Polishing Up The Shopping Experience
In this, there are three parts to this workshop that I kind of want to break down and how we can get more repeat sales and how we can encourage our past customers to come back and buy from us again, and this first part is on elevating your brands experience. So what I what I mean by your brands experiences first and foremost the shopping experience that you put your customers through so the moment that they learn about your company, maybe it's through social media, maybe they found you on facebook or instagram or pinterest or twitter? Maybe they found you in a magazine. Maybe they found you in someone else's, blawg the click over and the first thing they seize your home page and in that whole process from when they check out your shop, check out your products and maybe they even add a few things to car if they really liked your stuff and the price is right to the hole to the end point of checking out that entire process that they're on your website and even a little bit after that, whe...
re you're giving them sign up confirmation emails and tracking e mails all of that is one whole big experience that we need to pay attention to, and I think the big mistake that a lot of us creative business owners make is that we think that this is all just it's all just a process, but it's really an opportunity for you to brand it and to make it smooth and to make it your own so that your customers can have a long lasting impression of your brand and to come back and to tell people about it. So a positive experience shopping on your web site makes it more likely for a customer to come back again. If people have a good experience, they're they're they're just it's just it's just a natural thing for them to do. They're going to want to come back because they had a positive experience. They it was they were happy with their purchase, they're going to come back when the need arises for your product to be bought again, and then brandon website makes a better, longer lasting impression. So what I mean by brandon, you have your logo on there, you've got a nicely designed layout, you have nice colors on there that match your brand, you have copyrighting that match your brand. All of these things are all part of your branded experience, so an analogy that I like to use here with this shopping experience thing with people buying your products online and having them check out, and you know, that entire process, all of those little steps, the analogy I like to use is I don't know about you guys, but when I go out to eat and I got to you a lot, I like to always use yelp. Teo look at reviews for whether or not this is a good place to check out it's not yelp it's one of those others even google reviews has a lot of great reviews from from people who have been to this place before personally when I go to a restaurant because I grew up in a third world country it's the dirtier, the restaurant, the better the food is and it's kind of funny, but for the most part, for the most part people on yelp when they leave reviews on restaurants, the the cleanliness of the restaurant is really important the customer service that they're getting the wait staff that's really important to people the food itself is important to people by the ambience in its own way is almost as important as the food itself and it's so interesting that every time we go to a restaurant and it's like yeah, the food was really great. But the reviews are like two stars three stars out of five and it's really interesting to see that people are complaining about rude wait staff they were just checking their phones all the time and they didn't come to ask me if our food was ok or the restaurant was really dirty all of this can translate into your own shop online. This is your virtual storefront of the wait staff in that way, you're the cut zimmer service. You are that wait staff to your customer. The product is the food. The product in itself cannot stand by itself. You really have to give people the whole experience that they can be happy with the cleanliness of the restaurant. That's what your website looks like doesn't look clean, doesn't look appealing, doesn't look great. Does it make people feel great? Is it? Is it a place that someone wants to bring their date to? You know, do people want to talk about you to their friends? I want you to really go to your website even if it's your etc shop. Even if you don't have a website, go back to your website and look at these really standard elements of your website and think about how you can kind of spin that and add a little bit of your brand flavor into it. We'll talk a little bit more about how you can do that in just a little bit, but first, in talking about branded websites versus non brenda web sites such as etc, I wanted to have a little segment here to just talk about pros in concert for a little bit. The analogy I like to use here when you were talking about at sea versus having your own website is it's kind of like renting house versus owning your own house with renting, you know that equity, you're not building equity onto yourself, and the money that you're paying for rent to this house is just gone with the wind you're just throwing money out there that you're never going to see back. It doesn't add anything to you you're paying the mortgage for someone else, which essentially, is what you're doing with etc. When you do all of this marketing to your etc shop, you're in a way you're helping at sea itself grow and all the marketing that you do here in in our indirectly helping all the other shops on there, which is fine, which is fine, but when you own your own home, you have the freedom to rent a late you have the freedom to do things a little bit differently with your house to make it your own, and the more the mortgage payments that you're paying towards your house that's actually building onto your own name so if one day you get a great feature in a magazine or in a tv show on a huge blawg, and if that links toe, etc. They're not going to remember you, so that was the other thing is, well, etc is great if you want to set up your if you want to set up your shop quickly, I'm not saying that it's the don't go in and see I'm not saying that he does have its place if you want to. If it's if it's, if you're not very tech savvy and you feel like setting up a whole web sites going to be a lot of money and I'm going to show you how it's not that hard at sea is a great way for you to get up