Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Starting an Online Business? - Guide 9 - Building Your Customer Base

Every business that owns a website or ecommerce solution online must include a section where a visitor can leave their email address. This may be to sign up to a newsletter or enter a competition, whatever the instance maybe, having a facility for the visitor to leave their details is essential to future sales and future visits.

Only a small number of visitors will share their information with the website, but those who do can be formed into repeat visitors and potential sales. Ecommerce software that provides latest offers and incentives for the visitor to leave their information, will achieve higher results and greater customer contact.

Protecting a customer base is an important factor for an ecommerce solution as once the visitor has trusted the website to store their information they expect it not to be utilised for other uses. In the ecommerce software privacy statement on the website it is important to keep the businesses word when dealing with customer’s information. In a lot of privacy statements it ought to state that the business will not sell or distribute customers email to others. If the business respects the privacy of its customers and subscribers then it must supply relevant, useful emails, the businesses reward will be repeat visitors and a personal audience for important updates that is made on the website. Some news website send out emails daily but if the website is an ecommerce solution then sending out emails once a week or even monthly may get a bigger response as the customer will not have numerous unimportant emails, just the one relevant, useful email.

Offering incentives to your customer base to share to their friends is now an important marketing tool in today’s social environment. A business may try various incentives before a successful option is conceived. By adding a share button option within an email or on the website opens up the ecommerce solution to other prospective customers and uses the current customer as a reliable sales person. Some other alternatives to get the customer to share the service or product are to give the customer more chances to win in a competition if they share it with their friends or to offer a discount code when they have recommended a certain number of friends.

Building a customer base can greatly increase your visitors and sales on an ecommerce solution, by having a loyal following that use your businesses service and products can bring in a new customer base only available through your current customers. By having a social aspect when building your customer base utilises the change in the current market as customers recommend customers through social media.

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