Tag Archives: online shopping

E-commerce has revolutionised the business world, with a lot of small businesses positively influenced by these changes. With the increased availability and accessibility of creating and implementing an e-commerce platform, large companies are no longer the only ones to enjoy the benefits of selling products online. Small businesses have found success online and these companies have been able to grow beyond their expectations. This article aims to show you how, with the help of the experts at Linkeo Ltd, you too can reap the rewards of an online sales platform.

Attracting a Larger Customer Base

Perhaps the most obvious benefit of e-commerce is how it expands your customer base. If you are a small brick-and-mortar store, you can’t really expect to generate customer numbers beyond what is locally possible. On the other hand, when you set up an e-commerce site, your customers are not bound by geography. You can sell to customers around the world. Even if you don’t want to get started with international shipping, you’ll still be able to sell to a broader audience within your country. The benefit for a small business comes from how the increased amount of sales is generated with little to no additional overhead cost.

Access to Commercial Platforms

In order to enjoy growth in sales, small businesses naturally have to be able to get the word out. You need to ensure the customer base is able to find you and your products online. When your business is small, your website might not always be attractive enough to generate enough visitors. But e-commerce doesn’t just happen on single websites – there are plenty of commercial platforms that are open to all, no matter what the size of the business, like Amazon or Etsy. Small businesses can also be on a level playing field on different shopping portals aimed at helping customers to save money.

Free or Cheaper Promotion

As a follow-on to the above point, e-commerce and the Internet have helped provide free or cheaper promotional options for small businesses. Traditional marketing costs always have small businesses at a disadvantage. The cost of advertising in the newspaper or TV has continued to increase and physical advertising elsewhere can cost thousands. The Internet, on the other hand, provides tons of routes on a much more level playing field.

If your business is not yet promoting itself on social media, then you need to get started immediately. Regular posting on sites like Twitter and Instagram can help drive up sales. The great thing about marketing online is how you can use the power of social media and get your customers to advertise for you. If you can get them to post about your business, you reach more people and you didn’t even have to do anything beyond providing a great service and product.

Not to mention how much easier it is to customise the marketing to suit your customers. If you have a wide customer base, you don’t need that one single ad to suit all – you can use different platforms and marketing methods to reach different segments and ensure your promotional material is always appealing to the person in question.

Better and More Personalised Service

E-commerce has also helped drive sales because of the customisation opportunities. This is especially good for small businesses. As you learn about your customers, you can start offering more personalised solutions. Customers of the modern era love to tweak their products and buy something that isn’t available for everyone else – uniqueness and personality are the big words of the decade, if not century.

Easier Way to Shop and Sell

Overall, e-commerce has made the process a lot easier. Not only can it be easier for you to sell as a small business online, but the customer also benefits from the simplicity and ease of shopping this way. The simplicity can help your small business, as customers tend to look for things online before venturing out in the shops. Therefore, if you can provide a niche service, the customer is likely to opt for the ease of online shopping instead of looking around.

If your business is not yet part of the e-commerce revolution, then hopefully the above points will convince you to join up. You’ll experience higher sales and improved growth as a result. Let us know if you have more questions in the comments below.

In today’s digital world where everything moves fast, it’s essential to have up-to-date information so that you can monitor the performance of your business, whether it be in terms of customer interaction, the success of your promotional campaigns and shifts in buying trends. Therefore, you need to have the means to obtain and analyze real-time statistics. Before we get into the kinds of real-time details you will be able to obtain through your online platform, let’s get a definition of what real-time actually means in this context.

What Is Real-Time Data?

Real-time data refers to anything that creates useful insights you can immediately process and deploy, based on events as they occur in the real world. For instance, if a customer purchases a product or abandons their shopping cart via an online storefront, you will know immediately, in real-time.

Using real-time data leads to a quick, efficient and trackable marketing process, affording additional gains and performance improvements. Because it’s so effective, many marketers and brands choose to rely on real-time information to adjust their marketing strategies quickly and efficiently.

Ways You Can Use Real-Time Data

Now that you have a grasp on real-time data, let’s consider some ways in which it can be used to improve your business.

Know Who Your Customers Are: Real-time data allows you to build an accurate representation and depiction of your audience, with details such as addresses, preferences, habits and more. Real-time data delves into the core of who the audience is. Remember, customers have nuances. They may dislike a certain product within a service category, for instance, while responding to something different within that category that speaks to another need.

