Tag Archive | "E Commerce Site"

Mobile Promotions, Ads and Coupons Increasingly Being Shared

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Mobile Promotions, Ads and Coupons Increasingly Being Shared


If you’ve set up a mobile advertising campaign, you may wonder whether users are more likely to share the things that you have to offer them. After all, mobile devices are being used not only to browse the web, but also to access social media sites, which are all about sharing. There was a study done last month and published by Market Watch that sheds some light on the topic, which should give some good information for marketers, affiliates and e-commerce site operators.

One of the first things mentioned in the survey is that young adults, between 18 and 35 years of age are much more likely to use mobile devices when transacting online, of which a sizable proportion prefer their mobile device as their primary way of shopping online. Of course, this isn’t really a surprise, as we all knew that younger people are more likely to use mobile technology and to shop online on a mobile as opposed to a PC. The survey of 1 500 adults in the USA shows that those under 35 have a 30% chance of saying that they enjoy using the internet more on their mobile device than on a PC.

Additionally, 47% of users state that they’ve clicked an ad they saw on a mobile web page or an app. 55% made a mobile purchase within the last 6 months, however this also includes “mobile specific” content, such as music, images, ringtones, apps, etc. The same amount (55%) admit to using their smartphone to make comparisons between prices offered by different merchants at least once a week.

But what is even more important for online merchants is this: 50% of users indicated that they shared coupon codes, sales materials or promotions with others by using a mobile device at least once during the past month. A good proportion of these users (19%) are even more engaged and responded that they share this type of material 3 times or more every month.

What this means to marketers is simple: create mobile ads and use marketing materials or strategies that are easily shared via social media. Coupons are among the favorite type of content by those who share online shopping information, for several reasons. First, they don’t seem as “spammy” as just sharing an ad. Second, they allow the user’s friends to save money, so if someone is happy with getting a good deal thanks to the use of a coupon code or link, they are more likely to share that happiness with their friends, especially if they believe that these friends will be interested in the type of merchandise sold and will benefit from the coupon.

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Why Offering Coupons Can Be Beneficial for E-Commerce Site Owners

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Why Offering Coupons Can Be Beneficial for E-Commerce Site Owners


If you’ve bought anything from an online retailer, you may have seen an option to use a coupon code during checkout and you may have even used one yourself. But if you’re selling things online yourself, would it be a good idea to make coupons available to your customers? There are many reasons why this strategy can be beneficial for you in the end. Here are some of them:

Drivers Budget Conscious Customers and Comparison Shoppers

One of the main reasons people shop online is because they have the ability to quickly and easily compare prices between different retailers. An ever increasing number of people are more conscious of how much money they’re spending when shopping online and they want to get the best deals. This is why searches for coupon codes are getting a lot of traction on Google. Sure, some people may simply buy something because it had a flashy ad, or will just buy whatever they want without considering the price. But unless your target audience is “lazy rich people”, including coupons as part of your marketing strategy will be a good idea.

Encourages Affiliates to Promote Your Site

There are now thousands of websites which list coupon codes for various e-commerce sites. If you do a search for [merchant name] + coupon on Google, you will see plenty of them pop up. Some are specific to a certain genre of retailer, while others are more general coupon sharing sites. But those who run these websites don’t do this simply for fun. As you’ve probably noticed, they include affiliate links to the sites that they have coupons for, so that when someone uses a coupon from their website and clicks through to the merchant, they will get a commission. There are many other affiliate sites which promote specific merchants more simply because they offer discount and coupon codes that make them more attractive to their audience. Therefore, making coupons available gives an incentive for your affiliates to promote your site more. It can create a win-win-win scenario for everyone: the customer gets a lower price, the affiliate gets a commission and you get increased traffic and sales to your business.

It Encourages Social Sharing

Coupon codes for online shopping sites are rapidly becoming an item that is shared a lot on various social media sites. In fact, people are far more likely to talk about an online shopping site if they offer discounts, special promotions and coupon codes. If you include coupons on your social media page, this draws more attention to your post and makes it more likely that it will be shared. Tomorrow we will take a more detailed look at how coupons can be a part of your social media marketing strategy. If you’re thinking of making your social media use more efficient, including them in your posts can be a definite way to turn things around for your business.

