We regularly have clients come to us looking for marketing tips and strategies to increase sales. In some cases, they have grown from mom and pop shops into web stores with 20,000 SKU’s or more, but the inventory is languishing on the shelves.
Every business wants to know, how can they sell more? Based on our experience, we’ve listed seven practical marketing tips to answer that question. They are valid for a one-person start-up to a multinational enterprise. Although some may seem obvious, many companies ignore them and wonder why sales keep slumping.
Review your marketing strategy and see if they include these proven tactics.
1. Build a Sales Funnel
Although this is Marketing 101, many companies ignore the essential aspects of building a complete sales funnel. It’s the fundamental blueprint of your inbound automated lead/traffic generating machine. Whether you call it a funnel, pipeline, or flywheel, the idea is the same. It is to drive new business and nurture existing customers for continued sales.
Assuming you’ve set up your funnel, our marketing tip is to review every step. Your sales funnel must resonate with your customers to guide them seamlessly through your purchase process. The more customer data you collect, the easier this becomes. The next tip relies on the quantity and accuracy of your customer’s data.
2. Automate Your Marketing Techniques
Everyone secretly enjoys being remembered on their birthday or thanked for making a purchase.
Automation can make your messaging more personal and keeps your business top of mind in a friendly way. By integrating your CRM with email, your company will never forget to send out happy birthday wishes.
However, marketing automation is more than delivering birthday greetings. It’s a customer-centric, inbound strategy that collects and utilizes all customer data to provide timely, accurate information to the shopper. The goal is to guide them toward a purchase.
The information includes shopping and browsing behavior from all your marketing channels. Successful automated marketing communicates with prospects and customers on all channels, not email alone. 48% of companies that use automated marketing report ROIs of 150% or more.
3. Harness Your CRM To Build Your Email List
As we’ve seen above, building a quality subscriber list is more than just collecting names and email addresses. A good CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system captures far more data than contact information. It should provide you with historical browsing data and shopping habits by tapping into every channel, including social.
Overall, the ROI for email is about 40 times the investment. The more precise your data, the more you can segment and personalize for more meaningful results.
4. Incorporate User Generated Content
Social proof is a necessary element for any product’s marketing success. 92% of shoppers read at least one review before making a purchase. A Northwestern University marketing study found that by displaying at least five reviews, sales conversions increased by 270%.
Reviews are the most influential user-generated content (UGC) a company can get. However, UGC can also be shared comments, pictures, or videos. It is also Q&A participation, comments shared in forums, on your website, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
It’s valuable for B2B and B2C sellers because UGC increases consumer confidence and trust over company-generated advertising.
“86% of consumers say that authenticity is important when deciding what brands they like and support. Consumers are 3x more likely to say that content created by a consumer is authentic compared to content created by a brand.The Consumer Content Report: Influence in the Digital Age
5. Upgrade Your SEO & Content Marketing
SEO and content marketing make a monumental difference in your success. Why? 91.5% of all search traffic is a result of sites listed on the first page of Google. To get there means using the right keywords and content.
An SEO company, Moz, calculated that SEO generates approximately 20 times more traffic than PPC. That includes both mobile and desktop. SEO is a money tree that bears fruit long after you plant it.
If you are not posting regularly, outsource your content writing. Provide a list of relevant keywords around which the writers can build quality content. An extra tip is to be sure you write for humans and not search bots.
6. Reduce Abandoned Carts and Wish Lists
Reducing abandoned carts is a relatively effortless way to recover 25% or more of unrealized revenue. Within three months, Klaviyo, an email marketing automation platform, helped almost 3,000 U.S.-based clients recover $60 million in revenue from abandoned carts.
Abandoned cart solutions are two-fold. The first is fixing internal issues to improve a shopper’s experience. That’s everything from making your website mobile-friendly to reducing the checkout friction.
The other is with abandoned cart emails. Like we saw with Klaviyo, by merely reminding shoppers that they left something behind, retailers can recover a great deal of revenue. The more you can personalize and segment your messages, the more success you’ll have in getting them to complete the purchase.
In a similar vein, reminding people about their wish lists is another way to recover more lost revenue. People live in a state of continuous distraction, and a gentle reminder will reward your efforts with increased sales. One retailer reported an average 21.8% increase in sales marketing to customers having a wish list.
Selling to people who actually want to hear from you is more effective than interrupting strangers who don’t.Seth Godin
7. Trust Effects Consumer Buying Decision
When it comes to a brand connecting with customers, the most valuable element is trust. In an international survey of 16,000 consumers, MarketingCharts researchers discovered that 81% said that brand trust is a deciding factor whether they buy or not.
There are several methods of building consumer trust, but the single best approach is to have a branded website and use it to broadcast the latest information about your company and the latest products. It may seem like a no-brainer. However, about 30% of businesses do not post current or relevant information.
One of the greatest influences in gaining customer trust is excellent customer service. 75% of shoppers polled say customer service is why they stay (or leave) a brand.
Mutually Inclusive Marketing Tips
These marketing tips must work in unison, not independently. Building a sales funnel means having the infrastructure in place to capture customer data and then following up with nurturing emails or social posts. To do that, you need a CRM integrated with an email provider using segmentation capabilities. You will also use this information to help reduce cart abandonment.
Creating various social channels for customers to provide genuine UGC helps boost your trust. Likewise, supplementing your user content and reviews with other targeted SEO content will ultimately increase inbound traffic.
Like the transmission in your car, everything must fit together. It’s complex and continuously shifting, but a beautiful thing when everything comes together.
If you need some help incorporating these tips, we’re here to fine-tune your marketing tactics to improve conversion rates.