective customers because here is where they ultimately make their decision on if they need the item or not. Be transparent with your descriptions and make sure that the customer knows exactly what they are getting because they can’t see the item in person they need to get an image in their head if this is exactly what they need. Remember that putting in key descriptive information at the top of the page is ideal and if the customer wants to read more you can then add a description button under the product.
eCommerce is only going to be growing in the coming months as brick and mortar shops are becoming more obsolete. The tips above if implemented can rake in thousands of dollars in extra revenue if done properly. When running a company everyone wants to make sure that every customer that lands on their page are going to convert, so why not make sure you have the best opportunity to
The trends of the last few years have all been pushing out traditional brick-and-mortar stores, and more and more shopping is going digital. This was expedited by the pandemic. eCommerce is now a must-have no matter what your business is, With lower overhead and the ability to reach customers all over the world it is a no-brainer that now is the time to add eCommerce to your company. By doing so you may think that marketing expenditures are going to skyrocket. Paid advertising is a way to go, but there are more ways to drive traffic to your website. Here are 4 ways that you can get more traffic and conversions on your eCommerce website without spending a dime.
This is a form of referral marketing and can do wonders for your business. It is stated that 81 percent of customers say that when hearing a good review from a friend or family member will heavily influence their decision to buy a product. A great way to get these reviews is to set up an automated email that is sent out to every consumer about two weeks after they have purchased your product. Then they can write an honest review. Another thing way that you can get referrals is to encourage them to post something on their social media using a specific hashtag to win a freebie. This could be a great way for you to get your name out there.
This may not increase your traffic but it will increase your conversion and revenue. It was found that upselling can drive an increase of 4 percent per customer. That number may seem inconvenient on its on but multiplied by thousands, it can bring in more revenue than you’ve ever seen. A prime example of this is when Amazon started upselling on its website it saw a 35 percent increase in sales within the first year. Bundling things together is only going to help you in the long run. We all know it costs way more to get a new client than an existing one, so why not make sure that both parties are happy.
Search engine optimization is a free way to make sure that your website is optimized to show up as high as possible in an organic search. This is possible by having a website with relevant information, use of good keywords, backlinking, and a good URL. There are many other things that you can do to make sure that you are on the first page of a search, but it is a tedious and time-consuming task. It is recommended that you have a person dedicated to doing this for your company because it is ever-changing. There are certain tools that you can use however that may help you along the way. LinkedIn Learning is a great way to learn the basics before implementing and searching for keywords that are relevant to your company. You can also use Google Keyword Planner to make sure that all of the keywords that you want to use are relatable and optimized to your website.
With eCommerce growing at a rate that is unexplainable and showing no sign of slowing, there is no better time than right now to start your journey and create an online shop. The most valuable thing that you will be giving up is your time, but with the right guidance and research, the possibilities are endless.
3PL stands for third-party logistics and if you are in the eCommerce market you know how important they can be. There could be a multitude of reasons that you are shopping around to see what else is out there, they may have changed their pricing so they are no longer competitive, or you have just simply outgrown the provider and are looking for bigger and better. It is always hard to switch and to know when so here are some tips that you can look for that may tell you that it is time to start looking for a new 3PL provider.
When first looking to partner with a 3PL provider you are thinking about cost-effectiveness and accuracy, there is not much thought if they will be able to handle your capacity in the coming years. This is something that may become a problem if your eCommerce product becomes extremely popular, if you are working with a company that is not willing to work with you and is not growing with you they may end up holding you back. They may not have the technology or space to be able to handle your business and this will always end poorly. So it is always natural to feel as if you have outgrown a company and stepping away and looking for a new partner is a part of the business.
Lack of accuracy
When customers are constantly returning items or getting the wrong items it reflects poorly on your company and not necessarily the fulfillment provider. Your company is the front-facing company so when there is a problem they are most likely going to blame your company for the mistake. In a world where customer retention is the key to success, if lack of accuracy is a constant occurrence it could heavily affect your company. This could also lead to complaints about your products if they are getting shipped damaged or to the wrong addresses. It is stated that 92 percent of customers are more likely to trust their peers when doing research on a product, so if your fulfillment partner is doing a poor job and that is getting relayed into poor reviews, you will lose out on future customers and revenue
Lastly and most importantly, if the 3PL provider is charging an arm and a leg and there are more and more invisible costs every year. This may be a good hint that it may be time to start shopping around and seeing if you are paying a competitive rate. When first entering the market there may not have been many companies that were willing to work with you, so most likely you were going to pay a premium, but the more business that you bring the better rate that you can get. The best you can do is find a 3PL that works the best for you, sometimes the cheapest isn’t the best. One thing that you should make sure of is that the company that you are talking to has strong relationships with a carrier so that you can reap the benefits of the discounts that they get in shipping.
This may be a stressful time, but if you think about a long-term goal changing your 3PL provider may be one of the best decisions that you can make. The best thing you can do is take your time and chose a 3PL that is willing to grow with your company and has your best interest in mind. Not everyone is going to have the same result with a certain company, so it is important to do your research!
In this eCommerce boom, shipping time is getting more and more important. People are expecting their goods faster because of the Amazon effect. They do not like waiting a week for their products anymore. Most consumers will feel dissatisfied if they get the product after 4 days after purchase. Here are some tips and tricks that you might find to keep your customers coming back for more and having the most efficient shipping process you can have.
It is easy to say that when you are running an eCommerce business that ships out items daily, it is crucial to know where all of your inventory is kept, so when an order is placed you can easily find it. When working with a third-party fulfillment company they will all have software that is put in place to make sure that when getting your items off of the floor they will be done in a timely manner. This is very important because this can ensure speed and accuracy, so customers will remain satisfied and coming back for more.
When in the shopping cart add address suggestions when the customer is checking out. We have all made that mistake where we mistyped our address because we are going too fast. If you add address suggestions it may stop the buyer from making these errors. If these errors are caught you will not have to worry about address corrections from the carriers.
Plan Shipping Carefully
When looking into which carrier would be the best for you. Research is always key. Finding out who has the lowest rates with the least hidden fees is going to save your company a lot of money. Another way to save money is if working with a third party company they often get discounted rates from shipping companies, so it may be the best economical decision to look into all of the options when your company has reached a certain capacity.
Lastly, Location is extremely important, having a centralized location will make sure that all of your items will arrive to your customer as fast as possible. A good way to do this is to talk to a fulfillment company and hear their plan in making sure that they are going to be in a centralized location for your customers. You will need to collect data and find out where the majority of your sales are coming from so you can relay that information.
Shipping is a crucial part of the eCommerce system and can determine if your customers come back and buy more for you. No one likes waiting around for something that they have already paid for. Focusing on some of the points above and implementing them will increase your overall customer satisfaction and retention. If you are looking for a third-party logistics company to help you grow your company, contact Complemar and we will put all of the systems that were mentioned into place for you. Look on our website and contact us today for a free consultation.
Rochester, NY (Headquarters)
Oklahoma City, OK
Buffalo, NY (Complemar Print)