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Should Coupons Be Part of Your E-Commerce Strategy?

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Should Coupons Be Part of Your E-Commerce Strategy?


Coupons are and have been for decades a popular method for retailers to draw more business by giving discounts to customers and also using the coupons themselves as advertising vehicles. Everyone knows what a coupon is and how it looks like. But how does this translate to the online world? Now that an ever increasing number of individuals are shopping online, e-commerce site owners need to find ways to get the maximum number of buyers for their products, by offering innovative promotions and discounts to their targeted audience. This has caused online coupons to become popular as well.

In the online world, coupons work a bit differently than with physical stores, as there is no face to face transaction going on. Online coupons can come in these formats:

A Discount or Promotion Link

Here the buyer clicks on a link, which can be a text link, video, banner or full page ad. They are redirected to a landing page that reflects the promotion that they’re supposed to get, such as a buy one get one free offer, a discount off the purchase price or free shipping.

A Coupon Code to Enter at Checkout

Here, the buyer would enter a discount code in a field during the checkout process. Coupon codes can be shared with the targeted audience through various means, such as email, social media, affiliate sites, etc. There are now thousands of sites whose only purpose is to list coupons for various merchants. People share coupon codes with offers, as well as give feedback to tell visitors whether the coupon is still valid.

Daily Deals or Time Limited Special Offers

Not really a coupon, per se, but works on a similar concept. An e-commerce site makes a special promotion that is only valid during a certain time period, usually a day or a few days. The promotion is mainly shared through the company’s own marketing efforts or through affiliate sites.

Discounts and Coupons Aimed at Specific Customers

Here, the promotion is not available to the public, but rather to select customers, usually those who have already purchased something from the site in the past. Sometimes, it is a rather large group of customers who gets the promotion, such as those who bought something in the past few months, or the customers could be hand selected by the merchant. This can be combined with loyalty programs.

Can coupons really help you as an e-commerce site owner? This is the question that many online retailers are asking. In reality, coupons can have many benefits to online merchants and help them drive more sales, even if it results in lower profits for some transactions, as the customer will essentially be paying less for their items. Tomorrow we will see some ways in which integrating coupons as part of your overall marketing strategy can help you get more sales and in the long run make more money from your e-commerce business.

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Holiday Selling Tips for Affiliates

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Holiday Selling Tips for Affiliates


So Black Friday and Cyber Monday are right around the corner, which means that e-commerce site owners as well as affiliates are all getting busy to give their shoppers the best possible experience and try to draw as many of them as they can to their site. But how should you do it as an affiliate? What sites should you promote and why? Here are a few pieces of advice that affiliates will find useful:

Look for Merchants that Offer Great Deals and Free Shipping

There are many reasons why people shop online: good prices, convenience and the ability to find products that they wouldn’t be able to get in stores. But in the case of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, people will be looking for more than “good” deals, they want great ones. Look for merchants who will be giving their customers special offers that have prices far below what they would normally charge during the shopping holiday.

Also, another thing to watch out for is free shipping. Research has shown that online shoppers are more likely to make a purchase at a site that offers them free shipping on their order. After all, what good is it to save $25 on a product if you need to pay $30 to have it shipped to you? This is why you need to look after sites that ship for free, either just for the holiday or all the time. Also, be careful about free shipping that comes with conditions, such as requiring that shoppers spend $50, $100 or more before being eligible to get their items delivered for free. While this may work for certain items, you should prioritize sites that give free shipping without any conditions attached. Finally, make sure to emphasize the “free shipping” part in your marketing materials.

Be Mindful of Mobile Shoppers

A recent survey published at Market Watch finds that about 4% of e-commerce transactions come from mobile devices and this is expected to nearly double in the next 4 years. This shows that there are many people who shop from their mobile devices like tablets or smartphones, but these aren’t yet the platforms that are preferred by shoppers, who will mostly be using a regular PC. Smartphones are the most popular mobile device at the moment, but tablets are rapidly catching up and are expected to become the main mobile device used for shopping in the next 5 years. Still, this doesn’t mean that you should ignore mobile shoppers.

The most simple thing you should do is ensure that your site will display properly when viewed on a smartphone or tablet PC. Even though the percentage is small, remember that there are millions of online shoppers out there and that there’s a relatively good chance that some of your sales will come from them. Test out your sites and also ensure that any affiliate links work properly when they are accessed from a mobile device.

