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As the speed of modern living incentivizes more and more buyers to get their shopping done from their office or couch, e-commerce continues to increase in popularity. But most people do not open their laptops just to search for your product, so landing that first sale can only happen if you let people know how and why they should come to you. 

This is where conversion rates come in. Your company’s conversion rate is the rate at which you are able to convert online traffic into real buyer commitment. Thinking about exactly how your website, marketing, and overall strategy are operating on your target audience can help you land your first successful e-commerce sale — and the next one, and the one after that, too.

The 2020 Adobe Digital Index Report estimates that the average conversion rate for an e-commerce website is around 3 percent. Although this rate changes depending on the retail sector you are in, a new e-commerce company can realistically aim for a two percent conversion rate. 

But two percent is not a very big fraction of the pie. That’s why it’s important to break down exactly how to land your first successful e-commerce sale, and why you landed it. 

The following article will explain ways to draw in more web traffic, analyze that traffic, troubleshoot, and convince that potential buyer to convert their curiosity into a bonafide first sale. 

Draw In as Much Website Traffic as Possible

Perhaps it seems obvious, but the more traffic your website can attract, the more opportunity you create for potential buyers to become committed customers. Lots of e-commerce blogs will first recommend offering discount codes, lowering prices, etc. However, there are a lot of things you can do to simply draw in more traffic without simply changing your prices.

Blogging is one way to draw in traffic beyond people who had initially set out to buy your product from the get-go.  A 2019 survey on blogging demonstrates that “quality of content” is the most important success factor among all bloggers.

Providing meaningful content online, such as recipes, informational videos, nutrition information, workout tips or fashion advice offers value to potential buyers. Especially if your product is part of a particular buyer niche, you can draw in those potential buyers by offering new content about their interest or hobby. 

In addition to blogging, email lists are a highly popular way to reach out to potential buyers. In the US, 61 percent of consumers prefer to be contacted by brands via email. Because of this, it’s no surprise that email marketing yields $44 of profit for every dollar spent — that’s an ROI of 4,400 percent.

Just like in blogging, quality of content is important here too. According to B2B Marketing Community, email campaigns are most successful when they provide compelling content for their customers. 

Beyond e-mail, e-commerce brands are also increasingly turning to influencer marketing to get their startups off the ground. Shipping product out to well-known YouTubers, Instagram influencers, and even podcasters is a way to expand your fishing net of potential buyers. This kind of marketing also allows you to connect with target audiences at a more personal level than a typical ad campaign.  

Analyze Potential Buyers You Have Drawn In

Once you have some traffic for your website, keep track of how that traffic is moving and where it is coming from. You can use data from sites like Google Analytics and AdWords to gain insight into the performance of your marketing, web design, and SEO. 

Resources like these can help you learn how visitors found your website, how long they stay, where they came from, whether they are first-comers or regulars, and the conversion rates of website visits. 

Customer reviews can also contribute to your buyer analysis. You can analyze customer review feedback (from your brand or brands similar to yours) to get a picture of buyers’ shopping experiences and understand why those who took the plunge decided to do so. 

Overall, when you know who is visiting and why you have more insight as to how to land that first sale — and the ones to follow, of course.

Troubleshoot Obstacles to Conversion

Once you have an idea of who is visiting your site, you can imagine how to remove obstacles that would prevent buyers from purchasing your product. 

For example, many brands need to reconsider the importance of presenting shoppers with clean, simple website design. Good web design compresses the journey from window shopping to checking out into a short, enjoyable experience that only requires a few clicks. 

Additionally, make sure you use striking images and video and offer a checkout process that is as simple as possible. Design and functionality can join forces to offer an aesthetically pleasing shopping experience without the frustration and hassle that often prevent conversion.

If, in spite of good design, you are still having problems with cart abandonment, there are also several kinds of cart abandonment software available to reduce cart abandonment and regain sales lost. Discovering why shoppers are not taking the bait can help you understand the situation in which they will. 

Offer Conversion Incentives to Potential Buyers

Most e-commerce blogs overemphasize discounts. It’s important to remember that offering a discount or deal is a method of increasing sales that also directly decreases profit. 

While discount codes and competitive pricing certainly appeal to shoppers, it’s important to keep in mind the big picture of “who, what, when, where, and why” when it comes to website traffic. Then, discount codes, free shipping, and giveaways become a strategy that can be used in the context of a plan to land those first sales. 

Overall, landing your first sale begins with a process of envisioning the sea of potential buyers in all their various traffic patterns and habits, and strategically casting out nets ready to reel them in.

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