to get set up very quickly. You have photos of your product, you can type in descriptions, it's, a great starter shop for you to be on, but people are less likely to remember your brand if you're on etc, but they will remember, etc, because the etc branding is front and center of everything, and the only little spaces for branding is a little banner, maybe a little to one or two pictures on the side bar, but there is very little freedom and control that you have over this experience if the same for every shop and I want to share it with you an interesting experience I was doing a craft show one day and it was over the christmas holidays and I was just it was pretty it was pretty slow it was in the morning still so people weren't coming in yet but I was just standing there listening to people talking and these two ladies walked by and they were really excited they're saying it's just like being at sea and to me that it sees branding everyone remembers at sea everyone remembers I bought these hearings from etc they're not going to say I bought these hearings from tiny hands so that's one huge disadvantage for selling on etc it's a great place to get started but eventually the faster you can get your own website the better it is for you the better it is for you in the bigger picture in the long term if you're looking for long term growth and success definitely look at starting your own website so there are tons of easy website builders out there there's shopify which I know a lot of us are using I just moved on to shop five amazing for those of you who want to go more of the d I y method work press is a great place for you to its war presses a content management system you can download its free install it and then you can download and install an e commerce plug in called rule commerce and that can turn were pressed into into a shop bubble site basically you have options like weeks dot com big commerce the cartel three d card there are so many options out there for you and they want the these sites really make it really easy for you to start your own store online outside of etc. What I like to do is all of thes website builders. They all have places for you to be able to download templates off a design that you can put on to your own shop. So once you sign up, say, for example, you're going on to shopify so you sign up for your first store, then you at attach her domain ing to it so something like tiny hands online dot com your own brand a domain name you can go into the shopify template store or theme store where other designers and at other graphic designers and coders have already done the work for you to create just a plug and play theme. And you can search through all of these really awesome looking themes and it's not it's beyond shopify there other third party companies out there who are also making their own shop of five themes and you can take those themes and it's very affordable the most expensive things I've come across or maybe one hundred eighty dollars, but the one that I'm using with fifty dollars you take that theme you buy, install into your own car and super easy is just the clintons at the click of a few buttons and your seems installed and what I love about this, how easy this is, you don't have to touch any code you don't have to know see, assess you don't need to know html or all that stuff, so it's, really easy for people who are not so familiar with all this technical stuff and what's nice is when you turn it into your own branded shop. It's really easy, it's just like filling out a survey it's going to ask you upload your logo here and then you just click, upload, browse and upload, and then I'll ask you what color funt do you want to have as your main front? What fun choice tight? Do you want to have your fun as so it's? Just going through a list of questions and then you're just answering them and what's really nice, too about shopify is once you're changing these the's toggles it, the changes will reflect right away, so you can kind of play around with it and kind of make it your own. So I'm not trying to discredit graphic designers or website bill website designers out there, but for a lot of us, small business owners were just starting out, we may not have the budget to commission or invest a couple of thousand dollars on a professional graphic or website designer so this is an option that you condemn finitely take it is so easy for you to start a store on your own outside of etc. So a few things to keep in mind is your website design and your layout. As I mentioned with my yelp restaurant analogy, when people go out to eat food, or even when you're going to a store where you're buying clothes and think about the whole experience, right, what does the store look like? Our this is the staff friendly are the clothes great and the closer the product staff issue you, your customer service and what does the place look like? Really? Get into that that depth and create a place where your customers that we, we make them feel great. Is it clear and obvious what you do and what you sell? So have critiqued a few web sites in the past, and sometimes, you know the problem is you land on the website and there's a nice pretty home page it's nicely designed but it's not very clear what you do. So if you have a tag line, if you have a title text, whatever it is, pictures off the product itself. Put it front and center make it clear that this is what you do and if you're doing if you do see a lot of different things that I would recommend for you to really think about how you khun niche that down and make that more focused and make that more specific because when people remember you as that one specific thing you are the go to person for so and so they're going to remember you that much better so make it really clear and obvious that you do what it is that you do don't try to hide it you want to communicate that right away so you don't leave people the problem with people who are our surfing online is there's this thing called bound street so if someone finds you on google or someone finds you on facebook and they click along link onto your site if in like the first three seconds they closed your web site because they don't feel like I don't know what this is about or I don't like this thing or I don't get it they're going to close it and that will result in a bounce for you and the higher your bounce right on your web site the lower google as a search engine will start to rank you and so you're you're