There are a billion blogs and a ton of content available on the web. So how do you stand out?
Don’t rely on SEO or social media anymore- SEO takes longer to get rankings, and it’s still super effective. You just have to be patient and play the long game of social media, they’re continually cramping down on how much reach you get unless you spend money on ads. One strategy that you should be leveraging that’s super effective is push notifications. You can use it through tools like subscribers. Use messenger bots, email marketing remarketing, and even repurpose your content and leverage that same piece into audio form, video form, or vice versa. So if you don’t rely on SEO and social media, and you leverage some of these strategies, you’ll notice that your content will start getting more views. And indirectly, it will also start doing better on the social web and through SEO.
Start translating your content-You no longer can just focus on English. This is because the majority of the people in this world don’t speak English. They also don’t search on Google in English. They use all the other languages. What needs to be understood is that people’s biggest traffic gains came from translations.
Spend more time updating your content than creating new content- If you look at what’s led to big traffic gains for companies who are leveraging content marketing, a lot of it is updating all content. It’s more than blogging. Understanding the relationship between your targeted keywords, content created and user intent is vital for SEO. It is important to showcase topic expertise and knowledge through factual and useful content to be relevant for search engines, and hence, users. Search engines reward sites with unique and quality images as younger users seek authentic material that relates to their everyday lives and evokes emotions. Faster loading websites and mobile-friendly designs have become a must as search engines want to give their users a satisfying experience. Automation in SEO contributes to the maximization of business productivity and it makes sure that you get the best possible service for your money’s worth.
Creation of personalized, humanized content- Content marketers with very clear and intimate knowledge of their target audience will continue to stand out. Here they become the original thinkers, creative writers and experimenters. They also become the people with adequate skills to attract the attention of the audience, educate, entertain, and inspire them. Personalization and humanization of the content continue to be key drivers for success, in an increasingly noisy digital landscape. Regarding SEO, the best tip would be to satisfy the needs of the user in every possible way. This becomes very significant as this is what Google and other ranking authorities are aiming to achieve.
Digital marketing trends
Short DIY videos
Tell a real story
5 SEO Trends–
Artificial intelligence plays an important SEO, also known as refers to using artificial intelligence to guide search engine optimization of a web page or website to gain better rankings and organic traffic.
Voice search impact search queries. Nowadays, people use voice search instead of typing long keywords. Apple series, Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa are examples of innovation. Technology for voice search has come a long way. Use long tail keywords that people use in normal discussion to optimize for voice search.
Mobile friendliness will impact search rankings. Mobile trendiness has become a core stone of SEO. Most of the search queries are made through mobile, so it’s very important to have a mobile-friendly site.
Content that fulfils the Google AITT principle will rank higher. AAT stands for expertise, authoritativeness and trustworthiness. Google uses these sectors to determine if a web page provides quality content, and it is something business needs to be aware of when developing content for their website.
An effective SEO strategy will need to include a video short. Video stimulates the interest of viewers. Videos are a very good option for SEO as they make the audience stay longer on the page. Make sure your video channel’s name and description are optimized. The description should merely be filled with keywords. They should also provide a user-friendly description of what a channel is filled about.
Efficient SEO and Content Marketing to boost your company’s growth
Artificial Intelligence -Artificial Intelligence AI is playing a crucial role in shaping the future of SEO too.
The Eat concept– It is an abbreviation for expertise, authoritativeness and trustworthiness. Your content needs to be established as a real and proven authority in a niche.
Voice Search and Digital Assistants -Voice search enables people to ask a verbal question and get an instant answer for the same.
MobileFirst indexing– MobileFirst indexing means that the website’s mobile version would become the baseline for how Google determines rankings
Unlinked Mentions– Unlinked mentions are when a website is mentioned without a link back to it. They are now counted by both Google and Bing as strong ranking symbols.
Featured snippets– These are the answers we get in a box when we ask a question on Google. Above all the search results, this is a Featured Snippet.
Latent Semantic Indexing -To keep a check on the relevance. Through this indexing, Google can gather content from billions of websites and scan for the relativity of the topic.
The most common and productive way to drive traffic to your website with ease is Search Engine Optimization. In 2022 if you’re ranking #1 on search results, your site has a 39.6% CTR, which is more than twice the #2 result (18.4%), and almost quadruple of #3 (10.1%).
As vital as it is to rank in search engine results, it’s as tough and competitive to reach there. Google will simply rank your result on top, only if your content is relevant, useful, and helpful to the user.
Well, then how exactly does Google understand that your content is valuable? It’s simple, by going through your page and ensuring that it has relevant keywords and delivers the information the user’s searching for.
But that’s not all, there are a lot of factors that affect your content’s value and thus your ranking. Here’s how you can start writing SEO-optimized content and drive relevant & organic traffic to your page.
SEO applies to every single type of content available online. Be it the e-commerce industry or the social world, SEO is in effect everywhere. You can put it to use in:
Ensuring that the delivery and intent of your content are on point is another aid to SEO. Having a proper structure to your blog post and having an overall pleasant user experience (UX) ensures the retention rate of the user.
SEO tips & techniques
First, let’s admit that tricks without quality content are useless, you need to have valuable content while also having consistent uploads. It’s notable, that sites with the highest CTRs (Click Through Rate) have a very average CTR per page.
Here the takeaway is that you need to have consistent uploads to have constant traffic. The implementation of SEO is still individual for every post or webpage. Here are 9 hand-picked strategies to Ace the SEO game.
SEO keyword targeting with keyword research tools
Exploring the KPI of your writings
Writing catchy headers
Refining your tone
Creating a content strategy
CTA aka conversion
Updating and Optimizing
Backlinking more relevant content
SEO keyword targeting with keyword research tools
The first and simplest strategy to implement is adding keywords to your page that is the most trending or are being searched for the most. You can think of this process in three simple steps:
Come up with synonyms and words that are the key terms of your page. See that these terms are common and easy to understand. Filter out anywhere from 6 – 20 keywords, and use tools like Ahrefs and Keyword surfer to figure out monthly search volumes.
Finalize your choices according to the stats and prioritize which keyword is the most important. Keep one keyword as your primary keyword, two secondary keywords, and the rest as tertiary keywords. Use these according to your page’s visual hierarchy.
Exploring the KPI of your writings
Key Performance Indicators or KPIs (referred to as KSI sometimes) are measures of your brand’s performance meeting your strategic goals. In simpler terms, it’s a measure of how much you put in and what you expect out of it.
An understanding of what brings in the sale and what doesn’t is simply termed KPI. They give you a holistic view of the performance of different functions in your organization.
Writing catchy Headers
Research has it that readers these days tend to stick to content that is short and to the point. It all sums up the fact that the human brain releases dopamine (an excitement hormone) in the first 15 seconds of any action.
Moreover, the user is searching for constant information that has an appeasing approach to it. Be it any header in your hierarchy (H1, H2, or H3), try to make them catchy and meaningful. Remember, you have to create the need in the user to read your article.
Refining your tone
Knowing the niche of your content and the target audience, you can tweak the tone of your text to suit the reader better. Observing the need of your customer and the easily understandable tone is the primary aim here.
For example, if you’re writing a blog post for your blog, then your language can be pretty informal and the text can have a story format to it, on the other hand, if you’re a B2B brand, you might want to put in a more formal and structured approach.
Creating a content strategy
If you’re still unaware of the fact that marketing your content needs a proper strategy, then it’s high time that you start working on them, here’s a quick start.
Marketing your content is a crucial step and plays an important role in explaining the intent of your page. There are multiple approaches to a single strategy, the most useful for SEO is the Hub and spoke model.
The approach is simply generating content about a broad topic called a hub piece and then generating supplementary content that links to it and is generally more detailed.
CTA aka conversions
CTA (Call To Action) is a set of keys or functions that help convert a user at the top or middle of the funnel to the bottom of the funnel. Buttons like “know more” or “try for free” are common examples of conversion CTA.
