The Failsafe Way to Improve Online Sales

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    14-improve-online-salesIf you think being spoiled for choice is a great thing, think again.  For the majority of us, a vast list of options is simply overwhelming and we fail to make any decision.  This holds true when we make our online purchases. 

    If you’ve ever gone to the sales, it’s a fair bet that your eyes were out on stalks looking at all the bargains.  But did you have a choice meltdown and buy nothing?  If you’d seen only a handful of goods on promotion, you would have been subconsciously steered towards buying one of them.

    Now consider your website.  Have you created a seemingly never-ending list of products in your excitement to tell your prospective customers all about them?  Well don’t be too despondent but all that hard work may have been in vain.  You must simplify your offerings to achieve more sales.  The fewer options displayed, the easier it is for your customer to make a decision, and the more likely he is to buy.  Less is more!

    Consider things from your customer’s viewpoint.  He needs to fully understand your product to see if it matches his mental check-list and to see how it compares to the competitors’ wares.  To work through an extensive list makes this process complicated and exhausting and the customer starts to drown in choices – and stays far, far away from making a decision!

    Mental fatigue caused by considering and prioritizing options is a psychological fact so before you burn-out your customer with information overload, and they leave your website never to come back, read on. 

    1. Online Shopping
      If you operate an online shopping website, you know that your customers like to browse.  Be careful how you display the matches to their search terms.  If the search term is generic then you may well have hundreds of results.  Limit the number shown on one page, ideally to below ten.  And always give the customer the ability to use filters to narrow down the selection further.


      Online Services


      If you’re selling a service, for example, cable TV or an internet service, streamline your packages.  Some people only need a light service with a reduced monthly fee; others want the all-singing, all-dancing version.  Aim for no more than 4 or 5 packages to satisfy a range of clients’ requirements or add on a bespoke option if appropriate. 

    3. Online Information

      If you sell expertise, you can’t appear as a jack of all trades, master of none.  People will be wary about the quality of your information.  Far better to focus on one thing at a time.  Some savvy companies have completely different websites to promote their different products.  Think along the lines of an author writing under a pen name to attract a new type of reader without prejudice or pre-formed expectations.

      It’s all quite simple really; get away from the mindset that more choices result in more sales.  The opposite is true:  the more the brain is needed to sift through product information, the more your sales will suffer. 

    Amanda Kelly

    Amanda is an active writer for J&R Marketing. Covering a wide range of social, marketing and business topics, Amanda also provides consulting services to many small businesses. 

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