Ten Great Ecommerce Ideas for September 2009

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 September 2009 installment.

Help Customers Interact With Your Site

“Invest in features that will help customers interact with your site or understand your products better. This could be product reviews, expandable interactive images, video, or chat. Watch your competition — what features are they adding?”

Brad Yeager
Certified Business Intermediary
Ecommerce Exit Strategies

Turn Shopping Cart Abandons Into Future Customers

“Never underestimate the profit opportunity that comes with undecided or ‘freebies hunting’ customers. Do your prospects want your merchandise for free? Get creative! Join forces with advertisers and other merchants around the world and use the ‘Get it for free’ model to turn shopping cart abandons into sales.”

Adriana Iordan
Web Marketing Manager

Targeted Email Can Increase ROI

“Your customers have different purchasing patterns and interests. Segmentation allows you to send targeted email campaigns to subgroups within your list based on subscribers’ behavior or demographics. Since competition for the attention of your newsletter subscribers is rising, sending relevant email is vital to a successful email marketing campaign.”

Marianne Cellucci
SEO/PPC Analyst
Net Atlantic

Use Google Alerts to Stay on Top of Your Industry

“Use Google Alerts to stay abreast on what’s happening in your industry, you’ll be surprised how much they keep your ‘finger on the pulse’ of news items that are important to you. Make sure to include keywords like your company’s name and your line of business, as well as important industry keywords and buzzwords.”

Lin Grosman
Director of Marketing and Business Development

Establish Good Inbound Links

“Links are the currency of the web. Not only do they drive traffic in their own right, but they also are essential to high search engine rankings. Without good inbound links to your web site, your search engine optimization (SEO) efforts will be limited.”

Anthony Vitro
Account Manager
Sage Tree LLC

Present Your Products in the Best Possible Way

“Image is everything and online shoppers need to come as close to touching and feeling a product as possible. You need to overcome the obstacle of customers not being able to experience your product, like they can in a retail store. Take time to present your products in the best possible way with clear and vibrant images and accurate descriptions.”

Joe McDonald
Managing Partner
Durrani Design

Customer Testimonials Add Trust

“Customer reviews and testimonials are great ways to help visitors to feel more confident in their purchase, resulting in lower shopping cart abandonment and higher overall revenue. When contemplating a purchase, peer feedback is very powerful and adds a new dimension of trust.”

Kenny Caufield
Social Media Officer
Comodo Group Inc.

Look Further Afield for Inventory Sources

“With an unrivaled manufacturing infrastructure, sourcing direct from Chinese suppliers can greatly increase profit margins for small online businesses. By using a transactional marketplace rather than a supplier directory, buyers can select and purchase small volumes at a high frequency while utilizing inbuilt security systems – mitigating risk and maximizing cost-efficiencies.”

Diane Wang

Take Advantage of Existing SEO Services

“Before contracting for any SEO services at all, be sure you are taking maximum advantage of SEO services you already possess, such as those built into your web hosting account, or those built into your shopping cart. You should be using them. Some are highly effective and will continue to build page authority and page rank for you day-by-day, every day.”

Ron Robinson
General Manager

Don’t Wait to Promote Top-rated Sellers

“Leading retailers have recognized the value of premium position and are offering it as part of their top-rated program. But why wait until October (like eBay does) to promote top-rated sellers? Offering cost-per-click bidding now to attain premium position helps advertisers/suppliers improve sales while helping you generate incremental revenue in hours.”

John Federman
Searchandise Commerce

Ankush Agarwal
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