Tuesday, 18 September 2012

How to follow in eBay's steps with a business revamp

In the wake of eBay's new logo revamp after 17 years, have you ever thought about giving your own online store a redesign in order to help increase sales or develop a new image? 

When selling online keeping up with your competitors in product pricing, service and layout in all important. If you have great products but a poor brand image, it simply doesn't matter how good your products are, people just won't visit your store. However, the image of your business isn't just the layout of your website; it's also the logo, advertisements, blogs, social media, pretty much anything that is available for the public to see. Whether you run an eBay store or another ecommerce store, refreshing your overall look can play a large part in helping give your business a new lease of life. So if you have decided that you think your business needs freshening up, where do you start?

Well before you make any drastic changes, you first need to look at how your business is currently performing. While you personally may have grown bored with how your website looks, if the site is effective in generating customers and achieving a high conversion rate, it may be a case where the effectiveness should outweigh your own personal taste. What I mean by this is that if it's not broke, don't fix it. The next factor you should consider is how drastic do you want your redesign to be and could it potentially alienate some of your current customers. Sometimes a business will look to have a complete overhaul by not just changing the website and logo, but also changing the name of the business. If you decide to do this, you need to make sure that your old customers are aware that your new business is essentially your old business, just with a different name. The last thing you want to do is lower the total number of sales your redesigned business will achieve as some of your old dedicated customers were unaware that your business is now under a new name.

The easiest way to solve this is to carry out two simple tasks:

  • Send out an email to your current customer list, informing them of your redesign. This means giving them all the information they will require such as the new name and URL of your ecommerce store so that they cna easily access it. You may also wish to offer them some sort of relaunch promotion to help further entice them to your store.
  • Use your old web domain as a landing page to your new site. While you have left your old address form a new home, you don't simply want to leave it with no ties at all. This will just result in customers visiting your old website, finding nothing there and being left with no place to go. Using the old web domain as a landing page ensures that even if a customer is unaware of your rebranding, they will still be able to access your new site when they visit your old one. 
Now while a complete rebranding is very much at the extreme end of the spectrum, you may decide that they are just one or two minor aspects of your business that you would like to freshen up.

Website Layout - Probably the best way to give your online store a new lease of life. This means changing the colour scheme, design and also the layout of your store, making it much mire inviting for your customers, but also easier for them to find the products they would like to purchase.
Introducing New Stock - If you find that your sales have declined in recent months, you may look to try and increase the number of customers who would be interested in your products by offering a completely new line of products for sale. However, when introducing a number of new products to your store, you need to make sure that they still have something to do with what you currently sell as it will just create a confused brand image. What I mean is that if you are a company that sells sporting goods, you don't want to add a new produce line selling gardening equipment.
New Logo Design - If you have had your new logo for a while, you may look to take a leaf out of eBay's book and create a new one. When deciding how to change your logo you may design to just give the current design a more modern look, or you simply may decide to create a new one from scratch. If you do decide to make a completely new logo, like I mentioned earlier in regard to a full rebranding, you need to make sure that your customers are still able to relate the new logo to your current business.
Blog - Very much one of the lesser forms of rebranding, but could allow you to drastically increase your search engine ranking. In terms of an overhaul for your blog, I don't really mean change the design layout, although this is one thing you can look to do. What I mean is that you may change both what your blog articles are written about and how many people contribute to them. Broadening your blog subject, when combined with a number of additional or guest bloggers, gives you the ability to broaden your audience base, enabling you to produce more content over a set period, increasing your readership as a result.
Social Media - While you cannot redesign the look of your social media accounts as you are working within the set boundaries of that social media channel, you can look to reinvigorate your social media accounts by changing your overall strategy. If your number of followers or overall engagement is lower than you would have liked, you should look to change how often you post content, what content you post and how you interact with your followers in order to give yourself a more established social media presence. If you are looking to play a bigger role in your business's social media output, read our recent post 'Beginners guide to social media' for a few simple tips about what you can post on your social media site to engage with your customers.
Advertising Content - If you decide that you would like to redesign either your logo or your website layout, you must make sure that all your advertising content such as banners and other material are designed to match. This may mean adding a new logo or changing the colours on the banners so that they match the colour scheme you have chosen for your website. Having your old banners and content out there on forums, social media sites and other areas creates a confused identity for your business as you will seemingly have two different public images.
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