Is your online store dazzling? Here are seven things e-commerce retailers can do to stand out

Emille-Mendoza-online-store-advice

Boracay Skin CEO and founder Emille Mendoza. Source: supplied.

Your store needs to create a dazzling experience, both online and offline, to be memorable.

The internet is full of noise and competition for customer attention, but there are ways to stand out.

Sure, your products have to be good, but it really is the small things that matter when it comes to an online store.

Here are the top seven things you can do to stand out.

1. Use real-time customisation through messages and email marketing 

Customisation with welcome messages and targeted email marketing helps your customers feel connected to your brand.

Think of how you feel when you walk into a brick-and-mortar store and you’re greeted warmly versus when the shop assistant barely looks up.

In the first scenario, you’ve had personal interaction, and you immediately feel more connected to where you are. 

You can create this online with personalised welcome messages based on demographics, geography, preferences and habits.

Although this might seem laborious in terms of data mining, it creates an instant connection with the customer and helps you to stand out in an oversaturated market. 

Customisation can also dictate your email marketing.

By looking through a customer’s profile on your email marketing platform, you can determine certain characteristics about the customer, such as how often they open our emails and which products they have viewed.

Then you can tailor specific messages to your customers based on this personalisation rather than sending bulk, generic emails to everyone.

This corresponds with increased open rates, and, therefore, greater engagement and purchases. 

2. Add unique tools to give customers value and add email addresses to your database 

Adding interactive tools on your homepage is fun for your customers and useful for growing your email list.

Options such as a ‘spin the wheel to win a discount’ work as an incentive for customers to purchase using the discount they’ve won.

The only condition of playing should be that your customers opt-in to the marketing list to claim the discount. They can choose to spin or just continue to shop. 

It may sound a bit naff, but seemingly dorky tools like this are really popular with online shoppers and genuinely help grow your database. 

3. Use customer-generated review pages 

Genuine reviews written by customers, accompanied by photos, are effective at helping new customers make purchase decisions.

Not only can a review page urge people to make purchases, but it can also act as a landing page for email marketing for a specific product campaign. 

4. Install digital assistants and chatbots 

Do you know what it’s like when you’re in a hurry in a store but can’t find what you’re looking for?

Online shoppers often feel this way, and often need guidance.

In fact, 75% of cross-channel shoppers want the same quality of customer advice provided online as they receive in-store. 

By offering digital assistants and chatbots you can gently and effectively steer customers toward their ideal purchase.

These online e-commerce tools help customers make purchase decisions without overwhelming them with too much choice. 

5. Offer different shipping options, especially during a pandemic

Massive delays in freighting and limited flights have really impacted shipping in 2020, so if you haven’t already, you’ll need to change your policies.

Explore different shipping options and offer your customers the choice so they can control delivery.

To cater to these new options, your staff may need to work different hours to ensure timely deliveries, but it’s worth it.  

6. Keep your customer updated with their delivery details 

Once your customer has bought something online, it’s important to keep them updated about their shipment’s journey.

Set up automation emails if you haven’t already. This gives your customers peace of mind and lets them know exactly where their shipment is. 

7. Create an exceptional unboxing experience 

Unboxing is one of the most popular hashtags on Instagram as it’s such a vital part of buying online products.

What is unboxing?

It’s the process of unpacking your new online goodies, which needs to be just as special for online purchases as it is for offline shopping. 

What makes an exceptional unboxing? 

Using postal packaging that reflects your brand’s mission. This can mean biodegradable packaging or a certain colour scheme. 

Add small touches such as delicate tissue paper or recyclable boxes to let your customers unwrap more layers for a fuller experience. 

Using stickers or stamps can add a hint of branding too.

Like snowflakes, no two businesses are the same, and no two customers are the same. So personalising their online and offline experiences will help make your brand memorable and keep customers coming back for more. 

NOW READ: From on-counter beans to clean isles: Three strategies for improving in-store merchandising

NOW READ: The Wine Collective bags $8.3 million, as COVID-19 drives demand for boozy e-commerce

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