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#5.03: The “Easy Ways to Increase Sales” Issue

Don’t forget those simple ways to increase sales online. A blurb here, a personal touch there can go a long way.

1> Compete on Convenience
2> Ramp Up Referrals
3> Hold Their Hands
4> Check It Out: Hide Your Email From Spammers

1> Compete on Convenience

Your best customers are those that have already bought from you. Make sure every subsequent purchase gets easier and easier. If you don’t simplify that second sale, it’ll be just as easy to go buy from a competitor. You already have a leg up — you know the customer, and they know you. So start adding little conveniences that deepen the relationship and lower the barriers to repeat business. Staples lets you quickly reorder from past shopping lists. Orbitz keeps your flight preferences and frequent flyer numbers so you don’t have to re-enter them. Low-tech solutions work too: discount codes for repeat orders, a refrigerator magnet with the web address, or a “buy ten, get one free” frequent buyer card. Make the comeback so simple that it would be a waste of time to do business anywhere else.

THE LESSON: Make second purchases easier than first purchases, and your new customers will become regulars.

2> Ramp Up Referrals

Tell-a-friend forms work much better when you put them in the right place. Putting it on the homepage doesn’t do much because the visitor hasn’t had time to look at the site yet. But as they dig deeper, they find the exact information they need — and that’s where they will feel a need to share it with a friend. So, put your tell-a-friend forms right on the product pages with the most detailed information. Nokia places the forms deep in their site, on the pages with specifications for each phone model. These interesting and informative pages are worth passing along. Nokia also offers a five dollar coupon with each referral to sweeten the deal. It’s also worth it if people send themselves a coupon because it’s an easy way to get them back to the site to close a sale.

THE LESSON: Make your viral tools one click away when the motivation hits.

MORE INFO: http://www.nokiausa.com/phones/6820

3> Hold Their Hands

We’re all scared of a hostile online world full of spammers, scammers, and identity thieves. That fear interferes with every purchase on your site — so go above and beyond to reassure customers. Give them the confidence that they need to buy from you. Don’t bury what you do in a privacy policy — brag about how you take care of customers. Use little reminders like “This is a secure server” and “We respect your privacy.” All forms on GasPedal’s site highlight that “We will never, ever release your email.” At the grocery store, you might toss a few bags of chips in your cart before deciding it’s a decadency you can live without. Amazon.com creates the same willingness online by saying “Add this to your cart, you can always remove it later” next to each item.

THE LESSON: Buying things online can be a little overwhelming. Ease customers’ fears, and you’ll close more sales.

4> Check It Out: Hide Your Email From Spammers

How do you put an email address on your website without spammers being able to steal it? Use Tim Williams’ Email Address Obfuscator:
http://www.u.arizona.edu/~trw/spam/spam.htm

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Privacy: We won't save or reuse these emails.

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