Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Merchandising Yourself On The Web

This is NOT about driving people to your web site or your online store. It IS about what you should be doing once they are there.

For this little blog I don’t care how you got the customer to your web site, be it typing your web address, key word search, pay for click, a link from your Social Media site, a reciprocal link, banner ad. I don’t care.
What I do care about is what they find once they arrive on your site.

1st, and your should have done this when you set up your site, is to know who your intended customer is and prethink their needs and wants. As a business it is JOB 1 to find the products and services of your target market. You either have it or you don’t. If you don’t, change your products or services OR if you don’t, change your target market to one that does. You need to think about what they have bought in the past and who they bought it from. Then you can start to have them buying from you.

2nd, understand you are selling more than a great product or service; you are really selling a solution. They have a need or pain and you are the great healer of that pain. So ask what is that pain, for me it is finding companies sales leads and companies that buy what they sell. What is yours?

3rd, Mix and match your products and services into a suite of services. I have a page on my site dedicated to that task, although I looked at it and I think I need to rework it. But, what are yours? Are you a plumber? If you’re fixing a sink, why not show new kitchen designs, if you sell closet shelving, why not show bedroom design. If you sell lamp shades, why not offer lighting design?

4th, Now sit down and take a breath. It is time checkup on yourself. It is a good idea to take the necessary time to search for your products or services in a key word search and then once your find your site (if you do) click though it to see how user friendly it really is, for you! If it is not friendly for you, think of your poor unsuspecting customer. Then ask a trusted friend who will be bluntly honest with you to do the same thing. And when they criticize your site, LISTEN.

5th, you need to prethink your customers. No one really goes to your site for fun; they go there to buy something. You might want to create buying categories such as “hard to shop for husbands” or “for the baseball creasy person” or “cooking 101” “even “the complete marathoner”. You can do the same for pricing, having inexpensive, mid range and high end areas on your site.

The key is to make yourself accessible for the customer to find what they want in the way they want.

Larson Notes & Satire: I don’t care what I want. Well I do, but not in that way. If I make my customer happy, I’m happy. If they buy from me, my reward is a sale and that makes me happy, and I hope it makes my customer happy with the service or product they have just contracted out for.

There is saying which I am almost sure you heard in one way shape of form “Walk a mile in your customers shoes”. Know them better than they know themselves. Pre think what is happening.

With Christmas right around the corner do you realize that the stores decided last January and February what you would be buying this year? Oh yes, all the big Christmas merchandising shows happen in January and February. The buyers came, looked about bought, back then!

Do what they do. Look at what is happening and prethink your business position. Pre think your merchandising. If you do this better than the competition (and can get the word out better than the competition) people will not only find you but buy more from you. Why? Because you fulfill their need.

Remember the Mickey Mouse Club closing: MIC, see you real soon, KEY, why because we like you….. and did you come back the next day?

Howard Larson
Larson & Associates
Target Marketing & Telesales Professionals for new account acquisition
Making good businesses great and great businesses even better

P.S. We make telesales for small business affordable by offering programs down to only 15 hours a week. Maybe you could add telesales into your marketing mix call today and find out.

P.P.S. An American Company, marketing American Companies! Call or email to get an appointment to pick my brain (a $125.00 value) for 30 minutes.

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