For business owners wanting to run a profitable business, creating and implementing strategies for business growth is not negotiable. This applies to both traditional “brick and mortar” businesses as well as eCommerce businesses.
However, as you might know, scaling your eCommerce business is not a day’s job. But it’s not rocket science either. This article explores a couple of tried and tested strategies you can implement to scale your eCommerce business.
The concept of scaling an eCommerce business and growing one is significantly different.
While business growth involves both increased costs and outputs, scaling involves increased outputs without unduly costly inputs.
Think of scaling as a more sustainable and efficient business growth model, with reduced overhead costs and wider profit margins.
So, as an eCommerce business owner, there comes a time when you must actively implement certain strategies to get your scaling plan rolling. Some statistics show that nearly 30% of the world’s population are digital buyers.
In 2021, retail sales from eCommerce stores nearly reached 5 trillion dollars worldwide. Scaling your eCommerce business has to be active and deliberate if your business must cash in on these figures.
Scaling your eCommerce business right ensures that sudden spikes in orders do not disrupt your service process.
This article explores some sure-fire strategies that’ll get your eCommerce business scaling in no time.
10 Strategies to Scale Your eCommerce Business
Scaling your eCommerce business requires a great level of intentionality and patience. We’ll expound on some simple strategies you can implement to scale your business. However, some of these strategies do not pay off right away but have significant long-term effects on your business growth model.
Most of the strategies we highlight require minimal costs, while some others require a little more monetary investment. All in all, if you’re looking to scale your eCommerce business, implement as many of these strategies we put together. These scaling strategies are tailor-made for eCommerce businesses.
1. Optimize For mCommerce
Mobile commerce (also known as mCommerce) basically refers to an eCommerce transaction that a customer carries out with a wireless handheld device. Some statistics show that nearly 70% of traffic to online retail stores was from mobile devices.
For a smart eCommerce business owner looking to scale, you must optimize your business’ user experience on the mobile platform.
So, while creating and recreating your eCommerce site or platform, you must ensure that mobile users get a seamless experience that would amp up your chances of getting a conversion.
Ensure that you don’t just do the bare minimum of having a mobile version for your eCommerce business; you must cater to your mobile visitors. You stand a chance of missing out on over 50% of potential conversions when you do not optimize for mobile.
Thus, you must ensure that every step of your sales funnel has a seamless experience for mobile users.
2. Get Blogging
A functional and informative blog can work magic for your eCommerce business. Search engine-optimized blog posts can build your brand awareness, generate leads and increase your conversion rate. However, blogging is one long-term strategy that may not have clear, immediate effects.
Knowing your brand’s user persona should enable you to tailor your content to your target audience. Also, consider guest posting on bigger blogs to bolster your brand’s authority in your industry.
Not only will it get your name out, it can also help create a profitable network with other entities in your industry. Backlinks and unlinked mentions from authority sites can help drive traffic to your own site and build awareness for your eCommerce business.
3. Consider building a referral network
Every eCommerce business owner serious about scaling should consider building a referral system for their brand. Satisfied clients of great brands/products always turn evangelists of the product.
Leveraging your satisfied clients’ influence is a smart way to generate some organic awareness for your brand. This, in essence, would be free advertising for your brand that could generate leads that will convert.
You can also utilize other custom solutions to incentivize your customers to become promoters of your business. Many times, organic recommendations tend to attract more customers that will convert than paid ads. Creating and automating an affiliate program with a reliable affiliate tracking tool is a great investment for scaling your eCommerce business.
4. Automate Your Processes
Part of creating a more efficient growth model includes automating different parts of your business processes. Automating certain aspects of your eCommerce business will help you save time you’d have spent on repetitive tasks.
A chatbot, for example, will save you from individually responding to frequently asked questions. Having an aspect of your customer service automated will help you build a more efficient customer service strategy that does not involve spending on hires.
As much as possible, invest in tools that automate a part of your service process. eCommerce platforms such as Shopify have several automation features that users on the platform can utilize.
Also, if you’re really looking to scale your eCommerce business, some software packages are available that you can integrate into your online business. For example, you can set up a bot to instantly respond to bad customer reviews.
Also, consider automating your business inventory to get notified when your products are running out. You can also automate your brand’s order fulfilment and shipping if necessary.
All in all, automation ensures efficient and consistent output in whatever part of your process it’s applied to. Thus, utilizing automation tools can help you scale your eCommerce business faster.
5. Behavioral Retargeting and Remarketing
Retargeting is one surefire way to increase the chances of an interested consumer buying your product. Behavioural retargeting basically entails getting your potential customer to view ads of your product specifically targeted at them.
This sort of ad marketing is targeted to those who began a conversion journey and dropped off without making a purchase.
For example, suppose a visitor to your eCommerce site adds items to their cart and drops off without buying the product through browser cookies. In that case, you can identify them and send targeted ads their way, knowing they are already somewhat interested in your product.
On the other hand, remarketing involves using organic outreach strategies such as email marketing to keep in touch with customers who have already purchased your product. For eCommerce business owners, marketing should not stop when users reach the end of your sales funnel.
Instead, you should keep your customer engaged in hopes that they will be repeat customers. It’s also a chance to upsell or inform customers of new products.
Since these already have an interest in your offerings, you should devise strategies to keep them coming back. Retaining a customer is way cheaper than getting new ones.
Thus, it’s an efficient plan to put some work into keeping your business in the mind of your old customers. You can do this through email marketing, social media, or any other targeted marketing channel.
Also, it would be best if you leveraged on special days to get custom email newsletters out. Some statistics show that users are many times more likely to open a personalized email than a generic one.
