9 Powerful Ways to Increase E-commerce Traffic and Drive Your Online Sales 5 Times

increase ecommerce traffic drive sales

Sparse website traffic is undoubtedly one of the biggest problems people face when managing an online store.

According to the Smartinsights report, the average conversion rate for the 100 largest online stores is 2.8 percent, i.e., less than three out of every 100 visitors turn into customers.

Let’s do a quick calculation: the average cost per click (CPC) on Facebook Ads in all industries is $1.72. Let’s assume that you can launch an ad so efficient that your CPC will be cut to $1 and generate 100 visitors at the cost of $100. With an average conversion rate of 2.8 percent, you can pay $35.71 to buy one paying customer.

Rather high, isn’t it?

For those who start small, getting traffic for (cough) free is crucial.

Let’s have a look at the most effective yet free or at least inexpensive strategies to increase traffic to your online store.

Some of the tips focus on specific strategies that you can apply, while others are more general ones to inspire your thinking.

In this article, we’ll look at 9 of these strategies, so whether you’re selling physical goods or doing a service-driven business, here are some strategies to increase your e-commerce traffic and online sales.

1. Use Referral Marketing and Social Proof

If you don’t yet have a referral program – consider starting one either as a self-hosted program or joining platform like CJ Affiliate. See how Click Funnel is doing it here.

92 percent of consumers trust the product suggestions of their colleagues, and 70 percent trust the endorsements of entirely unfamiliar people.

It doesn’t have to be complicated, though.

Include an easy way for customers to see reviews and recommend your brand to others. A client received from a referral has a higher lifetime value than other clients.

Social evidence is exactly what it sounds like. Here is my favorite example:

social proof

Another type of referral marketing is the influence model.

Recently, thanks to the growing popularity of social networks such as Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter, the term “outreach” has become a popular term for sales strategies.

Before the era of social media, bloggers and YouTubers were the two main types of influential people in most industries.

How can you, as a beginner in your niche market, take advantage of this social movement to increase your online e-commerce traffic? Ask influential people to present your products on their network.

Before you look for influential people, you need to determine what type of people would be the most ideal and prominent, and whose followers are your target market.

  • Start by asking some of your customers directly, whom they follow to get their inspiration from.
  • I also love Google Reddit threads with something like “site:reddit.com best marketing blogs.
  • There are also existing databases of influencers like Buzzsumo.

That will give you an idea of some keywords to search for in Google and social hashtags.

Once you have a list of influencers, here are a few door openers to start with:

  • Send them free samples in exchange for an H O N E S T review
  • Create and offer them an exclusive discount for their followers
  • Incentivize them by offering them to become affiliates (i.e., they get a profit share from every referred client).

2. Upsell to Current Customers

Many small e-commerce stores ignore one of the most affordable ways to sell: upselling.

Getting a new customer is always much more expensive than increasing sales to your current customer base.

It may sound like not much right at the beginning, but it does add up, especially when you implement some automation with all those follow-up emails like “it’s been a while… we miss you.”

3. Go to Amazon

There are many ways to become an Amazon partner and start selling on Amazon.

First, find out if your product is among the best selling categories.

How do you come out top over thousands of other e-commerce sellers on Amazon?

If the price of your product is not competitive, buyers would instead buy it from your competitors (duh).

Instead of apparent advice like “get a better supplier to reduce costs” I’ll give you a bit more original one 🙂

Try Amazon repricer software.

Start by setting your prices manually to get a better understanding of the online market. Most online retailers start with selecting higher costs and lower prices to find out how customers react. Once you find the optimal price range, Amazon’s repricing software will help you stay competitive in this harsh online retail industry.

There are several repricing programs on the market. Each has its unique features. Besides, repricing methods generally differ between different platforms. To choose the one that’s best suited for your business, use free trial versions and demonstrations to learn more about the software.

Of course, trying the software and talking to the support team should make it easier for you to make a decision.

Initially, entering all your products into the repricing software can be risky for your e-commerce business. If something goes wrong, there is a risk that you will sell your products at the incorrect price.

Amazon sellers typically try repricing software for a small part of their inventory before using the software across their whole product range.

So, by starting small, you can minimize the chance of repricing errors and make better pricing decisions.

4. Watch Your Site’s Speed

What is the speed of your website? Have you measured it recently?

Research shows that the page load speed of more than 3 seconds costs almost half of your potential visitors. And, unfortunately, you are unlikely to get them back after they leave. Most visitors who are unhappy with the download time of the site will never revisit it.

In December 2019, Google added page speed report to their Google Search Console, so I highly recommend using that, but of course, there are numerous other tools like webpagetest.org, Pingdom, etc.

site speed

5. Become an SEO Guru

We all know that SEO is essential (if you don’t, check out this Promozseo’s SEO course), and yet sometimes we let it “happen” instead of giving it the attention it deserves.

SEO is a prerequisite for attracting a long-term source of targeted traffic to your e-commerce site. Sooner or later, it would help if you looked to SEO as a sustainable tactic.

