• Your Ultimate Guide to eCommerce Email Marketing

    How would you like to add, potentially, another 20% to your revenue? And how would you like to do that at a potential 3800% ROI?

    This, my friends, is entirely possible using Email Marketing. 

    In fact, as an eCommerce store, one of the highest-impact marketing strategies you can have in your toolkit is email marketing.

    Yes, even now in mid-2020, this is still the case!

    And believe me, when you master the art and science of using email to generate sales on your website, you will always be able to make money.

    I know, I know… Most Ecommerce store owners just don’t know what to put in their emails!

    Well, if that’s you – this episode’s for you!

    Listen as I share my Ultimate Guide to all things eCommerce Email Marketing.

    From how to design and format your emails…

    To how to get people onto your list…

    And what content you should put IN your emails…

    So that you can generate consistent new and repeat sales in your online store.

    Listen now.

    Next, be sure to head to our Rockstar Productpreneur community to ask your #askcatherine questions! I can’t wait to hear them.

    Subscribe & Review in iTunes

    Are you subscribed to my podcast? If you’re not, I want to encourage you to do that today. I don’t want you to miss an episode. I’m adding a bunch of bonus episodes to the mix and if you’re not subscribed there’s a good chance you’ll miss out on those. Click here to subscribe in iTunes!

    Now if you’re feeling extra loving, I would be really grateful if you left me a review over on iTunes, too. Those reviews help other people find my podcast and they’re also fun for me to go in and read. Just click here to review, select “Ratings and Reviews” and “Write a Review” and let me know what your favorite part of the podcast is. Thank you!

    Links mentioned in this episode:

    Klaviyo email marketing platform for eCommerce stores

    Click Here to download your free “Double Your Customers” Email Guide

    Click here to listen to the podcast about Giveaways & Competitions

    Click here to register for our upcoming free Masterclass, “My 6 Figure Ecommerce Sales Formula”

    Other Ways To Enjoy This Episode:

    Read the Transcript

    Listen on iTunes

    Listen on Spotify

    CONTINUE READING

  • How to write a simple business plan

    & make the next 12 months your best year yet!

    I love planning for the year ahead. I mean, I REALLY love it.

    But, when I first started out in business, I was more of a ‘fly by the seat of my pants’ kinda operator.

    And in a short survey I recently conducted, I learned that more than half of my audience also tend towards this method of operating.

    It’s not that they don’t WANT to write a business plan, they just have no idea WHAT they should be putting in it.

    Yet, the same people have also set themselves some very ambitious goals and dreams for their business.

    Sound familiar?

    And I have no doubt that those goals are entirely achievable. BUT it’ll be bloody hard to get there without knowing what activities to focus on and how to spend your time.

    When I worked this out, my business grew exponentially!

    How to plan for your best year yet

    Don’t waste a second on activities that don’t generate results

    Figuring out what to focus on – what are the key drivers for your business growth – can be the difference between mediocre and exponential growth.

    Here’s how…

    Think big (but not too big!)

    What would you do in your business in the next year if you couldn’t fail? You want to think about this now, so that your business plan will lead you to this outcome!

    What products do you want to sell? What customers do you want to serve?

    Do you want to be featured on prime time TV? Or stocked in a big box retailer?

    Personally I like to keep my goals within the realm of possibility, whilst still being ambitious! That way, you can proceed with confidence and remove the fear of failure.

    Fear of failure is a big one isn’t it? Too often, fear of failure holds us back and stops us from pursuing our dreams.

    So let me give you a tip about setting a big (but achievable) goal:

    People tend to over-estimate what they can achieve in a year and underestimate what they can achieve in a decade.

    What’s your number(s)?

    Without thinking about the HOW just yet, set the following goals:

    How much revenue do you want to make?

    What % growth does this represent?

    What is your goal average order value?

    How many website visitors would you like to get each month?

    What is your goal website conversion rate?

    How many emails will you add to your email list?

    Look back before you can plan ahead

    Next, before you put pen to paper with your business plan, you need to review your past year’s performance.

    I know this can be a bit tedious, and sometimes also a bit scary if you’re still in the early stage of your business and not turning a profit yet!

    (Take heart – everyone starts like this, but with a good plan you’ll be able to get ahead!)

    Dig into your website reports, your accounts, your Paypal, and your Google analytics, to find out exactly where you are right now.