Finding the Right Data to Get Your Answers: The trick is to discover why the competition is performing better by knowing your customers. Even if you cannot acquire the necessary insights, you can go through second- or third-party data sources. Or, you can assess the performance and sentiment data related to the products you have released.

Furthermore, you can gather in-depth insights about your audience regarding age, gender, race and more. You can also learn their average budget or family income. Include all this information in future campaigns to improve performance and engagement.

Analyze the Conversion Funnel from a Different Angle: At the core of your business is the customer experience or customer journey. There are different steps in this process, from onboarding to supporting loyal customers. Real-time data allows you to analyze this funnel from different angles. When you create the experience or work on improving it, you look at it from the perspective of your business and brand. You might spend time getting to know your audience and trying to match up with their needs. You don’t often think about what they experience. Unfortunately, this is how many brands and organizations grow out of touch with their customer base. Customer feedback and surveys are among the best ways to see things from the perspective of your audience. You can see why a process doesn’t work as well as you thought it would. With real-time data systems, you can process and combine this information to deliver more influential data. You can see why customers don’t like a particular process, and what can be done to improve performance — both from an efficiency and customer-satisfaction standpoint.

Provide a Unique Experience for Every Visitor: Personalization is crucial in today’s market. Why? Modern data systems are making it possible to deliver unique experiences to everyone. Once customers have tasted this level of personalization, they expect it whenever they visit a website. Seventy-five percent of consumers are more likely to buy from a retailer or brand that:

  • Recognizes them by name
  • Knows their purchasing history, and recommends similar items

Guess what makes both above possible? Yes, it’s real-time data. Analytics tools and customer insight platforms allow you to collect, process and deploy this information.

React and Respond to Issues Faster: Real-time data allows you to get a better understanding of what’s happening around you and within your audience, but it also comes in soon enough that you can make split-second decisions. If a product looks like it’s going to waste time, resources and money for little return, you can cancel it sooner than you would otherwise. Why? Because you can assess through real-time data the true performance of the product, why it’s not working and what went wrong.

Smart companies use this type of real-time data to respond to customer service issues faster. Before a customer becomes irate and vents about a poor experience via social media, affecting your brand and product reputation, you can reach out to help solve the problem.

Or, imagine the common scenario where a customer abandons their cart without completing the transaction. You could send that customer an email offering a coupon or exclusive discount, which might be enough to entice them to go through with the purchase.

Want to learn more about the advantages of using real-time data in your marketing efforts? Contact Deliver by Linkeo for more information or to schedule a demo of our products.

Attracting and retaining the attention of shoppers online is pretty difficult, especially since a high number of online retailers are all competing for the same customers. A very effective tool in reaching out to and connecting with clients is online coupons that offer discounts and promotions – after all, who doesn’t like to get something for less? However, if you really want to make a splash, you need to go above and beyond basic coupon marketing strategies. The upfront investment will be worth it — when done right, promotions will allow you to get new customers, inspire brand loyalty, upselling, cross-selling and more.

In this article, we will look at 5 excellent tips that will allow you to harness the power of coupon marketing and get a leg up on the competition. Let’s begin!

Single-Use Promo Codes and Coupons

Traditional coupon marketing strategies are limited by how they’re set up from the start. The standard way of doing things is to assign a generic promo code for all coupons. For example, if you are offering 20% off all t-shirts, each coupon will have the same code. While quite cost-effective, this approach does bring obvious risks. If that code is shared online, you could end up with more people getting a discount than you originally intended – which might be good for exposure, but will definitely limit your ability to use these promotions as exclusive benefits for loyal customers.

What you need are personalized, single-use promo codes. Rather than creating generic promo codes, you either create many unique codes or issue a new code whenever a request is made by a potential customer.

Platforms like Deliver by Linkeo include tools that allow you to engage your target audience with unique promotions, removes the risk of promo code misuse and opens the door to a number of other clever promotional tactics.

Personalize Your Coupons

Nowadays, it’s not enough to just give customers generic promotions and discounts, you need to personalize the deals and offers to reflect their past interactions with your brand. However, you need to be careful to limit the personalization to what the customers have willingly shared with you, such as purchase histories and personal information supplied when making an account. Birthday discounts, ‘anniversary discounts’ (from the first time they made a purchase with you), or promotions based on how long it’s been since the last time they made a purchase can all be effective ways to reach out and connect.

The bottom line of personalization is to make the customer feel like you’re offering them something exclusive — something for them specifically. Single-use promo codes make this far simpler, allowing you to even tailor the level of discount or type of promotion to match their past habits or reward past shopping history. If customers feel valued, they will be more likely to respond.