Other types and examples that you might have observed and can be implemented are:
Using the right CTA, you can drive potential conversions to your page.
Updating and Optimizing
Content never gets old, but knowledge is an ongoing process, so updating the stats and info on your old blog posts or landing pages can always be the cherry on top.
Keywords get outdated as well, with upcoming trends and fashion, you have to identify the mood of the market and edit your keywords accordingly.
Remember, once you put out your content, you’ve to water this plant to grow into a tree. Don’t forget to share it, with your contacts, on social media, and on every platform that you can think of, just put out your content to let it reach a more diverse audience.
Backlinking more relevant content
Suppose you’re writing a blog post and there are terminologies and concepts that are better explained in any other post by you, don’t hesitate to put down the link for it.
Referring the user to even more useful content will highlight the quality of your content and bring more traffic to your other pages. The same goes for stats and data, barely anyone conducts their surveys to put data on their blog.
Apart from the fact that the data on survey sites is free to use, it’s also unnecessary to conduct more surveys. Backlinking the sites where you collected the data is a good way to add quality to your page while improving your rankings.
Yes, we told you to put out your content everywhere, but keep in mind, that SEO works differently for every platform.
Each platform requires you to have a particular writing style to make it rank. For example, on a platform like Instagram, content in the form of photos and videos will rank higher than any other format.
You must understand what the audience on a specific platform demands and what content will satisfy them. Plan and structure accordingly.
SEO writing as a career?
Being a content writer for blogs and websites, you can always integrate SEO and make your life easier. But SEO writing in itself is a sub-part of content writing. Big brands can have a specific post for this role, and if you know you’re good at it, give it a shot!
With that said, we hope you have an excellent time watching your sales go up, while in the meantime, you can subscribe to our newsletter for more mind-blowing stuff.
An impulse purchase or impulse buying is an unplanned decision to buy a product or service, made just before a purchase. It’s the purchase made on the spur of the moment. One who tends to make such a purchase is called an impulse purchaser or impulse buyer.
The decision taken by the customers to buy a particular product is the result of suddenly seeing the product. The significant factor that drives an impulse buy is the shopper’s emotional state. It may also be due to exposure to an extremely effective promotional message. It has been found that 50 per cent of purchases are unplanned. These purchases, especially impulse buys, present an opportunity for retailers who can entice consumers to deviate from their shopping lists.
What drives us to buy those things we don’t need or really can’t afford to use?
Basic evolutionary drives and the tactics retailers use together make us more susceptible to spontaneously spending our money. Shopping in a sense is a feel-good activity and many say it’s a feel-good activity it makes people feel happier instantly.
Another prime mover is the money that we aspire to save. The feeling of getting a deal motivates us to spend more. So when you come across a notice or an advertisement detailing that a discount is prevalent only for a short period, we feel like we should grab the offer soon and take advantage of that deal that we fear that we may have to pay more in the future. In such a case we automatically go over and look for it, and then usually buy it even if we’re not sure if we want it because it’s on sale right then and there and it might not be there tomorrow.
On average, customers only visit about a third of the retailer’s floor area. It is here that the architecture of a store impacts consumer satisfaction, which in turn might spur impulse buys. This happens when a store takes you from shopping for a specific item to shopping for shopping’s sake. A classic example of this is the “Gruen effect”, implemented by Victor Gruen, an architect who pioneered the first American shopping malls, which made use of light and space to dramatically stage goods in storefront windows that captured the attention of passersby thereby making them customers. Here the sudden instinct to spend cash overpowers our decision to spend wisely and judiciously. It’s about the aspiration, will, mindset and the environment that they try to create.
Retailers pay close attention to how their floor plan can change store behavior. Grid layouts emphasize speed and convenience. Or freeform layouts allow exploration, which can make customers visit more parts of the shop.
Spots of light take your mind and eyes to the entrance of the showroom and even before you know it, you have taken the scenic route. So with proper lighting, you can steer consumers’ attention toward the different areas and different product selections.
The secret persuaders at the supermarket checkout area
As pointed out, retailers adopt certain measures to get customers to do impulse purchases before leaving the store. It’s not just those factors that attract customer attention. The role of secret persuaders at the checkout area is also worth noting. They silently, by their very presence, convince shoppers to reward themselves. Candy, snacks or magazines are effective impulse items, and they may be the last chance to increase sales before the shopper leaves the store.
Use Point of Purchase- Displays both content displays that inform shoppers of certain benefits of a product.
For example, a sign that promotes a particular soap.
Samples not only showcase the benefits of the products but also applies the social influence
principle of reciprocity of the product. Samples represent a form of gift to the shopper who in turn may feel obligated to reciprocate by making a purchase. Usage of novel, unusual and high-contrast stimuli also helps a lot in this process. It needs to be understood that the shoppers will not go in search of impulse purchases like they do for products they wish to buy. In this situation, extra effort needs to be put in to draw a shopper’s attention to impulse items. This can be done by highlighting impulse purchase zones with brighter colours, additional lighting or unusual decorations. It should be kept in mind, that the products you consider impulse items must fit this purpose and criteria. Grabbing the shopper’s attention won’t help if the highlighted item isn’t the product most shoppers are willing to purchase spontaneously.
Another major method to adopt is verbal prompting. It can be used in a retail setting as well. Every time a shopper interacts with sales staff, special offers or the latest innovations and new products in stock could be mentioned. Prompting the customers can also be done through visual cues. For example, by Displaying signs indicating which other items can be used in combination with another product you might show a picture near a sofa to indicate which pillows match the sofa design present products with companion items bundle presentation shows shoppers how products can be used in real life. A customer who plans to buy wine glasses might also buy table decorations or other tables where all these products are so appealingly arranged that the shopper cannot resist, however.
How to boost that bottom lineand sell a lot more impulse purchases?
Impulse purchases add up fast. Consumers, however, are more likely to spend an extra bit of cash in a physical store. This is because in-store retailers have more control over the entire in-store experience and they can easily introduce the customer to other options available for a similar kind of product.
What exactly are the steps that youcan take to improve your impulse purchase sales?
Five easy ways that you can maximize your store’s performance with a few small changes.
Start with the product of disability. No one will purchase a product that is not properly placed or which is not seen. The structure and arrangements of your retail space matters, and there are ways to highlight particular impulse purchase items.
Get a lot of signage, large signs. Try to grab the attention of the customers and direct them to those areas. They can make the customer feel like it’s too good of a deal to pass up. Use bright colours.
Use rounded corners on displays too curved around the edges to appeal more to the average consumer. They’re seen as more welcoming and less intimidating. Packaging matters to the look and feel of a package and can affect a customer’s perception of the product. It gives a great shopping experience and adds to customer satisfaction. Make a few changes to try out and see if sales change. You also need to choose the location of your impulse products carefully. In addition to making sure the product is easily seen, take some time to consider where to position your impulse buys. The common spot is at or around the sales area. It’s near the checkout zone, where you’ve probably noticed the most impulse buys in many retail stores.
Seasonal items are also a great way to fill your impulse buy shelves. These are one of the best choices for your checkout space and it is suited to the impulse displays as they cater to that sense of urgency. As such products will be available for a short time there’s the possibility to bring more customers.
Don’t forget about pricing strategies too. Pricing your products well, giving discounts, bundles or sales add appeal to the purchase and makes it more attractive to the people. Make it affordable. Place lower-priced impulse buys near the checkout area.
During the time of shopping, consumer behaviour is largely found in our subconscious. Most of us love spending money and we’ve been trained to feel happiness when receiving something new, limited time or limited product promotions and still a sense of urgency in the shopper. Putting a constraint on a deal makes it seem even better, Upping the perceived value of an item is a great extra push to convince someone to make a purchase. By this, you can get the shoppers excited about the unique and new products. Those products that are exciting can bring in great demand from the customers. Like the other strategies mentioned, try out several changes and monitor how they impact sales in your product margins. This will aid in finding the most optimal combination. Finally, make sure you’re relying on a great retail team.
