Tuesday 30 September, 2014

How to Do Ecommerce – Tips on Being Transparent

Even though online shopping is on the rise, people still have some basic fears about buying online. This is because you can’t see the person behind the ecommerce store. It could be a scammer who has set up a site to nab your money and then will disappear into the virtual ether. You hear stories like this all of the time.

To win your customers over and get them to buy, you need to be transparent with what you do online. This shows them clearly who they’re buying from and makes you more accessible to them, which engenders trust.

Give It a Personal Touch

Make your web presence as personal as possible, with plenty of pictures of you and your staff, behind-the-scenes peeks at what you do, and so on. Make your website as human and friendly as any store the visitors frequents. Something as simple as candid pictures of real smiling faces can make a big psychological difference.

Real Contact Info

Of course, any spammer could take ‘candid’ pictures and plaster then on a website. You need to do more than this. One way to be more transparent is to offer plenty of contact information. Give them an email that you actually respond to. Even more importantly, give them several ways to reach you. Include a phone number, preferably an 800 number. People may not call this number, but be ready to answer it. Include a street address, even if it’s just your house.

A Solid Privacy Policy

Clearly state your privacy policy. Your privacy policy should explain in layman’s terms what data you collect from your buyers, what data you store, and what you do with this data. Make sure they understand that you’re not sharing it with any third party and that you have plenty of security in place to protect it.

Pricing Info Upfront

Be very upfront about all information related to the price of your goods, including tax and shipping. Make it as easy to understand as possible and include any extra fees that you charge.

Simple and Intuitive Design

Give your site a simple and intuitive design. If you’re not sure exactly what this means, test it with other people and see what they think. Try to give your site the kind of design that your grandmother could figure out. The most important information should be out front and at the top of your site’s pages.

Include Social Proof

Use social proof to boost your credibility. Seek out honest testimonials and reviews and display them prominently. Social proof tells visitors about you from others. It doesn’t come from you, so it seems more legitimate.

Quick Response

Finally, respond quickly and personally whenever someone contacts you. Don’t give them canned or automated responses. In surveys, online shoppers consistently rate speed of response as a major factor in whether or not they trust an ecommerce website.

Bob Steele

Bob Steele is an entrepreneur, software developer, marketer, and author living in the Denver metropolitan area. He’s an avid outdoorsman who loves skiing, hiking, fishing, boating, and just plain having fun. His interests include games, space, technology, physics, cooking (well eating actually), economics, business, internationalism, and team sports. With over thirty years of professional consulting experience, Bob has been exposed to many diverse business models and has gained a sensible approach to life. Bob’s company, WaveCentric is focused on commerce, marketing, and entertainment related products.

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