Create a Sense of Urgency

If you make a customer feel like they have all the time in the world to use their coupons and promotions, they are less likely to act. Therefore, you need to remind them that they only have limited time to redeem their coupons. This will drive faster response times, and also increase use rates.

A limited-time offer also gives the impression of value. It implies that you’ve offered them the deal of a lifetime with this promotion and that they should act upon it quickly before you change your mind. These types of promotions are a particularly good way to get customers off the fence — for example, email marketing campaigns designed to limit shopping cart abandonment.

Use Gamification Techniques

Despite claims to the contrary, we all enjoy games. Therefore, if you can make the act of shopping into a game, you may well find that it results in a dramatic uptick in user engagement. There are lots of fun ways in which you can incorporate gamification into your coupon marketing strategy. But make sure that the rules of the game are consistent, whatever they may be. If consumers feel as though the game is rigged or simply poorly managed, they’ll be much less inclined to play it.

Let’s look at an example that always gives great returns: Mystery Rewards. These are discounts of an unknown quantity rewarded to customers for completing certain actions like clicking on an email link. It’s always a good idea to use the term “Mystery Prize” in a prominent place (such as the subject line) and to provide defined parameters for the kind of discounts that users can expect.

There are two things that make mystery rewards great. First, people just want to know the answer to the mystery. A desire to solve that mystery will deliver an increase in the clickthrough rate of your email campaign. Second, you will get some of the eye-catching power of offering a great promotion (e.g. 25% off), while really taking a 10%-15% total hit to your margins for that campaign. With the right tool, an algorithm can control this, giving out varying discount amounts to deliver your targeted overall discount for the promotion.

Use Influencers to Engage With Your Customers

In an age where almost half of the global population are active social media users, leveraging influencers has become more important than ever. Consumers trust other consumers, and as such influencer marketing should be a key part of your coupon marketing strategy. Did you know that 90% of consumers trust peer recommendations, while only 33% trust conventional ads?

By giving consumers, bloggers, creators and anyone else with an influential platform access to special discounts, coupon codes and incentives, they become your willing affiliates. They can spread your message into corners of the internet that are hard to reach (or at the very least, expensive to reach) through conventional advertising.

To stand out, you need to be creative and unique. To deliver results that matter to you, you need to keep an outcome-oriented focus. Invest in tools that will let you track results and hone your strategies based on the response of your customers. Experiment with these five tips and get ready to set yourself apart online!

Did you know that many e-commerces fail because of their delivery options? It might be the cost is too high, the lack of delivery options, or quite simply that customers don’t trust the delivery promise. Therefore, you can drastically improve your online sales by simply focusing some attention on your delivery strategy and acting upon areas that your customers feel need work.

Let’s look at what we mean by delivery strategy.

Your delivery strategy covers everything to do with the delivery of your products and will be dictated by what your customers expect of you. Everything from how you present the delivery information on your e-commerce website and in your marketing, right down to the product that arrives on the doorstep will be shaped by these demands, as well as your ability to meet these requirements in terms of volumes, finances, or manpower.

How Can Your Delivery Strategy Increase Sales?

As previously mentioned, delivery is one of the main reasons why people don’t buy online, so how can you entice people to trust you? Quite simply, you need to offer the kind of delivery options your customers want. Survey your regulars to see whether speed, convenience or cost is the most important for your customers. This is especially important if you’re running a specialist business like a cheese shop or vintner. Once you’ve identified what your clients want, find the couriers that can best serve your needs.

The delivery space is one of the fastest-growing aspects of e-commerce at the present time, and the options for smaller businesses are constantly improving. This makes it well worth scouting the marketplace periodically to make sure you have the best delivery service for your business.

Once you have the right services in place, make sure you are presenting them clearly on your website. You need to get it right in all these places:

  • On every page: a header with the headline offering, and then a link to the delivery options. Avoid hiding the prices.
  • Clear information on every product page. Is it in stock? When will it dispatch? Relevant postage prices.
  • Clearly explain it on the checkout and basket pages too.

Offers on delivery are one of the most powerful promotional tools you have at your disposal. Any promotion is your opportunity to get the customer to do what you want them to do as cheaply as possible – in other words, with minimal impact on your margins. If you are already offering free P&P on everything then use “Free upgrade to [better delivery service]” as the big promotion. A permanent free P&P offer of some sort can also be very powerful. For example, if your average order value is $50, then give anyone who spends more than $50 free P&P.