How do you create the advantage of impulse buying?
1)Create FOMO ( Fear of Missing Out)
Only 50 Remaining.
Don’t miss out
Identify the impulse products/services. On an e-commerce site/website, you should put these items on your homepage.
2) Simplify the buying process
3)Provide ease of access to customer support
The phenomenon of Impulse buying is getting great attention from consumer researchers as well as marketers. Having a good sense of knowledge about the factors triggering impulse purchase is very much needed for companies
Online marketplaces give you the chance to showcase your brand and products on channels that link you to diverse and increasingly global consumers.
What are online marketplaces?
Online marketplaces often provide the following regardless of their style or income model:
A single platform that many sellers use.
Web hosting, transaction processing, and general website interface upkeep. Fulfillment services could also be available for extra money depending on the platform.
Although this definition covers the essentials, the lines are becoming more hazy today.
Google Shopping and other search engine shopping destinations show products from various vendors in a marketplace-like setting, but historically, consumers clicked back to retailer websites to find out more and make purchases.
Google is moving toward becoming a true marketplace by now providing its own payment mechanism. Similar to how social networks have long included product listings connected to eCommerce websites in paid advertising, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and even TikTok now accept transactions within their environments, fusing with markets to create new social commerce platforms and experiences.
Why should I sell on an internet market?
Marketplaces may be advantageous for your company for the following reasons:
Online markets are used by consumers. The attractiveness of buying a variety of things from several merchants in a single transaction is its convenience. Six online marketplaces, accounting for 62% of all eCommerce transactions globally, were among the top eight most popular retail websites on the internet in 2020.
The infrastructure is kept up by the marketplace. You can concentrate on your primary company since you can use an eCommerce site that has already been created and perfected by someone else.
International exposure is provided by online markets. You can acquire exposure across borders without any hassles by using a number of the most well-liked marketplaces in the globe, which cater to viewers outside. Regional competitors like MercadoLibre compete with Amazon, which is powerful globally.
Reputable internet stores–
Some of the most well-known online marketplaces are handled by the greatest names in retail, while others are independent of well-known companies. Top marketplace locations include:
Amazon- The vast majority of products sold on Amazon come from marketplace vendors in a variety of industries, from electronics to beauty. Amazon is both a seller and a marketplace, thus goods from independent merchants are displayed alongside goods the company sells. The core functionality of Wix eCommerce can be used to create an Amazon shop for those who want to learn how to sell on Amazon.
Shopping at Walmart With more than 100,000 vendors on its marketplace, which Walmart launched in 2009 (primarily to compete with Amazon), the retail behemoth has had double-digit eCommerce growth since the epidemic. Once their applications have been accepted, marketplace vendors can start selling items alongside those that are available in Walmart shops.
eBay- With the bulk of things selling for a fixed price utilising the “Buy It Now” option, eBay has evolved from its roots as an online auction site for individuals to sell their used goods to its current status as a popular platform for brands. Approximately half of eBay’s 152 million buyers are based in the United States. Wix eCommerce features eBay as a native sales channel.
Though the largest online marketplaces provide strong platforms and wide audiences, it may be simple to get lost in the noise, making more specialised niche sites an appealing alternative. In 2021, 42% of shoppers made purchases from one of these locations, demonstrating the popularity of these locations. The top locations are:
Etsy- Despite offering a wide range of products, from 3D-printed trinkets to vibrant cloth face masks, Etsy places a strong emphasis on handcrafted goods from small vendors. Even though it earned over $330 million in sales in a single quarter with a blistering annual growth rate of 19%, this lends it a specialised appeal.
Wayfair- Wayfair touts more than 20 million customers and 12,000 suppliers, specialising in “home products” like bedding and kitchen appliances. Wayfair is the leading furniture-related online retailer in the US because to a meticulous vendor selection procedure and attentive curating.
Newegg- This tech-focused marketplace has gained more than 40 million users since its start in 2011, and they utilise the website to buy electronics, entertainment media, games, and other items.
Choosing the appropriate online market strategy
Selling opportunities on online markets are essentially limitless. But a sound market strategy is essential to maximizing the benefits—both now and in the future. A quick check list is provided below to get you going.
1. Select the location where you will sell
Your marketplace choices can be made with the support of current and potential customers. You can also look at listings on rival marketplaces to get a sense of the hotspots in your industry.
2.Recognize the trade-offs in each market
Markets offer a lot, but they also have their own difficulties. Make sure you comprehend the following before deciding on your product selection and pricing:
Popularity versus rivalry. The largest online marketplaces feature both a large number of sellers and a large number of customers. This implies that increasing visibility might not come naturally, and you might even need to incur additional costs like paid listings in order to attract new clients.
Friend vs foe: the marketplace operator. Some online marketplaces don’t just offer things for sale; they also produce their own private-label products, which could lead to a conflict of interest with other merchants. Amazon has come under fire for stealing the ideas for its new products from marketplace best-sellers and releasing them under its own private label. Due of this, it is crucial to own and maintain your own eCommerce real estate, such as a Wix online store.
3. Select products and establish prices
You can decide which things to sell and at what price once you have a handle on your true costs. The objective is to showcase offerings that are distinctive without being so uncommon as to be infrequently searched for and observed. Established best-sellers (products that fit with popular categories) and distinctive presents or sets are among the items to take into consideration.
4. Construct a robust product feed
Each marketplace has specific guidelines for how product information and photos should be presented. To make use of all the features offered by the marketplace platform, carefully construct your own product stream.
05. Define and evaluate your fulfilment procedure
Larger marketplace platforms charge extra for fulfilment services, which might be especially helpful if your consumers need faster delivery than you can handle on your own.
Make sure to thoroughly test whatever procedure you develop because fulfilment time is frequently one of the factors marketplace algorithms consider to determine which listings receive higher notice.
06. Boost client service
Provide timely attention to them because most marketplace systems track marketplace merchants’ reaction times to customer care inquiries and grievances.
07. Complete, assess, and modify
Once your marketplace products have been released, monitor sales, ad spending, and customer service closely. You may also utilise the built-in monitoring tools to monitor performance. Adjust product offerings, costs, or shipping alternatives as necessary, and always carry out a thorough evaluation before significant occasions, like the busiest holiday season.
The most trivial explanation for the term inventory is nothing but the products and commodities that a business sells. This could vary from clothes, shoes, beauty products, or cleaning supplies to paper goods, food products, or beverages. A business succeeds in the simple fact that they sell these products at a reasonable profit margin to make revenue.
This inventory can be broadly classified into four categories:
Raw materials or components
Maintenance, repair, and operations (MRO) goods
All of these need to be directly monitored and any problems that might arise in these cases must be addressed immediately as they are all interrelated. Hence if one of them faces an issue all four categories are affected directly or indirectly.
Other important factors related pertinent to inventory is cab be analysed elegantly by answering these very basic questions: Where one stores the product? The capacity of storage and How your inventory is stored? Answering and contemplating the essence of these questions take us toward one of the most pivotal concepts of modern-day commerce known as Inventory Management.
What is Inventory Management?
Inventory management is one of the most vital elements of successfully running an SMB. It refers to Inventory management refers to a step of paramount importance when it comes to commerce and trading where one tracks the trading and movement of stocks of the company. It also includes other aspects like the Buffer Stock, Overseeing the orders received and the stock in place.
The goal of setting up an effective Inventory management system is to maintain a stable and ideal inventory that ensures enough stock for the received orders ie to maintain an adequate amount of stock, all the while controlling the cost and ensuring a beneficial profit margin. It’s a very elaborate mechanism which starts from the production of the commodity from raw materials and ends when the finished product reached the customer’s shelves.