    How much revenue did you make in the last 12 months?

    How much did you grow from the previous year?

    What is your current average order value?

    How many website visitors do you get each month?

    What is your current website conversion rate?

    How many email subscribers do you have right now?

    Time to SWOT

    Have you ever done a SWOT analysis? (Or am I now talking Greek to you?!)

    SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats.

    Basically, you want to get real with yourself here. No kidding yourself about how things really are.

    Strengths and Weaknesses relate to your own personal abilities and that of your team. Are you fantastic at social media marketing, but suck at writing emails? Or brilliant at driving sales, but your order fulfilment or customer service really lags behind?

    Opportunities and Threats relate to what’s going on in your industry. Are there any new competitors coming to market? Or have you identified a fantastic new product opportunity that you reckon would be absolutely killer?

    Figure out the HOW

    Now you know what you want to achieve, and you know your starting point. Next step is to figure out how you’ll get there and put this in your business plan.

    So, what strategies do you need to employ to achieve these goals?

    For example, to grow sales online, consider:

    • If your website conversion rate is really low, work on website optimization
    • If your website visitor numbers are low, work on SEO or paid advertising
    • Up your game with more consistent email marketing
    • Think about a promotional calendar so you have something for each month
    • Sourcing or producing new products to sell more to your existing customers
    • Working with bloggers, media or influencers to build your brand profile

    There’s so many more strategies you could employ, I can’t list them all here. But you want to have a strategy to answer each of your goals and your SWOT analysis.

    Make sure you ALWAYS have a strategy in place for these 2 things

    How to plan for your best year yetYour business plan must always include strategies that:

    • Attract potential new customers (such as influencers and paid advertising)
    • Convert new and repeat sales (such as regular promotions, new products, special offers, and email marketing)

    Without a constant stream of potential customers, and a mechanism to convert them into buyers (preferably who buy more than once), then you don’t have a business.

    Use my FREE Planner Tool to Create Your Own Plan

    Download my FREE Planner Tool that I developed to prepare business and marketing plans.

    CONTINUE READING

  • How To Identify Your Most Profitable Customers

    So tell me, do you treat all your customers equally? 

    This is not the time to be like a parent who loves all their children equally… 

    You SHOULD love some customers more than others. 

    Let me explain. And in the process, I’ll give you some insight into your customers, and explain how to build your business around your best buyers.

    Why you should play favourites with your customers

    Those of you who know me know that caffeine practically runs in my veins. I’ve been a coffee lover for as long as I can remember. (Starting out with decaf iced coffees that I made as a little kid!)

    13 years ago I bought my beloved Italian-made espresso machine. I called her my 3rd child, until I actually had a 3rd child… 

    Since then, I’ve bought a lot of coffee products: coffee grinders, brushes, tampers, beautiful coffee cups and jars – the list goes on. I even bought a professional coffee-making course! 

    But I didn’t buy all this at once. It happened over time.

    The place I initially bought all my products from educated me about coffee using engaging content – I would read their emails, watch their videos, sometimes I would visit them in-store, and I would buy. And buy. And buy. 

    Clearly, selling coffee products to me is easy, and I’m a profitable customer 

    I became what’s called a hyper-consumer. And these are the people who drive your sales forwards. They are the backbone of your business.

    But I don’t see that many eCommerce brands working as hard as they should to identify their own hyper-consumers.

    Listen as I share my process for identifying your most profitable customers

    Listen now.

    Next, be sure to head to our Rockstar Productpreneur community to ask your #askcatherine questions! I can’t wait to hear them.

    Subscribe & Review in iTunes

    Are you subscribed to my podcast? If you’re not, I want to encourage you to do that today. I don’t want you to miss an episode. I’m adding a bunch of bonus episodes to the mix and if you’re not subscribed there’s a good chance you’ll miss out on those. Click here to subscribe in iTunes!

    Now if you’re feeling extra loving, I would be really grateful if you left me a review over on iTunes, too. Those reviews help other people find my podcast and they’re also fun for me to go in and read. Just click here to review, select “Ratings and Reviews” and “Write a Review” and let me know what your favorite part of the podcast is. Thank you!

