Let’s all face it, accounting isn’t the most exciting part of running your business. But with that being said, it’s an important and can’t be ignored. With the rise in technology many different types of accounting software has been created. If you are just starting a business, or looking for a new software to use, look no further. Listed below are a few of our favorite accounting software options for your eCommerce business.
Xero is a cloud based accounting software that offers a plethora of options at a good price point. It is specifically marketed towards small and medium sized businesses. The program provides features such as invoicing, payroll processing, inventory management, and others. It is starting to gain popularity with more and more bookkeepers and accountants. Many are now Xero partners. Xero also has the ability to pair with over seven-hundred different apps to help keep track of everything. If you’re trying to integrate directly, Xero does support direct integration with BigCommere and Shopify.
Xero has three different types of plans that your business can use. Prices start as low as $9 USD / Month.
QuickBooks is an accounting software package that was created by Intuit. This is a popular software that has been around for quite some time. Quickbooks online is perfect for small to medium sized businesses. Quickbooks has been made to optimize the user experience with a user-friendly navigation and it has many features that can be accessible by just one click. There is also a mobile application which will allow you to do accounting when you don’t have access to your laptop or desktop. Quickbooks offers a direct integration with Shopfiy and BigCommerce for those looking to make the process as seamless as possible.
There are many online videos and resources to help you better understand Quickbooks and all of the features that it has to offer. If you need any additional help with QuickBooks, they offer a strong online support. QuickBooks is tiered and offers multiple plans, they start as low as $10 USD / Month.
Wave Accounting is an online accounting software that is designed for small businesses and entrepreneurs. It is a perfect program to use if you are just starting out or if you have a small budget. Wave offers many of the features that the programs above do, it is very simple and has mobile application that you can download. If you would like to use Wave with Shopify or Bigcommerce, there is no direct integration available but it is possible to use third party apps.
Wave has a tiered pricing, just like many of the other programs. The most basic level of the program is free.
This is another cloud-based accounting software. It has been designed to be very simple, with no hassle to manage your business’s accounting. FreeAgent has a few unique features that other programs do not. One of the features, is hassle-free expense tracking. You can take a photo of the receipt on the application, and it will upload it into your documents. FreeAgent also provides you with the option to link in your bank statements, for easier viewing of all of your spending.
It is important to note that FreeAgent doesn’t include some features that larger businesses may use more regularly. For example, it doesn’t have purchase order tracking, or inventory management. If you would like to use FreeAgent with Shopify or Bigcommerce, there is no direct integration available but it is possible to use third party apps.
FreeAgent doesn’t have tiered pricing like many of the other programs. It is $12 USD for the first six months, and then after that it is $24 USD / month.
Accounting isn’t the most glorious part of a business but it must be done. Hopefully after examining a few of the programs, you are on your way to choosing a new program to help with the nitty gritty part of your business. Remember before you commit to any particular accounting program to do your research and see how it will work with your sales platform. If you have any questions, please reach out to our team.
Setting up and building an e-Commerce business isn’t as easy as some people view it from the outside, some think you just upload products to the internet and you will start making money. Unfortunately starting an e-Commerce business isn’t that easy. There are a lot of different steps that you must go through and consider before you have a site up and running. One of the most important things to consider is the platform that you are going to use to host your e-Commerce site. In this article we are going to examine some of the factors you should consider when choosing your e-Commerce platform.
This is one of the first and most important aspects that a business will consider when choosing the right platform. If you are just starting out, you probably have a limited budget and won’t be able to afford a costly monthly fee. Many e-Commerce platforms offer a tiered pricing system, many have a budget level that still offers the majority of the features. Then it will go up and more features will be unlocked with each step up. It’s important to compare the features you can get on each.
Depending on the pricing it will also affect the types of payments you will be allowed to process when customers are placing orders. Some platforms will accept certain types of payment, and others will not. Sometimes you have to pay extra to allow third-party payments such as PayPal. Look into the types of payments you would like to be able to process before choosing a platform.
Phones have become a large part of our everyday life, and now it has become a part of our online shopping routine. It is important to consider platforms that allow an easy transition from desktop to mobile. Some perform this transition better than others, take a look at websites that are already running on platforms that you are considering. Compare the desktop version to your phone.
Is it as responsive? Are all of the images still loading? How user friendly is it? Putting yourself in the customer’s shoes will help you enhance the experience on your own site.
Another important thing to look into when choosing a platform is the integration that it can have with other programs. These other tools and programs can help you run your business in a much smoother way. Shopify and Bigcommerce, for example, both have plenty of plugins to allow you to use other applications with your platform. Bigcommerce has a page showing all of the different plugins that are available, and which ones they recommend as well.
