8 rules of online sales

If you're ready to launch an online store or reorganize existing store, here are eight rules are drawn from many specialist retailers and online success.

1 / Set up a solid infrastructure that saves

You do not need to hire an expert HTML, an artist, designer or an engineer to build a network for e-commerce site. The complex and somewhat expensive are now completely can be done by a few software and the selection of outsourcing (hiring external resources) related to web design and hosting, such as Microsoft's Commerce Manager.

These software packages on the market will give you so many options professionally designed templates, including the catalogs of products, the price display, automatic ordering system, drops purchase, processing system processes and inventory management and even accounting systems.

Some software customization including help from the experts about bands, web browsing, ... thereby enhancing your site.

2 / features, functionality and features

Like traditional stores always rely on the design and the convenience to attract customers, helping them quickly find what you want, the online store can not do not care elements this.

Be sure to shop online for your convenience and ease of use in so far as possible. Depending on what provider you should consider your site map (site map) to orientate the customer. Use the navigation bar at the top and bottom so users will not have to constantly scrolling web pages when you want to change pages.

It will be important to the drop-down meny (back). Do not force shoppers to rely on the "back" on their web browser. And you should always ask customers if they feel less happy or upset about something.

For example, with its Massachusetts Bay Trading Company (massbaytrading.com), an online business specializing in products made in Massachusetts, USA. Co-founder of the company is Bob Nilsson said the online store was opened in 2002, on the site there are images of the different credit cards to let customers know of the cards can be used to payment for goods sold here.

But users continually click on the images because they thought it was a certain selection of goods. "They click and wait, but nothing appears at all," Nilsson said, "Then we received many complaints about the site speed is too slow". So, Nilsson decided to build a link to these photos from the manual page for payment and customer satisfaction.

3 / Understanding the customer

Typically, customers shopping online is very different from the offline shoppers.

Do not forget to research and determine what online customers through online surveys, the team or simply call the customer.

You also need to identify the products / services will attract online shoppers and thereby rationalize how your offerings. In addition, the proposed free products, discounts or trial ... and very valuable. As with any other sales method, you must know about your customers and do not make assumptions.

4 / Maintain design principles

"When you design an online store, it's easy to fall into that desire into everything," Karen Frishman, director of marketing its Ruby Lane (rubylane.com), an e-commerce site for retailers pottery, antiques, ..., said, "All the animation or the addition of graphics on the site just makes web browsing speed of slowness. A clear design and simply better. "

And do not forget to integrate into the design of its online store the data offline marketing. Everything should be taken offline here.

5 / Make sure the appropriate content elements

You need to have the product descriptions easy to read and understand, the picture quality, the procurement guidelines and clear delivery. The online retailer regularly post information poor, they edit the content yourself or bring up the faint image, low quality. The result is creating a lack of professional image, getting the customer to conclude that their customers have accepted low. Instead, you hire professional copywriter, marketing and use of digital photographers are highly skilled. Then to determine the contents of the sale is the best place.

For example, Pinxav, a company established in 1927 specializing in producing skin cream sold to selected retailers. Owners of third-generation company (the family tree) Gregg Steiner a few years ago opened its online store (pinxav.com).

Now, online sales accounted for 10% of total revenue of the company. "The key is the mouth advertising," Steiner said. To get this reputation, he had to rely on the transmission of a lot of useful content, including advice on skin care, beauty formula, compare products .... "We teach people not only products but also a lot of valuable experience another life," Steiner said.

6 / Build trust and credibility

Constantly reassure the customer that you will be delivery and absolute protection of personal information. "The biggest mistake of the inexperienced home sales are not given enough information about who they are and how professional," Frishman said, "Our customers want to know who they are buying ".

With a negligible cost, you can register and obtain the approval label from consulting clients such as TRUSTe (www.truste.org) or Better Business Bureau Online (www.bbbonline.org ). Providing a 100% money back guarantee will alleviate concerns that customer.

7 / optimization opportunities

The direct search method is quick and most economical way to attract new customers, but only if your site must be set correctly. That means that the "meta tags" (labels) suitable and intelligent - in providing information that is put into the site to allow search engines to find you directly.

This also means that you need to understand website management system to when it needs to refresh your content, you will not lose the keywords that the search engine has recorded online. Details and online search ranking changes every day. Unless you have your own technical professionals, and to otherwise seek the assistance of other experts.

To optimize your site with search engines online, you need a specialist part-time work for you or use the online services like Microsoft's Submit It!. The selection of software and services can also statistics of visits and analyze where people click together often they leave the site you like. In addition, there are a few services and statistical analysis to Microsoft's web FastCounter Pro.

8 / Refresh, renew and refresh

"The success of the stores we shop is the most dynamic," Frishman said, "That's all online stores are always flexible update, supplement of new goods, posting the picture new and constantly changing the layout of the site for more attractive. " Never "asleep" on laurels. Please change your graphics window, change the home page, ... Please keep up to date of new products, or move the product out from the home page and vice versa.

Do not forget the rewards. Remember to give loyal customers something new or special offers such as discounts or a small gift that. You should also send out e-mail notification to customers whenever you have new products or lower prices.

In addition, you will need these other sales promotion, such as placing a link to the online store all marketing materials, advertising - from bag sales to business cards and stationery .

Finally, an important part of selling online activity today is to ensure the services and software to automate always quick to operate smoothly online store. All you need do is keep the site stable and always be the latest products


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