It is vitally important that any business have a good website. This is especially true of an ecommerce site. Not only do you need to know how to create a website, you need to know how to take that website to the next level so that it can run your day to day operations.
This means that at least some of your web operations need to be automated. That way most of your processes can be handled without you needing to interfere at all. If you are selling digital products, your website can pretty much run the whole process.
If you are selling physical goods or services, you can concentrate on shipping and customer service. The website can walk the customer through a large majority of the process, keeping your efforts focused where they should be rather than on tasks that can easily be handled digitally. Here are some steps to making a website that runs your day to day operations for you.
This one is easy. There are a number of platforms that can help your customers check out all on their own. A good shopping cart and an automated checkout process can make this really easy. Here are some key takeaways.
- Make it Easy: Don’t make someone sign up for an account to buy something. Allow guest checkouts, and make sure entering payment information is as simple and easy as possible.
- Make it Fast: No one wants to waste time, and studies show that if a checkout page takes more than 4 seconds to load, users will leave and go elsewhere. Make sure your site is optimized the way it should be.
- Accept All Forms of Payment Possible: Besides credit and debit cards, things like Google Pay, Samsung Pay, Apple Pay, and more contactless payments are available. Be sure your customers can use them if they wish. These payment forms are often more secure and guaranteed too, something that is better for both you and them.
Automate your checkout process, and you will rarely even have to look at it. Instead your website will do all the work for you.
The All-Important FAQs
Your customers will have questions and often they have the same ones other customers have had as well. These are known as frequently asked questions, but you don’t have to answer countless emails with the same ones if you have a thorough section on your website. This means that if you start to get new questions frequently, you will need to add them to your FAQ section on your website.
In order to serve your customers better, consider answering these questions using video, graphics, infographics, and other media. The more clearly and creatively you answer these questions, the less likely your customers will be to contact you and ask the same things over and over.
Also, be sure to include follow up questions. Be as thorough as possible, and your website will field these questions for you as part of your overall day to day operations.
Today’s chatbots are not the ones of old, the irritating ones that could not really deal effectively with customers and that left them running for your competition site. Instead, today’s chatbots are powered by machine learning and artificial intelligence and learn from a customer’s behaviors.
If you have a good Customer Relationship Management software (CRM) the chatbot can also pull information from that, so it knows about previous interactions with this customer, their purchasing history, and more. In many cases, the chatbot can either solve the problem on the spot or vet it enough that a customer service representative can solve it in a few simple steps.
Often a buzzword in today’s marketing world, website personalization can make a world of difference in how your website works and can make it pretty much run itself. How does this work? The same information the chatbot got from the CRM, your website uses to customize the customer journey from the beginning.
For instance, if you sell shoes on a website nationwide, the shoes you sell in the Northwest will not sell the same in New York. The cultures are entirely different. Web personalization allows for a different home page to be displayed based on where the customer has logged in from, making it appealing to them from the start.
Website behavior is also a part of this, and the website will know whether or not to direct the customer to several different pages based on their past buying behavior, or just to show them the item they are looking for. This customizes the sales funnel to how the customer likes to buy without you doing a thing.
Your website, constructed properly and with the right technology can not only set you apart from your competition, but can run your day to day operations with very little effort on your part, leaving you to concentrate on other areas of your business that will pay off in the long run. Consider these methods when setting your website up to run itself.