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5 Ways to Grow Your Online Business : Summer 2021 Guide

5 Ways to Grow Your Online Business : Summer 2021 Guide

By Sneha Joseph, Benzinga contributor

Globally, economies continue to march toward a post-pandemic phase, a moment most of us have been waiting over a year for. As economies open up in the slow recovery from the COVID-19 shutdowns, experts are predicting that the business world will see a jump in sales. But different sectors experience unique sets of circumstances affecting their recovery. The ecommerce industry is a perfect case study for this.

Because Covid-19 and worldwide lockdowns resulted in the huge leap of the digitally literate populace of the globe, the market flooded with new ecommerce sites as people shifted their shopping online. This increase in demand as well as supply is a large part of why the typically-slow summer season may be especially unpredictable for ecommerce businesses. 

Other factors like uneven vaccine rollouts and resurges in COVID-19 cases in certain areas combined with the slower summer season and other mitigating factors mean you have to play it smart to stand out in the crowd.  If you're worried about keeping your business afloat through these rocky economic times, these 15 tactics will help keep your ecommerce company padding through rough waters.

Grow Your Online Business: Best Practices

Keeping a constant look on the market and planning your strategy accordingly is key. Recent research conducted by Professor Gerald Zaltman of Harvard University says that the subconscious mind controls the buying decisions of 95 percent of clients. A careful evaluation of what is influencing your consumers' buying decisions and meeting them there is most vital.  Also, it is important to keep your business safe from always-present cyber threats.  Cyber attacks and data breaches increase yearly worldwide, so don't let summer sun and fun get in the way of ensuring your ecommerce platform is protected against common security threats to an online business.

Growing an Online Business in Summer 2021

Aside from the general best practices detailed above, use these 5 tips and tricks to zero in on your ecommerce strategy. We'll dive deep into each recommendation to help you drive traffic the right way.

Step 1: Know Your Audience

Above all else, giving your customers exactly what they want is the best way to keep and increase sales volume, as well as targeting new opportunities. Giving them incentives like referral programs and targeting the right audience with social media is a great way to carry this mission out daily.

Focus on the Existing Customers

Targeting existing customers for sales is useful in the summer season. Rewarding loyal customers with exciting offers is a tried-and-true way to keep them coming back to shop for more. 

Generally, regular customers add more items to the cart and spend more money on the site. The chances of selling products to an existing customer are 70-80 percent higher than new customers. They are easier to convince and will buy more from the site. 

Focusing more on these loyal people will benefit the sales and can improve the business of ecommerce platforms. People who visited the site and did not complete a purchase are also worthwhile targets because they are more likely to buy something from you in the future than a completely new customer. 

Leverage Your Existing Base with Referral-Based Offers

Referral-based marketing techniques are an excellent option to continue to grow your ecommerce business. At the end of the day, people liking your brand enough to tell others about it drives growth. Giveaways, cash backs, and discounts can be blended with affiliate referrals for great results. 

Successful Social Media Marketing

If you use the right social media marketing tactics, you will attract the right people to your site because it targets specific audiences. Proper research is necessary for effective social media marketing. Many companies employ influencers to bring more eyes to their brand, leveraging their large audiences for promotion. 

Step 2: Contests, Giveaways and Seasonal Campaigns

Contests are a great way to generate brand awareness and increase interest in your online shopping site. Contents may produce new leads to market during the summertime. Season giveaways especially can attract more customers to your site, resulting in an increased conversion to sales. 

And, planning contests around a homebound summertime is a great way to draw interest as the COVID-19 crisis continues. Giveaways are also an easy way to use word-of-mouth marketing, contributing further to your brand's reach.

Seasonal Products

Launching new summer special products in the store is an obvious but highly effective strategy to increase sales. Shelving items that may perform poorly in the season and introducing season-oriented stock keeps customers on your page as you anticipate their needs. Since the 2021 summer is a unique one, a combination of pandemic and summer products may be your golden ticket. Customers love exclusive summer offers. Not only will it create a sense of urgency to buy your products, this strategy will mark your brand as thoughtful, experimental and on-trend, attracting more young people and discerning buyers who love a good seasonal launch. 