The Importance of Inventory Management
Inventory management is considered a cornerstone for the success of a small-scale or medium-scale business because with an elegant strategy in place a proper investment management plan can actually reap benefits that might overtake giant companies themselves. Hence every company relies on strategising the most effective plan to manage their inventory. Lack of proper Inventory Management can throw your company into peril as it could lead to some devastating scenarios as follows:
Loss of profit when too much inventory gets sold
Can lead to disruption of sales causing potential damage to the company’s reputation
Poor management can lead to displeased and angry customers who will seek out your competitors which will lead to a loss in business.
Stockouts and Spoilage
Capital getting stuck on products that ran out of demand
Sunken cost due to wasted inventory
Inventory management does a marvellous job of tackling all these threats and reaping benefits that put you leaps and bounds ahead of your competitors. With an appropriate and sophisticated plan of action for investment management one can ensure:
Increased productivity: Productivity of the SMB is increased marginally as capable management software allows the operations and work in the warehouse to be completed quickly
Reduced Costs: Through precise projections of demand and order using the software the company can manage the inventory with a fresh stock of the right amount
Happy Customers: With an efficient system in place the business will be able to provide the customer with quality products n time boosting the customer’s satisfaction
Less Waste and Theft: Proper awareness of the amount of stock will aid you in knowing what to sell and how much to sell so that they won’t be expired
Improved efficiency: Proper management guarantees the seamless flow of stock making the whole process fluid and revitalises your SMB
Better cash Flow: The strategy will also assist you in finding prospects for freeing up capital for other marketing cavities that will help you improve your SMB
Eliminate errors: Mechanised checking of stock saves you a lot of time and helps in preventing human errors while keeping track of stock
Choosing the right Software for your Inventory Management
When it comes to choosing software for the Inventory management of your SMB it is only customary that you first dwell on the problems you are facing in doing so. One should try to choose the most adequate software that would address all the current and possible problems that may arise in the future when it comes to inventory management. Another important aspect to keep in mind is the kind of stock and inventor you are managing. The current market is flooded with various software and it is very often seen that they all specialise in one certain aspect of inventory management. So choose the one which addresses the most crucial part of your kind of inventory.
Yet another factor of preponderant importance is the kind of SMB you are and who will be using the software. This can be broadly seen by understanding the perspectives of Business to Customer(B2C) companies and Business to Business(B2B) companies. One thing that is common for both is that the software should be able to aid them with multi-channel management. This also helps in avoiding overselling. This simply means that the software should assist them in managing their inventory on various platforms at the same time. For B2C companies the most preponderant part is to fluidly process and manage real-time data from sales in marketplaces, physical stores and a native website to ensure consumers get what they want when they expect to get it. Therefore installing an Application Programming Interface(API) that vividly depicts Point Of Sale(POI) is their primary step. So they would seek software that would effortlessly make this happen. For a B2B company, the aspect of paramount importance is the seamless management of the multi-channel environment.
Upon targeting these factors it becomes trivial that the software is expected to integrate various other aspects of the business and inventory management along with its nuances so that there is an impeccable connection between inventory management with back-office financial systems enabling real-time visibility for stating inventory accurately in financial reports and it rejuvenates the forecasting capabilities.
The ideal modern inventory management software is expected to be completely automated, ensures flawless multi-channel management, and is accessible, intuitive and secure to use and handle from anywhere across the globe.
Maintaining the efficiency of Inventory Management?
The introduction of cloud-based inventory systems revolutionised the Inventory Management sector to a marvellous degree. This ensures a secure and reliable system for adequate inventory management. An efficient software can have a significant impact on SMB and this impact can be broadly analysed in three ways
MOVING ON FROM A PEN-AND-PAPER SYSTEM
Digitalising the records of inventory management through installing completely automated software shall surely make the process much more fluid and mobile. According to the State of Small Business Report, 46% of SMBs either use a manual system to track their inventory or do not monitor their inventory at all. And this is exactly why many of them are falling behind in their margins of profit. Digitilaising such mundane and vapid tasks also assist in making Inventory management an effortless task and the labour can be used elsewhere in the process for better productivity.
ELIMINATING INVENTORY SHRINKAGE AND THEFT
A manual inventory system often leads to shrinkage and theft of stock. This is completely expunged through computerising the process. The National Retail Federation 2018 Retail Security Survey ranks shoplifting or external theft (35.7%) and employee or internal theft (33.2%) as the two leading sources of inventory shrinkage. This grave issue is flawlessly tackled by the software
PREVENTING OVERSELLING AND UNDERSELLING
Efficiency can be boosted and the cost of production can be cut to a good degree by implementing some very basic methods. This helps in maintaining the overall efficiency of your inventory management. Some of them are:
Order Products in Bulk: Helps in reducing Shipping Costs
Consider just-in-time (JIT) inventory:JIT refers to a fulfilment strategy where the stock is ordered and sold simultaneously just in time to ship. This minimizes the storage cost and dead stock. This keeps the on-hand inventory at a minimum.
Consider dropshipping: Dropshipping corresponds to a management strategy where the supplier ships the order on your behalf eliminating the handling and storage cost for you.
Accept pre-orders:Helps in building hype for your product and also aids you in studying the market and demand for the product
The Various Techniques to implement an efficient strategy for Inventory Management
So far we have elaborately discussed the various perspective of Inventory Management and why it is so pivotal in successfully running an SMB. It is vital for us to also grasp the awareness of the various techniques of inventory management as well. Some of the very basic and widely known techniques are as follows:
The Barcode System
In this system, a Barcode is given to all products which acts as a unique signature to it throughout the process of inventory management. KIt helps in speeding up the process and keeping a clear track of the product and its whereabouts in the procedure.
This is a more advanced method f tracking the product using microchips. The chip stores all the important information regarding the product and is more convenient as it makes the process more automated and simple when it comes to processing them in the warehouses. The RFID tracking system is the most adequate for tracking large volumes of products. An RFID system ensures impeccable efficiency as there will be lesser and your staff will be more efficient in processing orders.
Economic Order Quantity (EOQ) Reordering
This mechanism is centred around the theme of reducing inventory costs and making them as minimum as possible. EOQ reordering aids one in determining the best time for reordering to minimize your overall inventory costs (product ordering costs and inventory holding costs).
With the EOQ method, you can calculate how much inventory to reorder so that you do not end up paying more storage fees than you need to.
The ABC Method
This is one of the most common and widely used inventory management techniques. T categorises stocks into three kinds A, B and C. This assists them in prioritising their product concerning which can bring more profit. The categories are:
Category A: Most valuable products of the SMB contributing to 70-80% of company revenue. One must make sure to have enough stock of this commodity.
Category B: Products that are considered very important but not as valuable as Category Ac
Category C: Least valuable products but they still play a pivotal role in the company’s profit.
The product shifts between these categories according to the prevailing demand and cost and this should be done through regular analysis of the market.
FIFO and LIFO Method
FIFO stands for the first-in, first-out method of inventory control. This aims to sell the oldest stock as soon as possible to bring in fresher stocks and avoid old products from piling and hence prevent the loss that can be caused by piling up of old expired products.
On the other hand, the LIFO or Last-in, First-Out method targets selling the newest inventory is sold first. This assists in prohibiting the products from becoming obsolete.
Product photography, also known as e-commerce photography, is exactly what it seems like: images that are taken and utilized on social media and websites to help boost the revenue of your service or product. Given the development of online shopping, the variety of items and brands accessible to customers in any specific category may be large – which means that photographs that demonstrate what you’re offering and why it’s worth purchasing are a critical component for any business that sells online.
HOW DOES IT AFFECT THE ECOMMERCE BUSINESS?
93% of buyers believe that visual content is the most important deciding element in a buying choice. Most importantly, the pictures you’ll utilize to demonstrate how your items appear are ESSENTIAL.
According to Big Commerce research, 78% of online buyers want images to bring items to life – people want to view the object as if it were part of their personal lives. Product photography does have the ability to tell a tale: what the brand stands for, what it means to customers, and why a visitor should care.