    Links mentioned in this episode:

    FREE 5-Day Marketing Planning Challenge

    Blog, “The Secret Sauce for a Profitable Ecommerce Business”

    Free Rockstar Productpreneur Facebook Group

    Klaviyo email platform

    Other Ways To Enjoy This Episode:

    Read the Transcript

    Listen on iTunes

    Listen on Spotify

    CONTINUE READING

  • How To Systemise To Supercharge Your Online Store

    & keep up with the remarkable acceleration in eCommerce retail

    The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and social distancing measures have seen a worldwide acceleration in growth of eCommerce retail. 

    We have entered a period of hyper-evolution, where consumer behaviour and the technology that supports buying online has changed forever. 

    Now, the equivalent of 5 years of “gradual shift” into ecommerce will be compressed into two quarters.

    How much speed are we picking up? 

    Former eBay Inc. CEO Devin Wenig was quoted by Bloomberg as projecting eCommerce share of total U.S. retail sales at 20% in the second quarter of 2020. For context, at the end of 2019, ecommerce share was 10% of total retail sales in Australia and 11% in the U.S. 

    eCommerce platform Shopify is already handling Black Friday level traffic daily!

    How do you manage such rapid growth?

    As tempting as growth in hyper-speed is, it’s incredibly difficult to manage.

    Keeping on top of your supply chain as well as managing the human resources to fulfil such rapidly increasing order volumes is HARD! & mistakes are easy to make.

    How do you keep up without derailing your business completely? 

    Well buckle in – here’s what you need to do RIGHT NOW to facilitate your growth!

    Systemise to Supercharge Growth

    This week my guest on the podcast, Lisa Munro from Happy Tummies, shares her step-by-step process for documenting systems and procedures.

    Yes, I realise this sounds like an incredibly boring topic, but the potential upside from doing this yourself is absolutely MASSIVE! 

    Lisa was prompted to do this after a bout of illness left her totally incapacitated and she realised that no-one else knew how the business operated. No-one could help with ordering or pick-and-pack or marketing. It was a complete disaster! 

    But now, despite basically tripling her revenue basically overnight with COVID-19, her systems have made it easy for her to expand quickly and with the confidence that everything will be done exactly the way she wants it. 

    So if you’ve ever felt like, “it’ll take too long to teach someone so it’s easier if I just do it myself”, or “I can’t outsource this because no-one knows how to do it just like me”, then this episode is for you!

    Listen now.

    Next, be sure to head to our Rockstar Productpreneur community to ask your #askcatherine questions! I can’t wait to hear them.

    Subscribe & Review in iTunes

    Are you subscribed to my podcast? If you’re not, I want to encourage you to do that today. I don’t want you to miss an episode. I’m adding a bunch of bonus episodes to the mix and if you’re not subscribed there’s a good chance you’ll miss out on those. Click here to subscribe in iTunes!

    Now if you’re feeling extra loving, I would be really grateful if you left me a review over on iTunes, too. Those reviews help other people find my podcast and they’re also fun for me to go in and read. Just click here to review, select “Ratings and Reviews” and “Write a Review” and let me know what your favorite part of the podcast is. Thank you!

    Links mentioned in this episode:

    FREE 5-Day Ecommerce Marketing Planning Challenge

    Happy Tummies website, Facebook, Instagram, Youtube & Pinterest

    Other Ways To Enjoy This Episode:

    Read the Transcript

    Listen on iTunes

    Listen on Spotify

    CONTINUE READING

  • How To Run A Successful Giveaway On Social Media

    Have you ever run a social media competition? Or wanted to?

    If so — did you do it to gain more followers or page likes?

    Or did you do it to sell more product in your online store?

    In my opinion — as an eCommerce store, you shouldn’t run a giveaway purely to gain followers.

    Because more followers rarely equates to an increase in sales…

    Are you making this big mistake?

    There is a common mistake I see brands make ALL the time when it comes to running competitions and giveaways.

    And that is — the assumption that gaining followers will automatically result in an increase in website traffic and sales in your online store.

    Unfortunately, this is rarely the case!

    Here’s what to do instead…

    Listen as I share my step-by-step training on running a giveaway that achieves 3 key objectives:

    1. How to attract and warm up an audience of people who really want your stuff
    2. How to build your email list, and
    3. How to sell more product

    Listen now.

    Next, be sure to head to our Rockstar Productpreneur community to ask your #askcatherine questions! I can’t wait to hear them.

