If you review some of the top-selling e-commerce websites on the Internet today, you will see some distinct traits that explains why the website has been such a great success.
Many of these are very easy to reproduce on your own store if you know what you’re looking for. Below is a list of a few of the special traits of these top-selling stores have that you may be able to replicate on your own.
Adding additional value.
If a number of different stores are selling the same item, a customer can either be price focused, or value focused. A great way to add extra perceived value is to offer an additional add-on that is complimentary to the product itself.
For example if you are selling a skipping rope, you may be able to differentiate yourself from the rest of the pack by also offering a discounted or even free video about how to best use the skipping rope.
Another cheaper way you can do this is by offering a huge amount of pertinent information about the product itself and possibly also display real-life reviews so people can see if the product really is suitable for them. After all many people use the Internet to learn about some.
Selling Add on’s.
Have you ever purchased a product to find that it comes with so many different add on is that it becomes confusing. One of the best examples of this is how Apple markets and sells the iPad. Of course you can just buy the iPad itself or you want to get more complete experience, you can also buy keyboards, cases, screen protectors, charges or even apps. So from the first initial sale, Apple has essentially sold a number of different items as well.
Apple took this one step further by creating vendor lock in. This means that you can buy the accessories, especially apps, but they will only work on their own system and not on a competitors system.
Another example of this could be someone who sells trampolines. An additional add-on could be to also sell protective sides so that younger children can use it safely as well.
Sell complimentary items.
Similar to selling add-ons, is also stocking and selling complimentary items. A great example of this is clothing stores. A online clothing store may sell woman’s tops, skirts, shoes and all the accessories. This means a customer can effectively purchase all their clothing in the one place instead of having to go to different stores.
The only store with a certain product.
If you are the only place a person can buy an in demand product, you will be successful. Some great examples of this are people who create their own product or manufacturer one.
Lately there has been a lot of buzz around the idea of private labelling a product. This is essentially taking an existing product, creating a new name for the product and then advertising it for sale. As it is your own brand you will be the only person who is able to sell it.
Exclusivity in distribution or pricing. If you can find a manufacturer that can offer you exclusive distribution, again you will be the only store available for a person to purchase the product.
What this basically means is that if the customer wants the item, they need to buy it from you. The main problem of this method is that you need to be able to create your own advertising and demand for the product itself.
Don’t be a bargain price basement.
One way many stores try to become successful is by having the cheapest possible price. If you have great supply connections and can consistently offer a cheap price you will steal business from your more expensive competitors. This is especially true when an item is the same no matter where you buy it from. A great example of this is digital cameras and lenses.
Many customers who are going to spend thousands of dollars on a camera already know what they are after. By shopping around the could save hundreds of dollars essentially get the exact same brand of camera with exactly the same specifications.
The problem of trying to be the cheapest as that it is always a downward spiral, that generally is doomed to fail. If the only thing you can offer a customer is the best price you will eventually get caught up in a price war that will erode your customers and profits.
For example do you really think you could compete when someone else with deeper pockets comes along and offers it cheaper than you do. All you need is a large marketplace like Amazon or even Walmart to aggressively start selling the product at a discount and the share market size they have, and the discounts they receive from suppliers delete will mean you will not be able to compete.
Customer and after-care service.
In today’s day and age customer service does go a long way. Especially when you’re dealing with a technical item or something people are not completely sure about. A great way to take advantage of this is again by adding extra content to your website and possibly a question-and-answer facility that people can review before making a purchase decision.
This also goes with after sales service. It only takes one angry customer to turn off other cash in hand customers. If a customer has an issue with the goods you’ve supplied, it is normally better to fix the problem, even if it cost you a little bit of money initially, as if they have a great experience they may tell people they know to also buy from you.
Make your site easy to use.
Have you ever walked into a new shop, knowing exactly what you want to purchase but have not been able to find it? I know I have and it is very frustrating. Depending how badly you want the product and if there is another place to find it, will determine if you just simply walk out and go elsewhere.
On the Internet this is even easier to do, you have at most only a couple of seconds to attract viewers attention before the click the back button and go somewhere else. This means your site needs to load quickly, be easy to navigate, and contain what they are after.
If you can give your potential customers all the information they are searching for they will purchase from you and not somebody else.
Top tips to make your site stand out from the crowd.
- Make it easy for customers to find what they are after (easy to navigate and find/view your products)
- Make it easy for customers to buy from you (easy to add items to a cart, check out and pay for their purchase).
- Create detailed product descriptions.
- Only use high quality images that display the product clearly and if possible have more than one image.
- Have past customer reviews on your site.
- Have additional detailed information about the product i.e. installation/setup guides.
- If possible include videos reviewing the actual product, what it is and how it can be used.