Practical Ecommerce

Ten Great Ecommerce Ideas for July 2011

Practical eCommerce asks industry insiders each month to share a great, innovative idea that could help an ecommerce company. Here’s what ten of them had to say for the July 2011 installment of “Ten Great Ecommerce Ideas.”

Develop an Ongoing Site Review Process

“Develop an ongoing approach to improving your website with a concentration on closing sales. We found that the best way to improve close ratio is to have a site review process, which determines what improvements will have the greatest impact on your website’s ability to close sales. Then monitor your changes and keep improving.”

David Sasson
President and CEO
OverstockArt.com

Build Your Brand with Q & A Section

“If you’re an expert on the products you sell, start proving it with a question and answer section on your website. Solicit visitors to send you questions and post the answers online. It’s great for building your brand, and the search engines love user-generated content. Plus, the big box guys don’t have the manpower or knowledge to offer this kind of personalized service. Use it to your advantage.”

Jamie Salvatori
Owner
Vat19.com

Customers Don’t Care About Cool Graphics

“Keep your site neat, clean and straightforward. Too many times site owners do things because they can or just because it looks cool, but have no benefit to the customer. Customers generally come to your site to get information and hopefully to buy. They don’t care about a lot of cool graphics, Flash or sound on your site. Online shoppers overwhelmingly prefer a professional looking site with easy navigation.”

Tim Burns
Owner
MinnesotaWorkwear

Free Comparison Search Engines

“You don’t have to spend money to advertise your products online. Google Shopping, Bing Shopping, and TheFind offer merchants the ability to advertise their products to a significant user base without having to pay per click. An additional benefit of using these services is the SEO boost merchants get from using them.”

Carlos D. Rivera
Web Administrator
Haddrell’s Point

Disseminate Reviews Across All Marketing Channels

“Capture unstructured, user-generated content in your content management platform and disseminate customers’ reviews about your products across all channels. This will allow your customers to access product reviews whether they visit your site to make a purchase, use their mobile devices to conduct research, or contact your customer service center with a question.”

Carsten Thoma
President
hybris U.S.

Cultivate Existing Email List

“Keep developing and cultivating your existing customer email list. It’s always easier and cheaper to sell to existing customers rather than finding new ones.”

Luis Hernandez, Jr.
Owner
The Motor Bookstore

Develop Ebooks and How-to Guides for Link Bait

“Create link bait by developing ebooks and how-to guides. If the content is original, useful, and interesting, the ebook will be downloaded and passed around, generating a lot of residual interest in your company. The key is to produce amazing content, not another sales pitch.”

Mike Eckler
Owner
eCommerceAngles.com

Concentrate on Lesser Performing Pages

“Scrutinize your analytics reports for pages that bring in just a trickle of visitors. Compare them to pages that bring in more traffic, and strategize on how you could turn those lesser performing pages into a torrent of visitors.”

Richard Potvin
CEO
WholesaleAce

Feature Contact Information on Checkout Page

“Make sure your company’s customer service phone number is prominently listed on your checkout page. The last thing you want is a potential customer to leave your site right before they are about to buy an item because they have a minor issue and get frustrated with no way to contact you.”

Randall Davidson
Lead Project Manager
Audio Transcription

Expand Globally

“Are you still only selling your products in the U.S.? Partner with a shipment forwarding company that will ship your orders safely anywhere in the world. Companies such as BongoUS, MyUs, and International Checkout will protect merchants from fraudulent international orders and will help you sell your products to a wider customer base.”

Shai Atanelov
CEO and Founder
Bigtime Wireless

Got a great ecommerce idea you’d like to share? Email Kate Monteith at kate@practicalecommerce.com.

Kate Monteith

Kate Monteith

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