Articles Written by Dennis Sims

Modern Email Marketing That’s Built for Success

May 31st, 2013

Email marketing is not just sending out email blasts in the hope that you’ll get a bite. Here, we take a look at how email can help e-tailers capture every sale possible by cultivating email marketing lists and employing clever use of “abandoned cart” emails.

Abandoned Cart Emails

Abandoned cart emails are considered a “triggered” email, because they are triggered at some point after a potential or repeat customer leaves an item or items in their shopping cart without following through with the purchase. You pay to prepare these abandoned cart emails for delivery, then sit back and watch as money that would have been left unspent makes its way into your pocket. The more often a site sees cart abandonment, the better they tend to perform. There is around a 20% success rate with these, and that’s a significant amount, indeed.

Here are some tips for treating your “abandoned cart consumers”:

  • Automate your trigger email to be sent 48-72 hours after the cart was abandoned. Any shorter may feel like you’re stalking them, while any longer may run the risk of your customer having purchased elsewhere or forgotten why they needed your product in the first place.
  • Use messaging that helps achieve a better shopping experience for your customer rather than a promo-heavy email that gives them the hard sell.
  • Refer to the full name of the abandoned item(s) in the message for their reference.
  • Make it easy for your customers with a direct link to the cart with abandoned items.
  • Photos can be helpful to have to re-ignite your customer’s interest.
  • Create urgency by letting customers know when their cart will expire.
  • Consider offering free shipping or a coupon to seal the deal. But don’t do it all the time, otherwise you may generate the unintended consequence of customers purposely leaving items in their cart without buying in order to get an offer.

Building Your Email List

Companies often try to take shortcuts with their email lists by buying “qualified email leads”. The bottom line is that these people didn’t ask to be on your email list, and more often than not, they don’t want your emails. No one ever said that creating an email list was easy. Generally, it’s a long and slow process and much like building a brand, time and patience is imperative. The most important thing for growing an email list is prominence and relevance. Your email sign-up needs to be highly visible on your site; never make visitors work to find it. You also need to offer visitors something that benefits them or something they can’t find elsewhere. A line as simple as “Sign up and save X%” can be the perfect way to attract your core audience.

Email databases are constantly diminishing in size due to opt-outs, email addresses changes and other reasons. Because of this, it’s crucial to find fresh ways to grow your audience. Here are some tips for consistent email list building:

  • Ask for email addresses at the point of sale and let customers know you’ll keep them informed with upcoming discounts, events, specials, content such as blogs or a newsletter and other incentives.
  • Use social media in conjunction with email lists in order to expand your audience base.
  • Experiment with different ideas and take note of what works best.
  • Collect email addresses in return for coupons or deals.
  • Craft your CTA (call to action) in a compelling manner, informing your customers of solutions you can provide for them.

Emails are a direct communications lifeline to your customer base; choosing to treat them in a way that benefits both your business and their best interests is key to achieving email marketing success. Abandoned cart emails and the cultivation of a strong email list are a huge piece of the marketing puzzle and a good handle on them will net you nothing less than great results.

The Benefits of an Effective Social Media Marketing Campaign

May 10th, 2013

Social media marketing is all about gaining website traffic, exposure or sales through the use of social media outlets such as Facebook and Twitter. These campaigns often focus on creating content that encourages readers to spread the word, make a purchase or just produce a greater sense of brand-identification within the reader’s mind. Let’s take a look at some tools for a successful campaign. Read More »

Would You Like Anything Else With That?

August 30th, 2012

Many years ago, in another life, I used to work with my father in a delicatessen. That was the family business. I remember begging my father to let me work in the deli and he would always say next year, or the year after. Finally when I hit 14 years old, he said OK. I started out as a stock boy filling shelves, packing and unpacking boxes. It was very tedious and not much to learn. Read More »

How To Increase Conversion Rates?

April 20th, 2012

If you are reading this article, chances are you have a business, it has a website, and you aren’t making enough money that you need something better to do than look for more information. Sometimes, in the nature of the day's to do, we all forget that we have a very powerful ally in marketing our brains, and more importantly, not procrastinating. Read More »

5 Ways To Optimize Conversions For Landing Pages

April 17th, 2012

It’s always important to remember that each visitor to your website has value. Whether you are selling products directly via your E-Commerce website, or your website is designed to generate leads that you distribute to your sales force, you need to make sure you are maximizing your conversion rates, period!

