Between 2015 and 2020, retail sales will reach $523 billion, Forrester projects.
As e-commerce growth accelerates, marketing departments will prioritize the need to develop content that increases website traffic, with 65 percent of marketers investing the biggest part of their budget in social marketing, according to Gartner.
But while focusing on traffic, it’s easy to overlook the design elements that make product pages sell. Here are some key ways to create effective product pages through design, testing and implementation.
The header image helps make the sale by speaking to peoples’ emotions. And, imagery is an especially important consideration in industries like clothing, where detail makes the difference. Accordingly, the Gap’s home page is dominated by images of models posing in various clothing items, with minimal text.
Product names can also speak to peoples’ emotions and create a rational appeal to buyers. To enhance emotional impact, include benefit-oriented descriptors in your product name fields.
Add buttons for buying items or adding items to a sales cart, followed by prices. In some cases, you might be able to showcase price discounts as well as prices. For instance, a TireBuyer product page for Goodyear Tires highlights a money-back offer in the space above the fold.
Use product headlines that draw attention to the overall benefits.
Include product reviews, additional photos or gallery photos and full product blurbs or specifications. These elements speak to the shopper who may already be considering a purchase, which can help close the deal.
Testing to improve conversion rates is another important step in page design. Many Internet marketing A/B split tests focus on tweaking details, such as alternating images, colors and fonts.
WordStream founder Larry Kim says these minor tweaks can sometimes boost your conversion rate a few points. But if you want to double or triple your conversions, focus on items that have a bigger impact on sales persuasiveness.
The biggest element you can improve is changing your sales offer. Many industries use offers that sound essentially similar to their competitors. For instance, most software providers offer free trials. You can make a free trial offer more compelling by making it more specific and unique, Kim says.
For instance, to promote his company’s online advertising service, Kim’s team used an online tool to offer visitors a free AdWords campaign performance grade evaluation; the company offered 40 hours of PPC analysis in 60 seconds or less.
Other elements you can adjust include the usability flow of your design and re-marketing to visitors once they leave your site.
Successful page deployment also requires effective marketing implementation. This includes covering social media promotion and order fulfillment.
The way we do business and generate sales has changed greatly in just the past 10-20 years.
For better or worse it has been the Internet that has caused a major shift in how business in done.
Clients and customers no longer feel as though the local shop in town is the best choice for their needs.
They can go online and outsource work and get products direct from suppliers for a much lower rate. That is why it is so important that you have the ability to close sales.
However, this is where things start to get really difficult for people in sales. You can no longer act as though you are getting the sale.
IMPORTANT: Read below to learn more – but don’t discount the #1 thing to kickstart sales: “Build more campaigns – create a sales video, create a landing pages or opt-in page and drive traffic to it with ads, social, emails and organic!”
Let’s take a step back in time to the age of disco balls and awesome polyester suits.
Back then it was perfectly fine to be a salesman and you knew what had to be done to close a sale. Customers and clients knew they were going to be in for a hard sell. Don’t believe me?
Ask your parents or grandparents what it was like trying to buy that Chevy Impala.
They knew they were going to sit in that car dealership sweating in the summer heat until they collapsed and bought the car.
Salesmen were expected to be pushy, ignorant, and saw the client as a bonus.
Times have changed all of that, which I think most of us can say is a good thing. In today’s world salespeople are expected to listen to the customer and make sure they are getting what is best for them.
It is not about pushing the most expensive product.
So that leaves many of us in the proverbial pickle. How is it possible to close a sale without it seeming like it is a close? That seems like a question better left for a college philosophy class.
You don’t need a philosophy degree to close more sales. In fact, we are going to discuss five of the most uncommon ways you can close more sales. Better yet you don’t need the cheap polyester suit to do it.
These are smooth and go with what customers expect out of good customer relations.
1 – How Much Content Do You Produce?
One of the most uncommon ways of closing more sales is through the use of content marketing.
It is so important to make sure that the content you are creating for your websites and social media accounts are working for you. It is important that the content you create focuses on what your clients need and hope to obtain.
Of course, all your content should have a soft sell directed toward your other products and services. Your website should be tailored to be a silent salesperson, closing sales 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
If it is not doing this for you, it is important to hire someone who can help create that type of content.
2 – Forget About Your Sales
That would seem like an unlikely way of closing a sale, wouldn’t it?
However, it is vital that you forget about trying to sell to your clients.
Your number one goal should be focusing on their needs.
Do you have a solution to their problem?
If you think about their needs over everything else you are going to be able to close the sale every single time.
In fact, think of yourself as a problem-solver and not a salesperson.
3 – No Two Clients Needs Are Ever The Same
One of the most important aspects on closing a sale is realizing that no two clients are ever the same nor are their needs.
