It’s no mistake that Amazon has become a household name. Just today, I was at my local hardware store shopping for a new showerhead when a man turned to me and said, “you can buy these cheaper on Amazon.” And, sure enough, I can. In 1994, when Jeff Bezos started creating his plan for what would eventually become a game-changing company, this is exactly what he had in mind.
The name itself is exotic and put Bezos, Amazon’s founder, in mind of the largest river in the world – a perfect metaphor for what this company has become. Each move the company makes is calculated. In 2016, Amazon had $136 billion in Net sales and was the most popular store in the United States. Apply these tactics, inspired by the ultimate eCommerce authority, to power your online store.
Your Business Model Should Be Customer-Centric
Amazon didn’t get where they are by focusing solely on their products. They have taken a customer-centered approach by monitoring shopper behavior and creating a model that appeals to them. Set up a customer behavior monitoring and reporting system to watch for trends and shift your processes and tactics to suit your shoppers.
Using a marketing automation platform, integrated with intelligent analytics, you can find out so much valuable information about your shoppers and their browsing and spending habits. Top companies are 67% more likely to use a marketing automation system. A platform like Boomtrain will provide you with advanced insights to stay organized effortlessly.
Here are the benefits of using a marketing automation platform:
- Omnichannel email, push, onsite, in-app, and messenger automation.
- Dynamic activity, behavior, and interest smart triggers and segmentation.
- AI-powered content personalization, product recommendation, and messaging.
- Unified customer and content insights.
- State-of-the-art performance analytics
When you know what your customers are doing, you have a better idea how to appeal to them at every stage of their purchase journey.
Shipping Plays a Major Role in Conversion
Amazon Prime is a program that allows members to receive their purchased items in as little as two days for free. A membership costs $99 per year, and includes other perks like free and reduced price digital downloads. Why did Amazon decide to highlight “free,” two-day shipping as the central benefit of their membership program?
Screenshot sourced from Amazon.com
The wise company made this choice because shipping plays a huge role in eCommerce conversion. 80% of online shoppers consider shipping cost and speed when making a purchase decision. Any sized retailer can duplicate these results.
Of course, if you can offer free shipping, that’s the best way to ensure optimal conversion rates. You need to look at all areas of your fulfillment process to see where you can save to make up for what you lose on your lack of shipping and handling prices. What are some efficient ways to do cut your costs?
- When possible, automate any processes that you’re currently paying someone to do manually.
- Examine your packaging and packing materials for areas where you can save.
- Negotiate contract deals with your carrier(s).
- Make sure you’re using the right warehouse and look at ways to cut storage and handling costs.
- Make sure you’re not spending too much on your content management system or eCommerce platform.
Free shipping is a fail-proof way to optimize sales conversion rates for your online store.
Customers Appreciate Tracking Updates
Amazon is just one of many online retailers that offer a branded tracking experience (not just a link to the UPS or FedEx tracking page). This is a pivotal part of the buying experience because it gives shoppers a sense of control over their purchase.
Before ordering from you, a buyer has no way of knowing what the waiting and delivery experience will be like. But, once you’ve wowed someone with access to view their package at every step of the fulfillment process, they’re more likely to purchase from you again. So, give your customers access to their purchases from your website and send automated push-notifications via email or text message.
Screenshot sourced from Amazon.com
The easiest way to create a branded package tracking experience is through the use of a modern transportation management system (TMS). Companies like Shiphawk combine shipment tracking software with their TMS to keep track of all orders while automating much of the tracking process.
Here are some of the benefits of using a TMS with advanced shipment tracking software:
- Branded shipment tracking.
- Easy integration with major carriers (FedEx, UPS, USPS, DHL, and more).
- Automatic push requests for updated information from warehouses and carriers.
Inventory Management Should Be Automated
In the United States alone, Amazon sells over 480 million products with up to 485,000 added daily. But, it doesn’t matter if you’re selling just 200 products; you need to know whether or not an item is in stock and be able to deliver real-time information to your customers. Ordering a product only to find out it was actually unavailable is going to send online shoppers packing. Once they’re gone, they may never return.
To keep track of your stock, find a way to automate. Especially if you sell on your own website as well as Amazon, eBay, offline, or another channel, you need to share information between systems so you always have a clear view of inventory. Shopify has a ton of labor-saving inventory management software to streamline the process for those working in their platform and across others. By leveraging one of these tools, you will spend less time struggling to know what’s available for purchase at any given time.
Automate your marketing. Lower and eliminate your shipping prices. Use a TMS that integrates shipment tracking software. Leverage inventory management tools. All of these tips will save you time and money while optimizing the customer experience of your brand. Follow this advice and watch your eCommerce success soar.