Not only is repeat buying an acknowledgement from your customer that they liked their first purchase, it provides you with an extremely cost-effective method of increasing, if not doubling, sales of products or services.
Additionally, it is possible to give your business the best possible chance of setting the path down for repeat buying during the customer’s initial purchasing experience. Often, business owners spend a great amount of resources, from time to money, giving intensive thought into how to entice the website visitor to make a sale. From the landing page, to the visual merchandizing, from blogging and to easy functionality, all the marketing efforts are made in order to drive the customer to one place: the shopping cart. Once they have arrived at the functional and secure shopping cart page that your website includes, the customer is ready to buy.
So is the job of the marketing team done at this stage? The customer is buying, and that surely means success? Not necessarily. This is where you have the opportunity to set up the foundation for repeat sales, and here is how.
Step 1: Make Sure the Check-Out Process is Simple and Secure
If you want to encourage repeat sales, make sure that your customers believe that shopping with you is easy, efficient and secure. It goes without saying, but is nonetheless important to reinforce, that safety of online payments and the security of their online-bought packages are important to consumers. According to Comscore, half of shoppers state that the ability to track their order is important to them. This only goes to further demonstrate the opportunity in the functionality and design of the shopping cart to reconfirm your efficiency and credibility as an online shopper. By proving that shopping online with you is a positive experience, you have laid down the very necessary foundation to support their motivation to shop with you again.
Step 2: Consolidate Your Brand Image
If your online shopping is secure and efficient, you have proven that you have the basics required by consumers to be happy to shop online with you. These are minimal expectations.
There is now an opportunity to go even further, and make yourself stand out in the market against your competitors. After all, marketing opportunities within the shopping cart are often overlooked, which you can take advantage of. Show that you care beyond the sale. This will show the credibility and quality of your entire brand.
At this stage, you can leverage online marketing content to communicate a message of care and credibility. If you have developed blogs, articles, documents or guides about how to best make the most of your product as part of your marketing strategy, this is the time to make sure that your customer has seen it. It is within the layout of your shopping cartthat this is possible. By integrating your blog feed into the page, and introducing the information within as further guidance about the products and services available, you offer a beneficial both for your customer and for you. Not only does this show that you truly care about the problem that your product or service promises to solve, it also encourages your customer to revisit your site for reference again and again. This provides you with an opportunity to entice further purchases. The sales possibilities of a blog are endless, with surveys indicating that, amongst the companies surveyed that maintained a blog, 55% saw more sales than those that did not own a blog.
Make sure that your customers are benefiting from your blog before they leave you; they will be more likely to come back.
Step 3: Build a Connection with Your Customer
A study by Forbes showed that there are well over 100,000 online retailers in the US—and the number only continues to grow as the trend of online shopping becomes even more deeply ingrained into societal buying behaviour. So the question remains: how do you deter your customers from looking and shopping elsewhere? Geographical barriers no longer limit the opportunities for consumers to shop around. Furthermore, with the increasing popularity of price comparison websites, comparing the hard data of different products is made easy for your customers.
So how do you encourage your customers to come back and not be enticed to your competitors? It is possible to go beyond the hard data such as the price and the features of a product or service that are easily comparable, variable and searchable by creating a more personable connection with your customer.
There is no doubt that it would be extremely difficult, if not impossible, to create one-to-one relationships with each and every customer that buys with you. If it were possible, it certainly would not be economically viable. However, there are certain tools that can be included within the shopping cart that to inhibit a feeling of belonging to your brand. By leveraging the human need of belonging, as demonstrated in Business Psychology according to Maslow’s theories, a greater loyalty to your brand can be encouraged, which goes beyond the product’s hard facts.
Specifically, the features that you can include to encourage loyalty and a connection within your shopping cart can include, but are not limited to:
A personal profile for customers, rewarding them for their former purchases by making future buying easier. This also permits you to provide exclusive offers to your existing customers.
Blogs and email marketing sign-ups. By regularly providing fresh, useful and relevant information and guidance to your customers, you can gain their trust and keep you in mind for when they require relevant products