If you have certain applications that you already use, or applications you know will be critical to your site, take a look at the platforms plugin options before committing.
As much as we like to think that this is a perfect world, it sadly is not, and not everything will go as planned. A site will go down, servers can freeze, payment can’t be processed, there is a whole number of things that can go wrong. This is why it is so crucial to read reviews and see how each platform deals with these situations as they arise.
When reading about the customer service there are a few things you should consider:
How often are they available, is it all day everyday?
What methods can you use to contact the support team?
How quickly do issues usually get resolved?
It is going to take you a lot of time, money, and effort to set up your e-Commerce website. Make sure that this time and money isn’t being wasted! Nothing is more frustrating than setting up your website, and a few months later deciding to switch the e-Commerce platform that you’ve been using. The factors we listed above are just a few of the things you should consider. Make sure to take your time, and if you need any help, please let us know.
30 years ago the internet was a passing fad, it has since grown into a critical component of everyday life. All this growth has changed how many of us market online and the skills we need to do so. A key player in this game is Google. The tools Google provides for businesses, such as Adwords and Analytics, are popular resources that almost every business is now using. This has inspired Google to create a set of certifications to help individuals get better at using these products, and to help use them more efficiently for their business.
Google Analytics is a popular web analytics tool created by Google. It provides you with information on traffic to your website, how consumers interact with your website, purchasing information, and many more topics. If you are new to Google Analytics, Google has created the Google Analytics Academy to help you start using this program for your online business. This is also a great tool for anyone in the marketing field to become more familiar with this popular tool. The Google Analytics Academy is the resource you need to be using if you use Google Analytics for your website analytics. The academy provides 6 different certifications that you can complete, starting from the very basics and moving up to the more complicated ways to use the program. If you are looking for additional information on Google Analytics you can find it here and here.
Google Ads is an online advertising program created by Google for the Google ad network. This includes the Google search engine, websites, and any mobile applications that Google has created. It allows companies to display short ads, product listings, videos, and other forms of advertising on the Google network. This network has a massive audience and could be very beneficial for your company. Like Google Analytics, there is a Google Ads Academy. There are multiple different lessons you can take to give you a better understanding of how to use the program and how it can benefit your business. Personally I think that the Google Ads Mobile, Search, and Display are the first few lessons that you should complete. You can find more info on Google Ads here.
Google offers additional programs on top of the Google Ads and Analytics training. Google has another academy known as Google Digital Academy. This program offers a wide range of programs to help companies to stay ahead of changes. They provide this information in videos on Youtube and articles that can be accessed online. Google also has a physical Academy space in London, so if you live in England or are visiting, it would be worth stopping in for a class or two. Are you still looking to learn more? Google has made a mobile application called Primer. The main focus of primer is to provide you with quick, easy, and interactive ways to continue learning new marketing strategies. It provides lessons on the ever changing marketing world, and also provides refresher lessons on more basic, but essential topics. There are over 18 topics available on Primer. The best part about Primer is that you can take the lessons anywhere and at anytime, you can even use the application if you don’t have service.
With the ever changing world of marketing, Google is going to have a significant impact on how you choose to run your online business. Google has multiple tools that can help take your business to the next level. Luckily they have made these products free, and the training and resources associated with them as well. If you have any questions about Google’s products and how to use them, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our team.
Social media is one of the fastest growing and most powerful business tools that can be used at a relatively inexpensive price. When considering what social media platforms to invest time in, Instagram should be on the top of your list. It is a photo and video platform that was started in 2010, and has been growing rapidly ever since. Instagram has over a billion monthly active users making it as much a necessity as an opportunity for businesses.
Over the years Instagram has implemented updates and platform changes to keep up with competitors such as Snapchat and Facebook. Some of these updates have been made to help businesses sell products on the social media platform. We would like to introduce you to these business friendly updates to help your business get started selling on Instagram.
Instagram Business Account
The first thing you will need to do before you start to build your profile and sell products is to set up an Instagram business account. You can choose which type of profile you would like when first setting up your account, but don’t worry, a personal account can be switched to a business account at any time. A business account can become verified, have additional contact information, and can allow you to advertise on Instagram. Business accounts also give you access to features such as Instagram Analytics, which will help you track performance. These additional features will help you step up your game, and better understand the impact your posts are having on your audience.
Below is Vans Instagram Business account. You can see that right next to the name it has a blue check mark which means it has been verified. This allows your customers to know which is the official account for a brand. Instagram now allows all business accounts to apply for verification just go to “Settings” then “Account” where you will find a form to apply for verification.