    Subscribe & Review in iTunes

    Are you subscribed to my podcast? If you’re not, I want to encourage you to do that today. I don’t want you to miss an episode. I’m adding a bunch of bonus episodes to the mix and if you’re not subscribed there’s a good chance you’ll miss out on those. Click here to subscribe in iTunes!

    Now if you’re feeling extra loving, I would be really grateful if you left me a review over on iTunes, too. Those reviews help other people find my podcast and they’re also fun for me to go in and read. Just click here to review, select “Ratings and Reviews” and “Write a Review” and let me know what your favorite part of the podcast is. Thank you!

    Links mentioned in this episode:

    FREE 5-Day Ecommerce Marketing Starter Course

    Facebook’s and Instagram’s Competition & Giveaway T&Cs

    FREE Marketing Campaign Planning Guide + Template Download 

    Other Ways To Enjoy This Episode:

    Read the Transcript

    Listen on iTunes

    Listen on Spotify

    CONTINUE READING

  • How to know what to do at each stage of your business’ growth

    My 4 takeaways from a world-class marketing conference (plus a bonus 5th one)

    I think one of the hardest things in business, is knowing what to do next. How to plan effectively for business growth.

    What do you do to start your business? What do you do to scale from there?

    I tell you what DOESN’T work if you want long-term growth: doing the same thing as you always did.

    If you keep doing the same thing over and over, you’ll always get the exact same result!

    So, what do you do at each stage of your business, in order to grow to the next stage?

    Over the last few days, I’ve been in Austin, Texas, attending a big digital marketing conference, learning from some of the most successful entrepreneurs in the world right now.

    Now I get to bring this knowledge home and share it with my clients, students and readers.

    Read on for the 4 most important THINGS to take you from launch to scale!

    How to know what to do at each stage of your business' growth

    1. Getting started and launching your business

    I remember when I launched my first business, I was absolutely sh!tting myself! I was almost too scared to tell any of my family and friends I’d started a business, or invite them to look at my website.

    Why? Because of an almost-overwhelming fear of failure. I had set myself a really big goal, and standing on the starting blocks, that goal looked totally unachievable!

    Is that familiar to you?

    It’s actually really common!

    BUT, if you want to progress, you gotta beat that fear of failure.

    And the way we do this, is to detach ourselves from the outcome and focus on the process.

    You want to focus on mastering the process of doing business, and of sales and marketing, without attaching your ego or self-worth to the outcome.

    Doing this liberates you and enables you to just learn what you’re doing.

    2. When you have a few customers (but still a long way to go)

    Sometimes, getting those first few sales and customers can be easy and happen quite quickly after launching. For others, it’s more of a slow burn.

    Either way, getting those first few customers to buy from you feels so good. This is your proof of concept, right? Evidence that people are willing to pay money for your product.

    But a handful of customers does not a business make, does it? So what do you do now, when making some proper, consistent revenue still seems so far off?

    Here’s what you want to do: you want to stop thinking big and start thinking small.

    That sounds a bit counter-intuitive, right? Normally the advice is to set yourself a big goal, a big vision, and then repeat that to yourself daily like some kind of mantra. Manifest that goal into existence.

    But for lots of start-ups, constantly focusing on big goals can be incredibly overwhelming. And feeling overwhelmed can cause you to feel stuck in your business, rather than moving forwards!

    Instead, break down your goals and tasks into small manageable steps that are easy to achieve.

    Ask yourself, ‘what can I do to make an extra $500 each month?’

    When you improve a little bit each day, eventually big, lasting improvements happen.

    3. Entering into the growth phase

    So you’ve passed the launch phase and your sales are now growing. You’re not THERE yet, you still have some way to go to achieve your goals, but sales are growing.

    Sales may not be consistent at this point, but you’re definitely busier.

    At this stage, you can often feel pretty frantic. One minute you’re answering customer emails.

    Next minute you’re packing orders. Then you’re working on a newsletter or Facebook ads.

    At this point, things can feel pretty reactive, with little time for forward planning.

    And whilst you’re really busy and sales are growing very nicely, you may not be in a position to pay yourself consistently just yet.

    Before you burn out or start dropping the ball on something important, you need to get some help.

    This may be hiring your first team member, outsourcing something like order picking and packing, or working with a business coach.

