There are a thousand countless ways to increase the success of your website and make money. Many models have been created and thousands of gurus have given their say on the path to online mastery and great wealth. The Old way of doing business was to “Buy Low – Sell high”, have a Creative Marketing Plan and Great Innovative Product.
It is always best to go back to the Basics. Yet it takes one successful company to really exemplify those Basic Criteria of what we are talking about. So, in this case, we will use Amazon.com. Amazon.com, we could all agree, is the quintessential E-Commerce site. Let’s see the Cyber-Principles of how they created a successful site.
- Value the customer above all.
Amazon.com founder and CEO Jeff Bezos has repeatedly stated that he endeavors to make Amazon the most customer-centric business in the world. A visit to the site confirms this.
Amazon offers great customer service. It knows that responsiveness is the key to making online shoppers feel comfortable. It is important to realize that ordering online is different than purchasing something in a store. Online, you can’t touch the actual products and you don’t talk to a real salesperson. You just cough up your credit card number, make your purchase, and send your order off into cyberspace, hoping for the best. For many people, it still seems like a proposition based on faith. So the first secret to getting customers to order from you is to convince them that you won’t let them down. Amazon first does so by immediately sending you an email confirming your order and telling you when they expect to ship it. Then, when your order does ship, they send you another e-mail with your tracking number.
You should do the same; it creates confidence in your store. (Some e-commerce software builds this function right into the software, such as Yahoo! Store for example.) You should try and ship quickly. If a customer has a problem, Amazon responds immdediately.
For example, I ordered a Magazine from Amazon last month and it took them a day longer than anticipated to ship my order. They e-mailed me, saying that they upgraded my order to a “priority” mail shipment because of the “delay.” I got the package the next day. It is things like these that build loyalty to the brand.
1. Make shopping easy and pleasant.
Amazon has a “three-click” policy that dictates that if a customer can’t accomplish what they want to within three clicks, then the system isn’t working right. Imitate Amazon and make shopping at your store simple.
In the same way, Amazon’s pages are clean and professional. The use of images is prudent: never too many, nor too big, so the pages don’t take long to load. They know that their job is to give you the chance to find what you want quickly and easily and to be able to purchase it without difficulty.
2. Offer Product Variations.
What is Amazon? Now, besides being “Earth’s Biggest Bookstore,” it seems to be earth’s biggest store. When you have a big inventory, it tells your customers that you are here to stay and that they will be able to find what they want if they go to you first.
3. Offer Excellent Prices.
A big reason that people shop online is because they think they will find unbeatable prices. That is certainly true at Amazon, and it should be true for your store.
While few of us have the resources to totally imitate Amazon, the spirit of the site is one to emulate. You might not become another Amazon but you will be on your way to become successful.