Larger photos have an impact on both category and product pages. Because the photographs on category sites are often small, raising their size helps buyers to view the subtleties of each category, making the buying experience more delightful. Mall.cz, the Czech Republic’s second-largest e-commerce shop, saw a 9.46% boost in sales on product pages featuring larger photos.
Essential equipment for product photography
First and foremost. To create high-quality photos, you must have the proper tools on hand. You don’t have to get out your expensive DSLR camera to begin. A few pieces of basic equipment will suffice:
A smartphone –Smartphones in recent generations offer outstanding photographic skills. Not only do they have the power to take high-quality, detailed shots, but modern phones offer a plethora of options to assist you enhance your images. Spend some time learning about your phone’s options, especially manual settings, to enhance quality. Alternatively, you might invest in a low-cost camera and lenses to capture your products in all their splendour.
A tripod – A tripod guarantees that your camera is perfectly level, and it could be adjusted to a certain height and angle to ensure that all of your photographs are consistent. If you want to buy a good tripod for the smartphone, you should expect to pay between $20 and $60. Once your camera is mounted on a tripod, you may use a remote or a countdown timer to take images without accidentally moving anything.
A light source – Another important aspect of great product photography is lighting. Although natural light helps in certain situations, it might shift throughout a session, making it unsuitable for producing pure product photographs that demand consistency and precision. While you may invest in highly qualified lighting and flashes, normal bulbs will suffice for now. If the shadows and glare are too strong, add a diffuser such as paper, white flat sheet, or white rubbish bags to soften the light. Just make sure that every DIY light reflectors are not flammable. Another excellent alternative for creating soft lighting is to purchase or make your own reflector.
A sweep – A sweep is a solid, clean backdrop that eliminates the visual distractions from the background. It removes the line between the wall and the table and keeps you from catching any imperfections in the backdrop that you didn’t see with your naked eye. A huge piece of posterboard, roll of paper, or a sheet of cloth can be used to make a sweep. The top of your sweep can be attached to the purpose-built frame, the back of a chair, the wall, or even the back of a lightbox.
A light box –Depending on the dimensions of your items, you may want to arrange them in a lightbox to guarantee that they are appropriately positioned between light sources. Built-in screens in light boxes filter light and decrease shadows. There are several internet methods for making low-cost table light boxes, or one may purchase one from a photographic supply store.
Mannequins, stands, or racks –Each of them serves as static, standard props for displaying objects. As needed, try using dabs of glue or two-sided tape to hold things in place.
Photo editing software –Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Lightroom, for example, may help you sharpen your photographs even further. They provide you with access to a variety of filters, effects, and graphical capabilities. However, you may not require the entire range of editing tools for your business. Before overpaying, consider other solutions, such as Wix’s built-in picture editor, which is offered to all Wix retailers.
TIPS AND PROCESS OF TAKING GOOD COMMERCIAL PHOTOS –
1. Set up your background
Choosing the correct background not only puts the attention on the thing you’re photographing but also aids in the editing process during post-production. Using a bright or white backdrop will make removing undesirable elements and retouching images easier.
2. Set up your product
It’s now time to put your goods in the limelight.
It may appear straightforward, but getting the perspective, lighting, and location just perfect might take a few tries.
Place your object ahead of the background, centered and on a level, solid surfaces such as a desk or chair.
3. Adjust your lighting
Perfect lighting is among the most crucial aspects of creating a professional product shot. Although it may be time-consuming to modify, proper lighting can make or break an image, and you’ll undoubtedly thank yourself later in the post-production phase when you have fewer tweaks to make.
4. Use a tripod
To create that crisp-looking shot that captures every aspect of your goods, you’ll need a high depth of focus, which ultimately affects the image’s sharpness. To do this, adjust your camera to a low aperture and slow shutter speed.
5. Pick the right camera
This may seem obvious, but selecting the appropriate camera is critical to good product photography.
Of course, if you’re not intending on performing photoshoots on a regular basis, or if you’re on a limited budget, don’t feel obligated to invest in a high-end DSLR camera.
6. Take multiple pictures and evaluate
It’s now time to put your product pictures to use!
When you’re ready to begin snapping, keep in mind that the initial few may be a bit rusty, so take many. Take photographs from various angles, distances, and locations to see which works best.
7. Retouch your pictures
It’s now time for post-production. Even if you’ve previously snapped a few photographs that you like, retouching them is still an essential stage of the process. This will transform your photographs from mediocre to professional, and it will guarantee that all images of the products on your site have uniform quality, lighting, and location.
8. Optimize images
Unfortunately, the bigger the image on the website, the longer it takes for the page to load. However, increasing your SEO might degrade the quality of the image.
2020 has seen a great boom in the use of chatbots across the industrial sector. Chatbots are full of advantages to provide undeniable experience for customer services. So, conversational AI is an integral part of business practices across all industries.
The role of chatbots is not limited to customer services only. Although they are recommended for customer support. Conversational Bots are helpful to promote marketing and sales activities.
Since chatbots are a small application of conversational AI. Conversational Intelligence has a much wider scope. It compiles the trending technologies and utilizing the mix for variant purposes. Artificial Intelligence has captured a significant share in conversational marketing.
“What” & “Why” paves a path towards the Conversational AI trends for 2021. And, also, to the reason why it is a priority for the major section of the industry.
What Is Conversational AI?
The set of technologies that help simulate the conversational environment is coined as conversational AI. These sets of instructions are used in conjunction with Virtual agents like bots to make them capable of understanding the intent and tone of the words framed together into a sentence and then process a response to the text or voice message and reply in natural ways. Therefore, Conversational AI accommodates the interaction between peoples and complex systems.
Why Conversational AI Is In-Demand?
The systems and processes are getting more complex. Because of the increasing technical demands in the industry. And it gets difficult for the non-technical users to navigate through the complex problems without any expert help. The use of chatbots at the forefront eases the movement of the user when surfing or shopping online. It is a step ahead towards betterment. Customer experience is the priority for the industries now. Hence, the customer experience will be simpler and more intuitive. (Only by replacing the traditional UIs with the conversational dialog boxes).
Why Conversational AI Becomes A Priority In 2021?
1. Manages Dialog Turns & Twists
A normal human conversation is full of uncertainties. Each dialog in conversation is capable of changing the flow of conversation further. Understanding these turning points is the major goal of inducing Natural Language Processing techniques into AI applications. Hence, the Conversational AI concept manages instant pauses, rollbacks, or repetitive conversations. It also provides a fluent hassle-free experience to the users.
2. Context Management
Since we are talking of bots, we can’t be sure that the bot you chatted with a month ago still remembers the highlights. Neither we can be sure it will continue the conversation from the same endpoint. But Conversational AI knows that every conversation has some context involved. And it is also aware that context levies the importance of information. Conversational AI holds the context from past conversations. Because of this, it can resume the conversation from the same endpoint. For example, user information, preferences, queries, etc.
3. Sentiment Analysis
Conversational AI makes bots capable of analyzing the emotion and tone of the conversation by breaking down the sentences/phrases into singular words. Each word or utterance is then further analyzed considering the key triggers, connotations, and placement in the sentence. You can count them as individual metrics that combined together to define the type and intensity of the emotion conveyed through the conversation.
4. Multilingual Support
Conversational AI supports almost every language. Hence, contributing to your business growth by giving you access to understand the intent of individuals across the globe. Online stores can integrate a chatbot that provides multiple language support without any translator. Read more
5. Rapid Industry Adoption
The introduction of chatbots in the commercial industry has captured every sector from marketing promotions to customer support. Automating business processes in certain sectors allows the marketers and owners to focus on the more critical issues that can’t be taken care of under bots for now at least. With Conversational AI, bots are one step ahead of the artificially intelligent earth.