    4. Scaling your business

    Once you move through the growth phase, and you have a team in place to facilitate your next leap forward, it’s time to scale.

    There’s many different ways you can scale a business. You only have to take a peek at Google to realise there’s lots of advice about different strategies you can employ.

    The temptation is strong to want to do EVERYTHING! But let me guard against this, as it’s a recipe for disaster! (Or at least, a recipe for being a whole lot less effective and profitable!)

    Instead, pick one or two marketing strategies and just focus on doing those really, really well.

    Limit your focus to a couple of things that work well, and then optimising those till they produce exceptional (scalable) results. Don’t spread yourself too thin by attempting to execute lots and lots of different strategies.

    That is, be the expert, not the generalist!

    Bonus #5: Prioritise for profit

    Further to my previous point, you MAY need a little help trying to figure out exactly what activities or strategies to focus on.

    I don’t know about you, but my to do list and my ideas list always seem a mile long, so you want to make sure you focus your time and money on the things that will get results.

    Here’s a simple method you can use to score each strategy so that you focus on the right things.

    First of all, work out what the level of effort (LOE) will be to execute the strategy. IE, will it take you two weeks, or most of the year to get it done?

    Next, work out what is the return on that effort (ROE).

    You want to focus on strategies that will give you the greatest combined LOE and ROE.

    Got some planning to do? Grab my FREE Marketing Action Planner

    Download your free copy of my own Marketing Action Planner.

    CONTINUE READING

  • Running An Online Business From A Regional Town

    With Corrina Lyndsay from Bird On The Hill Designs

    What are some of the challenges you’re facing in business now? Or that you’ve had to deal with along your entrepreneurial journey?

    A lot of the time, people come to me because they’re stuck with how to grow their business. They need help with the sales and marketing, to get more traffic and sales consistently in their online store. 

    But I know from personal experience that there are many more hurdles on the way to starting and growing your business.

    In the beginning, validating your concept, making sure there’s demand for your stuff, and figuring out what makes you different or better than the competition. 

    Getting finance to start and grow, especially if you’re footing production bills. 

    Learning the tech side of Ecommerce. 

    The list goes on of course. 

    I think starting a business in a regional town has added complexities to it, especially on the logistics side. 

    Corrina from Bird on the Hill Designs, a furniture painting and decorating company, joins us on this week’s podcast to share her experiences about running a business from a regional town.

    I love that Corrina created her business around a creative activity she was passionate about – upscaling old furniture. 

    In fact, her hobby also happens to be part of a massive trend, as thousands of others have also gotten into it as well.

    Corrina’s business has grown relatively quickly, especially in the last few months, and she has some fantastic insights to share.

    From building an audience, to using Pinterest to drive website traffic, to moving her business into its own premises and hiring a team.

    But EVEN IF you don’t operate in a regional location, I really want you to listen to this episode and hear Corrina describe the fantastic “Challenge Promotion” she’s recently run. 

    One of the hardest things for many product businesses is to get a customer over the line to try your product for the first time. 

    If that’s the case, then you’ll LOVE hearing all about Corrina’s Challenge promo!

    Listen online now.

    Get your question answered

    Now, be sure to head to our Rockstar Productpreneur community to ask your #askcatherine questions! I can’t wait to hear them.

    Subscribe & Review in iTunes

    Are you subscribed to my podcast? If you’re not, I want to encourage you to do that today. I don’t want you to miss an episode. I’m adding a bunch of bonus episodes to the mix and if you’re not subscribed there’s a good chance you’ll miss out on those. Click here to subscribe in iTunes!

    Now if you’re feeling extra loving, I would be really grateful if you left me a review over on iTunes, too. Those reviews help other people find my podcast and they’re also fun for me to go in and read. Just click here to review, select “Ratings and Reviews” and “Write a Review” and let me know what your favorite part of the podcast is. Thank you!

    Links mentioned in this episode:

    Productpreneur Academy Mastermind & Coaching

    Rockstar Productpreneur Facebook Group

    Bird On The Hill Designs website, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest

    Other Ways To Enjoy This Episode:

    Read the Transcript

    Listen on iTunes

    Listen on Spotify

    CONTINUE READING

  • How To Build An Audience Of Raving Fans For Your Online Store

    With Lou Duggan from Cake 2 The Rescue

    Every now and then I come across a brand that has such an infectiously fun personality that I fall instantly in love with it. And then I want to find out who is behind the brand!