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Are Mobile Payment Solutions Really the Way of the Future for E-Commerce?

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Are Mobile Payment Solutions Really the Way of the Future for E-Commerce?


You may have seen a few pieces of online news about mobile payment solutions and wondered whether you should implement them on your website. Some articles even go as far as claiming that mobile payments are the way of the future and will revolutionize the online commerce industry. But is there any truth to these claims, or is it just marketing hype to get yet another “start up” run by a 19 year old entrepreneur from his basement off the ground?

When talking about mobile payment solutions, we first need to clear up one thing in order to avoid any potential confusion. There are actually two kinds of mobile payment options currently available in the online world. The first one is simply a type of mobile wallet that is linked to the customers credit card. The buyer can easily make transactions from their mobile phone without revealing their card information, but the purchase is still charged to their credit card as usual. The second kind involves charging the amount of the transaction to the buyer’s mobile phone bill or deducting it from their prepaid balance on their mobile account. The second one is the type that we will be addressing in this post.

First, let’s understand how the system works. The client wants to make a purchase online. They then enter their cell phone number into a secure form on an e-commerce site. They then receive a text message with information about the transaction (such as the cost) and will need to confirm they accept the charges, either by replying to the message or more commonly, by entering a code that is sent with the message onto the merchant’s website. They then have access to the product or service that they’ve ordered and the merchant will get paid by the payment processor later on, just like with a credit card transaction.

Sounds easy, right? The system is designed to allow for easy and smooth transactions with minimum risk to both the merchant and the customer. Using such a payment system has many advantages for both parties. It is good for buyers who don’t have a credit card or are reluctant to use theirs on an online commerce site, as it provides them with an alternative payment solution. It’s also a very good way to pay online for small purchases that are delivered directly to the buyer’s computer or for online services that don’t require any physical items to be shipped.

But should you run and implement this method of payment on your website immediately? The answer will depend on a few factors. As convenient as mobile payments may be, they are still far from being a perfect solution in all cases and it’s also important that merchants understand their potential disadvantages and not only look at the plus side. Tomorrow we will go into more details on the inner workings of mobile payments, which will be very helpful if you just started an e-commerce site and want to provide buyers with as many choices for payment as possible.

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Some of Facebook’s Biggest Changes in 2012

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Some of Facebook’s Biggest Changes in 2012


This year, Facebook has made a great deal of changes to the way its social networking site works. Many of these changes have a good impact on those who use the site for marketing purposes. While the social network itself may have evolved, the main principles behind social media marketing seem to remain unchanged for now. It’s just that it’s now easier and more convenient for marketers to connect with their audience and share information. Here are some of the most noticeable changes we’ve seen and some that we’re expecting.

 

Timeline for marketers. The adoption of the timeline design for profiles has been met with quite a lot of controversy when it was announced in 2011. Some users didn’t mind it, while many others resisted the change believing that the old design was better. But just like many other Facebook changes, people have eventually come to get used to it and accepted it. The Timeline is responsible for changing the way in which people interact with the social network. It has also had some positive effects on businesses that use the site for marketing. Some studies suggest that since the Timeline was introduced, brands receive over 40 percent more engagement for each post that they make.

 

The “Want” Button. Currently, we have the ever present “Like” button on Facebook. But there are many rumors that are now circulating in online marketing circles that Facebook may be planning to launch a “Want” button. As some of you may have guessed by now, this type of feature would be most beneficial for e-commerce site owners. Having a Want button can be useful when it comes to seeing just how many people are interested in what you have to offer them. If it was available when you launch new products and inform your Facebook fans, the Want button could generate a lot more interest for your new additions. However, it should be known that this feature is, for now, little more than a rumor. It is not yet known when, if at all, Facebook will make it available and whether this feature will be available to all marketers on the site, or only to a select group at the beginning. Perhaps marketers would have to pay to get the ability to have a Want button? But the real answers might be coming soon, perhaps in a few months.

 

Scheduled Page Posts. This isn’t anything revolutionary, but it does make things more convenient for marketers. You may be planning to release a new product soon and want the Facebook page post to be displayed as soon as it becomes available. Now with the ability to schedule your posts, you can opt to have them displayed at a pre determined date and time. That way, you will never be late in making your announcements to your fans.