6. Behavioral Analytics For Bots
Chatbots employed by the industries have fetched them huge user data, performance, and/or other metadata. But, if data is not providing any information, it is useless. Hence deciphering the information contained in the data and delivering significant insights is what is required. And Conversational AI is capable of doing so. Conversational AI-based analytics provides a visual representation of the user journey via plotting the flow of dialog in the conversation between the user and the bot. These flows define user behavior. Further, it can also determine the intention of the user.
7. Machine to Machine Conversations
We can’t skip IoT since we’re talking about intelligent technology behind the smart devices. Internet of Things or IoT enables the machine to machine conversation by creating a data-sharing network. Conversational AI plays a vital role in deciphering the information shared between machines. And vital information shared with the man via conversation too. In other words, Conversational AI is the mediator. It supports the conversation between the man and machines without any manual help.
8. Voice Assistants
Conversational AI caters to resolve the communication hindrances too. Voice assistants are the chatbot capable of conversing with the human. Rather by talking instead of typing long sentences. Amazon Echo, Google Home, etc. are the real-existing examples of voice assistants. Hence, supporting the hands-free conversation.
The use and trends of Chatbots use cases have been widely embraced in 2020. And there is no doubt that it will proliferate in 2021 as well. Since the use of chatbots is not restricted to any particular sector or industry type. Any enterprise can enjoy this technology.
Yes, it’s that time of the year again. The time when we close the balance for the current year and start planning for the next one. Can you imagine 2021 marketing without automation? No one can! But this doesn’t mean that we don’t need to be prepared for what the future holds in store for 2021.
So let’s take a close look at the top marketing automation predictions for 2021. There has been enough uncertainty this year to warrant extra attention to being prepared in the next one, don’t you think?
In fact, the uncertainty that shrouded most of 2020 lays the foundation for what will happen in marketing automation in 2021. With most businesses going fully digital or moving most of their operations online, the need for marketing automation software has increased exponentially.
And this is not something that will change too soon.
Marketing Automation Predictions for 2021
Digital marketing was largely viewed as a must-have strategy by most marketers even before the pandemic. Seventy-eight percentof marketers believe that digital marketing was the key to their marketing efforts successful.
People turned to their devices with studies showing that device usage leaped by 16 percent in a single day in the US! Everyone is online (still!) so there has never been a better time to polish your marketing automation strategy.
Video marketing is not a new concept — it stuck around because it works. Everyone loves watching a relevant, entertaining video.
Statistics show that 85 percent of internet users watch video content and it is estimated that the average person will be spending 100 minutes a day watching online videos in 2021.
They are easy to follow and when done right, educational too. There are several video types that you can use to reach your targeted market. For instance, some people have turned to vlog to reach their audience.
Recorded or live Q&As are also extremely popular and will continue to be this way. These are great for interacting with your audience. Q&As are more informative and don’t seem like sales so you can attract people to your business easily.
Ninety-three percent of companies say that their video content helped them to get new customers, with 63 percent of businesses saying that they get the best ROIs through their videos.
One of the best things about video marketing is that, even though you can’t automate production, you can definitely automate its distribution. There are dozens of social media management tools to help you distribute your video content automatically. Just schedule the post and go on with your day.
The same goes for sharing your video content with your email subscribers. Schedule a campaign in your favorite automation tool and go back to your dashboard to see how it performed.
Pro tip: leverage marketing automation for a video like a pro. Schedule your most important videos to be published at different times on different days. Why? Organic reach on social media is low, so posting a video just once means that you’ll only reach a small fraction of your audience. Play with different times of the day to catch bigger chunks of your fan base, especially if you cater to an international audience, in multiple time zones.
Remember, when we all used to rely on a clear customer journey: awareness, consideration, decision. That’s it! Start creating content and campaigns for each stage.
Well, not anymore. Today’s customer journey is complex and unpredictable. Sometimes, they will narrow down their search to a single brand only to expand it again minutes later.
With more time to spend online researching options, consumers are becoming more and more aware that they are in charge of the process and that they don’t have to give in to remarketing ads or persistent email campaigns.
What can you do?
Automate, but smartly.
Invest in marketing automation software that allows you to have a 360-degree view of the customer’s behavior and cross-reference reports. Integration is your best friend here: integrating your CRM with your marketing automation tool (for instance, Salesforce with Mailchimp), you can send hyper-targeted and relevant messages to your contacts.
Marketing automation in 2021 has to respond to the customers’ demands: less generic campaigns, more personalization, and more relevance.
It feels like email marketing has been around since the beginning of time. But just because it’s rather old, it doesn’t mean it’s any less significant.
Marketing automation has taken an email to the next level.
Email marketing has progressed over the years and it has now become more personalized and tailored to every recipient’s needs. Nowadays, it has all been hyper-simplified. All you need is your email address, and the rest can happen on auto-pilot.
Email marketing automation will also get a significant upgrade in 2021. Forget about siloed marketing tactics and integrate email with your business goals in 2021 and beyond.
How can that happen?
When you integrate your email platform with your CRM or ESP, you get a birds-eye-view of your customer’s profile. This means that you can (and should!) set automated campaigns for:
Thank you notes after purchases
Reminders for clients who usually purchase things at regular intervals (for instance: “Hey, it’s time to refill your cat food bag”)
Very specific segments: import data from your CRM into your email marketing platform to know, for instance, who will attend what class in your gym. Then proceed to send automated emails to those people alone.
4. AI (Artificial Intelligence) Use on the Rise
No, this is not about the kind of artificial intelligence you see in movies. This breed of AI is specifically made for businesses. It is meant to make processes and operations easier.
Let’s look at two kinds of marketing automation AI. Despite the low uptake of AI in business over the years, 2021 will most likely see a spike in usage.
Most of the behavior patterns that consumers follow when looking to make a purchase, like asking friends and family for referrals, checking out reviews, or online researching, have made their way into the business world. A lot of research is done before the potential buyer goes to your site.
Conversational AI is here to help with that. It is an artificial intelligence technology that powers chatbots to respond to inputs.
In short, this technology looks for a way to narrow down where a potential buyer is in their buying process and what are the next steps they should take. This can be done by asking questions to website visitors while they are still on your site, for instance.
AI makes it easy for a customer to navigate through your website, making it easy for them to get what they are looking for instead of wasting their time going through everything.
It also shortens the sales cycle and leaves your website visitors more fulfilled. In short, AI (in marketing automation) can improve your chat conversion rates significantly.
Email marketing also uses artificial intelligence to make email tasks easier. Email service providers offer AI-based tools that you can easily adjust to make it specific to your brand’s needs.
If your goal is to increase your click rate and conversion rate for your campaigns, 2021 is the year when you should consider AI for email. It is going to help you organize your campaigns by making it possible to send specific emails to the recipients who need them.
Artificial intelligence can create algorithms that optimize content according to the price, relevance, display order, etc., and send it to each subscriber catering to their needs.
AI for email considers a subscriber’s behavior on your website, looking at how they respond to messages, their social media activities, and purchase histories, among other factors to know where their interests lie.
Once it has narrowed down a subscriber’s interest, AI now filters these interests to find the one email that will fit the customer’s needs. It then proceeds to send it to them.
When people receive offers they are interested in, it creates better customer engagement and increases sales for your company. Email AI is still evolving and increasingly becoming easier to use, even for small businesses. This is the kind of marketing automation prediction for 2021 that you can use to grow your business starting right now.
5. Better Personalization Fueled by Marketing Automation
Yes, personalization takes center stage in 2021 and beyond. But personalization without marketing automation is a nightmare. Can you imagine emailing everyone in your list separately, so you can add personalized information in each email?
It’s OK, you don’t even have to go there. Marketing automation can do this for you. And, in 2021, it goes beyond adding the recipient’s name.
New developments in marketing automation will allow you to deliver hyper-personalized messages across channels. In fact, this will be the norm starting with next year.
Picture this: you have a loyal customer who follows you on two social networks and orders from you regularly. They sometimes also use your website chat or call your support department. How do you which channel works best when you try to reach them?