    Who Gives A Crap, Vinomofo and Birdsnest are prime examples of really great fun brands.

    And Cake 2 The Rescue is another, so I’m absolutely pumped to have founder Lou Duggan on this week’s show.

    Cake 2 the Rescue is an Ecommerce brand based on a huge range of really fun and creative cake designs for childrens’ birthdays and other special events. Basically, you get the whole kit to make the cake and decorate it, and they’re all really do-able for non-bakers. 

    Getting your Product / Customer Fit just right…

    Lou’s been in business for 8 years now and something she’s been incredibly successful at is building a really engaged audience of customers and raving fans. 

    It doesn’t take a genius to realise that every business needs an audience if they want to sell something. No audience = no customers.

    In fact, if you’re just getting started in your business, you may find that getting people to notice you and visit your site – it’s actually really, really difficult! 

    Learning exactly who your customer is and what they really need and want – A.K.A getting the ‘product / customer fit’ just right – is essential.

    Tune in to listen to Lou’s wise words as she shares some of her biggest mistakes as well as successes, on her way to building her amazing brand.

    Listen online now.

    Honestly, I could sit and listen to Lou speak for hours – she’s such a fun person, but also generous with her experiences as well.

    If you want to build an engaged audience who want to BUY from YOU – this takeaway is gold: 

    “…the minute you realise that people buy from people is the second your business changes forever.” 

    And Lou demonstrates to her customers that she completely understands them and is there to help them to “pour their love into a homemade cake for their kids”.

    Get your question answered

    Now, be sure to head to our Rockstar Productpreneur community to ask your #askcatherine questions! I can’t wait to hear them.

    Subscribe & Review in iTunes

    Are you subscribed to my podcast? If you’re not, I want to encourage you to do that today. I don’t want you to miss an episode. I’m adding a bunch of bonus episodes to the mix and if you’re not subscribed there’s a good chance you’ll miss out on those. Click here to subscribe in iTunes!

    Now if you’re feeling extra loving, I would be really grateful if you left me a review over on iTunes, too. Those reviews help other people find my podcast and they’re also fun for me to go in and read. Just click here to review, select “Ratings and Reviews” and “Write a Review” and let me know what your favorite part of the podcast is. Thank you!

    Links mentioned in this episode:

    Productpreneur Academy Mastermind & Coaching

    Rockstar Productpreneur Facebook Group

    Cake 2 The Rescue website, Facebook and Instagram

    Other Ways To Enjoy This Episode:

    Read the Transcript

    Listen on iTunes

    Listen on Spotify

    CONTINUE READING

  • Your Ultimate Guide to Moving Your Brick and Mortar Store Online

    Are you looking to move your brick and mortar store online? This may be to supplement your in-store revenue, or to replace it, depending on your circumstances.   

    For example, my client Elle J Boutique has recently suffered through cyclones and now the COVID-19 pandemic, so a pivot from brick and mortar to Ecommerce has been critical.

    Either way, adding Ecommerce to your business model is a great way to expand because you’re effectively adding another sales channel to your business.

    This guide will help you quickly build an online presence that translates the experience of your physical store, allowing you to expand and reach a broader audience online.

    Foundation & Preparation

    1. Your Brand

    It may be tempting to start by choosing a pretty theme and jumping straight in to building your website. But this would be a BIG mistake. You’ll end up looking generic – a sure fire way to blend into the wallpaper. 

    Before you start building your online store, take a step back and think about what makes your retail store brand unique. 

    Look around your store. What about your physical store do you want to translate to an online experience?

    Think about your retail brand as a ‘universe’ – kind of like the Marvel universe (yes, I have teenage sons who are big fans of all Marvel movies…)

    What does your ‘universe’ look like, sound like, feel like, speak like. Who are the characters? What sort of personality to they (or the store as a whole) have?

    After you have an idea of what you love about your store that you want to bring online, develop your brand voice, tone, and style. The creative work you already have (i.e., your logo, signs, advertising, etc.) will inform the look of your website. 

    Head to our previous post on “What’s In A Brand” for more information. You’ll find a handy free guide on there you can download as well, called “Discover Your Unique Selling Proposition”.

