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There are many reasons why being an online retailer is the best gig around. Namely, the ability to build your business in the comfort of your own home or favourite cafe. But another great perk that (believe it or not) may be an even bigger asset to your company, is that you get to think before you act. You have the power to plot your next move before you make it.
There are no sloppy run-ins with a customer at the stop light after biking 20 blocks, no lipstick smears from the cappuccino you chugged on your way into the office. As an eCommerce retailer, you get to run through all the possible outcomes of a decision before going public with it.
We’ve got a few tips to get you to thinking about your online business in every stage of its life and start increasing eCommerce sales.
Start with small steps, but think big picture
After taking the plunge into online retail, it’s easy to get overwhelmed with the creeping tide of information you don’t know yet. How to source materials, shipping complexities, copyright, budget – it’s a lot to digest, and it feels like you have to have it all figured out right away.
Take a look at lifestyle brand Illbury & Goose. The apparel brand began with two college students trying to make a bit of extra cash using the skills they had. They began selling t-shirts out of their shared apartment and soon took their earnings, reinvested, and began holding pop-up shops at local events. Now, just three years later, they’ve moved on to conquer eCommerce and have a storefront of their own.
[tweet_this] Letting your business plan grow with you is an authentic approach to retail entrepreneurship.[/tweet_this]
Create a connection between your brand and the story behind it
Once you’ve begun to build your brand, you need something to draw in your customers. It’s been proven time and again (a bit more on that, in case you don’t believe us) that the best way to engage anyone is to tell them a story.
Krochet Kids found a way to do this, and to use their product as a platform promoting global awareness, with their #KnowWhoMadeIt campaign. Simply, they had a label sewn onto each individual garment with the name of the person who made it.
Creating a connection between the brand (and the people behind it), and the customer is a sure way to boost your sales, and to develop a stronger relationship with customers.
[tweet_this] An expert in branding recognizes a solution that benefits everyone involved. It’s a win-win-win. [/tweet_this]
Continue the conversation after purchase and keep it playful
It’s important to realize that your job doesn’t end after a customer has purchased your product. You want to build brand loyalty, retain their business.
Be sure to appreciate your customers even after they’re done shopping, like a digital version of writing a thank-you note.
Chubbies is a UK-based shorts retailer that uses humour and its own client- base as material for its continued conversation. After purchasing a pair of shorts, Chubbies ensures you feel like you’re a part of a short wearing club, boasting images of men (sourced from social media) wearing the garment doing unusual, funny and remarkable things. They also follow up with email newsletters, including updates on what’s going on with them, and prompting the client to do the same.
Chubbies does an awesome job at keeping their copy light and playful on their eCommerce site, and have a very clear phone number to call to reach ‘an actual human’ aka their customer service team.
[tweet_this] Continuing the conversation with your shopper makes them feel valued as an individual, not just as a customer. [/tweet_this]
Being a strategic thinker in every stage of your business’ growth is a vital part of its life. Become friends with your retailers, stockists and individual clients. Make them feel like they know where you and your product come from, and where you’re headed.
Care, and they’ll care back.
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