This is a separate feature that is now being used by most users that have an account on Instagram. Instagram stories are photos or videos that are available to view for only 24 hours. To use Instagram Stories, head to the top bar of your profile, from there you just need to click on the + button around your profile picture. From here you can take a new photo or video, or upload one that you have already taken. When someone else you are following uploads new content to their Instagram Story, you will see a multi-colored ring light up around their profile picture. Stories are a great way to interact with your audience on a less formal basis than the traditional posting formats.
So how can this feature be used to sell products? When posting an Instagram story, brands with more than 10,000 followers have the option to include a link in your post. When you do this, customers just need to “swipe up” and they will be taken to the corresponding link. Many brands will posts photos of products and link the URL to their online store. Brands will also use this feature to gain traffic to other parts of their website. Below is an Instagram Story from an action sports film company known as Teton Gravity Research. They are using the “swipe up” story feature to bring their audience to an article recently published on their website.
Instagram Shoppable Posts
This is a relatively new feature that Instagram released in 2018. It is a feature that allows customers to complete their entire buying journey without even leaving the Instagram application. These posts are marked with a small shopping bag icon in the bottom left hand corner. Once having everything set up, tagging a product in a photo is just as easy as tagging a person in a photo.
Pictured above is an Instagram Shoppable post from the backpack company Osprey. In the post there are two products that are being shown with the corresponding prices. To view the product, a customer simply clicks on the “view products” page. This will then pull up all of the products that are in the post, providing the customers an opportunity to view the products on your own website. The great thing about this shopping feature, is that it won’t make you leave the Instagram application, everything is done within it.
So how do you start using the shoppable feature of Instagram? First you need to complete a few steps:
You must be located in a country where the feature is currently available, there are currently 46 countries.
You need an Instagram business account
Must have the latest version of the Instagram application
Your business profile must be connected to a Facebook catalog. This can be created using a business Facebook page, Bigcommerce, or Shopify.
If you meet the above requirements, you can add the Instagram channel to your Shopify or Bigcommerce at no additional cost. Then you enable the “Shopping Feature” under the Business Settings on the Instagram Application.
Link in Bio
Another very popular way for businesses to advertise products is by placing a link for customers to click in their bio. A business’s bio is located under the name of the business. It is where businesses can fill in any additional information they want, such as hashtags, business hours, location, or any other relevant information they want customers to see when visiting their profile.
A business will create a post mentioning a certain product or line of new products and tell customers to click the link in their bio. This requires some effort from the customer, but if done well, it takes only a few taps of a phone screen and customers will quickly be on your website shopping your products. Shown below is a link that Stance Socks placed in their bio for customers to view products that are new for the Fall of 2019.
Even though selling on Instagram is becoming easier, it is important that you are not only selling products to your audience. They are following your brand/business for a specific reason and don’t want to only see advertisements and posts about buying services or products. It is important to continue with the same content strategies you have created for your brand and expect to have success with in the future. It’s easy to overwhelm your customers with shopping related posts so make sure you strike a balance of genuine content posts and shopping posts. If you have any questions please feel free to reach out to our team, we would love to help you out.
Google My Business is a free tool for both businesses and organizations to manage the online presence that they have within Google, this also includes Google Maps and Google Search. In GMB(Google My Business) you add info such as your business name, hours, location, and you can show/respond to reviews. Editing and verifying this information will make it much easier for customers to find your business. Below we will be going over the benefits of Google My Business and how to set it up for your own business.
Benefits of using GMB
Manage Your Information – Google My Business allows you to manage the information that customers see when they are doing research on your business. You are able to verify your information through Google, which helps customers consider it more trustworthy. When people find your business on Maps or Search it is important that you have the correct information available. This will help to draw in more traffic to your business.
Interact With Customers – With GMB you are able to read and respond to the reviews that have been posted about your business. You can also post photos to show off what your business does.
Understand & Expand Presence – An important feature you can use is insights. This will show you how customers arrived on your website and where they are from. You can create & track Smart campaigns, allowing you to enhance the following of your brand.
How To Set Up Google My Business
Setting up a Google My Business account is fairly easy, and doesn’t take that long. If you follow the steps listed below, it will allow you to maximize the benefit you can receive from GMB.
Create A Listing – The first thing that you need to do is to create a Google My Business listing. To start this, you need to first sign into the Google account that you would like associated with the business, and then go to google.com/business.
After that it prompts you to fill in information about your business. You will need to provide your business name, location, website, phone number, and business category.
Verify Your Listing – This is a very important step, that is sometimes overlooked. Verified businesses on Google are more likely to be trusted compared to unverified businesses. There are many ways to become verified, we will cover some of them below.