You cannot give the same solution over and over, it is vital that you actually listen and work with the client to give them what they need.
Too many salespeople will “listen” to their clients only to give them a “cookie-cutter” resolution.
By choosing to close a sale this way will only insult the client and send them elsewhere.
Instead, engage the customer in a real conversation that focuses on what they need. Be proactive and make them feel comfortable. By doing so, you have a much greater chance of closing a sale as opposed to the generic closing speech.
4 – Understand Your Client’s Expertise And Needs
Once you have been working in a business for months or years you begin to know it quite well. You, in fact, become an expert in your field.
Your clients come to you for your expertise and knowledge and hope that you are able to guide them in the right direction.
There will be times you have client’s who believe they know what is best for their company and will be adamant about choosing a product or service, even if you know it is the wrong decision.
When moment’s like this appear in your daily routine it is the opportune time to take the high ground and close a sale, unlike no other way.
In the past, you would have just accepted the sale and went on with your daily basis, never once again thinking about your clients wrong decision.
However, if you know it is the wrong decision, you have to assert your expertise and simply deny the sale. Inform your client that you cannot under good faith allow them to make that purchase.
Two things are bound to happen here:
One they are going to curse you out for not letting buy what they want. However, they will be impressed with your level of integrity and the potential of losing a sale and will go with your recommendation.
Two, they will curse you out and walk out the store. In this case, if you were originally right, they will come back to you more impressed than ever with your business integrity. It is important to remember that not every lost sale is a bad thing, there are always opportunities.
5 – Be Truthful
Imagine that, telling the truth would be one of the most uncommon ways of closing the sale. Far too many businesses will lie and manipulate until their client buys a package or product.
There is a drive among many salespeople to promise anything they can to get a new lead or client in the door.
Even if they are unable to meet the clients needs and expectations they will say they can just to get that client’s business. What do you think happens with this client in a couple of weeks or months when their expectations are not being met? They leave the business and are highly dissatisfied.
While it may seem counter-intuitive it is best to let the client know you cannot meet their expectations at this time.
Whether they are looking for high-quality web content or 1-gigabyte high internet speed. It is best to explain you do not offer that service at the moment, but you will do your best to make it available as soon as possible.
The client will appreciate your honesty and integrity more than if you had just signed them up for the next best thing you had.
Remember to ask for their contact details and when you are able to accommodate them, give them a call and offer a free trial.
You will more than likely close the sale with your exceptional customer service skills and willingness to please.
By following the tips in this article you will see that you are not only closing more sales, but you are cultivating clients that are going to respect you and buy from you over and over.
These relationships are priceless in business and only a few are needed for long-term success.
As your reputation grows due to your integrity so will the number of referrals and clients.
Email marketing is an online business strategy that involves sending a series of specific messages (emails) to a list of existing subscribers (a segment) or potential customers. You may be informing them of new products or services available for them to try/buy, or build a relationship with them to create interest.
Marketers use these emails to solicit sales, donations or even send ads to targeted audiences. The main purpose is to create brand awareness, build trust and loyalty among customers, as well as increase the customer base & purchase patterns.
An email list is however needed to make this marketing campaign a success and fruitful. In addition to this, the marketer needs to have a creative way of crafting the promotional emails to attract the target audience’s attention and get the message through.
Although it may seem like a simple marketing strategy, many factors have to be considered to make it a success.
It is for this reason one needs to be creative enough to make the most out of an email list.
Outlined below are a few tips and tricks on how to use email marketing to drive more traffic to your business to record higher sales and profits.
10 Ways On How to Drive More Traffic Using Email Marketing:
1. Encourage people to subscribe to promotional emails:
The first step in email marketing is collecting email addresses from interested potential customers. Collecting viable and credible email addresses to use in a marketing campaign is one of the toughest tasks marketers have to undertake. Discussed below are a few tips and trick on how to encourage prospects to subscribe to your promotional newsletters.
a. Use your Facebook accounts: Social media marketing is another powerful marketing strategy that every marketer should use. If you already have a Facebook page for your business, you can then use it to collect more viable emails from interested audiences and friends. Allowing your target audience to subscribe to newsletters while on Facebook can help you generate more leads than you anticipated. They can sign up directly, or via a landing page that you send them to.
b. Use blogs and forums: Blogs have a huge influence on the online market today – this is especially important for blogs offering informative content for the online community. Most people search for information on blogs and other informative sites they can find online. If you already have a blog linked to your business website, you can then use it to collect email addresses from visiting viewers and audiences. You however should make sure the blog contains informative content, and what the target audience wants, for them to feel obliged to provide an email address. Often you can capture this via a freemium, an offer that has value to them, in exchange for an email. We call this an ‘ethical bribe’.
c. Use promotional or explainer videos: Although most marketers are yet to realize this, you can collect tons of email addressing by uploading a promotional video – or an explainer or funny video clip with a call to action button on video hosting sites such as YouTube and Vimeo. YouTube has over a billion users and creates massive traffic every day from all corners of the world. You can therefore tap into its traffic and even collect email addresses from the same. As mentioned earlier, you need to give these subscribers a reason to subscribe to your newsletters and other promotional content for them to provide you with their personal email addresses.
