COVID crisis has completely changed the way we do eCommerce. Contactless methods of transactions have become a reality especially because people are fearful about health concerns. Getting to a shopping mall – which was exactly a walk in the local mall – has become a walk in a booby-trapped pyramid. No one is sure who is infected, and this has become a constant hurdle in performing regular activities.

As a result, eCommerce has boomed. Stores that rarely received orders and traffic before COVID are now receiving 3X more orders regularly. It has also created new opportunities for revenue for many in the digital sector.

In this article, we will discuss what strategies eCommerce store owners can create to double their revenue during the COVID crisis.

With that said, let’s get digging.

1. Reassess Your Customer Policy

Since COVID has changed how people used to shop, it is time for online stores to create a more customer-centric policy for their visitors. To do that, we need to understand what customers want. Most customers would want an easy return and refund policy so that if the product doesn’t suit them, they can still get it replaced or refunded.

Most online stores don’t offer this and therefore people think twice before ordering anything online.

Another issue with online shoppers is the high price of products available online. Today, almost 80% of people in the US are buying groceries online. This has increased the eCommerce order volume by 129%.

When people want to purchase anything online, their first thought is to buy products from websites that:

  • Don’t charge shipping
  • Offer lower prices than other eCommerce stores
  • Don’t have any hidden fees
  • Allow users to get products in the next three days

It is because daily use items are immediate needs and should be delivered within two days.

With that said, creating a customer-centric policy should be the first in the list of online users.

2. Enhance Your Revenue with Push Ads

Once your policy is aligned with what customers think, your next step should be to create a promotion strategy so that your products always show up when people search for them. This would include creating push ads, improving organic rankings, and create a holistic marketing strategy that caters to your target audience.

  • A few ad streams you can add to your eCommerce store include:
  • Push ads for marketing and promotion
  • In-mail ads
  • Remarketing on organic and search engines
  • Google shopping ads
  • Display ads on Audience Network, Google Display network, Microsoft Display network.

3. Upsell and Cross-Sell to the Right Audience

Once you have customers, the next step is to retain them so that the Lifetime Value (LTV) of each customer can increase. In simple words, if a customer was spending $100 on your eCommerce store, you should focus on increasing that spend to $300 for the next year so that your annual revenue can double in a short time.

There are a few ways to do this, but the best one is to upsell and cross-sell to your customers. Upselling means selling complementary products that people would need in the future. For example, if a person has bought camping gear from your eCommerce store, they would also need an electric pan, barbecue set, chargeable freezer, and similar camping stuff. You need to target them with a discounted price of these products when they are on the checkout page.

Similarly, when they have bought products from your eCommerce store, you can sell them more products that relate to the same niche. These can be camping boots, torch, supplies that are not from the same category but can be useful.

4. Precise Audience Targeting Is a MUST

Understanding your audience is the first point to increase revenue during the COVID condition. People today are not buying luxury stuff, most of them are either buying grocery items, daily use items, medicines, or baby products. Here is a graph that sheds more light on what people have bought in the last three months after the lockdown started.

ecommerce-consumer-sales
Source: Common Thread Collective

Since people are stuck in their homes, they are more likely to spend their money on the essentials. With that said, luxury items, fashion products, and tourist products are going to experience a big drop because people are simply not interested in buying those products.

It is important to understand that your messaging caters to this audience. This would mean creating segmented lists based on the category of products people have brought from your store. Once you have the list available, a few options you can try for precise marketing include:

  • Remarketing to each customer base separately
  • Creating an email newsletter with discount offers on the categories that are being sold the most on your eCommerce store
  • Revamping your landing pages to push products with high transactions to the front
  • Enhance the user journey by enhancing search-based product selection
  • Creating user guides of essential items and publishing it on your blog and other places on your website that get the most eyeballs

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4. Ad Costs are Down – benefit from it

Google and other search mediums have decreased ad costs during the COVID crisis. This is high time for companies to spend more on ads and target the right categories to their audience. Even if they are not getting any visitors at this time, they can still build targeting workflows through ad marketing, multivariate testing, and then remarketing.

To understand how the world is working right now, you need to know about Maslow’s needs chart.

maslow-needs-chart

Ecommerce stores need to target categories that in the basic needs section. This includes daily essentials, security safety, and health.

Hidden categories that have become important:

  • Board games, home-based games, computer games. Anything that can kill your boredom
  • Subscriptions to entertainment websites and channels
  • Book reading is back again in fashion because people must do something
  • Branded stores are faring better than others because they already have a trust relation built with their customers.
  • Heat maps and scroll maps can tell a lot about your customers. So, run them regularly on your top landing pages to understand what items your customers are most interested in.

5. Bottom line: Communication is the key!

If you want to reap the most benefit from eCommerce in the COVID scenario, then communicate effectively with your customers. Tell them about how you are trying to help them during the crisis. What they should expect from your service and how they can easily provide their feedback. In short, ‘you are listening to them’ – is the key message to focus on.