A common way to become verified, is by phone. If you are eligible you will see the “Verify by Phone” option when you go to verify your business. Google will send you a text to the number that you provided earlier in the process, from here you must enter the code that they sent to you.
Another common way is by email. If you are eligible for this option, you will see “Verify by Email” option when you go to verify your business. Google will use the email that you provided and send you an email. When you open the email up there will be a link to click that will verify your business.
Some businesses will be able to have “instant verification.” This is possible if you have already verified your business by using another tool called Google Search Console.
Optimize Your Listing – Now that you’ve created your listing, it isn’t over yet. It’s time to finish creating your profile so it will be as beneficial as possible to all the people that look at your Google My Business profile.
The first thing you should do is to go to the “info” section, and add as much information as possible. Make sure you have a profile photo, correct hours, your website url, phone number(s), and attributes for your business. An attribute would be a characteristic such as “free wifi”.
Another thing you should do is add photos to your profile. This will help customers get a better idea of what you offer, and it can help to draw them in. For example, if you are a restaurant, add photos of the food, drinks, and the atmosphere. If done right, this will help to draw customers in. On your GMB profile, customers will also be able to add their own photos from experiences in your business.
Another important aspect to add is the location of your business. On top of the physical address you can add the location on Google Maps, and show the street view from Google Maps. This will assist customers by giving them multiple reference points when looking for your business.
You can edit your listing at any time by logging into your profile and heading down to the “info” tab. We suggest periodically checking on your GMB listing to make sure that all of the information is current. Sometimes business will forget to change things, such as Winter back to Summer hours of operation. There is also a Google My Business mobile application. You can download this to a mobile device to edit information on the go, add photos, and to view available insights.
Google My Business is a simple and free tool that every business should be utilizing. It won’t take long to set up and fill in with information. Using the tips and tricks we’ve listed above should help your business receive more traffic and hopefully an increase in sales. If you have any questions, or need any help with this process, please let our team know.
BigCommerce is an all-in-one e-commerce platforms that offers a wide variety of tools and solutions for businesses of all sizes. It provides users with a large amount of scalability and has some of the best built-in features of an e-commerce platform. BigCommerce can seem quite intimidating as a first time user, but follow the steps in our tutorial and you will have your website up and running in no time!
Step 1:Set Up Your Account
When first starting to use BigCommerce, they give you a 15-day free trial to try the software. To access this trial, simply go to the homepage and click the “get started” button in the top right hand corner.
After that, you must fill out some information to get started. They will ask you for an email, a password, and some general information about your business. This will help BigCommerce set up your demo website. It only takes a few minutes after you submit all of the info to have your initial website created.
Step 2: Follow the BigCommerce Dashboard Tour
When accessing your new site for the first time, the BigCommerce dashboard will prompt you with the option to take a tour of your new dashboard. We found this tour to be very beneficial and will cover the basic layout of the software. It will cover topics such as marketing, sales, and how to manage orders for your business.
Step 3: Store Name & Address
If these details were not entered at the start, the set-up wizard will prompt you to add this information. You can access this information by clicking on “Update Your Store Settings.” Under this section you will be able to add a name, address, phone number, and other contact information.
In this section you are able to mark your site as “Down for Maintenance”. This will allow for your site to display this message until you are ready to unveil it to the internet and all of your prospective customers!
Step 4:Choosing Your Theme & Logo
The templates that BigCommerce offers for its users are known as “themes.” You are provided with two free themes. These themes are modern and responsible, but have fairly basic features. If you are looking for more options, there are themes that you can pay for. The price for paid themes range from a one time payment of $150 – $300 per theme. Paid themes offer more layout and options compared to the free options. If you are unsure about a paid theme, you can view what it would look like on your individual website before you purchase.
It is important to note that when you change from one theme to another, any customization will be deleted. This means that you will need to keep track of what you have been adjusting to your current website before you switch to a new theme.
On the left-side menu, right below themes, there will be a tab called “Logo.” Click this and it will allow you to upload your company’s logo.
Step 5:Add Products
Now that you have set up your store to make it visually stunning, it’s time to add some products to the shelves.
To start this process, the first thing you need to create are the product categories you would like reflected on your online store. To add categories, click on “Product Categories” under the “Product” page. Your demo store will have some pre-loaded categories based on the type of store you chose. You can delete the ones you don’t need, and add others. Under each new category, you need to add a name, URL, and description to the category.
Once you have your categories set, it’s time to add your products. First you need to click on the “Add” tab under the products drop-down menu. Once you click on this, you will see multiple different fields to add your product information. The most important aspects to add when first entering product information is:
After you enter a few products into your store, you can view them all in a list by “view” under the products drop down menu. Under this list you will also see the demo products that BigCommerce added, you can delete these the same way that you delete the preloaded categories. If you need any extra help loading products into BigCommerce, you can find more information here.