2. Tell subscribers what to expect:
Most people focus too much on acquiring a potential customer’s email address without telling them what to expect from the process. One of the basic principles of email marketing is making it known to these subscribers why you need their email addresses. None one will just hand you their personal address without a good reason to.
Telling these subscribers what to expect from you gives them a peace of mind – this means they will most probably open the promotional email and read through the mail. You however need to be careful not to send too many emails, as some of the audience may be annoyed and hit the ‘unsubscribe’ button. You can easily manage this by watching your statistics. Their engagement (clicks, responses) will tell you when to break up the frequency of email messages.
3. Make the emails scannable:
Most people are too busy to read long lines of text, which is the reason why you should strive to keep your emails short and precise. Make sure the reader can scan through the email with one glimpse and get the idea behind the text without having to read through the text. (Note: this can obviously vary depending on the market. If you are an educational center for example, more detail may be ok.)
Including graphic images and including subheadings can greatly help how fast a reader can comprehend the mail hence saving his/her time. You also need to include a call to action link to help interested customers to click to make a purchase or order easily.
4. Use mobile-friendly emails:
Many people today use their smartphones, tablets, iPads, and other handheld devices to surf the internet and access their personal emails.
It is for this reason you should ensure all promotional emails send are mobile-friendly and easy to read in limited screen sizes. Many of these handheld devices use inbuilt emailing apps to deliver messages to the user, which is another reason you need to ensure the text is readable across multiple emailing platforms and apps.
If all your target audiences in your mailing list are able to open and read the emails with ease, you can then be assured that most of them will make orders or even log into your business website.
5. Use video email marketing:
Video email marketing is the newest marketing kid on the block. As mentioned earlier, most people lead busy lives and rarely get time to read long blocks of text in their emails.
Nonetheless, the reading time can be reduced to a few seconds by simply using a promotional, high quality and informative video clip as the main message.
You however should make sure the video quality is exceptionally good but lightweight to enable fast loading even on emailing programs. HTML5 video clips are mostly recommended as they load very fast even on slow networks. Showing a video player graphic with your smiling face on it, and a link to the actual video on a landing page is also best practice.
Audio visual content is more converting than written content in that, it is easier to comprehend – it only takes less than 15 seconds to deliver the intended message. The best thing about this is that, most smartphones, tablets and iPads support 3G and 4G networks, which means viewing these videos on these devices is a breeze and present a smooth viewing experience.
6. Send personalized emails:
Both loyal and potential customers will greatly appreciate if you send them personalized emails custom designed for their needs. This means you have to categorize your emailing list according to customer preferences and needs. This ensures the recipients get mails related to their needs and what may appear to them as “spammy” mails.
It would be more advantageous to inject personalized recommendations for your clients for an ultimate one-on-one communication. Although sending personalized emails may be time-consuming, your business or website should receive at least 25% higher conversions and even higher traffic from the same. The returns on investment on sending personalized emails are much higher than sending one message to thousands of recipients.
If you use dynamic responses to email clicks and events, you can make it work in this way.
7. Ensure the landing page is properly optimized:
Although investing in a promising and effective email marketing campaign is recommended, it would be advisable to ensure your business’ landing page is optimized properly. Most businesses lose potential high-value customers simply because their websites aren’t presentable or optimized (high value messaging, offers and speed of loading).
For more return visits (and for potential customers to refer their friends to your website) it would be wise to ensure your business website is optimized and designed properly. The website should be very easy to use and navigate. A presentable, informative, and easy to use website attracts more return visits than an unresponsive website. Tools like leadpages and unbounce can help get the process started.
8. Automate post-purchase messages:
A strong website, positive customer experience, and effective email marketing campaigns form a stable footing for your business and interactive marketing. You however shouldn’t take your customers, whether one-time or loyal customers, for granted.
Provide them with exclusive and attractive deals to encourage them to buy more, or even refer their friends to your website.
Taking some time to thank them after a purchase (through a personalized automated message) can be uplifting to them. This paves way for more return visits hence increased traffic and more sales. Psychologically, you are also “training” and preparing them for future interactions with you. The first email they get is the most important for establishing trust and good relationship from the outset.