So, why don’t you create a blog from the start and gradually create content that lasts longer? This tactic is especially useful when you start working with a small budget, rather than investing in paid channels such as advertising.

Most of the web traffic comes from Google’s first page. It would be best if you were on the first page. Pay attention to the product keywords you should use. Use a tool such as Google Keyword Planner to find out and analyze key phrases that are relevant to your brand, its products or services, and start using them contextually on our e-commerce pages.

Then you do on-page SEO, spice it with link building, and (cough) that’s it, you might be there.

6. Develop Email Marketing Campaigns

By focusing on getting new traffic to your e-commerce website, you usually forget about old visitors who leave without buying. 97 out of 100 visitors leave your site without purchasing anything.

Imagine how many sales you can lose from these sliding visitors?

The best strategy to get your traffic back to your online e-commerce store is to target existing or ‘almost’ customers with either retargeting or email marketing.

The key is to receive their emails before they leave.

In addition to registration, a static sidebar, or a header banner requesting a customer subscription, you can also use an interactive pop-up window to collect the customer’s email to send personalized email campaigns later.

How can you automatically send personalized messages to hundreds of visitors per day?

email marketing

Email marketing platforms like Mailchimp or GetResponse are able to monitor each customer’s actions. For example, when a customer adds the product to the shopping cart but doesn’t make a purchase, you can organize an abandoned basket campaign that will remind them of items waiting in the cart.

Check out this guide on how to create an effective email campaign.

Now that you have collected a database of customer-emails in one way or another, you are diligently making a comprehensive list of subscribers, getting the consent of all its members.

Now, what are you doing with it? You could try to test the waters with promotional emails.

Promotional emails increase loyalty and make customers come back for more. You allow your “best customers” to participate in something special before anyone else does.

7. Host a Contest on Social Media or Incentivize Customers

To increase your online store’s attendance during the early stages of your business, you should consider an activation campaign that can create a viral effect.

It might be worth trying a contest or giveaways that can increase your e-commerce traffic. The rules for giveaways vary, but usually require people to follow the brand account, refer their friends, or perform some other ‘engagement’ action.

Nowadays, we are well equipped with social media, video, and live broadcasting tools to turn our creative ideas into a viral message.

When implemented in the right way, it creates a massive viral involvement and leads to much traffic to your online store. When your social account is new – consider getting a niche relevant influential person on board who will be conducting giveaways or competitions for you.

influencer marketing

When your account grows and has a decent number of subscribers, you can run the event yourself to attract more traffic to your online e-commerce store.

8. Get Featured on Relevant Blogs

Buying ads on blogs is one way to put your brand in front of the right people. However, a much more powerful way to draw attention to your work is to have bloggers who support you.

You should not wait for influential bloggers to “find” you, you should instead look for them and get to know them. There are ways to do it.

The wrong way is to send them your life story, ask for a favor, or oppress them.

The right way is to send them a short, simple “greeting” that will introduce them to your brand… and get the ball rolling.

Remember that these people get approached all the time, so make it easy and comfortable for them! Be concise, be prepared, and remember to include a few low-resolution photos of your work so that they can quickly see if it works with their audience.

Please do your research, discover new opportunities, and make it personal!

Use their own name, know what they are looking for, and only reach out to them who you think will like what you are doing and creating. They do their jobs like you, and their job is to find fantastic content and products (and get their buck for doing that).

If your target market usually finds information on popular websites or blogs, you can direct traffic from these websites or blogs to your e-commerce store by posting guest content.

Guest posts typically appear as normal, but the source of reference information is the author, as well as a link to your site.

If your content provides valuable information, with appropriate backlinks added, which interest readers, they will follow it and become part of your traffic.

9. Join Facebook Groups Where Your Niche Hangs Around

Today is the age when the whole world is hanging out on Facebook. They join groups, follow pages, react, comment, and respond.

Be active on Facebook to reach your target customers and, thus, being able to sell effectively on Facebook.

One of the easiest ways includes joining Facebook groups, where your customers join in and discuss their common interests, as well as seek advice and suggestions. You can act as a brand ambassador to promote your product, coupons, or promotions.

Alternatively, you can behave like a regular user who has already become familiar with the products and introduced them to the group. Your main goal is to create a community around your brand or product.

To Sum It Up

Please don’t turn a blind eye to these ideas; you can use them to increase your online e-commerce traffic, but keep in mind that there is no one-size-fits-all solution.

Remember that no one can tell if a given strategy works for your particular business until you give it a try.

The result mainly depends on both your execution and the nature of your niche. Understanding your customers and having flexibility when executing strategies that resonate with them is crucial to achieving positive results.

Lastly remember, none of these strategies is easy to boost e-commerce sales and make more money online. Your e-commerce sales growth and success depend on your planning, execution, testing, and iteration of these three, time and again until you find that golden formula which will multiply your e-commerce traffic by several-fold, and upswing its sales and conversions.

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