Eccomerce success is a hard nut to crack and ensuring success is a long-lasting battle between the choices you are going to make and the actual stuff that works for you.
You might find yourself investing time, effort and money into the wrong technologies, without turning a profit around.
This is why it is highly important to understand and implement the right marketing features right from the start.
Here are a few essential features modern eCommerce platforms should use:
1. Personalized Emails
Long and gone are the times when a simple promotion email was sent to a huge list of people without knowing exactly their preferences and without offering a solution to their problem. Nowadays, unpersonalized emails are basically spam.
You need to analyze your user's interaction with your website, understand their needs and look at their past transactions to figure out what to put into the emails you are sending them.
Of course, automation is the key element here; you won't be able to do it by hand, especially when you have a lot of data to analyze and a lot of different users with highly specific buying patterns.
Trigger emails for people that put products in the cart and then decided to abandon it, make them a special offer and try getting them back. The primary purpose of email marketing should convert more of your current website users.
Tools that can help you with all of this: Constant Contact, InfusionSoft, HubSpot and of course MailChimp.
2. Reviews systems
It astonishes me that is almost 2018, and there are still a huge amount of online shops out there without a review system!
Reviews are vital for any eCommerce based websites. Studies after studies show that people trust other people and overall trust online reviews.
Give buyers the possibility to review your products! Having reviews will increase the conversion rate and will generate more organic traffic because Google loves content coming from reviews and loves reviews in general, its a sign of democracy and popularity.
3. Google Analytics might not be enough
Using Google Analytics at the moment? Good. This is an excellent analytics tool, but for eCommerce success, this might not be enough. I suggest you start looking for an additional tool that provides more rich analytics and audience insights than your standard GA.
Such an example might be Magento's business intelligence with analytics features capable of GA integration as well as providing the kind of metrics that you only dream about, stuff like the average number of products a user buys per order, how long does a user stays around a customer (lifetime) and other similar performance metrics.
Having a blog is essential for any modern online shop. This should be an extra way to attract visitors to your shop.
Having an integrated blog without the need for a second management system might be even better.
A blog can help drive the kind of organic traffic your product pages and listing pages can't. Make sure you exploit this option to it fullest, ensuring additional customers.
5. Discount Codes
Having a discount code feature will help you convert those users that need that extra intent to make the purchase. It is a key element of any modern online promotion.
Studies have shown that discount codes had convinced over 80% of new customers to try a specific product.
I personally used this feature here in SC with a lot of success. Being able to add a discount feature for every user on every service offered here was a stroke of genius from the SC staff part.
6. Live chat feature
Have you ever used a live chat feature on any type of eCommerce website? Me neither.
But that doesn't mean that other people have the same opinion.
I've seen live chats in action on websites I thought such a feature was useless. You will e surprised how many clients need guidance on their conversion path.
With live chats, you will also get a huge chance to improve your site user experience. Why? Because the people that use the live chat usually have a problem. You can figure out where they got stuck and improved the user experience in such a way that features users won't ask the same question.
It's a win-win situation. On the one hand, you are converting users that otherwise had just left, and on the other, you are fixing website problems you never thought off.