9. Be friendly:
Although using a casual tone in promotional emails is recommended, it wouldn’t hurt to use an informal but friendly tone especially to loyal customers. It is by being friendly that you can break the ice with new audiences and customers.
This also creates a tighter relationship which makes potential customers want to try your services or products.
10. Respond to email replies:
Some of the potential customers (on your mailing list) may have questions/queries they need to be answered or cleared before they can make an order. Be sure to respond to their emails professionally by providing them with the answers they need to clear their doubts.
Do not be like any other marketer who uses a certain email address to mail potential leads and never checks emails or what the recipients hand to say.
Responding to a customer’s mail builds confidence and trust thus increasing their chances of visiting your official website, or better still, make an order.
Your business can benefit greatly from proper and well-executed email campaigns. As long as you do everything right, and aren’t too nagging or use a sales-pitchy tone in the emails, you should then expect some returns from the same. (Note: Certain times in the email sequence, it’s ok to be more direct. Don’t be shy about asking for the sale). Be sure to monitor the emailing address you use to contact the target audiences as you never know what they have to say, or what good it will do to your business.
Your existing CRM data is a treasure trove. But, you are likely not using it properly. Certainly not in today’s new ways of extracting and positioning that data for online use in your marketing. You are missing a huge opportunity. You can use that data (that you already own) to drive more targeted business using your existing customer data. Learn more about your own data, use it wisely in your marketing, and you can begin to predict the future for potential traffic, sales and bottom line profits.
A positive, return-of-investment ad campaign is only deemed so when the click-though and purchase rates are satisfactory enough to justify the time, effort and financial costs associated with them.
This is where the union between measurement, targeting and personalization all come into play.
Setting pre-defined goals for each campaign allows marketers to determine whether a campaign was a success.
Whether it is through the use of A/B testing, a percentage of views/clicks/submissions or through the use of some other metrics, the goal is to target an audience and have them end up, not as a customer in the monthly/quarterly/yearly sales cycle, but as a life-long business relationship.
Regardless of which type of advertising medium, or combination thereof, a business will choose; the goal of all effective advertising campaigns is to reach a customer, despite where they are (online, off-line, mobile). An effective marketer can only measure customers he or she has reached.
What about the others that slipped away?
Look-alike modeling, also known as a Lookalike Audience, is currently a marketing practice used by social media giant Facebook. A Lookalike Audience is a group of prospects targeted based on the customer personas a particular business wishes to reach.
In addition to gaining new followers for your business and boosting your brand’s social media presence, these prospective custom audiences are also an asset when vying for additional landing page sell-through revenues. Other online big data service marketing providers like Liveramp – provides lookalike audiences for CRM.
Targeted groups can be reached during various points of the customer lifecycle stage and look-alike modeling can be used, not only as an inexpensive way to gain new prospects but to test the effectiveness of new calls-to-action.
With metrics factored in, a business can have measurable results based on existing customer bases while capturing new, Lookalike Audiences and evaluating their response rates.
To ensure both active and potential customers receive personalized service, multi-channel marketing can be implemented throughout the use of social media outlets. Interactive digital campaigns should be used to deliver online ads to an intended group of consumers previously served by email or direct mail.
When these personalized marketing campaigns are cohesively aligned with CRM programs, actionable results can include:
Cost savings from having to pay for direct mail-related expenses and the avoidance of mail not reaching the intended recipient.
Reduction of emails being sent to spam folders; thus never being read.
Client reporting becomes easier as each specific campaign’s overall performance metrics are actionably measured, reported and archived for future use.
Ability to increase a business’ social media presence through the use of instant social media postings, landing page redirects, video marketing and other new-media.
Can Traditional and Digital Media Be Used Together In the CRM Experience?
The answer is certainly yes; if it will help increase your business’ overall bottom line and provide superior customer service. Again, this is where understanding your targeted customer demographic and personas come into play.
When implementing the true form of multi-channel marketing, customer interaction and acquisition are the goals. This means customer engagement and response could come from a direct mail catalog, visiting a business’ retail location, reading updates on a social media site, or instantly connecting with a mobile application.
Since an audience will need to be receptive to campaigns, A/B testing was mentioned earlier, but don’t forget about frequent digital content updates and making them relevant. Remember, the first 160 characters in any message are the most important, especially those delivered on mobile devices.
Attention-grabbing headlines, promotions and calls-to-action are a priority, and when executed effectively, can help increase a business’ CRM database, overall service reputation, attainable digital audience, and prospective yearly revenue.
To learn more about utilizing your existing customer data, and how you can leverage it for driving traffic and real customer engagements – get more information here.