Marketing automation will take that off your plate. Coupled with AI and cross-dashboard views, you will be able to know which is their favorite channel and send personalized, automated messages.
6. Integration Is no Longer “Nice to Have”. It’s a Must.
Integration helps bring together different facets of your business to work as one efficient tool. It’s not just sales and marketing that will live prosperously under the same “roof” (read: dashboard). It’s also accounting, IT, operations, customer support, and more. Pretty much everything that counts towards your business goals can be brought together in a single dashboard using iPaaS or integration services.
Come 2021, SaaS and iPaaS will become increasingly popular for obvious reasons. These tried-and-tested solutions will enable industries affected by the crisis to transit effortlessly and seamlessly into the new normal.
Integration is a crucial marketing automation prediction for 2021 because it marks the end of siloed business operations and the beginning of seamless transitions between departments and channels.
As iPaaS services evolve, they bring easy-to-use interfaces that come with a plethora of benefits for both the companies using them and for their customers.
7. Offline Conversion Tracking
While acknowledging that almost everything is turning digital, let’s not forget that brick-and-mortar stores will continue to exist. Only they will have an online presence, too.
But in the era of seamless communication across channels, you can’t afford to keep the two separate. This is where offline conversion tracking comes in.
To achieve this, some companies have been using promotional codes, coupons, sensors, and other means to translate digital marketing and in-store foot traffic into sales.
Google uses features like geo-targeting to show potential customers and uses product searches to determine conversion rates. Facebook uses data from customers with location services to show local store advertisements.
Marketing automation tools can now give you combined insights from all your customer touchpoints. Neatly grouped in a single dashboard, they will fuel your growth through data-driven campaigns.
With the new changes looming on the corner, a lot has to be changed for businesses to perform well in the coming year. The above marketing automation predictions for 2021 are just some of the ways to ensure your business thrives.
Investing in the right marketing automation now will mean you have a leg up before the next business year begins.
Take your time and evaluate your options and marketing efforts. Find better and more efficient ways to interact with your customers so that you can cater to their needs. Digital marketing is an ever-changing field and you need to adapt with time using the right strategy and tools.
While marketing automation is great, it’s not everything you need. The human touch is also important, perhaps more important than ever. Even if you can automate every email and social media campaign, remember to always humanize them. A hand-written thank-you note sent along with the order can turn a first-time buyer into a loyal customer for life.
Remember that catering to customers’ needs means understanding them first. So take the time to do that. Analytics reports in marketing automation get more refined every year, so you have the perfect opportunity to dig deep into customers’ behavior and adjust your strategy according to it.
Avoid repetitive or boring questions. You’re looking for insights into your target customers’ specific wants and needs.
3. Collect and analyze data
Remember those metrics I mentioned earlier? Start tracking them. You can use conversion rate optimization tools like Crazy Egg, Hello Bar, and Google Analytics to make sure you cover all your bases.
As you gather more data, look for patterns. Maybe most of your customers find you via Twitter, for instance, or read your about page before looking at your products. You can use that information to boost conversion rates.
4. Run A/B tests
I can’t stress enough how important it is to run A/B tests. I’m always testing every aspect of my offers because I don’t want to leave money on the table.
Tools like Crazy Egg have built-in A/B testing functionality. This means you don’t have to comb through the data yourself and develop a pounding headache. Instead, you know the “winner” and the winning variant gets the majority of the traffic even before the test concludes.
5. Discover the exact journey visitors take through your site
Mapping your buyers’ journey can yield lots of tasty nuggets of data. Do they read lots of your blog posts? Do they follow you on social media? How far do they scroll down each page?
6. Focus on the content that matters using heatmap analysis
The most important pages on your website, such as your landing pages and product pages, deserve special attention. Run heatmap analysis on those pages to see where people click and how they use the page. You can then optimize it for maximum conversions.
7. Create the perfect page with A/B testing
A/B testing doesn’t stop after just one test. In fact, you might need dozens of tests before you craft the perfect page.
Test your headline, body copy, hero image, CTA, CTA button color, font size, font color, and anything else that might impact conversions.
8. Don’t “guess”
Everyone starts out with a guess, but that’s where the guesswork should stop. Once you’re actively collecting data, make decisions based on what the numbers tell you.
9. Guide your customers
CTAs and directional indicators can help you guide your customers where you want them to go. Be strategic about where you place CTAs, arrows, navigational panels, and other elements.
10. Reduce friction
Remove any elements that give the user pause or promote objections. For instance, if you don’t need a paragraph of copy on your sales page, delete it. Or, if you want to make the information more digestible, turn it into bullet points.
Conversion Optimization Rate Mistakes
Unfortunately, even with lots of information circulating the Internet, business owners still make mistakes when it comes to conversion rate optimization. I’d like to help you avoid the three most common pitfalls:
1. Not adding positive emotional response
In your copywriting, include positive storytelling to help convey benefits. Help your reader envision himself benefiting from your product or service.
2. Not adopting a mobile-first strategy
More than half of consumers use their mobile devices to surf the Internet. If your store isn’t mobile-ready, you’ll turn off prospects.
Multivariate, or A/B Testing? Find out How to Test and Optimize Conversions
We’ve already touched on multivariate and A/B testing. They’re both highly useful conversion rate optimization tools.
A/B testing (also called split testing) is useful when you want to take a granular approach. You want to know how a CTA button’s color impacts conversions, but you don’t want anything else to contribute to the test.
Multivariate testing, on the other hand, works great when you have two very different versions of the same page or asset. Which one appeals most to your target audience?
Choose a testing platform
You can run A/B and multivariate testing manually, but I don’t recommend it. Use a tool to automate the process and get your results faster.
Crazy Egg, for instance, allows you to set up a split test and run it automatically. Crazy Egg will divide traffic evenly between the two versions, then hand you a “winner” once the test has reached statistical significance.
Analyze A/B test results
Once you have your results, record and analyze them. Why did your target audience prefer Version B, for instance? What aspect of the color red or the font Georgia or the wording of the CTA appealed to them?
A/B tests: Conduct A/B tests on any variation of a web page.
Forms: Get detailed information about prospects and turn them into leads.
Advanced CRO Techniques
Once you’ve nailed the basics, you can drill down on more specific aspects of your website’s design, format, and copy to take conversion rate optimization to the next level. I recommend testing all of these facets of your website.
Test big ideas, not small ones. To get big lifts on your conversions, you generally need to try bigger tests. Changing little things like button colors won’t impact many visitors.
Focus on headlines. People use the headline to make a snap judgement on whether or not they should continue. A better headline could easily increase conversion rates by 30%. It’s on the few “small” elements that have a major impact.
Remove fields in your signup form. The fewer steps in your form, the higher your conversion rate will be, usually.
Interview customers. Use customer research to find the primary benefit that your market wants. Also look for the top three objections. Then make changes to your site that focus on the main benefit while addressing the main objections.
Always run an A/B test. Results are often counter-intuitive, we’re still surprised by results. Hard data is the only way to ensure that your idea truly works.
SEO vs. Conversion Rate Optimization: Should You Focus on Increasing Traffic or Converting your Existing Traffic?
SEO and conversion rate optimization might seem like two sides of a coin. One is designed to attract more traffic (SEO), while the other optimizes content for existing traffic (conversion rate optimization).
So which matters more?
In my opinion, they’re equally important. Without SEO, you can’t get traffic in the first place. Without CRO, your traffic will produce fewer sales.
Let’s say you have a pretty good baseline for SEO, but it could use some improvement. First, though, you focus on conversion rate optimization. After a few months of hard work, your conversion rate jumps from 10 percent to 25 percent.
Great work! But it’s not over yet.
Now that you have a good CRO baseline, how do you grow your sales even further? You drive more traffic to your site and get even more conversions.
I’m a big fan of CRO and growth hacking.
Through conversion rate optimization, I’ve vastly improved my businesses’ conversion rates, and I’ve helped my clients do the same.
