Want to boost online sales? Try these eCommerce growth hacks
Running a business is one thing. Growing a business is another. For an eCommerce business owner, standing out in a sea of competition means giving yourself every advantage possible, starting with automated platforms and solid back-office practices.
You’ve crafted unique designs for your company’s new line of cellphone cases and can’t wait to share them with your customers, but hear mostly crickets after you launch your new product. Because opening a store takes just a few clicks, the world of eCommerce has become incredibly crowded, and competition for customers has never been fiercer. Customers can expect a lot, especially with rival products just a Google search away.
Being stretched too thin can take a toll on your ability to sell. Your focus is pulled elsewhere as you multitask to manage every stage of your product and customer journeys. Even if your sales have been healthy, you’re probably still looking for ways to boost your revenue. With some simple automation strategies and back-office best practices, you can give your business a leg up and stand out from the competition.
Keep in touch
Building customer loyalty is one of the best ways to grow your business. Customers loyal to your brand spread the word about your company, and they’ll return to buy more products and services again and again. Emails are a great way to create connections with customers and to start building that loyalty for your brand. In fact, 80% of small businesses rely on email marketing for customer retention.
Fortunately, you can implement automated email campaigns to save time while still personalizing messages tailored to your customers and their interests. For best practices, your customers should opt-in to join your list, and once you begin emailing them, you must always give them the option to opt out. You can start collecting email addresses in several ways, such as by including an opt-in checkbox at checkout or by using popups offering discounts for email signups once a customer has spent a certain amount of time on a page.
Email automation allows you to customize messaging for various stages of your customer’s journey. You can even retarget people already interested in particular products or offer incentives like special promotions and discounts. As many as 58.7% of internet users cite joining loyalty programs for discounts as one of the main reasons they choose shopping online, and 70% of customers are more likely to recommend a brand if it has a good loyalty program.
Because your customers have opted-in to these emails, they’re less likely to be annoyed to hear from you. You can craft content tailored to their interests when you segment your audience based on demographics, locations, or purchase history. This makes email automation particularly effective, as segmented email campaigns can lead to revenue increases up to 760% and 100.95% higher clickthrough rates.
| When you’re looking to grow your business, simple automation and solid back-office practices can go a long way to boost sales.
Keep tabs on your inventory and orders
Using spreadsheets or ledgers to track your inventory, orders, and finances can become a lot to handle. It’s easy to lose an entry that causes a significant delay, costs business, or requires vital time to track down and correct. Setting yourself up with the right back-office systems can help you avoid these pitfalls and create growth for your business.
Platforms that manage orders and inventory for eCommerce businesses are categorized by their functionality. You can choose the right platform by determining the specific needs of your business and matching them to the solutions offered by the software.
- Order management systems If you’re selling online, you must find an accurate, comprehensive way to manage your orders. With an effective order management system, you can handle orders from checkout until the customer receives the item. These systems record the real-time status of each order and the inventory for the entire business. Usually, an order management system can be integrated into your existing eCommerce platform for easy automation, but be sure to check for compatibility.
- Inventory management systems Inventory management systems differ from order management systems as their function is to monitor the quantities and locations of your products. These platforms allow you, at a glance, to see how much of each item you have on hand at each stage of the process, from raw materials to finished products. Many platforms allow you to set alerts when inventory dips too low.
The first step toward improving your order-to-cash cycle (OTC) is understanding how your business receives, processes, manages, and completes orders. By understanding how cash moves in and out of your business as you fulfill orders for customers, you can make informed decisions to optimize what’s working well and improve the aspects of your business that aren’t performing at the best level.
Keep track of the books
Cash flow management is also vital to your business, but it can be nearly impossible to forecast your company’s finances without accurate accounting. By automating your accounting with tools like real-time data analytics and reporting, you can create cash flow reports that will provide insight into your company’s financial situation now and in the future.
Automated accounting software can offer eCommerce business owners practical benefits in managing their company’s finances. With technology that combines artificial intelligence, machine learning, and robotic process automation, platforms can offer more accurate projections and a more nuanced interpretation of your business’s standing.
Integrating your accounting platform can save you even more time and optimize your back-office processes if you've already automated other aspects of your business. Automated accounting also improves the level of accuracy in your overall data-entry function, reducing the chances of error when recording and processing transactions.
Taxes are inevitable for businesses, just like everyone else, but automated accounting software can help you there too. You can track mileage, store receipts, and sales taxes. Similarly, platforms that track tax deadlines and help you budget for payments owed to the IRS also streamline your accounting.
Growing your sales starts with the processes that will help you manage them
When you’re looking to boost eCommerce sales, giving yourself an edge starts with solid back-office practices. Look for opportunities to automate, such as accounting, email marketing, and inventory and order management tasks.
Automation can increase productivity, allowing you to invest time in other areas of your business. You’ll gain insight into what’s working and where you can improve your sales. Check out these other time-saving tools to help you find more ways to make the most of your time.