Managing an online store is tough. The competition is massive and the online market is increasingly crowded. Major retailers dominate the scene (think Amazon, Alibaba and eBay) and if you are a small store starting out it’s challenging trying to find your space on large marketplaces like Etsy or eBay. So how can you find your niche and work to improve both your conversion rates and your sales? There is no simple answer but the tips below are a good start.
Find your niche
This is arguably the most important point for making sure an online business succeeds. With a crowded arena it is incredibly important to figure out who you are and why your offering stands out. Doug Hall of Eureka Ranch has distilled this into 3 laws of business: 1) Overt benefit; 2) Real Reason to Believe; 3) Dramatic Difference. Overt benefit basically means focusing on the major benefit your customer can gain from your product or service. It’s no good falling in love with a cool design or great technology. It’s important to stay benefit focused and to make sure that it is obvious so your customers can easily understand your business’s value.
On its own, overt benefit isn’t enough. It’s critical that you team it up with a real reason to believe. In a world in which we are inundated with advertising noise – why should people care about what you have to say? If you make products for babies then maybe your safety protocols are the best. Perhaps you have a ton of industry experience, which gives you experience and knowledge of the industry. The fundamental point is – how can you let customer’s know you will be able to deliver on your overt benefit.
Doug’s last law is a dramatic difference. Whatever industry you are in, you will find yourself surrounded by competitors. There might be more or less and they may be bigger or smaller but they will definitely be there. Find a way to differentiate yourself from your competitors and look for a dramatic difference that can last. Looking forward, what is it that makes you different? Is it your brand and social responsibility, your unique designs or something else?
To read more about Doug and his 3 laws, click here.
Leverage and learn from your audience
Selling a product is not enough. It’s important to focus on your customers and really get to know them. What do they like? What do they hate? And this shouldn’t just be guesswork. The best way to get feedback is to ask for feedback! This can be something as simple as enabling a reviews platform on your website. Once your users have a space to interact, you will have space to better understand them and to use their feedback to ultimately improve your business.
Don’t be scared of negative reviews. No one is perfect, and in fact, some negative reviews lend your business credibility (it just doesn’t look realistic if everyone is giving you 5 stars). But be sure to interact with these negative reviewers. Take the time to reply to them and to really understand the problem. These outliers will likely hold some very useful tips for improving your business.
Heyoya is a game-changing comments and reviews platform that brings voice to e-publishers and e-stores, improving sales and user engagement by allowing readers to express themselves beyond the medium of text. Heyoya’s new Receiver plan allows for quick and easy below-the-fold monetization through native advertising. Heyoya is a game changer for websites and is proven to increase brand affinity and the quality of user-generated content.
For more information about Heyoya, click here.