Friday, 17 August 2012

Out of the box advertising

With the sheer number of people looking to set up online ecommerce stores, the ability to make yourself stand out from the rest is becoming increasingly harder. While we have looked at the traditional forms of small business advertising in recent weeks, to help increase your reach to customers, maybe it's time for your business to think outside the box and try marketing ideas that you previously may not have considered.

Provide free products

Now before you start thinking that I've gone mad, I'm not suggesting you start giving out products to everyone for free, but what you could do is offer incentives to customers when they make a purchase. What I mean is that you could offer to give customers a specific item when they make a purchase over a certain amount. The product you choose to give your customers should be something that they would want but it shouldn't be something too expensive as you obviously don't want to lose money on the sale. 

Customers select your products

What this form of promotion could involve is you putting a number of different items on to your store's social media pages, for customers to then vote on. The product with the highest number of votes would then be added to your store for customers to purchase. This is a great promotion for two different reasons. Firstly, it encourages customers to actually interact with your store, increasing your number of social media followers and creating better relationships for with your customers. Secondly and probably most importantly, it means you are adding a product your store that you know will be of interest to your customers.

Customer loyalty rewards

The more products a customer purchases from your store, the more loyalty points the receive. Once the customer gains a certain number of points they receive an email or some form of contact from your store letting them know that they have gained a reward. This reward could come in store credit, a percentage off a product or free delivery on certain items. What this does is make the customer feel valued, meaning they will return to your store time and time again.

Carry out a charity based promotion

Create a promotion whereby every sale that is made in your store, a certain percentage of the transaction will go to a local charity. While this will mean you make less on each item sold, the popularity in sales this will generate will mean that you make more sales, take in more money, while helping out a local charity. Any work you can do in helping a charity or foundation is going to be fantastic PR, making more people aware of your business and increasing the likelihood that they will visit your store.

While these are simple ideas, it is the simple ideas that small businesses sometimes overlook as they go in search of grand promotion ideas to radically boost traffic and sales to their online store. Sometimes, it is doing the simple things well that is going to be the difference between success and failure, rather than looking to do the biggest promotion possible. 

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