Intelligent CXO Issue 16 - Page 42

FEATURE
Shahid Nizami , Regional Vice President , Asia Pacific and Japan , ActiveCampaign
That ’ s why it pays to curate your range , so every item you put up for sale online has the potential to make , not lose , money for your business .
Your capacity to service customers
Online or in-store : you may think of them as two separate aspects of your business , but customers don ’ t see it that way . Whether they ’ re transacting with you digitally or in real life , your brand is your brand . It doesn ’ t matter if you ’ re an international behemoth like Amazon or a boutique business with a single outlet – buyers expect and demand a consistent , high-quality customer experience across all channels . If you fail to deliver , they ’ ll mark you down accordingly .
ONLINE OR IN-STORE : YOU MAY THINK OF THEM AS TWO SEPARATE ASPECTS OF YOUR BUSINESS , BUT CUSTOMERS DON ’ T SEE IT THAT WAY .
Your product range
I ’ ve spent the last decade of my career helping companies of all stripes and sizes craft and execute e-commerce strategies that have driven topline growth and contributed to healthy bottom-line profits .
Here are five things to keep in mind when developing or overhauling yours this year .
Selling online can appear a pretty simple proposition . Put your entire product range and price list on your site , arrange an online payment facility with your bank and dispatch the orders as they come in , right ? In reality , it ’ s likely to be significantly more complex and there are plenty of opportunities for rookie players to come unstuck .
At present , for example , rising freight costs are a serious roadblock for many businesses , particularly if they ’ re located outside major hubs or they sell bulky or heavy items .
With consumers generally reluctant to pay high shipping fees , retailers may need to consider absorbing some of those costs , if they ’ re to make sales . While taking that economic hit may be good for topline growth , your bottom line may end up looking decidedly less healthy as a result .
For that reason , it ’ s essential to ensure you have the resources to not only dispatch online orders but also to manage enquiries and returns and all the other touchpoints in the customer life cycle efficiently and well . That could require you to partner with specialists that can handle aspects of your e-commerce operation , such as fulfilment and logistics . You may also need to invest in additional customer service employees who can help you deliver efficient , responsive and personalised service .
Show the right message at the right time
Stop creating multiple landing pages and hoping people land on the right ones . Send everyone to the same page and personalise it — so that your message hits right on target every time .
Additionally , you can boost store sales with smarter image placement . What ’ s the last thing each customer bought ? What might they want next ? Use each customer ’ s unique purchase history to create more opportunities to cross – and upsell by putting the right product and service images in front of the right visitors .
Opportunities to extend your reach
Any e-commerce strategy that sees you marketing your wares to existing customers , or prospects who are already aware of your brand and business , is unlikely to yield more than incremental sales growth . Pursuing symbiotic or mutually beneficial relationships with other organisations can help you to extend your reach and tap new market segments and demographics .
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