Step 6:Shipping Rates & Methods
It’s almost time to start selling products online, but you first need to figure out how you’re going to ship products to customers. To set this up, head over to “Store Setup” and then click on “Shipping.”
The first set of information you are asked to enter is the businesses address. After that it’s time to set up what you would like to charge for shipping. Some business offer free shipping on all orders, or none at all. If you decide you want to charge for shipping, the easiest way to do it is by offering a flat rate shipping price. To set this up, you click on the “Flat Rate” shipping option, you can decide what you would like to charge for each order that you are shipping.
While setting shipping up, you should also set up your payment options. BigCommerce offers its own payment processing service, or if you already have one set up, you can use that too. To find the payment options, click on “Accept Credit Cards & Paypal”. From here, if you would like to use BigCommerce’s payment service, you can set it up. If you already use Square, Paypal, or another merchant account, you can set it up below.
Step 7: Store Information Pages
You are almost able to launch your website using BigCommerce! One of the last things you need to do is to fill out your store information pages. Having these pages will allow you to communicate your brand to customers and to help answer common questions. BigCommerce makes this process easy by providing a web pages section where you can customize information pages. A few of the most common store info pages are:
Shipping & Returns
Step 8:Launch Your Site
It’s finally here, the moment you’ve been waiting for! After following all the steps listed above, you’ve added enough information to launch your e-commerce website. Click on the orange button that says “Launch Your Store.” After you press this, your store will be live and you can start selling products!
Choosing Your Plan:
Once you’ve decided that you want to host your website through BigCommerce, it will be time to decide what plan is right for you. Three different monthly plans are offered, standard, plus, and pro. BigCommerce also has an enterprise option, this is a custom option for larger businesses that are looking to take their growth to a new level. All of the plans have different features to help suit small startups all the way up to large corporations. You can find out more about the BigCommerce plans, here.
BigCommerce offers helpful resources for consumers on their website. They send out a weekly newsletter that is filled with helpful tips, strategies, and news happening in the ecommerce world. If you are looking for more specific information, BigCommerce offers helpful guides that you can download, and free webinars to watch. All of these resources can be used to help better understand the software and how it can be used to benefit your business. To find out more about this additional information, click here.
BigCommerce is a strong tool that can be used to take your business to the next level. It provides features that all businesses can use, at a top-tier price. The steps we have listed out above, will help you set up your website quickly and effectively. But these steps only scratch the surface of what BigCommerce is able to do. If you have any questions about setting up your new website with BigCommerce, feel free to reach out to our team.
Inbound Marketing is a methodology that helps to draw customers into your business instead of you reaching out to them. When focusing on inbound marketing, you create helpful content that will attract qualified customers to your website. This content is usually in the form of a blog post, social media, or SEO. The idea of inbound is to present your business in a helpful way compared to the traditional outbound methodology of marketing. Inbound marketing forgoes the ways of the pushy selling techniques that consumers are all too familiar with. The content that you create will help to solve a customers problem or provide them with additional information that they are looking for.
The term inbound marketing was first coined by, Hubspot, and they have continued to help expand the understanding and methodology of inbound marketing. They have created the process of inbound marketing as attracting, converting, closing, and then delighting customers. Hubspot offers a lot of online courses to help learn inbound, this article is actually a form of inbound in itself. You can see some of their courses and offerings by clicking here.
Benefits of Inbound Marketing:
Increase Trust – This is one of the biggest benefits of inbound marketing. When customers view your content they gain valuable information, whether they knew they needed it or not. This helps consumers view your brand as a place where they can find useful content and not just spend money, ensuring they will return to your site over others.
Higher Quality Traffic – By creating specific content, you can draw in a more specific consumer demographic to your website. This will help turn your traffic into potential sales and revenue for your customers by bringing in less consumers that aren’t interested in your products/services.
It’s Inexpensive – That’s right, it’s cheap, at least for the most part. It doesn’t cost your company any extra overhead to produce videos, blogs, and social media content. Usually someone on the marketing team can take care of this, another option would be to bring on an unpaid intern to help create and manage this type of content.
Lasting Impact – Inbound marketing can help to create a lasting impact on your consumers. If a video or blog post stood out to them, they might bring it up in conversation or share it on social media. This again will help to bring more consumers to your website. It will also leave the customer thinking about your brand, and hopefully bring them back to your website.
It is important to note that success with inbound marketing campaigns will not come overnight, it will take some time. Make sure to keep creating content even if there is not a significant change in website traffic. After you have started to produce inbound marketing campaigns, it is important to analyze the results. This will help you better understand what types of content your consumers are most interested in, and what you can tailor future content to be about.
