Growing an E-Commerce Business is not easy in a down economy but can be easier than in other brick-n-mortar stores.
Growing an e-commerce business takes smarts and passion. There’s no denying that our economy has been drastically affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
The lockdown in many countries has forced many businesses to close down, leaving thousands with no work.
The possibility of a global recession does not seem far off it’s almost here, while some may argue that it’s already here. You are heading for a crucible moment.
Here’s the thing about a down economy and e-commerce
It’s so easy to get discouraged about the success of your online business, especially during this time of the pandemic.
But that doesn’t mean that you can’t do anything about it. There are things you can try out to help your business survive and thrive during economic downturns.
This year, we have seen a significant increase in usage for e-commerce chiefly that people want to avoid going out of their homes to buy essentials and other things to spare themselves from getting infected by the virus.
Given that the full extent of the pandemic is still uncertain, it’s not bad to prepare for a recession. In this article, we will be giving you tips on how you can use times of economic decline to your business’ advantage.
We all know we’re in tough economic times. While there’s no official “recession,” every person you know is probably watching his daily spending and cutting back wherever possible due to COVID-19.
Since money is tight, is it a good time to start an online business? You bet.
First, internet startups have low overhead and startup costs–as low as $5,000, thanks in part to inexpensive, yet robust e-commerce software and services on the market. What’s more, the business can be set up in a home office and attended to at night and on weekends, allowing new entrepreneurs to keep their day jobs.
Also, many budding entrepreneurs can set up their online businesses in less than one week.
Tips on Growing Your E-Commerce Business in a Down Economy
Focus on the highest value customers
When the market takes a low dip, try not to win over more customers by giving excessive discounts. It’s true that when things are tough, people will tend to look for more discounts.
These are the customers who are only loyal to you based on your prices. Chances are, they will jump ship once they see better deals from others. And you bet they will see more good deals in an economic downturn.
Instead, focus on delivering a seamless and exemplary experience to your best customers. This group is the piece of your audience with the highest customer lifetime value the ones you will buy from you time and time again because of an overall excellent service.
Identify this piece of your audience, then optimize and tailor-fit your website to them. This guarantees that this set of customers will be getting the best shopping experience possible.
If you have successfully delivered a fantastic experience to them, they become your loyal customers, and you will be rewarded with repeat business.
Growing an e-commerce business for most businesses in repeat loyal customers.
Blogger outreach services
Driving up sales is what grows any business. Let’s face it. It’s the revenue that will keep everything going, right? First, you need to generate more leads to drive up sales. Blogger outreach services are one way to do it.
Blogger outreach is working alongside bloggers in your niche to create genuine content/reviews to promote your products/services. Take note, that these bloggers are already talking to your community and have established trust and influence.
This is one of the most underrated methods, as many find it tedious. Still, it’s an effective method when done correctly.
How do you benefit from it?
The community will likely believe what these bloggers say about a specific product because of their expertise. Once their loyal fans visit their site and see excellent reviews about your products/services, they will more likely be checking your website.
If you are in the cosmetics industry, you might want to tap on beauty bloggers such as Lisa Eldridge and PixiWoo are well-respected in the industry.
For starters, you can contact bloggers and ask them to do a review your product. Sought-after bloggers are receiving tons of these kinds of requests from startups and even well-known brands.
Once you get the signal, you can send them samples of your products for them to try. Bloggers are very honest and genuine with their reviews. So, if they like your product, they will put out a sincere review
Search Engine Optimization
In this digital era, where almost everyone is spending more time on the internet, seize the opportunity by optimizing your website. This helps drive up traffic on your website as it improves the quality of your website to rank high in the SERP.
Why is this important?
Think of it this way: if you search for “chocolate cake ingredients” in Google, a list of results will come up.
Based on the keywords you entered, the results shown are based on what Google thinks will be the most useful information.
Most users would never look past the first page, that’s why the first page of the SERP is what every website dreams of. Mind you. Those websites didn’t get there by accident. They used SEO to help search engines understand what their contents are about.
There are many benefits to optimizing your website. If you are in the cosmetics industry and sell lipsticks, you can use high-traffic keywords relating to it. There are different SEO tools that you can use for this as well.
