Thursday, December 6, 2012

How to Increase Online Sales with Hundreds of Products

Big brands, mid-size brands and small brands all have something in common. They have shit to sell. This post will shed some light into how companies with hundreds or even thousands of products can effectively increase overall sales for a large number of products. By carefully reading and finding hidden hints, you can help increase web rankings for specific product keyword terms, this in turn will help increase bottom line sales.
Many companies do not have thousands of products, and many do not even have hundreds of products so I guess this post is more geared towards the larger brands with a plethora of items to sell. It doesn’t matter if it is B2B or B2C (majority of time bigger brands sell B2C), there is always one main goal in mind when selling or launching a new product. Increase sales.
Product Categorization
Lets kick this off right, first you need to ensure you products are properly categorized and fall into alignment with each other. 1. This will help your consumer find closely related products for a higher conversion rate as well as upsells and 2. You can bundle. Customers love to see products bundled together, just keep it simple and do not give them too many of the same options. Giving a consumer too many options can actually hurt the chance of them actually making a purchase with you.  So bundle closely related products, give them a few options letting them know they are amazing deals that may not last or for a limited time, put a great price point on them and release it on the public. Heck, you might even want to do a quality press release to promote them. (Yes, I just said heck, reference to Varsity Blues)
So by now your asking yourself, how is this helping me with thousands of products, I’m ensuring the proper framework is layed for your business and now I’m getting there, chillax.

Look at your sales, look at your top products, the profit margins and price points. Start with your top 20 products, ensure you have some good on-page SEO for those specific product pages – don’t try and keyword stuff content to game the system, provide users with content and information that will allow them to make smart purchasing decisions – assuming your products are truly quality and people will come back for more.

Mothers car products do a great job at this. They have effectively categorized almost their whole product line into eight separate categories that should appeal to a certain audience. This also helps on-page SEO efforts to ensure search engines correctly crawl, categorize and filter your products into their related search algorithms.
Build 3x - Build Buzz, Build Links, Build Relationships
Build buzz about the product by interacting with people on social networks, getting feedback, giving promo codes, asking how you can improve the product for future customers. 

Build links to the specific product pages using helpful anchor text not only to the user who you are baiting to click on the link, but to the search engines letting them know that you are the best and number one source for that product – and people love it. 

Build relationships with your clients, they will tell their family, friends and co workers. This is where promo codes come in, they purchase a product and let you know the goods and bads, reward them. They are helping your business get better each and every day with each and every sale. Build a relationship with your clients to skyrocket buzz around your brand and amazing products. Now keep in mind, this first wave is specifically for your top 20 money makers. It wont come as easily with products that are not as highly trafficked and purchased.
So if you know you have a great product that isn’t selling, find out why. Is it new and people just don’t know about it? Is it crap and people have stopped buying because it needs improved? Or is it simply that there isn’t a market for that specific product. Dig up information on the product, the search volume and drill down to figure out why it is not performing. A good way to help a products performance is to throw it in a bundle of related products. When your customers buy related products, include valuable information into a customer’s purchase delivery ‘showcasing’ how awesome this other product is and let them make a decision to try it. Increase traffic and visibility to it by offering, dunt dunt du dunt da da – a product code for money or a percentage off. Maybe something as easy as free shipping may help the product gain some traction.
The Punchline
The products with the biggest profit margins will help you gain the extra money you need to develop out new products and/or revamp existing ones. Set monthly goals for your teams, optimize and build 3x - roughly 20 products a month – if you can increase your bottom line each month for a year, the next three years of business should be booming. After that first year, you can focus on building up the rest of your products, new product launches and finding ways to make your existing products, better.
Assuming you have taken the proper steps, optimized your top product pages, built links to them and began to engage with people about the individual products – the buzz has already begun around them and hopefully you begin to notice an upward trend on those product sales. Your product page rankings should gradually increase because of the manual buzz you have built and the increased traffic to those pages.  Within only a few short weeks, your brand and core products are already headed in the right direction to increase your bottom line of sales. 

There are many more aspects in various business models that can help increase your bottom line sales, this is just a simple route and steps you can take to optimize product conversion rates. For more information or web consulting services, drop me a line and we can setup a time to discover how your business can increase online sales!

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