I’ve discussed a/b testing and different ways that your website can be your best salesperson before. However here are 5 new things you can and should be trying.

  1. Making sure you have a website landing page targeted and relevant to the site visitors is a fantastic way of increasing conversions. If someone searched for “cheap desktop computers” the landing page should have calls to action with that term built in. You’ll have a much higher conversion rate because of it.
  2. Create multi-step forms. If you have a very long form with a lot of information, no need to have it on one form and a long drawn out page. That is intimidating to people, and will negatively affect your conversion rates. Making it shorter, with steps, will give you a better results.
  3. Have your landing pages designed with a lot of possible information on the main page. Tabs are a good way to do this, or an accordion navigation as well. This gives them the ability to change results on the landing page with the call to actions there, keeping your message strong.
  4. If your are marketing something that is based on a certain locale, it’s also very important to have your pages targeted to that local. For example, if you are in New York and you’re trying to sell tickets to Broadway shows, it would make sense to have your creative show images of NY and/or Broadway and different shows. Create a template that you can use and swap out, this is a good way to save money as well on labor.
  5. Make sure you are measuring and making changes if necessary. Check your conversion rate, and your bounce rate. If they are not where you’d like them to be, consider a/b testing and making some of the changes above.

For more information on landing page optimization, call us at 1-800-978-3417 or Contact Active Web Group and let us help you!

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To Blog or Not to Blog?

February 9th, 2012

There are so many types of website marketing efforts someone can pursue, so sometimes it can be a daunting task to try to figure out what you should be doing first. Should you be spending time with Social Media Management such as Facebook or Twitter, spending time trying to link build to increase your organic ranking or spend time and money for your company blog? Read More »

Small Business Marketing Tips

December 9th, 2011

Everyone seems to be complaining about the economy lately, at least that is what I hear around town. From my point of view, personally I believe that any business, if a little innovative and willing to put in the necessary effort, can successfully grow their revenue stream effectively as long as they are willing to pull the trigger. Read More »

What Is The Best Business Investment?

November 1st, 2011

With the recent housing market crash looming not really that far behind us, and the unsettling stock market that so many people lost their shirts on, you have to wonder or ask yourself where you should be putting your money, and what is a good solid investment?

I can’t advise you on how good an investment in Stocks or Bonds may be – but historically the stock market as a whole, is not stable enough to count on for retirement or to provide for your family. If you pick a 20 year time frame, let’s say 1928 – 1948, you would have seen an average of 2.5% over the next 20 years. If you had picked the late 50’s you would have seen an average of 5% or a little bit more. The most important thing is longevity in investing is the most important thing, and most people don’t have that kind of time in the world we live in.

I can advise you this much, if you own your own business, and you sell something tangible such as Designer Eyeglasses for instance, an investment in your business will almost always make sense. Let’s say you have a website store that sells these Eyeglasses, in addition to retail locations you may have scattered around your area. Having a properly designed E-Commerce online presence with all the bells and whistles in your shopping cart, can be a source of revenue for you that just may surprise you. (You’d be surprised how many retail chains on long island alone, don’t do it as well as they can). Many times, people who have retail locations, will have put up a website years ago, and just not paid any attention to it. Their retail business has grown, but because their website has not, they don’t pay it any mind. If you are trying to think about what kind of investment might be good for your retirement, I will tell you to invest and make sure you have the best E-Commerce solution that you can have. I can assure you, that if you are selling a tangible product, have good customer service, and you market yourself well, such as through Search Engine Optimization, that you will look back in a few years, and be very glad you made the investment. It is rare to come across a business online that is doing it 100% right. Many times there are always at least small changes, that can make a big difference in your annual sales over time.

If you advertise your ‘new and improved’ E-Commerce website correctly within your store, and receipts, and through your windows and other marketing efforts, you could really take the ball and run with it.

We have an SEO ROI calculator, just like they have on financial websites to calculate what your money could be in the future, well ours will show you what your money can do for you today.

What do I think the best investment to be? The best investment is to spend the right amount of money in your business, regardless of what type of business you have, or are selling and chances are I can promise you, that some type of Internet Marketing would make very good sense for you. SEO services, in conjunction with the branding you would already have going on, would have almost a snow-ball effect and it could very much grow in your favor if done right.

I say, the best investment is to invest back in your original idea, market yourself and your products correctly, and make sure you hire the correct people to help you implement your ideas to fruition.

For further assistance determining how to invest in your business, call us at 1-800-978-3417 or Contact Active Web Group and let us help you!

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