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4 Growth Hacks for Your Ecommerce Startup

Growth Hacks for Your ECommerce Startup

Growing an eCommerce business is difficult. Unless you are offering a product that is proprietary, you might be facing stiff competition from not only other merchants like yourself, but also from others selling on Amazon.

An inevitable consequence of this is a price war and low margins to work with. As a result, Ecommerce is oftentimes a volume game. The trick to survive is to scale your business up to attract more customers.

Find an angle on social media

Some categories, like auto spare parts or industrial machinery, may not be suited for social media. But for most consumer-end products, social media is a fantastic tool to get your target audience interested in your business.

There are two ways to make use of social media to hack your growth. The first is through coupons. Coupon marketing is a tried and tested way to increase your likes and shares which brings virality to your business.

It should, however, be pointed out that coupons appeal to the price-conscious user base which is also fickle. It is very unlikely for this audience to stick around when you stop offering coupons in order to turn a profit.

You should instead be working on branding. Sharing your product photos may not alone be enough to create a brand. Businesses that are successful on tools like Instagram weave a theme around their posts.

For instance, if you are an online store for ‘healthy cupcakes,’ you could work around topics like ‘how many hours of walking does one need to burn one slice of cake.’ Such a theme can not only go viral, but also aligns with the theme of your website.

Social media is perhaps one of the best growth hacking tools to scale up your visitors.

Follow the 10% rule

Growth hacking does not always require rapid scaling up of your traffic and business. When it comes to eCommerce, rapid scaling can actually be detrimental to your business since this would require an increase in warehousing costs, procurement and other inventory related expenses.

In her article on the Shopify blog, marketing expert Jacqueline Biggs recommends the 10% strategy. Put simply, the idea revolves around identifying the metrics that move the needle and then building strategies to grow them 10% at a time.

She points out that increasing your traffic numbers or conversion rate independently by ten percent may not seem like a great deal, but the improvements can bring about compounded growth which can be terrific for your eCommerce business.

Exit-intent pop up

Increasing conversion rates is a challenge that eCommerce store owners grapple with all the time. One of the quickest ways to achieve this is with the help of exit-intent pop ups. These are pop-ups that show up on the checkout page only when the customer intends to exit the page (by moving their cursor towards the close button or the back button).

By offering an irresistible offer to visitors who may have exited otherwise, you drive an increase in conversion rates.

Buying cycle driven email marketing

Different products have unique buying cycles. For instance, a consumer may buy a toothbrush once every three months while they may order a takeaway twice a week. Products like chocolates, on the other hand, are impulsive products and are most likely to be bought when the customer ‘craves’ them the most.

You must set up an email marketing campaign that coincides with the unique buying cycle of your customer. That means sending in a mail to your toothbrush buyer three months after they made a purchase. As for impulsive purchases, you could look at the time of the day or week when the consumer is most likely to be impulsive.

You may also time your mails to coincide with the ‘salary day’ so that customers who are impulsive buy your products when they have money in their wallets.

Do you have other growth hacks that an online store owner could use for their business? Share them in the comments below.

Published: September 27, 2017
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