Would you continue to pay a salesperson that never closes deals? Certainly not, you would coach or mentor them or maybe find a more suitable role. Why then would you have a website without an ecommerce store? You are doing exactly that, paying for a website salesperson that NEVER closes a deal.
A well built ecommerce store does everything a salesperson does, only better and on a larger scale.
A well designed ecommerce store accomplishes all of the stages of the sales cycle: Lead Generation, Cold Calling, Presentations, Follow Up, Closing, Payments, Subscriptions, and even Up-selling. Replacing salespeople altogether isn't realistic depending on your industry and there are aspects of business that only human interaction works for but much of what was traditionally thought of as sales can be done more effectively by a well thought out and executed ecommerce system which allows people to focus more on account management and customer service.
You Don't Need to Sell EVERYTHING Online.
Having an ecommerce store doesn't mean you need to sell everything online. Get started by just offering parts or certain standard items that get ordered repeatedly. Make no mistake, you can sell everything online if you want to bad enough but you can still improve your business and bottom line by selling standard items and parts.
Traditional Sales is Difficult to Scale
Ecommerce has been skyrocketing for years. Online ordering is uber convenient for consumers and for businesses online sales can offer similar convenience. Traditional sales is a difficult, expensive, time consuming series of never ending, repetitive tasks. To a certain extent tasks can be automated with the right software and user habits.
Salespeople need to spend as much time as possible in front of customers to get results. Scaling traditional sales is difficult and expensive. Growth requires getting in front of, and closing, more people which requires more salespeople. This is where an ecommerce solution really shines.
Ecommerce Fuels Scalable Growth
Luckily growth is where an ecommerce store really stands out as an opportunity to multiply sales because your ecommerce site can do just about everything a salesperson does only 24/7/365.
More Flexible than You Think
Many businesses are hesitant to adopt ecommerce because they believe their products are too complex, development is expensive, and/or the site will be difficult to manage. All of these are true to some extent but let's consider them:
- Is an ecommerce site actually more expensive or difficult than paying and managing a sales team, or even one salesperson for that matter?
- Complex products seem challenging but a well designed ecommerce platform with a product configurator (even in 3D!) can do amazing things and provide valuable insights.
- Managing an ecommerce site requires time and effort like anything else. Yet, unlike a salesperson, it does exactly what you program it to do Every, Single, Time, and once you find that sweet spot it keeps doing it 24/7/365.
Provides a Consistent and Reliable Customer Experience
An ecommerce site is up and running 24/7, it never gets tired, calls in sick, or takes vacation. You can easily advertise special offers, collect leads, manage a pipeline, and automatically follow up with well thought out drip campaigns. You can build out a thoughtful subscription service and even remind customers to go back and finish checking out. Your ecommerce site can even be presented in multiple languages! All the while the experience is laser focused and consistent.
It Doesn't Happen Overnight
While ecommerce is a great investment from this perspective it does require time, effort, and experimentation to really understand customer behavior as well as their wants and needs. A well developed ecommerce site can be a treasure trove of customer insights! Finding this insight treasure trove requires efforts on multiple fronts to be successful:
- Well documented and designed workflows across all departments
- Content Strategy
- Search Engine Optimization
- Customer Relationship Management
- Email, social, and mobile marketing campaigns
- Multi channel drip campaigns
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