Sure, it takes work. But once you have the data, you can generate more sales and dominate your industry.
Start by understanding the definition of CRO and how it works. Focus on following the CRO best practices and avoiding the most common mistakes.
Use the best conversion rate optimization tools in the business. Crazy Egg offers an ideal tool. Then keep testing. The more data you have, the better your chances of converting visitors.
Microsoft has unveiled a number of new features and technologies including private search, new ad units & more. Here are the highlights!
Microsoft unveiled several new features and technologies at Microsoft Advertising Elevate. In addition to new ad units, the announcement included new tools and technologies that are noteworthy even for businesses that aren’t currently advertising with Microsoft, such as private search technology and an upcoming small business hub with paid and organic social integrations.
Private Search For Microsoft Bing API
Microsoft is now empowering publishers to give consumers more options for privacy-first experiences. This feature is specifically designed for their search partner network, and is currently being used by Duck Duck Go.
Private Search is hosted on Azure with a setup that incorporates a private search proxy between the private search site or app and Microsoft Bing’s private search API. This would allow Bing to deliver results without ever receiving the search term.
The search partner will send the search request to the private proxy. Fraud detection would happen through the private search proxy and then the private search proxy would pass through an anonymized user agent and anonymized IP through to Bing’s Private Search API. The API would return search results and ads.
This would prevent personal data from being shared with other Microsoft services, including Bing, by anonymizing the user agent and IP, and by withholding the search query.
The search partner will be responsible for anonymizing the user agent and IP and they must comply with Microsoft’s policy in order to be eligible to use Private Search.
New Price Comparison Beta
Microsoft’s Edge browser has a feature that delivers discount codes in a flyout panel format. They’ve now announced a beta that would allow folks using Microsoft’s shopping features will be eligible to show up in that panel as a price comparison.
The ads will be delivered in the flyout within the toolbar when browsing product pages on Edge or through Collection by saving a product and manually clicking to view price comparisons.
This unit would enable businesses to deliver product listings to relevant consumers while they’re browsing the sites of other retailers.
These listings will pull from existing Merchant Center feeds so no further work is required for businesses that already have shopping campaigns created.
Best of all, since it is in an experimental phase, these placements are currently free – businesses will not be charged for the clicks on these ads.
The price comparison feature in Edge is a great example of where Microsoft is trying to provide a great experience for users (find the best deal!) and gain additional exposure for the products in advertisers’ feeds. Consumer research shows that most folks comparison shop at some level and price comparison surfaces this information automatically. It’s a win/win. – John Lee, Microsoft Evangelist
The metrics will be reported under the “O&O other” traffic segment within Microsoft Ads.
This is currently in beta within the US and the listings will only show on desktop, within the Edge browser. To request access to any of the Microsoft Ads’ betas, reach out to your Microsoft Ads account team or support.
New Video Extension Beta
Microsoft has announced a new beta that would allow advertisers to include multimedia extensions to their ads. The extensions are eligible to show alongside other ad extensions and, as with other ad extensions, advertisers will be charged when prospects click the ad unit.
Video extensions is an inflection point in the evolution of the SERP. Searchers are hungry for more information and we know that video is one of the most consumed forms of media for research (and more, of course!). This extension surfaces video at the point of search to improve and enrich the user experience. – John Lee, Microsoft Evangelist
Clicking the ad unit will result in the video expanding on the page with a CTA in the lower left-hand side.
If a prospect clicks the video extension and then clicks the ad unit in the same session, the advertiser will only be charged once.
The extensions currently only deliver on desktop but mobile is coming soon.
Videos must be uploaded and can either be uploaded from a local directory on the computer or a publicly accessible filer server location, such as OneDrive, FTP, Dropbox, etc.)
This is currently an open pilot within the US, CA, DE and AU with FR and IN coming soon.
New Ad Units for Property Promotion and Tours & Activities
Similar to the new automotive ad units that Microsoft recently announced, these new units are feed-based units that will promote vacation rentals (Property Promotion Ads) as well as tours and attractions (Tours & Activity Ads).
Property Promotion Ads
Property Promotion ads show in the top two slots on the hotel grid on Bing Maps, when someone delivers for hotels, or properties with certain amenities, in a specific location. The ads will deliver on desktop.
The first click on a Property Promotion ad will expand the listing to allow the user to select dates and proceed to booking. Advertisers will only be charged for the second click when users visit the site.
In order to run Property Promotion ads, advertisers will need to have Hotel Price Ads set up. To be considered for Property Promotion Ads, advertisers must provide at least five images and the star rating (which is currently optional in the feed for Hotel Price Ads but required for Property Promotion Ads).
Advertisers will have the option to add bid multipliers for Property Promotion Ads within Site Type.
Property Promotion ads are currently being piloted within the US only.
Tour & Activities Ads
Tour and Activities Ads will be triggered for travel intent and travel experiences intent queries to help advertisers promote their local experiences.
The ads will deliver on the Bing SERP when a user is searching for things to do in a specific location. When delivered on the SERP, advertisers are eligible for up to three ad placements.
The ads can also be delivered on Bing Maps when the user searches for a destination or is looking for things to do in a particular area or when they hover over Maps landmark pins.
A Potential Placement for Tours and Activities Ads
Ads Can Show When Searchers Search for a Destination
Last but not least, ads can deliver in the Bing Travel Guide as a carousel under the header image and destination description.
Tour & Activities Ads Can Deliver Within Microsoft Travel Guides
These ads could be a good fit for single-day or multi-day tours, theme parks and attractions, museums, cultural experiences, adventure and outdoor activities, food and dining, and educational experiences and classes.
These ads will show on desktop. To run Tour & Activities Ads, advertisers should visit Tools > Business Data > Dynamic Fields within the Microsoft Ads UI to set up their feed.
Tour & Activities Ads are in an open beta within the US and the UK. To request access to any of the Microsoft Ads betas, reach out to your Microsoft Ads account team or support.
New Audience Network Features: Facebook Import, Video Ads, & Geographic Expansion
Microsoft also unveiled new Audience Network announcements including a new Facebook Import option for native campaigns, video ads on the audience network, and expansion into New Zealand, Australia, and Canada.
Check out this post to learn more about these new Audience Network announcements and features, which also includes clips from Marketing O’Clock as Microsoft’s Evangelist, John Lee, discusses each of these new features.
Expanding Auto-Bidding Options
Microsoft plans to expand its auto-bidding options. Target Impression Share is currently in pilot and Portfolio Bid Strategies are coming soon.
Coming Soon: Unified Smart – an SMB Hub for Multi-Channel Campaigns & Social Media Management
Microsoft announced that. Businesses will be able to create “Smart Pages”, which allows businesses to set up a website for their advertisements to use as a landing page. The website is intended to be used as their webpage for all sources; meaning, they could also use this site as a destination for ads run on other networks.
Coming soon: Unified Smart campaigns, which will enable advertisers to set up campaigns in a simple interface where advertisers choose their goals, input their URL (which could be their Smart Page but does not have to be).
For search campaigns, advertisers will be able to choose keyword themes. Unified Smart goes beyond search, though. Advertisers would be able to target audiences on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter with ads. Linkedin is planned as a later addition.
The current plan is for advertisers to have one budget which is shared across all channels.
Unified Smart’s audience targeting is AI-based, using data points from setup inputs, business type, the URL, and other information shared.
Businesses will also be able to post to their social channels and respond to comments all from the Unified Smart interface.
Unified Smart will track calls and/or conversions, visits, time on site, visits to specific pages, and more so that businesses can monitor the performance of their efforts.
Expanding into New Geographies
In addition to all of the new releases that Microsoft has announced, they’re also continuing to expand into additional geographies. Microsoft plans to expand into 29 new countries in 2021. They haven’t yet announced which countries will be part of the expansion.
Requesting Access to the New Betas
To request access to any of the Microsoft Ads betas, reach out to your Microsoft Ads account team or support.