The great news for any small entrepreneur is that they can launch a site and begin selling online. But, before that happened and people felt safe using their credit or debit card online, it was necessary to lease a shop or get a market stall on the weekend to sell goods for retail.
Creating products, convincing major high street chains to stock the goods, and giving them sufficient display space to grab shoppers’ attention was an uphill battle. But, without having another way to sell, it was a non-starter.
Now that smaller entrepreneurs can use eCommerce as a new sales channel, how can they up their game further?
Focus on Broadening Out the Top Sellers
As a small online business with a limited line of products, it becomes crucially important to add products that will make a difference to the bottom line. Making careful additions to the product line based on what’s popular and selling is the best approach. It’s the lowest risk while still allowing for expansion. Ecommerce sites should look at what sales pages receive the most views and the dwell time on those pages. Does this correspond with the sales that are being received?
Communicating with Previous Buyers
When thinking about increasing the related product lines instead of branching into something completely new and unknown, get in touch with previous customers. Also, look at shopping basket abandonment. See if previous buyers or those who abandoned their basket but filled in their contact details are receptive to some communication. Ask whether the current product ideas sound interesting to them. Or, do they have ideas themselves, and they wished that kind of product were available?
These kinds of questions can illuminate why people are visiting a sales page for a long duration, but it’s still resulting in a low sales conversion rate. Maybe other product color choices, different features, or something else entirely would have been preferable. By asking, you can find out.
Using a Fulfilment Provider to Create Scope
When the current size of the operation is a choke point because everything is being done in-house, that may need a rethink. When the goods aren’t perishable or sufficiently fragile to pose a risk, having them stored at a fulfillment center and getting the delivery logistics handled is possible. Using a service provider like Zendbox to integrate systems and take advantage of their warehousing capabilities is one direction to go in. It can certainly resolve sticking points with expansion plans for smaller eCommerce operations looking to grow.
Delivery Speed Matters to Some Customers
Same-day deliveries or even next-day deliveries are a game-changer for companies that previously relied on 4-5 days to get a product to the consumer. By looking at alternative options in major cities to provide last-mile delivery, it can grab the orders that would have been lost by impatient customers or those needing the product sooner. In many cases, customers are willing to pay more to get the product sooner and avoid hunting it down at a local shopping center. So, the extra costs can be recovered that way.
While consumers in the UK are fairly evenly split on whether they want faster delivery or free delivery at a slower speed, there’s plenty of room to grow for enterprising eCommerce companies. It’s not necessary to be the largest to provide something that consumers want and get it to them in an acceptable time. Fortunately, for eCommerce companies, there are plenty of ways to up their game.