 

There are still a few more changes we will look at. Check back tomorrow for some more information about them.

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How You Can Keep Going Even When Google Changes

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How You Can Keep Going Even When Google Changes


As we’ve seen before, Google has made some changes to their search engine, which has a goal of improving the relevance of search results by displaying pages that are more likely to be relevant and more in tune with what the searcher is looking for. When it comes to consumers, this move is likely to be well received and even welcome by some. The reason behind this is that there are a lot of users who are getting tired of seeing “spammy” pages show up in search results, which don’t give them what they need at all. But for online marketing experts of all specialties, such as e-commerce site managers, SEO experts and more, it simply means that they would need to be more vigilant so as to not fall in a trap and have problems with Google.

 

For marketers, it mans making a few changes to their approach. Now that cheap marketing solutions exist, such as spinning programs that can automatically generate unique content from an original document, Google has taken notice of this impact on their business and stated limiting their scope of operation.

 

There is a lot more emphasis placed on the human aspect of marketing and this has been emphasized a lot in a recent article that was published by many online news sources regarding Google updates. Primarily, it means never resolving to using cheap outsourcing providers to create web content that is “just passable”, meaning that the English is readable but the text seems to be riddled with spelling, grammar mistakes plus in many cases just doesn’t answer what the searcher wanted. For example, if after typing a query of “How Do I Change A Flat Tire”, the user is simply given pages which serve as advertising outlets for a certain product, such as a car maintenance guide or e-commerce site that actually sells new tires. While some may think that this could be profitable from marketers, this is never a long term strategy. So, how do you avoid these problems? Here are some simple ways you can do that:

 

  • Write quality content and publish it on your site or blog.
  • If you need to outsource some of the creation of your content over to someone else, be completely sure that they would do it the right way, rather than the cheap way. They would need to know that the content you need has to be mainly unique and interesting.
  • Don’t focus on strategies to try to outsmart the search engines, as your business will come out losing in the end. Rather, focus your efforts on developing your site over time.
  • Now, more importantly than ever, don’t buy links from poor quality sites, as too many of these will get you penalized very quickly.
  • Adapt your keywords targeted to the type of visitor you want. Do you have an informational site that makes its money by publishing ads or some affiliate offers, or are you selling a specific product? Remember that you don’t want people looking for free stuff as visitors if you’re selling something.

 

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Make Your E-Commerce Site Easy to Navigate

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Make Your E-Commerce Site Easy to Navigate


Yesterday, we’ve seen that it’s important to take steps in order to improve the quality of your e-commerce site if you want to get more customers to purchase your products, in addition to encouraging your existing clients to come back.

 

According to many online shoppers, the accessibility and ease of use of a website are some of the elements to which they pay close attention to when shopping online. One of the main reasons that website visitors left an e-commerce site without buying anything isn’t because they didn’t like the products or their prices, but rather because the website in question made it difficult for them to have a good online shopping experience.

 

Improving your website’s look and navigation is not that difficult to do. First, you must consider how your website is organized. Your products should be neatly organized according to the category, as well as other attributes if they apply, such as brands, etc. You can also make navigating your product catalog easier by letting people sort the items in terms of price, from the lowest to the highest and highest to lowest. Many e-commerce plugins and shopping platforms support a search feature, which you should integrate in your site. This would make it easier for a visitor that knows exactly what product that they’re looking for.

 

The presentation of the text on your site should be easy to read. So for example, if you use a black background, using a “greyish” text color will make it hard to read. Make sure that the text is also of a large enough size to be easily legible.

 

Depending on what you’re selling, including detailed and high resolution photos of the items may be a good idea. Of course, this will largely depend on the type of items that you carry. Having a dozen photos from every angle of the item wouldn’t be too important if you’re selling boxes of vitamins or printer ink cartridges, but for a website that sells clothing, it would be recommended as the customer would want to closely examine the item that they’re going to buy since they don’t have the chance to examine it first.

 

Combine the photos of your item with a detailed description, which will of course depend on the category of items that you carry. By providing all the necessary information about your items to your buyers, you will reduce possible returns and dissatisfaction coming from buyers who weren’t given enough information to see if an item was suitable for their needs.

