3 Tips to Increase Online Sales Without Spending a Fortune on Marketing
Any small business working with a limited budget or staff knows the challenges that come with gaining traffic, traction and sales. Unlike retail giants that can drop millions on advertising and marketing initiatives, smaller e-tailers need to be crafty and use inexpensive (or even free) tools to connect with consumers. Here are three tips on how to accomplish that:
1. Establish a presence in other marketplaces. Setting up shop in marketplaces such as Amazon.com and eBay can increase visibility and sales.
"Some customers prefer marketplaces like eBay," says Mai Wong, founder of home and giftware store Carrot Tomato. In addition to selling through a Shopify storefront, the retailer also has a number of accounts on eBay, where it markets and sells its merchandise. This, according to Wong, generates additional sales, and since they enclose Carrot Tomato's business card in each order shipment, it also helps drive traffic to the company's Shopify store.
Selling through other online marketplaces can certainly help increase sales, but it also comes with some challenges. Staying on top of sales, customers and inventory from multiple channels can get confusing and eat up your time, so see to it that you've figured out a system to efficiently sync data across all storefronts. Consider using multichannel selling tools such as Bizelo or Stitch, which enable you to manage orders and inventory from one program.
2. Don't neglect social channels. In addition to using online marketplaces, make sure you're taking advantage of social channels as well. Wong says that updating Carrot Tomato's social accounts has helped increase sales. Furthermore, many of its customers end up placing orders after reading about Carrot Tomato's latest offers or new products on Facebook.
Emma Paisey, owner of Daisy Park, a retailer of gifts, furniture and accessories, does the same thing with her business and urges other retailers to up their social media strategies. "Utilize all available social media for your marketing. It's free … well, apart from your time. There are some fantastic platforms available and also some great tools to join these platforms together, making it less work for you," Paisey says.