How A Good Delivery Strategy Can Encourage Repeat Purchases

E-commerces are all looking to turn buyers into repeat customers, and your delivery strategy can play a vital role in making this happen. You need to approach the first order someone places with you as a test. The customer wants to see if they can trust you, so you need to make sure you do an excellent job on the order.

This means delivering on your promises – the right goods must be delivered on time, in one piece and as promised. And that’s just the bare minimum. You also need to have a robust plan to fall back on if things go wrong. Rather than looking at it as a problem to be solved, look at every issue as an opportunity to build more trust in your brand.

If you really want to get that second order, you need to be proactive. Put a clear call to action into that package to ask for the next order and wow the customer as well. For instance, you could add

  • a copy of your catalogue (if you have one);
  • a leaflet featuring your bestselling products;
  • an offer such as free P&P on your next order, or a code for a discount on the next order.

Even if you can’t add anything to the package, you might want to consider putting a promotional message on the dispatch paperwork.

If you’re looking to wow your customers, here are a few suggestions:

  • Brand your packaging – This could be as simple as a sticker or a stamp (some find this helps recruit new customers when their parcels arrive in offices).
  • Include a surprise gift: This doesn’t need not be big or complicated. A coaster, pen, sticker or bookmark can have a big impact.
  • Wrap the products nicely in tissue paper or anything else you can do to make opening that parcel feel special.
  • Add a “packed by” card from the person who actually packed it – creating a human connection always helps.

We hope this article has helped you realize the power of delivery for an e-commerce. If you would like to learn more, or have your own online platform created by a professional team, contact Linkeo Ltd today and enquire about the Deliver By Linkeo line of products.

Before the current pandemic forced most of the world to seek refuge indoors and avoid human contact, only about 7% of people in Western countries did their food shopping online. Suddenly stores were expected to deliver to more than 90% of homes. Not surprisingly, there were teething problems. The situation has now stabilized, and this article will look to see what the benefits and drawbacks of this have been and whether we can expect shopping habits will go back to pre-COVID ways or is online grocery shopping likely to be the new normal.

No Need to Leave the House

Pro: the biggest advantage in this current climate and one that will convince couch potatoes and go-getters alike is that you can do it from the comfort of your own home. Don’t feel like getting dressed and going out, but really need milk? Simply hop online! There are even chat functions so you can speak to a real person to sort out any ordering issues.

Con: unfortunately, if you’re not that tech-savvy, navigating certain grocery store websites can be a nightmare due to poor layout and design choices. This might not be much of an issue in the future, however, since most stores are responding to feedback and making the required improvements.

Time Convenience

Pro: Most online grocery stores offer either home delivery or store collection options, which in the future can mean that you’ll easily be able to fit your food shopping around your other commitments. You’ll also enjoy not needing to queue at the checkout to pay, no parking hassles as you search for a space in the shopping mall car park and not dealing with the in-store crowds if you have to shop at peak times.

Con: There aren’t many downsides with home delivery or in-store collection, aside from the fact that you may need to pay a premium for desirable slots like Friday evenings or over the weekend. For major public holidays like Christmas and Thanksgiving, you may find that slots have been booked months in advance, so it might be useful to have contingency plans for these sorts of events.

Freshness and Quality

Pro: Grocery stores can’t afford bad reviews, so will go the extra mile to ensure that they are sending out the highest quality fresh produce for home deliveries. Reputable stores will also offer no-questions-asked refund policies on the vast majority of their groceries, which they will want to avoid triggering.

Con: No matter how fresh the produce, having someone else choose your vegetables and meats will never seem as good as if you had done it yourself.

Saving Money

Pro: As we mentioned before, shopping online means that you’ll be saving money on gas and parking. You’ll also be less likely to the impulse buys that come with actually going to the store. Furthermore, lots of online stores offer promotions that you won’t find if you go in physically. You’ll also be able to use comparison sites to find even more deals without needing to visit each store individually. Putting all these together, you can see how the savings can accumulate.

Cons: the only major downside is that popular items may get sold out quickly. Even if the store offers substitute items, these may not be appropriate, which can lead to disappointment.

So, is Online Food Shopping Here to Stay?

There’s little doubt that online shopping is a growing trend. The convenience of being able to shop from home 24/7 is a no-brainer for most people. However, some people will always be worried about the quality and freshness of the food to be delivered. At the end of the day, there is no doubt that online grocery stores like WE R HERE 4 U will be constant features of our lives going forward.

 

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