 

Also, making your site accessible on mobile devices, such as smart phones and tablets is a tip that is given by many online marketing experts and has been said many times, but is always worth repeating. The amount of purchases made by users of mobile computing devices is growing. If your site doesn’t display correctly, the visitor will simply go find another one that does. There are many free tools available which can help you test the compatibility of your website with common mobile platforms or create an alternate mobile version of your main site, which carries the same products, but is optimized to be displayed on a mobile platform instead.

 

 

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Improving the Quality of Your E-Commerce Site

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Improving the Quality of Your E-Commerce Site


If you run an e-commerce site, one of your main concerns is obviously how to make your business as profitable as possible. This can be done in various ways, such as by using advertising methods that would direct high quality traffic to your website, as well as using various on site and off site methods to retain existing customers and make them come back to shop at your website again. Most e-commerce website operators would say that they are satisfied with how their website is operating, but there are always some things that you can consider improving in order to make things better, both for you and your customers.

Some of these main elements are the look and feel of the site, prices and policies, promotions available to your customers, as well as general service and support that you provide for your products. Remember, it’s not just about the quality of the products themselves (though this is an important point), but also about your website and how you run your business in general.

But which improvements should you make to your website? There are a few ways to find out, however one of the most important ones would be simply to ask your customers and website visitors about how they feel about your online business.

Getting feedback from customers is relatively simple. One of the more common ways of getting it is by having a small message on your site which invites them to take a poll about what they like on your site and what they don’t. It would also be a good idea to include a form where someone can write specific concerns that they have which aren’t listed in the poll options.

If you notice that participation is low, you may consider offering an incentive, such as a small discount on their next order, an additional item for free, participation in a contest to win a prize, etc.

The next best way would be to pay attention to your social media accounts. If your customers visit your Facebook page, they could leave you some comments or questions on your wall. Take their opinions into consideration, as this will help you see how you can improve your website.

Of course, let’s not forget direct communications between your customers and you. If several of your customers contact your support about a problem during the checkout process, or a section of your website being difficult to navigate, for example, then these are certainly things worth looking into further and fixing as soon as possible.

Remember that listening to your customers and site visitors is the best way of getting the a customers perspective on how well your website is doing.

Tomorrow we will explore some more ways that you can improve the quality of your e-commerce website, which will give it the potential to be more profitable as it provides a better and more problem free online shopping experience for your buyers.

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Securing Your Privacy When Doing Online Business

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Securing Your Privacy When Doing Online Business


Previously, we’ve seen some of the privacy concerns that people could have when they do business on the internet, either as an affiliate or an e-commerce site owner. But what about ways to reduce these privacy risks? There are a few very easy strategies that can be employed by online entrepreneurs and which will allow you to get a better control over what information you give out to your online business partners.

The first thing you would want to consider doing is registering a business that will be used for all your online activities. There are various legal forms that a business can take, such as a sole proprietorship, limited liability company, or a corporation. Rules and regulations regarding business registration will vary depending on the jurisdiction that you reside in, so it would be best if you read up on applicable laws and regulations. By having a registered business, you can receive payments under that name and list it as owner of the websites that you operate. This also has the advantage of making your online operations look a lot more professional.

One of the other privacy issues that arise when you do business online is giving out your home address. But there is an easy and relatively inexpensive solution for this. You can get a PO BOX or a mail forwarding address for about $10 per month. You can either use the post office, a company such as Mail Boxes Etc. or an online company that receives all your mail for you and then forwards it to you. This will allow you to do business online without revealing your home address to your partners, vendors, clients, etc. You also won’t need to pay extra for WHOIS privacy for each domain that you buy, as you can simply use your company name and “virtual” address when you register websites related to your online marketing activities.

Another thing that you need to consider is your phone number. Again, many wouldn’t want to give their personal home or cell phone number out as they don’t want their phone number to end up on dozens of marketing lists and get calls every day soliciting them to buy things. Once again, the solution to this is simple and rather inexpensive.

You can get a cheap cell phone on a prepaid plan and use the number as the contact phone number for your online business. This could be a good solution if you’re not going to be making or receiving a lot of business related calls each month. There are some other solutions as well. You could use a VoIP phone number and phone service that you can get for around $15 per month. There are also services which provide you with fax to email, voice mail, call forwarding, as well as numerous extensions. If you’re looking for a second phone line to use for your business, then you will definitely find a solution online for this.

