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Turning Browsing Customers into Ones That Buy

Chances are that like us, you work in eCommerce but crucially are also an online shopper yourself. So, you know the deal. When you buy something online, you’ve usually browsed several sites, gone back and forth a little, comparing prices, delivery, reviews, and so on, before you make that purchase. Online shoppers are fickle. One mistake and it’s game-over. So, you need to make sure your site is where the buying journey ends, until next time when they come right back to you for more.

Here are 4 tips for making your browsers buy:

Tip 1: Get to know your customer: And leverage that knowledge

Knowing your customer is absolutely key for any business. And what you know is crucial – it has to be much more than their names, ages and incomes. Knowing their hobbies, tastes and interests, and what they like to watch and the newspapers they read can give you a massive advantage – Google Analytics has tools for diving deeper into these. We also recommend that our clients use Nosto who are, as far as we’re concerned, the ultimate experts when it comes to utilising customer insight and driving sales via personalisation.

Understanding your customers’ needs and predicting what they’ll need next is critical too. Successful businesses will look to the future and do their best to anticipate what customers will be asking for in the coming months. Predicting customer behaviour and identifying trends and patterns will put you in a better position to deliver added value to customers.

Customer feedback surveys can really help you get to know your market, and can be designed so they’re hassle-free and quick to do. When you launch a campaign, for instance on Adwords, it must always tie back into what you know about your customers, and be focussed on specific segments within your market.

Key takeaways:

  • Keeping on top of trends, always know what your competitors are offering, and staying genuinely interested in your market is vital
  • Don’t run any campaign without fully understanding the precise segment of your audience you’re targeting and why
  • If you don’t already, make full use of the demographics tool on Google Analytics for some immediate insight

Tip 2: Don’t be a stranger: Retarget with Email

Why does retargeting work so well? The truth lies in human psychology: At its core, retargeting works because of the psychological principle called the mere-exposure effect. The theory here is that the more times a person is exposed to something, the more likely they are to prefer it.  

Retargeting by sending automated emails, either after an abandoned cart – the “did you forget something?” kind, or just as a reminder of your brand for someone who’s shopped with you before, has proven success in the following advantages when compared to sending emails to less targeted lists:

  • Reduced cost per impression
  • Higher conversion rates
  • Better ROI
  • Precise targeting
  • Cost effective branding

Our clients tend to use our partners Dotmailer as we feel they’re pretty much unrivalled today when it comes to automation in email. Dotmailer wrote a blog post for us last year that went down a storm, take a look and you’ll see heaps of tips for how to best use email for driving sales, including how to marry it with your social campaigns too.

Successful email marketing always begins with segmenting your customers. One promotion is never to resonate with all of your customers. For instance, if you sell both male and female trainers, sending an email for a sale on men’s trainers is going to fall on deaf ears to half your list. Worse case scenario being that the women open the email, assume you’re not for them, and switch off mentally to your brand.

Key takeaways:

  • Don’t fret about pestering your customers, seeing more of your store is a good thing. Be wherever they are
  • Platforms such as Dotmailer can do much of the hard work for you
  • Segmentation is key in ensuring personalisation for your retargeting with email

Tip 3: Make checkout hassle-free

The one-step checkout in Magento 2 has undergone a number of improvements and changes to its aesthetic appeal and general flow. This focus and refinement has been to directly make sure customers aren’t running scared at this crucial stage.

Customers appreciate it when you show you recognise their time is valuable. Having payment gateways like PayPal makes checking out easier for millions of potential customers, and having options like clicking to use the billing address for delivery too also stops consumers from tiring. You can help to keep checkout address tasks to a minimum by using a postcode lookup tool like Adressy.

Our client The Essential One’s checkout is quick, easy, and has clear links to all you’d need at every step.

Don’t make it essential for customers to set up an account with you before they buy. This is a conversion rate killer. Your goal as a retailer is to know as much about your customer as possible, but you also have to allow for those who don’t want to create accounts every time they shop somewhere new – both because of privacy, and because it’s a hassle! Using a guest checkout, you can collect valuable information like email addresses, while still providing an experience that’s less obtrusive.  Let customers buy as a guest on your website, then offer to register them after the payment. Think about using an incentive, such as shipment tracking, to encourage customers to create a profile.

Key takeaways:

  • Magento’s one-step checkout improves user experience
  • Don’t insist on gathering information: let customers checkout as guests and offer them the choice to upgrade to an account post-purchase
  • Remove any potential obstacle between you and a new customer. The smoother a sales funnel is, the higher your conversion rate will be

Tip 4: Be inventive with incentives

We don’t advise to never have discount codes, but they’re not without their problems. The main one being, that if you get your customers too used to you having promotions like this, they might become conditioned to not shop with you unless you’ve a discount going for them to use.

Fortunately there are many other ways you can help persuade those eCommerce window shoppers to make a purchase on your site, including:

  • Devise contests – such as encouraging customers to post photographs on social of your products being put to use, have a competition for the best photo
  • Free shipping – costly shipping is one of the biggest reasons for cart abandonment. Have minimum spend for free shipping and delivery and people are further enticed to spend more
  • Offer “sneak peaks” – e.g. for your “V.I.P” customers to see a new season or range first

Always start by using customer analytics. Historical purchasing habits can show you what promotions performed well previously.

Key takeaways:

  • Create contests to increase brand awareness via social
  • Offer free shipping to customers who spend a specific amount or meet other specifications set by you.
  • Give top customers a “sneak peek” and chance to shop your new products before the rest of your customers