How Inbound Marketing May Be Used:
Since inbound marketing is so broad, there are a number of ways that it can be used in a business setting. Below are some examples of how to use Inbound Marketing.
An online kitchen store has been seeing a drop in customers that are visiting their site. They would like to draw more qualified customers to their website. Their marketing director created a few options to attempt to attract more qualified visitors. They suggested:
– Write blogs on their favorite items in the store
– Produce videos of new recipes
– Send out a weekly newsletter with cooking tips
A small marketing firm is trying to consider new ways to inform its customers on the benefits and services that they offer. The firm decides to:
– Post customer testimonials on social media
– Write blog posts about current marketing trends
– Create downloadable ebooks
– Bi-weekly web seminars
Inbound marketing has grown to become an important aspect of the marketing mix for an e-commerce business. It helps to attract high quality visitors to your site and creates a better relationship with these visitors. This in turn will help to increase sales and revenue for your business, all being done at an affordable price. Not sure where to start? Reach out to our team and we would love to help you out.
Google Analytics is a powerful tool that you should be using in your marketing mix. It allows you to view a magnitude of data from your website that you can use to assist in making educated marketing decisions. There are so many options with Google Analytics that it can sometimes be overwhelming on where to start and what features are the most applicable to your business. Listed below are some of the features that we find the most helpful for any e-commerce business.
We have previously covered Google Analytics. If you need a general overview of the application, you can see it here.
This section can be somewhat intimidating if you are unsure what to look for. By using the behavioral flow feature on Google Analytics, you will be able to track your user’s step-by-step experience navigating your website. It allows you to see what pages they clicked on, if they backtracked, and where you might have lost them along the way. Using data from this section can help optimize the journey for your users and guide them to making a purchase.
A behavioral flows feature that I find specifically beneficial, is that it shows you the page that visitors started on. This can help you better understand where the traffic from your site is coming from. Whether that is from a marketing campaign, social media advertisements, or users clicking onto the homepage from Google.
The audience reports gives you an insight into the users that are traveling to your website. It provides you with multiple variables that you can click on ranging from demographics, interests, and even the operating system they are running when visiting your site. Knowing this information about your traffic can help you make more direct connections with them and how you choose to represent your company.
There are many avenues in this section, but I think that one of the most interesting is the Behavior section. These reports provide a gold-mine for understanding how your audience is interacting with your website. It provides how recently they visited, the frequency of the users, the time they spent on the sight, the number of sessions, and multiple other things.
Do you consider yourself a Google Analytics pro? After using the software for a while it could be time to step your game up and try custom reports.
Using this feature of Google Analytics allows you to view your data exactly how you want to. To create your own custom reports in Google Analytics you just need to scroll down on the right side. It will provide you with multiple variables that you can customize to see the exact data that you want. Because of this it will help you save time by producing more efficient reports and provide you with the exact data that you’re looking for.
If you are still trying to gain more Google Analytics experience, I suggest checking out the training certifications that Google offers. There are six different courses that cover a wide range of topics. The certifications combine watching short videos with step-by-step tutorials to help you gain the most out of each course. Upon completion of these courses you will be able to set up more complicated configurations, more complex data analysis, and more marketing tools to help grow your business. You can find an overview of the certifications here.
We hope this article showed you just the beginning of Google Analytic’s power. Utilizing these new features on Google Analytics will help you capture the full benefits and maximize your use of the application. If you need any assistance Google Analytics, feel free to reach out to our team.
Product descriptions are an important aspect of an e-commerce business. Unfortunately, they often get overlooked or underutilized. It is easy to fill this area with unappealing information, or just to copy the factory specifications from your supplier. This should be avoided at all costs. Although it may take some time, we advocate having strongly written product descriptions which can help to increase sales and revenue for your company.
A product description is used to show a products value to a potential customer on your website. If done well, it will provide features and benefits of the product which will influence a potential customer to purchase. A product description should include a description on how it can fix a customers problem. Many times customers go shopping to find a solution to a problem, this is a perfect area to highlight why your product is the best for them.
Below are some of the tips that we have created to help you get the most out of your product descriptions:
Write Your Product Descriptions:
Sounds easy right? Many e-commerce retailers tend to copy the description and facts that are provided by the manufacturer. Some of these facts and features will be relevant, but not all of them. Make sure to take some time to develop and write at least part of your product descriptions, it will help you stand out to your consumer.
Tell a Story:
This doesn’t have to be an elaborate fairy tail, but writing a story about the product can help sell it to the customer. You could use storytelling aspects to talk about the product’s history, or highlighting how it could help solve a specific problem.