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Improving Your Customer Service With Self Serve Features

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Improving Your Customer Service With Self Serve Features


If you have a website that sells something online, whether it’s a product or service, then making money by selling your items is the main objective of your site. However, if you want to remain competitive in your niche and see long term growth, then providing good support for your customers and potential customers is important for your online business, just like it would be in any other type of business.

Unfortunately, this is something that is often overlooked by many online business operators, especially those that provide services such as web hosting resellers. Here are some great tips which will help you provide a very good customer service experience for your website visitors:

  • Provide good information on your website

The issue with contacts to a website’s service staff is that many of these contacts could have been avoided if the necessary information was included on the site and featured in a prominent way. Therefore, you should provide clear information about how your products work, as well as help files about how to use them if this would be relevant to your products. Creating video tutorials on how to accomplish certain things with your products would also be a great idea. On your contact page, you should include a link to the relevant help section of your website, which will encourage your customers and potential buyers alike to first check out the information to see if the answer to their question can actually be found there before they contact you.

  • Offer good self service features

This is a move that has been well understood by many large businesses operating in plenty of different industries everywhere. It’s less costly in terms of money and resources to let your customers do certain transactions and see some information by themselves rather than having them contact you. If you run an e-commerce site that ships products, for example, you could include a section on your site that keeps track of your customers previous orders. You can then update it with shipping and tracking information, which would cut down on the “when will my order get there” type of inquiries. This also applies to service based sites as well. Try to implement features that would let your customers make their own changes to their account, such as changing their service plans, adding a new subscription under their main account, changing their billing information, canceling or suspending a service they have with you, etc. By doing all of this, you will reduce contacts to your customer service, sometimes even in a significant way.

  • Send a follow up/confirmation email on every new order

With the email, provide the relevant information, such as order number, tracking number for any shipments, as well as a link to the help section or the account management section of your website. Doing so will encourage your customers to use them to see if they can find the answer to any question they have there before they get into contact with you.

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Safely Using Social Media For Business: Part 3

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Safely Using Social Media For Business: Part 3


Using social media safely for your business is possible. We’ve seen a few pieces of advice previously that will help you do this. Here are some few final tips on this topic that will help you make the most of social networking sites all the while keeping your business safe from hacking and other security breaches.

  • Beware of compromised accounts

Just because your account is safe and you follow good security practices, doesn’t mean that everyone else in your contacts necessarily does the same thing, however. Be careful, as your clients, business partners, as well as personal friends accounts could be compromised. While most hacked accounts are used simply for posting spam, there are some other uses that hackers make of them. Beware of any strange links given to you by your contacts, especially if you don’t expect to be sent any links by that person. Very often, these would go to a phishing site, or a site that has been compromised by malware. Be careful about friends claiming that they need to borrow money or that they urgently need you to make a purchase for them on an e-commerce site. These are common scams that target social media users as well. If you’re unsure if the person that you’re talking to is really your contact, then get in touch with them in another way, such as by email, IM, text message or phone call.

  • Avoid discussing sensitive information on social networking sites

Don’t publicly post information that should be kept in private messages. For example, don’t post on your suppliers Facebook wall that you’ll be making an order for such and such product. This just gives information about your business to competitors. If one of your clients or partners wants to talk about something related specifically to business between you and them, then it’s better to do this in a more private environment such as by phone or email. Remember, there is always the potential that someone is impersonating a contact that you know on social networking sites, or that one of your contacts accounts has been compromised.

  • Keep up with developments in the security and social networking world

Read technology websites such as ZD Net, etc. They’re not just for computer geeks, but contain some very useful information about the latest technologies, in terms of online services, hardware as well as software solutions. You may learn more about a product that you’re currently using, or that you may find useful to get. But the most important reason why you need to keep up with technology news is that information about the latest security threats is reported a lot more quickly and thoroughly on these sites than on “general purpose” media websites. That way, if there’s a security threat such as a loop hole in site security that was found by hackers, or a piece of malware like a worm or trojan that is circulating through social networking sites, you will be the first to know about it and can find out ways to protect yourself from that security threat.

