Baseball legend Yogi Berra once said:
“Slump? I ain’t in no slump … I just ain’t hitting”
Call it whatever you want, but if you’re not getting sales (or hits) you’re in a slump. Any kind of slump is bad. And when it’s slow sales, that can be the difference between success and not paying the bills.
There are many ways sales can go horribly wrong. It’s sort of trying to make a cake without knowing the recipe. Sure, you may get it right or it may end up being the worst thing you’ve ever tasted. The same goes for sales. You plan and strategize, come up with a fabulous tagline and copy and agonize over price. And all your hard work doesn’t make a difference. Your sales are still less than spectacular.
This doesn’t mean you have to start from scratch. Rather, tweaking a few things may be enough to break your sales slump.
#1. Dig Into the Data
This may be the easiest tweak you can possibly do. You have a lot of answers sitting right inside your eCommerce analytics just waiting for you. You can easily see where you’re losing people and what marketing is driving traffic. All you need to do is to read the data.
In 56 Experts Uncover the 13 Quickest Ways to Increase Ecommerce Sales, Brita Turbyfill explains the power of data:
“Your return policy, your shipping rates, abandoned cart emails, referral programs, optimizing each pages to drive conversions… all these little things add up to more sales. Take full advantage of modern shopping features and meet consumer expectations — it will help your customers and therefore your business.”
All eCommerce platforms offer some kind of analytics. Here’s just a sample of the insightful reports available to BigCommerce users. It literally has everything you need to know at your fingertips. Just be sure you’re analyzing the data all the time – not just when you’re desperate to grow sales.
#2. Add Discounts & Coupons
If I know there’s possibly a coupon available, I’ll wait to buy something. Who doesn’t like savings?
In How to Promote a Product in 10 Different Ways, author Kristen Runvik explains:
“While offering discounts is controversial, they can work if you use them in a smart way and build them into your business strategy. If you want to build your email list because you want to share and sell your product, providing a discount code for opting in can be a great way to build your list and grow your bottom line.”
You have a few choices when it comes to coupons. You can send out discounts and coupon codes to your email list. You can also reach out to niche specific sites and ask if they are interested in a cross-promotion event. You can submit your discount to coupon websites like Groupon or RetailMeNot. Think about your overall strategy and how implementing a coupon or special discount could help you reach your sales goals.
#3. Change Your Boring Pictures
We’ve all heard that an image is worth a thousand words. And in the world of online sales, the right image can make all the difference.
Food blogging is incredibly popular and people love buying the latest recipes from their favorite cook. Let’s say you’re a foodie that creates amazing healthy snacks like hummus. Your hummus is awesome. It’s legendary. Everyone should buy your easy recipe on how to make the best hummus on the planet.
Except your recipe pics look like this:
This is a less than stellar picture of a tasty snack. And it’s probably not inspiring you to spend a few dollars to buy the recipe. On the other hand, this crazy treat is called “Winter Hummus”. It’s the kind of picture that makes you want to smell, taste and try this creation right this minute!
The right kind of product picture can make or break your sales. Sure, WalMart can sell a plain white t-shirt without a lot of fuss. But Walmart is a low-price store where no one is expecting any frills. Customers aren’t looking for anything amazing. They are only looking for a low-priced item and a plain picture doesn’t matter.
But selling from a small eCommerce site is different. You need to try to differentiate yourself from the millions of other sites out there. And having the right visuals will help you create a brand that people want to be a part of.
#4. Get Reviews & Testimonials
It’s important to create awesome content when you’re selling something from your site. It’s even more important to add the right kind of content. In fact, 85% of consumers read at least 10 reviews before buying a product.
And it’s easy to ask someone for a review. All you have to do is literally ask someone who bought your product. You can even ask trusted peers for an honest review or recommendation. But there’s more to this than simply asking.
According to Yotpo, you need to do more than just ask. In fact, it’s 33% more effective to encourage customers to write reviews on Mondays than on Saturdays. One-third of consumers is a huge number! So if you not getting the kind of reviews you want, consider not only how you ask, but when.
Breaking the Sales Slump
It’s not easy breaking out of any slump. And it’s a lot of pressure when it’s your business that you’re fighting for. Not to mention that you also have a million other responsibilities as a business owner. Sales is just one factor.
But turning your website into a thriving business means evolving as a professional. It means learning a new set of skills and taking different risks. eCommerce solutions make it very easy to sell anything from a site in only a few clicks. Add a widget on your sidebar or a plugin on a sales page – that’s the easy part. Learning how to sell is a completely different ballgame.
And learning how to break out of your sales slump is the first step.