I happen to meet 2 Senior Management People, who wants to create an online revolution in a product and render services in a different ecommerce strategy. (I am not revealing the name of the person, product or the company at this time.) Whereas will share an important question they asked me during the discussion. I.e. what would be the challenge in ecommerce? I thought for a while and said the below.
1. Once the customer reaches your website, what would he see in the website and would he stay in the website
2. Generally, just by visiting your website or seeing the product ad, the product and services will not sell themselves. What is the solution for the customer, for the questions “Why should he buy your product” and “how that is your product or service is different from others”.
3. If the visitor is interested in your products, what would be the trust factor? Though if the visitor of the website is potential customer, what if he does not trust your website
4. The decision to buy a product or service doesn’t last long, so what is that going to be in lined, to make the customer make and quickly buy your product or service
5. Generally customers do not like websites which are standard, so when planning to make business online, it’s also good to show the uniqueness of the website aligned that with the brand logo and color usage
6. Importantly, when you are having a ecommerce website, which involves database, financial transactions, you need be aware about the hackers. So it’s important to have website security vulnerability scanning and a proper IT Infrastructure.
There is lot more things other than the above, but still, if the above is taken care, then the other minor challenges will get solved. It also matters, how the website is hosted, and how secure is your web server. I had a refreshing discussion after such a long time.
Greater the brand visibility, greater would be the chances for your product to be retained in the customers mind, resulting in increased volume of sales. So to increase the brand visibility, it’s a must to create an excitement among your customers. Here are a few proven tips that would popularise your brand in the Market.
1. Have an attractive-speaking Website – “Attractive-Speaking Website” doesn’t mean that someone should voice in the website, it’s about the content and design of the website. The design should be attractive, with consistency in colour, and product. The content should talk about what the product is? And what does the product do? And why one should buy your product? If these 3 questions are answered, then the needful customers will get trust. Next step would be SEO (Search Engine Optimization) – which brings in your site in top of search engines when right keywords are chosen for identifying your website content.
2. Special Promotions – you can make a noise in the market, by providing variety of offers, gifts, discounts, etc during the festival season. Here you need to be careful about what to bundle with your product, to attract potential customers. This can be done by running a email campaign, online poster ads, website banners, and many more.
3. Media – Its one of the effective means of increasing brand visibility. If your budget fits in you can provide television ads or else you can go with social media, where you can create your own videos and upload, promote them. When you do these kinds of ads, you can sponsor / embed some social awareness and welfare messages.
4. Newspapers & Magazines – The most widely used means to promote your product and its brand. When it comes to newspapers and magazines, you can promote your brand by 2 ways. The no.1 would be to provide frequent news, press releases and articles to the editors and the no.2 would be to provide ads in the newspaper and magazines, both online as well as offline i.e. print media.
5. Sponsors – It’s all based on your Product. If you product is kind of enterprise then sponsor a corporate event, seminar etc. If your product is for consumers, then sponsor it for some major events like film fare, fashion show, sports, colleges, cultural programmes, social awareness programs and many more. These kinds of major events brings in lot of people in one place, which with combination of the media, newspaper, internet etc will provide you good weightage for your brand among the customers.
6. Viral Marketing – Viral Marketing is spreading the brand via buzzwords. Effective participation in social media optimization and social networking sites, will popularize your brand as well and bring in quality visitors to your website, and potential customers to your business. Promote your brand via popular websites like facebook, YouTube, google, yahoo buzz, etc which is a place where people will gather online. So effective promotion in social book marking sites will bring in success.
7. Online Forums and Communities – discuss and help your customers online by joining in forums and online communities. Create a group and share interesting topics and new product releases, upgrade etc.
8. Banners & Hoardings – these 2 again are great medium of advertising. Choose the right location if it’s going to be a physical banner/hoarding or choose the right website, to give banner ad online. An important tip here is to associate your logo, product and brand with some kind of social awareness messages to get additional exposure of your Brand.
9. Email Signatures – Whenever you or your associates send an email, use your company logo in the signature along with the website. A well organized, effective and unique color scheme will attract your customers and clients.
10. Other means of Promotions – Give your employees and customers T-Shirts, Jerkins with your logo printed, Give stickers for your employees to stick in their vehicles for parking inside the premises, make canopy of umbrella , standees, when you put some stalls on the road-side, put your logo in your office bus, give a pen with your logo embossed in it to customers / clients who trial your products, give an award, a shield which has got the logo embossed to your resellers and dealers to place it in their shops etc. There are still lot of small things which can really bring in great brand visibility, potential customer and good reputation to your business.
Now one of the biggest challenges that this age brings us is the constraint of time and of course global resource usage and its impact on the environment. Online shopping in its own way can positively impact both these problems.
There are many prejudices against online shopping on the lines of unsafe fiscal transactions, inadequate information about the product and the lack of opportunity to actually view the product. But the perks are more than evident. The time saved in travel, the effort saved in actually physically going across the shops and the possibility of getting a good review before the purchase.
Today, most successful products sold on the internet are that ones that do not require a great shopping experience, or the essentials.. Like computer parts, software etc. on the other hand people would much rather buy cloths after they wear it once, would not prefer to shop for it on the internet. But this scenario is soon to change with the invent of ways to make the shopping experience better with video, audio and other multimedia effects on the internet. It is interesting to note that there are places where people buy cars on the internet these days.
On the other hand, sectors like grocery stores etc are fast adapting to the internet revolution. It is possible in most parts of the world these days to buy products on the internet.
Like mentioned before time is a premium for everyone. Both the shopper and the seller save a lot of time when It comes to online shopping. All the host has to do is to set up a clean website and a good payment portal, the buyer come in and do their bit. On the other hand the buyer can shop at leisure with his computer where ever he wants. It’s a win-win situation.
Considering the money saved and betterment in shopping experience, online shopping is here to stay for some time to come.
Christmas Season has started, and there is a long Q in the ATM’s to withdraw money and spend it for shopping. As this is a season of Christmas shopping, most of sellers provide attractive offers both offline and online. When it comes to offline shopping, you go pick up the product pay for it and come back happily. But wonder some people in order to avoid over crowded places, start shopping online, and also gift their beloved ones with gifts that would be delivered at their door steps. But the question is how do you trust an online shopping site?
Many of the business sites who sell products using a ecommerce shopping cart with lot of attractive colours , festive offers and special discounts, but still do you thing the conversion rates are high. Do you think that they are really turning visitors into buyers? The answer would be “NO” until and unless the visitors trust that the site is a genuine one and really have got its market presence.
What should online shopping cart provider do to gain user’s trust?
Whenever, a shopping cart or any confidential details such credit card information, passwords etc are going to be taken from the website visitor, in order to gain the trust of the customer, the online shopping service provider should have an SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) Certification from any of the Certification Authorities. Eg. VeriSign, Comodo, Geotrust are leading certification authorities. Once the business is validated, the SSL certificate would be issued for the specified domain name, where the shopping cart is placed. This certification is mostly used by online banking sites, registration sites, shopping sites and other ecommerce related websites.
How will a user identify, if a site is secure and safe for shopping?
Generally websites start with the pre-text as http:// whereas when an SSL certificate is there it would begin with https://. Also a golden pad lock (lock image) would be found in the browser. When a website visitor clicks the padlock, he can see the certification details and know whether the certificate is issued to domain where the visitor is going to shop, the validity of certificate etc.
Having this point in my mind, I thought this blog post would be useful for new shopping cart builders and in the meantime would create awareness to a customer of about how to identify a secure online shopping website.
Buy a Website Security Trust Seal