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What Draws People to Online Shopping: Part 2

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What Draws People to Online Shopping: Part 2


Yesterday, we’ve seen some examples of what draws people to shop online during the holidays, as well as what you can do to ensure that you profit from these advantages. There are a few more reasons that would make holiday shoppers want to do their shopping online. Here are some more of these advantages of buying online for consumers:

  • Better availability of products

It is a well known fact that the internet is a global marketplace. And it is not called that for no reason. You can purchase any product that you want, even if it would be difficult to get in stores in your area. While international commerce has existed for decades now, ordering something that’s not available in the stores of your area would be quite a hassle before the internet. Now, all that’s required is for the visitor to find what they’re looking for online. To profit from this, a good business model would be selling merchandise that is unique and not too easy to find in stores.

  • Lower prices

One of the big advantages that online businesses have over physical ones is the lower overhead. Running a chain of stores would often require millions of dollars of investment and then a considerable monthly outlay just to keep things running. A store also needs to provide good customer service to their visitors, have their shelves neatly stocked, etc. But to run an e-commerce site, all you need is a location where you’ll be shipping your items out of. If your business is relatively small, this could be run from your home or from a “warehouse” located in your attic or garage. Price conscious consumers are increasingly turning to online shopping during the holidays, mainly because of an abundance of great deals that can be found on a wide range of merchandise on the internet. By making sure that your merchandise is priced lower than what retail stores charge, you will attract those that want to save some money on their holiday shopping.

  • More shipping and delivery options

Again, before the internet, when you ordered something from a catalog or by phone, the only shipping option available was regular shipping, meaning that you had to wait several weeks for your merchandise to arrive. Holiday shoppers obviously don’t have that much time to wait until they receive their order. But with the increased popularity of online shopping came faster shipping options at very affordable prices. Many online shopping websites now offer free standard shipping that takes 3 to 5 days to arrive at the customers door. Expedited shipping options, such as overnight are available as well to anyone who wants to get their order faster. The important thing here is that you give your buyers a good range of shipping options, which would allow them to choose the one that’s right for them. Some people need their order fast and will be willing to pay extra for it, while others can wait a few more days without problems.

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Get More Sales This Holiday Season: Using Social Media

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Get More Sales This Holiday Season: Using Social Media


So we’ve seen some ways to get started with your marketing campaigns for this holiday season if you own an e-commerce site. But do you want some more ideas on how you can draw in more site visitors and sales on your website? Here are some more ideas that you can use. Remember, you can always think up of your own strategies, look up some more online, or adapt these to match your overall business objectives, as well as your creativity.

  • Use Twitter For an Everyday Special

Twitter can be a powerful marketing tool for businesses. Of course, this is no secret and anyone into online marketing will already know this. But it is how you use Twitter that can make the difference between “good” and “excellent” results for your website. Simply Tweeting the same thing over and over again like “Come in! We have specials” is likely to bore your users after a while. But having a special promotion each day on a certain item, or category of items during the countdown to Christmas will be much better at keeping them paying attention to your Twitter feed.

  • Create a Facebook Event

You could make a day (or week) where you offer even bigger promotions to your buyers and attract them by creating a Facebook event, then inviting your Facebook friends to it. People often get invites to holiday parties and events during this season, so there is a high chance that they will be paying attention to the invites that they receive.

  • Donate Some of Your Proceeds to Charity

The holidays are a time of giving and sharing, so you definitely don’t want your company to look like “Scrooge Inc.” during this time of the year. Give some of your proceeds to a charity, maybe even a Christmas themed one and announce this on your website, social media pages and e-mail newsletters. Your shoppers will see your business as one who cares about others in need and will be more likely to shop with you.

  • Organize Some Giveaways and Contests

This doesn’t have to be complicated or require a lot of cutbacks from you. For example, you can post a coupon code on your social media page that is valid for the first 10 or so people that use it. Then, do the same again in a few days. This will do a lot to keep users paying attention to your advertising messages. A contest is also a good way to draw some attention. You could, for example, be giving away a free item or a gift voucher valid for a certain amount of money at your web store. Be creative, there are plenty of more giveaways that you can offer to your website visitors. Remember, your shoppers will want to see that you are giving them something valuable and sharing during this holiday season. A few free gifts can definitely be helpful. Customers who got something from you also have a higher chance of coming back to buy something, even if it is after the holidays.

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