Furthermore, when people visit your website, you don’t want to leave right away without even checking your items, right? Instead, you want to make a lasting impression that will encourage them to return.
To optimize your website, you need an understanding of the user experience. Learn and study how your website visitors steer around your site. How often do they click on your calls to action (CTAs)? Do they sign-up for your email list?
If they do, you can contact them and offer them incentives or discounts. That should make them avail of your products/services.
You can automation your social media posts with SharpSpring’s marketing automation software, watch the video below to learn how.
If not all, most businesses have accounts on different social media like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and many more. Nothing beats advertising your products and services on these platforms as most people are already on them, and signing up is free.
Many small businesses have started on these social media sites until they have established websites of their own. One thing to remember, though, social media is kind of tricky.
Take, for example, Facebook posting here is free. However, organic reach as of 2018 is estimated to be somewhere around 1.2%. If you post something on your Facebook site, no matter how engaging or informative, people most likely won’t see and interact with it.
Drive results by paying for sponsored posts. Social media sponsored posts are what businesses pay for to reach a larger and right audience. It’s an easy way to get more relevant eyes on your post.
When you sponsor a post, it’s essential to have the right audience in mind. This is so your market will be adequately targeted. If your posts don’t reach the right audience, your efforts will be for nothing.
One factor to surviving (and even flourishing) during an economic downturn is having a clear focus on your company’s profit and sticking to it. A recession would make banks tighten their wallets. Thus, you can’t fall back on loans you’ll need to rely on your profit entirely.
You can use tools to help you determine which platforms work for you. These tools feed you data-driven optimization from multiple sources, analyze it, then give you a clear picture of where you are and what you need both in real-time.
In an economic downturn, data-driven optimization is crucial as it helps businesses operate at maximum efficiency.
You can then see which platforms are working for you and campaigns/projects that need improvement to focus your time and resources on them.
It’s best to focus the efforts on the areas that will yield the highest conversion, especially during the times when you find your business limited in resources, budgets, and workforce.
Our economy continues to take hits due to the coronavirus pandemic. The market conditions have taken a turn for the worse. And as this is happening, you need to turn your business into a high-efficient machine laser-focused your business’s spending on the segments that have the highest return.
To be successful you must have a solid marketing automation platform. Watch the video below to help launch and organize your ecommerce business. It will show you how to reduce sales and marketing operating costs while boosting sales.
This video is a high-level demonstration of HubSpot’s marketing automation software. Please think about how much marketing personnel cost. A marketing manager makes about $65,000 to $80,000 a year at the high end of our recent salary surveys.
Now, if you’re using a marketing automation tool like SharpSpring, you may be paying $50 per month which comes to about $15,000 per year for mid-market firms. The simple return on investment is over 600%. This decision should be simple.
The value of the CRM and marketing automation tool is not only decreasing your sales and marketing operating costs but giving your customers what they want in an omnichannel environment.
Focus on high-value acquisition channels
The truth is: not all channels will be useful for your e-commerce business. That’s why you need to focus your resources and time on the ones that will yield higher conversion.
Because not all marketing channels are created equal, they will have different effects on your business. Some marketing channels will yield a higher ROI than others. And during tough times, you want to put more focus on high-value channels.
Determine first, which among the channels you use have the highest ROI. For example, traffic from organic searches may yield a higher conversion rate than Google PPC ads. Instagram sponsored campaigns are generating more leads than Facebook sponsored posts.
Next, improve the overall conversion rate of your traffic coming from those channels. Also, you can shift your marketing spending to focus primarily on these high-value channels.
The good thing about focusing your spending on and optimizing the conversion rate of your highest performing channels: it tends to give you a compounding effect.
When you focus your spending on and optimize your highest performing channels’ conversion rate, it tends to have a compounding effect. Your revenue increases exponentially as you stack multiple improvements on top of each other.
It’s never too late to start a business, especially an e-commerce business
Unfortunately, not all ways to keep your e-commerce business growing despite a down economy are free.
You will have to shell out a few dollars to drive up sales. With tight financial status, spending is not bad as long as it’s for the right reasons, and a return is guaranteed!
Have something to say about your thoughts on growing your ecommerce business?