The race is on! Now that you have launched an eCommerce website, it's time to reach the next milestone – 100 customers.
Customer acquisition is a challenge for many new online sellers. You have to get visitors to your website and convert casual browsers into loyal customers without any personal contact. Everything from the design of your website to its functionality can influence shoppers.
Here are a few things you can do right away to reach your first 100 customers and then set your next goal of 1,000 customers!
1. Make an Offer They Can't Refuse
Shoppers love a good deal. From a sale to low prices on in-demand items to coupons, a compelling offer can convert an undecided shopper into a customer. In fact, a coupon can entice shoppers to take immediate action. Upward of 60 percent of online shoppers look for coupons before making a purchase.
To get a few coupons in circulation, offer codes to potential customers on social media or via email. Connect with a few bloggers to review your product and offer a code to their readers.
Not only can the coupon help users commit to purchase, it can also drive new traffic to your website.
Get started: The Business Plan includes a coupon maker that lets you create different types of coupons. They are easy to build and can be used for practically anything in your online shop.
2. Build an Email List
An email list is one of the best ways to directly target and communicate with potential customers. Include an email form on your website to encourage shoppers to sign up for notification of special promotions and offers. Then make sure to follow up later with a featured product or coupon code.
Remember, the more times a potential customer interacts with your product or brand, the more likely they are to eventually make a purchase.
Get started: The Newsletter Signup Form is easy to drag and drop into your site so your audience can opt-in without ever leaving the page. With Weebly Promote, you can also sync newsletter signups with your contacts.
3. Offer Custom Gift Cards
A gift card can help existing customers recruit new business for you. Gift cards generate new sales, allow you to compete with larger retailers, shift sales to slower seasons and drive return visits.
Plus, a custom gift card makes the recipient feel special and even encourages shopping right away. Buyers can pick the denomination and even include personalized messages with their gift cards.
Get started: The Performance Plan allows you to create gift card products that are ready to use and integrated directly into the Editor.
4. Leverage the Power of Social Media
Social media is a strong driver when it comes to gaining new customers and generating demand for your products. Share compelling images of your items on social channels such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and encourage customers to share images as well. This social proof helps shoppers on the fence make the leap to buying.
In order to be successful, social media content can't look like a pure sales tactic. It should be driven by real people using the product in a real way. Keep the messaging simple–don't include a price or selling info–and remember to link back to your eCommerce store in the profile. Social media posts that look too much like ads will not be as effective as posts that seem organic and authentic.
Get started: Include links to social media accounts to your online store in the Weebly dashboard. In addition, make sure that social media profiles match the online look, feel and voice of your online shop so that shoppers know exactly who you are.
5. Advertise for Free
New businesses often have limited budgets, so free advertising can help get the word out. From coupons to online ads to content marketing, there are a number of ways you can promote your product and drive users to your online shop.
Some of the most popular options include linking from other retailers or sharing online coupons, claiming your location on online maps, getting reviews from review sites or bloggers and content marketing on social media and video channels. You might also consider sending a press release about your business to local media. Don't forget to send emails about your business to your full distribution list.
Get started: Make a list of all the places you can advertise and work through items one at a time. Pick one or two things to focus on each week, so that your online ad presence builds over time.
6. Follow Up with Leads
Most shopping carts are abandoned at the payment stage, and those purchases frequently end when customers are asked to enter shipping, delivery and payment information. Does this happen on your eCommerce website?
Dive into your analytics to see where the shopping experience breaks down and follow up on missed sales. Ask questions of shoppers who don't complete the checkout process. (You might find that it has nothing to do with the product and could be because of a checkout form that's too complicated.)
Get started: Send an email to remind customers if they have items left behind in the cart or ask how you could have improved the shopping experience. Weebly tools can even help you automate the process!
7. Grow Repeat Customers
Did you know that 40 percent of an online store's sales come from repeat customers? That makes your first 100 customers among the most valuable.
The best way to keep customers is to provide excellent support, service and value after the sale. Follow up with a thank you, confirmation of purchase and tracking number. Then make sure that your products are delivered in good condition and quickly after the sale–shoppers are growing accustomed to two-day delivery. And if problems pop up, follow up with customers and resolve issues right away.
Get started: Provide a contact form on your website that lets users get in touch with you quickly, or consider a tool such as online chat to solve customer issues in real-time. Both tools are part of your Weebly account.
While getting the first 100 customers might seem like a tall order, you can do it with a little planning and patience. Think about the things that make you a repeat customer of other businesses and employ those tactics for your store. Always focus on good customer service and ongoing outreach. With these strategies, you'll see your business attract new customers and continue to grow.