Make Profit with Holiday Sales

Similar to special holiday products, regular holiday sales will give your customers something to look forward to as well as bring in news one. Holiday sales are a traditional but effective method to improve online business sales. 

Introduce Flash Sales 

Flash sales are another traditional favorite area of customers. If done well, they can prompt a burst of much-needed sales during the slow summer season. Flash sales also drive more people to your social media pages who may not visit them otherwise. These people can eventually turn into regular customers. 

Step 3: Provide Great Customer Service

It may be a cliche, but it's true -- people always remember how you treat them. Solidifying your customer service strategy is an important part of developing a loyal customer base that will stick with you through every season. These methods will keep your customers well taken care of and coming back for me.

Vigorous Chatbot Strategy

Employing a chatbot is useful for the business in every season. But it is a useful way to capture the attention of distracted consumers in the summer season. A chatbot that can answer at least 80 percent of the customer service questions, providing a positive impact on customer satisfaction, keeping your existing customers returning and bringing in new ones, too. 

Highlight the Right User Reviews

Highlighting user reviews is a great way to increase your sales. People rely on reviews to inform their product search, so reviews carry great weight with potential customers. Having more positive reviews highlighted on your page is the perfect way to persuade an on-the-fence customer into sealing the deal.

Step 4: Improve Your Branding

Have a product that isn't selling very well? Sometimes, it really is us, not them. Tweaking branding for an unsuccessful product is a worthwhile strategy. Presenting products in attractive packaging is a sure way to draw people to your ecommerce store. 

Bundling products is another way to increase sales.  Suggested products like you may have seen Amazon do or offering pricing packages may see your customers clicking "Add to Cart" more before they checkout. Bundling plug-ins are available in Shopify that make this type of strategy light work for ecommerce owners like you.

Step 5: Improve User Experience on Your Ecommerce Website

A sleek, easy-to-use website is the crux of the shopping experience on your ecommerce site. Investing in your store to make sure your customers enjoy using your website is a sure way to keep them coming back. And, a website that is just as usable on a smartphone is a huge benefit -- your customers will be able to shop anywhere, anytime.

Use Drop-Shipping Methods 

The use of the drop-shipping method in online business is a proven method of increasing your sales. Drop-shopping allows someone else to handle product shipping and order fulfillment, leaving you to focus more on other important areas to get you through summer, like dialing in your marketing and sales strategy. Shopify comes with various pluck-ins for this segment, too. This is a hugely beneficial tactic used by established online ecommerce giants like Amazon. 

Expand Shipping and Delivery Options

Since the advent of the pandemic, many ecommerce websites have had to reconsider how they ship. Having the widest variety of shipping options is a good way to ensure customers choose your brand over other options. Transparent delivery tracking, detailed information, clear costs and options for free delivery are all things to consider. And even after the COVID-19 pandemic is more under control, these are great ways to give your ecommerce business a boost.

Provide a Customized and Simple Shopping Experience 

Customers who enjoy a personalized treatment on your shopping site tend to return to the store in the future. A customized shopping experience means anticipating your customers' needs, knowing their likes and dislikes and also providing them with suggestions and recommendations according to their priorities. This is a great way to ensure you're developing a strong customer base, even through slow times, because excellent personalization can drive people again and again to the site. 

Make Sure Your Website is Mobile-Friendly

If the ecommerce site is not optimized for smartphone usage, an immediate upgrade can drive sales, even during the summer. Vacation time will take people away from computers -- but means more time spent on mobile phones. A mobile-friendly site is  preferred by users and making one means that consumers can buy on the go. Quick-loading pages on the phone, easy navigation and effortless checkout will boost your sales. Focusing on this area is an obvious benefit for ecommerce platforms. 


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