Offer customized time-sensitive discounts and other perks for users on special days such as birthdays. All in all, don’t be afraid to try different offers to see how your customers respond to them.
6. Thoroughly Analyze Your Sales Funnel
To scale your eCommerce business, you must ensure that you identify the “leaks” in your conversion funnel. It’s important as an eCommerce business to study user behaviour throughout their stay in your eCommerce store.
Thoroughly analyzing the sales funnel of your eCommerce business is worth the time and effort. It’ll help you know the point at which your potential customers drop off. This gives you an insight into customer behaviour and will help you fix problems in your funnel.
To really scale and max out on your eCommerce store’s potential, identifying and fixing these problems is not optional. When you identify the point of your conversion funnel with the highest drop-offs, it’s easier to find solutions.
A low conversion rate could be a result of many factors. It could be that your CTA is not compelling enough to drive users to convert. It could also be that your buttons are somewhat not appealing enough to attract a click.
Whatever the issue is, analyzing your conversion funnel will help you to narrow your search.
7. Poach the Competition’s Weaknesses
This is one of those strategies that require a lot of tact. It’s important as a business owner to not only mind your business but also mind your competitors.
With the use of social listening tools, you can monitor what people are saying about your competitors’ products. If you set up your listening tool with the right keywords, you can be alerted when a completion receives a bad review.
At this point, depending on the platform, you can swoop in to offer a better service for the consumer. This is another cost-effective way of scaling your eCommerce business like a pro.
However, it’s important that you also monitor what consumers are saying about your brand as well.
This way, you can address your customers’ issues quickly. You must realize that your competitors might also be using listening tools, so you need to preempt their moves to get ahead of the completion.
8. Solicit honest reviews and feature requests
No one knows your product’s shortfalls like your customers. It’s therefore essential that you request reviews from your customers once in a while. To do this, you could send out email surveys for your customers to partake in.
The content of these surveys is entirely up to you. Ask them for pain points using your product. You could also ask them to request features or products they would like to see in your eCommerce store.
You could also run surveys on your business’s social media handles to get some insight into your buyers’ habits. Just ensure to keep the surveys straightforward.
9. The 80/20 Rule
This rule is derived from the Pareto Principle, which basically stipulates that 80% of outcomes are caused by 20% of inputs. While it’s by no means exactly accurate, it does hold some truth even for your eCommerce business. Basically, about 80% of your business profits will be from about 20% of your products.
Therefore, it’s wise to highlight your best-selling products if you want to scale. This does not mean that you should neglect your 80%. Just ensure that you give the most attention to the products racking in the numbers. Spotlighting your top sellers is a great way to scale your eCommerce business efficiently.
10. Excellent Customer Support Policies
A great eCommerce business can crumble due to poor customer support. As an eCommerce business, you must invest resources into creating an excellent customer service experience for your customers.
As much as customers make up the numbers involved in your business finances, you must realize that your customers are people, not numbers. Therefore, you must not fully automate your customer support.
It might be necessary to have bots to respond to basic customer queries. However, at some point, your service should have a human touch.
As an eCommerce business owner, you must realize that customers know that they have other options besides you. This is especially true when your business sells generic, non-customized products. Thus, your service is where you want to stand out. Ensure, therefore, that customers can reach you for complaints or questions through multiple channels. Also, monitor customer reviews and address them as quickly as possible.
FAQs on How To Scale Your eCommerce business
Are there differences between business scaling and business growth?
Simply put, growing a business involves an increase in every aspect, including costs, personnel, inventory, output, profits, etc., without particular emphasis on efficiency. Scaling, however, involves business growth with particular emphasis on reducing costs while increasing profit margins.
Growing and scaling your business is your best bet for creating a thriving, profitable business. However, some business owners are comfortable growing their business without scaling. It is sometimes a matter of lifestyle choices and long-term goals.
However, there are several disadvantages to growing a business without scaling. While the profits may be decent, little changes in the market or business can cause the business to collapse.
What other strategies can I implement to scale my eCommerce business?
Besides the strategies listed above, you should let your eCommerce business keep up with the times. To do this, you might want to review your user persona as often as you deem fit.
As times change, buying habits also change due to fads or other phenomena. Thus, your user persona might include other demographics as time goes on. Ensure to keep your business ahead by adjusting and realigning your user persona to create better-targeted content.
Try incorporating newsjacking into your content creation process as much as you can. This way, potential customers feel more connected and committed to your brand. For others, your newsjacking might be entertaining enough to make them interested in your content and even click on your CTA.
Ensure to put a lot of thought into employing staff with the necessary expertise your business needs. Most importantly, in your business process, consider outsourcing the processes in your business that are time-consuming.
To increase efficiency, outsource some tasks like fulfilling and shipping orders. If need be, employ the services of freelancers, so you can focus on scaling your eCommerce business.
Conclusion on How To Scale Your eCommerce business
Scaling an eCommerce business requires a lot of concerted effort and time to achieve. However, it can be achieved if you observe some necessary actions to make your business processes more efficient.
Leveraging automation tools and outsourcing necessary parts of your process can keep costs from rising at the same rates as your profit.
Paying attention to the strategies on our list can help your eCommerce business attain increased economies of scale.
Poaching the weak points of your competitors and generally staying ahead of customer reviews are other cost-efficient ways to grow your business without incurring great costs. Effect these strategies, and your eCommerce business is sure to scale in no time.
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Henry is a marketing and communications specialist. He enjoys helping individuals and brands find answers to their marketing questions. He has spent the majority of his career in the SaaS industry, gaining experiences in areas such as corporate communications, digital marketing, branding, and community building.
Henry currently serves as the head of product marketing and comms at Metricks.