Write For Your Target Audience:
This is one of the most crucial aspects to consider when writing product descriptions. Would you use the same language when selling a television on craigslist as you would selling it to your mother? Probably not. When writing these descriptions it is important to use phrases and words that are relevant to your target audience and their uses.
You won’t be able to make every description perfect when you first write it. You will have to test different variations to see what works best for your website. If you notice low conversion on a product, consider adjusting the description in slight increments and measuring the results.
Make sure to include all of the details that are applicable to the customers shopping on your website. If you notice an influx of emails asking about certain product features, include those on the description. Some consumers want more details, while others want only a small amount of information.
Easy To Read:
I know that we’ve given you a number of tips so far, but don’t let your descriptions get overly complicated. Make sure that they will be easy to read and comprehend for the users visiting your website. Have others read your finalized description to see if they can identify the main selling points.
Product descriptions are an important part of your website, and shouldn’t get brushed under the table. It will take some time and creativity to understand what aspects are important to include in your descriptions. If you need any help, feel free to reach out to our team.
Consumers are becoming more alert and aware of what you send to their inbox. They are sick of spam email! Sending creative and strategic emails can ensure that your emails stand out among the thousands of emails received by your busy consumer daily. Creating captivating emails gives the consumer the incentive to open that email rather than continuing to scroll by. Sending effective emails will help increase traffic and sales to your website.
Who is this for: This article is for online businesses that are looking to increase sales and visits to their website from automated emails. This could be used by business owners, marketing directors, marketing agencies, and more. This article will help you understand why these emails are important and provide helpful tips to get started. It will also allow you to make adjustments to existing email templates to help you get the most out of every email.
In order for new email campaigns to work you should have an established website with products or services that are available to customers.
Listed below are six of the crucial emails that will increase your email efficiency when sending them to customers. Under every email there will be examples and tips to help you get the most out of each email template. If you want additional examples, you can sign up for our templates here.
A welcome email has become a standard across online marketplaces. Shortly after signing up for an account, a websites newsletter, or making a purchase, the customer will receive an email thanking the customer and telling them more about their brand or service. Normally this will be the first official form of contact that a business will have with a prospective customer.
It is important to note that this email will set the tone and expectations for other emails you send in the future. This in return will help to influence the consumer to open future emails from you. What makes a great welcome email? Here’s what we think:
Include a brief and appealing overview of your business
Be Gentle on selling products
Include brand imagery
Track open rates to see what is working and what is not
Offer opt-in rewards for signing up, such as a first order discount
Add social media information in the email
Welcome Email Example:
Listed below are a few examples of welcome emails. The first email is from Vermont Smoke & Cure. This email uses a pun to engage and make consumers see their sense of humor. The email has a nice photo highlighting the examples of the product that the company sells. It also shows how consumers can use the product, pairing meat with hummus and vegetables. Provided in this first email is a coupon code that can be applied for 10% off their first order, to incentivize a product purchase.
The next email is from Hulu, a movie and television streaming service. This email thanks the user for signing up and welcomes them to the service. It provides a concise overview of the service and then has photos to engage the consumer. Hulu also added a silly catch phrase at the bottom “Get your TV on” to encourage the customer to start using the service right away.
The welcome email sent by Uber, a transportation network company, is one of my favorites. It thanks the consumer and provides a short description of the service. It also includes a photo of the application, to give the customer an idea of what it looks like. A link is also provided so consumers can download and start to use the application immediately.
Abandoned Cart/Browse Abandonment:
No company benefits when a customer adds a product to their shopping cart, but doesn’t follow up with the purchase. The good thing is, it shows that the customer expressed interest in that product. Abandoned cart emails recapture the consumer’s interest and will hopefully create a sale. Some companies will send these emails a few hours after not purchasing, while others will wait a few days. The ideal timing of abandoned cart emails depends on each company and the way that your customers engage with your emails. Below are tips and tricks to send successful abandoned cart emails.
Emphasizes “low quantities in stock”
Includes multiple photos of the product
Provides a link to access the abandoned cart
Gives contact information to answer any questions or doubts the consumer might have
Insert catchy phrases to pull the customer back into the process
Abandoned Cart Email Example:
Above is a simple yet effective email sent from AirBnB, a peer to peer marketplace where you can rent out houses and apartments. From previous searches on the website they were able to see what location/time frame the consumer was looking at. It is a friendly reminder to continue planning their trip and to influence the consumer to book through AirBnB. Abandoned cart emails are great because you can quickly adjust the elements to reflect the searches and experiences that other customers are searching.
