Making errors is sometimes unavoidable, but in ecommerce, mistakes can cost you a lot of money. Be smart with how you manage your business to make sure you aren’t wasting money. These six points should help you manage your ecommerce venture in a more streamlined and agile way.
Lazy SEO management
Don’t get lazy with SEO – it will cost you. Stay on top of your store’s SEO in order to maximise profits and grow.
- Keep up with your keyword research every time you add a new product. Keep refining your use of keywords based on user and search engine feedback.
- Technical SEO is really key for a smooth user-experience. Good SEO is about good UX (User Experience).
- Don’t invest in dodgy or cheap SEO – this will only be detrimental to your business in the long run.
- Take ownership of your SEO, or get a good supplier. Here is some information about link building you should keep in mind when vetting potential SEO suppliers
Throwing money after bad content
There are many content experts out there, but who can you trust?
- Don’t fall into the trap of paying out for expensive content consultants and freelance writers without a coherent strategy.
- For your content to work you need to have a joined-up strategy. This means integrating customer insights, sales data and keyword research into your a channel content plan. Not only will this help you plan, it will help you save money by squeezing more value out of every bit of content.
- To up your content value embrace the inbound sales methodology and create content that focuses on raising customer awareness.
- Factor in seasonality and invest more heavily in content around key tentpole dates when you’re likely to see a bigger ROI.
Bad channel management
Retailers and merchants need to embrace omnichannel and multichannel selling in order to succeed in today’s cut-throat retail world.
Customers are looking for joined up experiences – not confusing and contradictory branding and messaging.
- Leaving one channel to decay and fall behind the others in the innovation stakes is very dangerous. Make sure all channels are working in harmony with each other.
- Data will be integral to managing a good retail business that spans across different channels and platforms.
Not prioritising social proof
Social proof is really important for building customer relationships. This is where you get to build a brand culture and community into your store – massively upping your potential for growth.
- Getting great reviews and testimonials can take time, but you can try to make the process more fun through gamification and incentives. Always make leaving reviews super easy. (Here are some other gamification strategies you might want to consider).
- You will need to plan a response strategy for reviews. What happens when you get a five-star review? Do you say thank you? What about a negative one? What is your response rate? Don’t forget that there is a real person and a story behind every review.
- Integrate social media into the sales process by getting people to share purchases on social media. Asos have a great example of this: they get people to use the #AsSeenOnMe hashtag, uploading the best outfits to their website.
Ecommerce is dangerous when upfront costs aren’t managed properly. Sales can take a while to build up and cash flow management can become a huge issue.
- Don’t over-order stock. Have an agile stock management system and never stockpile.
- Don’t obsess over getting everything absolutely perfect from day one. Holding up your store launch because you are obsessing over the correct usage of a drop shadow doesn’t really make sense. This kind of micromanaging attitude creates a bottleneck of expensive costs and delays.
Not analysing data effectively
Data is what drives retail – take charge of your own. Don’t be afraid to open that dashboard: you need to learn from data – both good and bad.
- Better customer engagement and retention will only come through parsing data correctly.
- Don’t pay for an expensive data management tool and then just let it sit there – collecting data on its own. You need to actually process the data and act accordingly. Re-optimise poorly performing pages, add more call to actions to a bottleneck page and create more landing pages for better SEO results.
No one likes to make expensive errors, but they happen to the best of us. It’s a really good idea to invest in money management resources (books, online courses etc.). What do you think is most expensive mistake you’ve ever made and why?