5 Ecommerce Tools that You Should Start Using Right Now
2014 was a banner year for ecommerce businesses in the U.S. when the annual e-retail sales totaled $304.91 billion, up 15.4 percent from 2013. A report by eMarketers further predicts that ecommerce in the U.S. is likely to reach $350 billion in annual sales by the end of 2015.
For online retailers it is a great time to reach out to their target audience and find new customers online. However, this is easier said than done. Building an ecommerce website is itself a daunting task; marketing it and taking care of every other detail is even more challenging. Fortunately, there are a few online tools and solutions that can take away much of the burden so that you can focus more on building a better business strategy to improve sales.
In this post, I have put together 5 ecommerce tools that you must use to give your online store a serious boost.
1. Unbxd Recommendations
A relatively new entrant in the ecommerce market, Unbxd offers personalized product recommendations for online retailers. Personalization and recommendation tools have become mandatory for ecommerce sites. A study indicates that more than half of the online consumers prefer buying from e-retailers who offer personalized experiences.
In fact, personalization and recommendation tools are critical in building customer loyalty, a motivating factor to bring customers back to your store for repeat purchases. Unbxd helps you to provide a true personalized experience by offering recommendations based on customer preferences, making the shopping experience completely 1:1 i.e. personalized for every visitor. This ecommerce tool even provides product recommendations in real time even for first time visitors.
If inventory management and ecommerce shopping carts management has been a major issue for you, CrateJoy is an apt ecommerce app for your business. This all-in-one subscription business platform helps online retailers manage everything seamlessly, ranging from their inventory updates to payments, from shipping to rebilling. Using CrateJoy, you can handle refunds promptly, enhancing your customer service even further.
Some of the features of CrateJoy include subscription optimized designs, a built-in and customizable email notification engine, the option to get a custom domain name, sales tax collection, easy data exports, automated shipping cost calculation, and a robust backend system that allows third-party integration with ShipStation, MailChimp, and so on.
Seriously consider using CrateJoy for its excellent customer service. I’d also say it’s a great option if you want to run a physical subscription product company.
Just like any other website, your ecommerce site requires SEO to drive targeted traffic and rank higher on search engine result pages. SEO, therefore, becomes an integral part of your online retail business. But a single foul practice (in Google’s eyes) can wreak havoc on your site’s backlink profile and draw a merciless penalty from Google. Honestly, you don’t want to be at the receiving end of one of these. Linkody is your link monitoring tool that will help you keep a check on your backlinks.
There entire process is automated; this tool generates a detailed report of how your backlinks are doing, their health status, and if there is anything suspicious about them. In other words, it helps you identify and get rid of bad links.
Linkody will automatically track all your new links. You will also find a number of metrics revealing the quality of the site as defined by its links. Linkody also reports the ratio of no-follow to do-follow links, and will alert you if you have lost an important link somewhere. You can also get reports about your competitors and get notified whenever they build certain types of links.
This cloud-based platform is designed to increase user engagement, click-through rates and website conversions by facilitating real-time web personalization. Evergage is based on deep user behavioral analytics to help you track visitor and user behavior, and provide personalized content and messages in real time. Better yet, you can do all these without hiring a developer.
Evergage analyzes behavioral click-through data and has the ability to identify which feature(s) a particular customer is focusing on. Leveraging this data, this ecommerce tool creates floating messages via a visual editor to draw that visitor’s attention to a specific feature.
Evergage also allows you to conduct A/B testing to optimize success. Additional advantages of using this tool include improve user onboarding, increase upsell, and reducing churn. You can also promote your most relevant content, thanks to the ability of Evergage to analyze big data accurately.
Soldsie combines social media with ecommerce and helps you boost revenue through F-Commerce. Using this tool you can make sales on the two of the most popular social networks in existence – Facebook and Instagram. It allows your followers to buy directly from your brand pages on these platforms. Soldsie also facilitates inventory management and automatic invoicing.
Now, there is a marketing gimmick involving demand and supply that Soldsie platform plays. It integrates an “element of limited availability,” to make customers feel that a particular product is available in limited quantity, giving good products a chance to go viral and leading to a noticeable surge in sales.
To make it work, all you need to do is post pictures and descriptions of your products via the Soldsie dashboard. Your followers then need to sign up with Soldsie using the Facebook app and comment “Sold” on the product photo to make a purchase. Soldsie will take care of the rest.
More than 2,000 brands are now using this tool to sell their products on Facebook and Instagram. So far, Facebook pages have known to drive more numbers of sales than Instagram due to their sheer volume of traffic.
It takes a perfect combination of marketing, search optimization and sales promotions to boost the overall performance of your ecommerce site. The tools mentioned here perform just a few functions, such as marketing your online store, recommending relevant products, managing inventory and creating customer profiles. There are many relevant and useful tools out there. Try as many as you can to gain a competitive advantage over your competitors and thank me later!
Lori Wagoner is an independent content strategist who gives online marketing advice to small businesses. Lori has blogged at Tweak Your Biz, Customer Think, Business2Community, and many other business and tech blogs. Feel free to send her a friend request on Facebook :)