    When you’re confident about your brand, building out your Ecommerce store and online marketing will be much easier.

    2. Your Audience

    After you’ve considered how you want to portray your brand online, think about your audience. 

    One tip I always share with clients is that you will always gain traction faster with a niche Ecommerce store instead of going broad or general.

    The reason for this is that, these days, we’re all operating in a busy competitive landscape. There are a lot of Ecommerce stores on the internet, and it can be difficult to stand out unless you have a very clear point of difference. 

    Part of that point of difference is having a very defined target audience, or ‘customer avatar’. 

    For example, my client A Pure Beginning sells organic products for babies and new Mums. Whilst the potential audience for these products is huge, there’s also a lot of competition from other online retailers as well. 

    So they’ve honed their ‘customer avatar’ around the busy working Mum-to-be who hasn’t found the time to shop or prepare for their new baby and has left things too late. Their signature products are pre-packed baby bags with everything you need ready to take to hospital for the birth.

    For more guidance on finding your audience, check out our post “Not Everyone Will Be Obsessed With You”. It includes a free guide download to help you define and document your Customer Avatar as well.

    Design & Build Your Ecommerce Website

    With a concrete understanding of your brand and audience, you can start building your Ecommerce site. 

    While there are several ecommerce platforms you can choose from, our top recommendation is Shopify with a premium theme like Turbo

    There are loads of reasons we love Shopify so much, but here are the most important ones: 

    1. Is really easy to use, 
    2. Has excellent tech support,
    3. Effectively converts website visitors into buyers,
    4. Works equally well on mobile and desktop, and
    5. Integrates with other marketing applications (such as email marketing and Facebook)

    Now, when you do get started with building your site (or you get someone to do it for you), don’t just follow the prescribed layout of the theme. That’s a great guide to show you what’s possible, but it won’t be tailored to your brand or to your customers. 

    1. Design a High Converting Home Page

    The way you design your navigation and your homepage layout goes a LONG way to increasing your sales conversions on your website.

    Having an awesome product is not enough. If your website is slow or difficult to navigate or the checkout process is clunky, then customers won’t buy.

    I’ve written an extensive guide on how to design a high converting home page for your website – you can read it here

    Or, you can watch a video tutorial version of this website on our Facebook page.

    2. High Converting Product Pages

    Once someone clicks through to a product page, they’re indicating some interest in your products but they’re not sold yet. 

    Your product pages need to convince browsers that the product will suit their needs or desires. 

    Here are some tips for successful product pages:

    • Images
      Think about how your customers would look at a product in-store. They want to see it from different angles, sometimes inside and outside, and see how it looks when tried on. (Depending on your product of course!) I like to include one styled image showing the product ‘in use’, plus multiple product shots on a white background to show the detail. 
    • Add to Cart button
      Keep the Add To Cart button ‘above the fold’. That means, don’t have so much text that it pushes the button down the page, forcing someone to scroll to find it. 
    • Product Information
      What does the customer need to know, understand and believe in order to want to buy the product? Use short sentences and short paragraphs to make it easy to read.
      If there’s a lot of technical information about your products, use tabs under the Add To Cart button so that you can sort and display the information in an easy and clear manner.
    • Customer reviews
      Social proof is incredibly influential, especially at the point of purchase. So you want to collect and display as many reviews as possible on your product pages. We like to use Stamped.io to automate the review collection and display process. 
    • Shipping and Return Information
      Links to or descriptions of your shipping and return policy should be on every product page.
    • Size Guide (If applicable)
      If someone needs to wear your product, include a size guide on the product pages.

    An excellent example of a high converting website with well designed product pages is my client Milkbar Breastpumps, an online retail store.

    Start Marketing

    Once you’ve published your website and your move from brick and mortar to online is complete, you’ll want to start selling. And for that you need traffic. 

    Much like getting foot-traffic inside your brick & mortar store, without visitors to your website you have no-one to sell to.

    Head to my previous blog outlining the 3 different ways you can get traffic to your online store

    The fastest way to get started is to pay for traffic using Facebook advertising AND to start growing an email list and sending marketing emails. 

    Here’s a step-by-step overview of the Facebook ad strategy that works best for Ecommerce websites wanting to generate traffic and sales.