This next email is from an e-commerce general store. The emails starts off with their logo, and immediately tells the customers that they left something in their cart. A photo of the forgotten photo is pictured to remind the customer of the exact. Paired with reviews of the product to help influence the customer and to show them the positive experience of others.
This is another standard that consumers are now expecting from ecommerce websites. Once an order is placed, it is important to quickly process the initial request and confirm the order to the customer. In this email you can describe the next steps in the order process and ways for the customer to track the progress of the shipment. Many companies will send an additional email once the item has been successfully shipped.
Order confirmation emails provide an opportunity for extra brand promotion. You could highlight similar products, or other services provided by your company. Here are a few tips to help you send order confirmation emails to customers.
Send them shortly after you receive the order
Thank the customer for placing the order
Give them ways to track the shipping/process
Include the order number
Provide a photo of the product they have ordered
Include opportunities for consumers to continue shopping
Order Confirmation Email Example:
This is an email that confirmed the purchase of concert tickets, making sure they display the appropriate artist and date. It added the order number and ways to reach out if there were any issues. It gave the customer all the information they needed and was easy to comprehend.
This receipt from Google is for the rental of a movie. It is similar to a traditional receipt that you would see in a storefront. But it still covers some of the important aspects we covered above. It thanks the customer and provides a description of the rental along with the total cost. Proving that your emails don’t have to be too fancy to be effective! Receiving an email receipt from an online purchase helps the customer keep track of their purchase for their records.
Post Purchase Follow Ups:
Following up with customers shortly after they have purchased a product is an important way to receive feedback on a product/service. You can provide features such as a place to put reviews, to help you sell products. In these emails it can be beneficial to highlight other products that are associated with the product(s) they purchased. Many follow up emails also have a link to direct the consumer back to the company’s main website. Below are tips to help you gain the most out of post purchase follow ups.
Send 3-5 days after the customer receives the product
Thank the customer for their purchase
Ask them to leave a review of the product
Provide a link to leave the review
Add related products to the email
Post Purchase Examples
Skylynx, a transportation service from Vancouver B.C. to Whistler B.C., sent a follow up email after I had traveled with them. It first thanked me for using their service, and asked me to leave a review of my experience. They didn’t provide any specific link, but they did provide examples of websites I could use to leave a review. It was sent about two hours after I had traveled with them, so they could receive immediate feedback on the experience.
This email was sent shortly after I received a new pair of reflective sunglasses. The company wanted to make sure that I was satisfied with the product, and provided the appropriate contact information for sending questions/complaints. Later in the email they asked for a review and provided the medium of which they would like it written. It was a short but sweet email to help make sure that I was happy with the product.
These emails offers additional value for your customers while also increasing the feeling of commitment and care to the customer. It expresses your interested about their business and life and aren’t just using them to make some quick cash. The beauty of educational content is that it doesn’t need to follow any rules. It can be anything that you would consider beneficial for your customers and help your customers gain the most they can out of your brand.
You can write articles about multiple use products, show tests on products, best practices, or write a funny write up of how your company started. Educational content can take many mediums including film and writing. Here are some tips and tricks to sending out educational content emails.
Send these emails on a regular basis, one or twice a month
Include information not obvious to the consumer
Providing value to a diverse group of customers
Include photos for products
Have others in the office create content for these emails
We send out our own educational content emails bi-weekly. We call it Taco Tuesday and it’s filled with helpful marketing information. If you are interested in signing up, you can do so here. Below is an example of a Taco Tuesday we sent our a few weeks ago. We include blog posts, videos, and recipes to help add value to the emails we send. Below are two parts of an email that we sent out a few weeks ago.
If you are interested in getting our educational content, you can sign up here (insert hyperlink here).
Cross-selling emails can be a simple but effective way to persuade a customer to make additional purchases from your brand. By compiling previous purchases you can make useful recommendations for productions that complement or are compatible with their previous purchase. Below are tips to get the most out of your cross-selling emails:
Thank the customer for the previous purchase
Provide multiple additional items
Cross-sell similarly priced items
Add links to look at the products from the email
Make sure products are not drastically different in price
This example below is from a shaving service that provides a monthly service to customers. This email sent is a reminder of what the customer was receiving, and provided additional products they could purchase. With this strategic model, a customer can add one, or multiple additional products to their cart. The more they purchase, the higher their investment in the brand becomes. This will lead to an increase in revenue for your company.
Emails are one of the easiest ways to increase conversion and traffic to your website from customers already in your system. All six of these emails have provided new options for you to follow up with the customer and keep them coming back to your business. Many of these emails can be automated, which will help you save time and ensure these emails are sent exactly when you want them to be. You can gain our email templates here (insert hyperlink) to start sending emails to customers right away.