If Frank Sinatra, Old Blue Eyes himself, had been an ecommerce marketer, he might have a sung a song that went like this: Strangers on the site, exchanging glances, wondering in the night, what were the chances, we’d be sharing love [or, a meaningful commercial transaction leading to a long-term, growing revenue relationship.] Sorry about that, but you get the idea.
So often, we invest effort and not a small amount of money to get visitors to our ecommerce sites, only to see them vanish into the night and never return. It’s painful to watch the investment slip away with site visitors who never convert into paying customers. Plus, low conversions make the cost of acquiring a new customer that much more expensive.
How do I increase customer conversions on my site?
You don’t have to do the whole “strangers in the night” routine with your site visitors. As we’ve found in our work, there are a multitude of practices and technologies that can help bring visitors back, and ready to buy. Here are the seven we consider the most effective:
- Retargeting ads –With the right tool, you can follow a site visitor around the web, showing him or her ads that link back to your site. Solutions like Criteo and Google AdWords track your visitors after they leave your site, serving up ads that remind them of what they were looking at. If your visitor was checking out a dress, you can serve them an ad for the same one an hour later. They might think, “Oh, yeah, I really wanted that,” and return to buy.
- Abandoned cart remarketing– An abandoned shopping cart can be heartbreaking. The customer was so close to purchasing and then just ghosted you like a celebrity bachelorette. But, now you can get them back with specialized solutions that enable you to serve pay-per-click (PPC) ads or email the cart abandoner and enable them to come back.
- Facebook dynamic product ads– This form of sequential remarketing lets you return to your site visitor’s realm of consciousness when he or she is on Facebook. If she liked the dress on your site, for example, now you can insert an ad for it into her Facebook news feed for another look.
- Email acquisition tactics– Email capture is a great first step in luring fence-sitting buyers back to your site. We recommend extending some sort of special offer or free gift in exchange for the visitor’s email. Then, follow up with a thoughtful, reasonable nurture flow of emails promoting the best deals you have. There are even many tools that help automate the process. You can tee up an automatic welcome email and follow ups every day or week with a preset selection of special offers.
- After–purchase nurturing– After the customer converts, you can continue to nurture them with a “come back and buy more” flow of regular emails. The tools usually let you customize the nurture emails, so they speak the customers’ specific interests, e.g. a dress buyer gets a follow up email about dresses, etc.
- CRM emails– Work your lists! Look at the emails you have in your customer relationship management (CRM) system. These are potential return buyers. You can tailor your offers to them based on their previous buying behavior.
- Refer-a-friend –This is a natural, though it can be hard to pull off, marketing method. People don’t want to be blamed for signing their friends up for spam. However, if you can create cool offers with great value, the friend who’s referred might even appreciate being added to the mailing list.
Our overall recommendation is to try some of these ideas and see how they work for your unique ecommerce business. Be data-driven, test each suggested practice, and gauge the results – some may work well, and others may not meet your return on investment (ROI) criteria. By experimenting and evaluating the results, you’ll know what will work to move your ecommerce business forward. For more information on increasing online customer conversions on your ecommerce site, contact Zero Gravity Marketing!