    When it comes to growing an email list and sending marketing emails to generate sales, we hands-down recommend Klaviyo. Klaviyo is purpose-built for Ecommerce, it’s simple to use and highly effective. 

    (If you’d like more detail about why we use and recommend Klaviyo, here’s a blog that outlines how to choose the best email marketing app for your business.)

    Watch the Ecommerce Marketing Tutorial

    I recently presented a (free) video tutorial to help Ecommerce retailers figure out HOW to generate consistent website traffic and sales.

    I start by sharing some of the common mistakes I see Ecommerce stores making with their marketing ALL the time.

    And then, share details of the 3 core strategies you need to have in place in order to enjoy sales growth and consistent sales in your online store.

    Head on over to our Facebook page to watch the full tutorial.

    Need some help?

    Keen to get moving on a new Ecommerce website quickly and would rather get some help instead of spend ages trying to work it out on your own?

    We work with clients on the Shopify platform to design an eCommerce shopping experience that’s intuitive and delightful for your customers.

    We take your customer’s buyer journey into consideration, and we employ best practices around user experience, conversion optimisation, and search engine optimization.

    My experienced Shopify website design team has the experience and know-how to ensure your website’s conversion potential.

    Click the button below to schedule a time to speak with us about your website design requirements.

    CONTINUE READING

  • When You Need To Pivot From Wholesale To Ecommerce

    I love Wholesale as a strategy to scale a brand. It’s a highly leveraged strategy that can enable you to sell large volumes of product to a small number of customers. 

    However, right now, it’s tough to make money from wholesale, when so many retailers are having to close their stores due to COVID-19 pandemic lock-down measures. 

    Whereas, Ecommerce retail is going completely bonkers! 

    Just because shops are shut and customers are largely house-bound, doesn’t mean we’re not still spending money on essentials as well as retail therapy.

    Today on the podcast I’m joined by Claire Behrmann, owner of the incredibly successful brand Jellystone Designs, which in the past has predominantly been a wholesale and export brand. 

    Right now, of course, she’s having to focus more on Ecommerce sales and marketing, to sell direct to consumers. 

    But taking these actions now does not need to be the death of wholesale.

    Listen as Claire speaks about the relationships she’s developed with her stockists.

    She also speaks about connecting with her customers directly and how that has helped improve product design and development as well as brand awareness and demand. 

    Listen online now.

    Does selling direct to customers negatively impact wholesale?

    This is a question I get asked a lot, and in my experience – it depends on how you are handling the sales and marketing direct to customers on your own website.

    If you are super aggressive with your sales and marketing tactics, offering deep discounts and going on sale straight after product launches, then yes – this will absolutely have a negative impact on your wholesale business. Your retailers just can’t compete with that.

    However, if you have an emphasis on building brand awareness, increasing consumer demand, and selling direct to consumers in places where you don’t have stockists, then you are golden. This sort of marketing serves to increase sales for both yourself as well as your stockists.  

    Bottom line is – don’t put all your eggs in one basket

    Similar to Vicki from Bubblebubs’ advice on last week’s Podcast episode – Claire also recommends selling your brand through multiple channels.

    That means: on your own Ecommerce website, via wholesale, at trade shows and expos, and on other platforms as well.

    That way, when one channel goes down for any reason, you still have other avenues to keep sales ticking over. 

    Get your question answered

    Now, be sure to head to our Rockstar Productpreneur community to ask your #askcatherine questions! I can’t wait to hear them.

    Subscribe & Review in iTunes

    Are you subscribed to my podcast? If you’re not, I want to encourage you to do that today. I don’t want you to miss an episode. I’m adding a bunch of bonus episodes to the mix and if you’re not subscribed there’s a good chance you’ll miss out on those. Click here to subscribe in iTunes!

    Now if you’re feeling extra loving, I would be really grateful if you left me a review over on iTunes, too. Those reviews help other people find my podcast and they’re also fun for me to go in and read. Just click here to review, select “Ratings and Reviews” and “Write a Review” and let me know what your favorite part of the podcast is. Thank you!

    Links mentioned in this episode:

    Rockstar Productpreneur Facebook Group

    Jellystone Designs website, Facebook and Instagram

    Other Ways To Enjoy This Episode:

    Read the Transcript

    Listen on iTunes

    Listen on Spotify

    CONTINUE READING