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#1.03: The “Close More Sales” Issue

1 > Sell Right: Sell basic products with a basic site
2 > Reach Out: Close the sale with a live chat
3 > Use The Tools: Recoup sales with smart carts
4 > Check It Out: The world needs two of you

1 > Sell Right: Sell basic products with a basic site

The Deer Park Water Web site has only one purpose — to sell the delivery of bottled water. There’s no flash or content, no company history or tips on proper hydration. Site visitors are simply brought to a page with a shopping cart, a calculator to compute the quantity and frequency of water delivery, and options to request customer service follow-up and set up payment. In less than five minutes customers leave the site with an expected water delivery date. Some companies provide online content to entertain, and others use content to close a complicated sale, but Deer Park recognizes that visitors to a water site are not seeking a distinctive user experience. They just want to buy water.

The lesson: Simple products aren’t sold with flash, but rather with convenience. You don’t need to entertain, so just get the job done. Build a site that closes the sale.

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2 > Reach Out: Close the sale with a live chat

How many sales do you think you lose online because no sales person was available to talk the customer through to the close? Live Person is one example of a company that provides online customer services solutions that let you answer shoppers’ questions, identify ways to use your product, and help close the sale. Starting at only $90 per month, this correspondence system lets your sales force interact online with customers as they browse your site. A customer can click a button requesting a live chat with a representative, and a member of your sales force is then given all necessary information to contact that customer immediately. The service combines the personalized touch of brick and mortar shop with the modern-day convenience of Internet shopping.

The lesson: Getting prospects to your site is only half the battle. Closing the sale is the tough part, and sometimes it’s the personal contact with a representative that will incite the purchase.

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3 > Use the Tools: Recoup sales with smart carts

Don’t be discouraged by abandoned shopping carts. Remember that shoppers put items in their carts for a reason — so why not send an email to visitors who didn’t complete a purchase, offering them a second chance to get the goods? built a program for about $1,200 that saves data from registered users’ abandoned shopping carts of, and later sends follow-up emails reminding them of the items that are still available. According to Webmaster Geoffrey Baker, the site benefits not only from the increase in sales, but also from the insights gained through customer responses to the emails. It turns out the most common reason cited for abandoning a cart was a customer’s being disconnected from the Internet. So why not invite them to reconnect where they’ll find their carts exactly as they left them?

The lesson: Don’t jump to conclusions. Visitors to your site are looking for something. Just because they didn’t buy the first time around doesn’t mean they’ve lost interest. Give them a little push and watch your sales numbers jump.

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4 > Check it Out: The world needs two of you

Ever wished there were two of you to go around? With nothing more than a photo and some creative thoughts on a costume, The Andgor Toy Company will customize a personalized action figure of anyone you wish! This is definitely something to check out!

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