With the e-commerce retail sector only continuing to grow at a rapid rate, upscaling your online business in an effort to drive more traffic and conversions to your site is an important and necessary goal – however in a highly competitive and saturated market, this is often no easy feat.

That’s why today, our friends over at Land Digital are offering up 3 of their expert tips on how to successfully expand your e-commerce business, helping you realize your business’s online growth potential when paired with all the right digital know-how.

Perfect the art of upselling

Upselling has always been a proven sales technique implemented everywhere from high-street clothes stores to fast-food joints (we’re sure you’ve heard the classic ‘would you like to go large for an extra dollar?’) – but nowhere can upselling be as seamless as on online platforms.

This is because, when utilizing customer tracking software, you can evaluate your customers’ shopping habits to better inform your upsell – meaning you can offer consumers more relevant products to their original interests and needs. It’s important that you remain sensitive to the desired price range of the customer, however, as the anchor price of the original product will now be their means of comparison. As such, ensure the new product being offered to them is an objectively better fit than the original in order to rationally justify the price increase.

For example, perhaps your customer is buying a new mattress through your site. At the point of purchase, look to offer an upsell of a higher quality mattress (of the same size and within a reasonable price range) through an easily comprehensible and user-friendly format such as a pop-up. Likewise, as the customer reaches the online check-out, look to cross-sell accompanying products – in the case of our example, this could be something like a mattress cover. The trick is to effectively utilize the personalized shopping experience offered by e-commerce platforms to the advantage of your profitability at any opportunity.

Get customer service savvy

For many, the most frustrating part of online shopping can be the lack of customer service when compared to physical retail experiences. As such, look to get ahead of your competition by offering top-class customer service online – keeping customers coming back to your site time and time again.

When it comes to online customer service, it’s important to make consumers feel engaged. In a world of instant connectivity, they are no longer satisfied with waiting three working days for a template response from a ‘help @’ support team email. As such, ensure your site is equipped with an online chat tool that enables direct communication with targeted customers – whether that be to offer assistance with a purchase or to quickly and accurately answer a query regarding order status, stock and more.

In addition to this, ensure your social media pages are checked regularly to respond to any direct messages or comments regarding any issues. More and more people are using Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to directly contact brands, so ensure that you’re not only contactable on these platforms, but actively responding to messages and problems within a reasonable time window (where possible, we recommend that this should be on the same day).

By ensuring your digital customer service is up to scratch, you’re legitimizing your online brand as a trustworthy and authentic e-commerce business – ensuring its natural growth as a result.

Optimize, optimize, optimize

Of course, the most valuable tool to any e-commerce brand looking to expand is Google. When pairing the fact that Google currently accounts for a mammoth 90.1% of total search engine usage with the fact that 93% of online sessions start with a search engine, the value of ranking on page 1 of Google really speaks for itself. But how do you get there?

The short answer–optimize, optimize, optimize. Focus on both the quality of content and the quality of user experience offered by your site, ensuring it is sufficiently optimized on both desktop and mobile platforms to offer a functional, logical and seamless user journey. Moreover, research relevant keywords within your industry and target attainable terms with high search volumes, naturally integrating these into your product pages, blog posts and metadata–this is a valuable practice known as keyword optimization. The successful implementation of this strategy will see you climb up Google rankings for these search terms, subsequently improving your visibility in search and, in turn, driving more traffic to your site.

In today’s digital world, having a fundamental understanding of e-commerce operations is vital to the viable growth of your business. We hope these handy tips have helped you obtain a better understanding of how to digitally expand your business, to the eventual benefit of your profitability and subsequent longevity in this highly competitive sector.

Jon Leighton is the Director of Land Digital, a full-service digital agency providing made-to-measure marketing, design and development solutions to help businesses in the UK solve their commercial problems.

E-commerce stock photo by one photo/Shutterstock