not going to show up as high up on search engines as you could be are you mobile optimized with google's newest algorithm that they just launched I think this wass sometime earlier this year in two thousand fifteen they've launched this new algorithm which penalizes websites whose web sites are not mobile optimized so if for my web sites when I look at my google politics, at least fifty percent of all of my traffic comes from mobile browsers from people who are surfing with their iphones or smartphones. And so you want to be sure that your website is optimized and looks great and that smaller scale and if you're using any one of those web site builders I was telling you about and if you use a theme that is ah that is backed by the website builder itself chances are they're all going to be response if they're all going to be mobile optimize so that's going to be great for you you don't have to worry about how do I make a big website look small and nice on my tiny little phone but this is something that you definitely want to think about as well for your own website a note about navigation links you need to have clear navigation links make it easy for people to go from page to page on your website make it easy for people to shop around and to click around a note on this is when I talk about branding the standard elements what I want you to do is for your links you know you can be instead of saying about you can say about me or if you say car you can see shopping cart change that around so that it suits your brand and your company but in terms of navigation links don't go too crazy on that if you're changing about me too cheesecake no one's going to know that that's your about paige even if you think like oh that's really cute thing to say and there's some story behind it no one's going to know that so make it very clear that the about page is the about page that the contact page is the contact page your website colors are definitely something that you want to also make sure blend well together do they go well together? Are they on brand colors with your brand are the easy on the eyes? One thing I want to talk about is by now button colors aa lot of studies have been done on what has been the highest converting color that you should have for your vinyl buttons it's little things like these like the color of your by now buttons that could result in the extra sale extra sales for your business the verdict on this the answer if you're curious is that as long as the color is different from all the other colors on your website you're fine so on my website I have a lot of pinks going on a lot of beiges and whites, and so my by now, buttons are green, so a lot of people out there will be saying red is the better color orange is the better color do amazon orange, right? They have kind of ah yellowish yellowish orange color you could try all of that, but if all of your website is yellow and your by now buttons also yellow it's not really going to draw attention to your by now button and that's. What you want people to do ultimately is to click that by now, button, you also want it to be obvious to people what your cart and checkout button looks like and where it is, so don't hide that, if possible in your theme. If you're able to use that as an option, make that a sticky header so that no matter where you scroll or what page you're on, the carton button will always be visible to your customers. Make it easy for them for once they're ready to check out that button is right there for them, too, to continue on that process. There have been so many times for people are adding things to their cart, and then they can't figure out how to check out, and then they drop off and they don't buy, they don't end up purchasing from you. Your point? Your fund choices are equally as important. I have come across so many different websites where probably on one browser it looks great, but on what I'm looking in, I can hardly read it because it's so it's just like that, it just looks weird, so be sure that when you are doing all of this website stuff colors the layout, thie the size and the dimensions of your layout. The font choice is the size of your fund that you test it out in the different browsers and on different operating systems, so there can be a difference in funt choices if you're viewing something on a mac and if you're viewing something on windows, it can look different and if people can't read your text, they're probably not going to buy from you either. As a general rule, keep things simple and clean, simple and clean things straight forward it's easy for people to consume people like easy, simple things so you also want to check your site speed. This is not just for your customers but also for google google ranks you hire if your if your site loads faster and your customers also fuel better as the experience goes if you if your website is lagging and it's taking like twenty seconds if it's taking a whole minute for that loading but for that loading icon and nothing's popping up they're going to get frustrated and they're going to leave your website so it works both ways for your customers. For google a great place for you to check out your site speed and kind of have a rating on your web site is to go to this u r l developers dot google dot com slash speed slash page feed slash insights or you can just go toe google and then search website speed google and what's really nice about once you enter in your your website here it will show you kind of a ranking out of one hundred points will give you a rating kind of like a score and it also spell out to you what needs to be worked on so that you can actually go in there and fix some of those problems and then you can resubmit your side again deceived that made any changes your most important pages who you want if anything else you want to make sure that you get these pages right? So your home page where most people are going to be landing on this is the first impression they're going to have off your shop. This is so important you don't have to reinvent the wheel here something simple like just pictures of your product or a banner or a slide show of your product works fine and then the navigation you don't have to go crazy but the home page is very important so if you haven't really looked at that and if you haven't focused on that I really encourage you to go in there and fix it up the category page kind of if you have different categories in your product line so with jewelry I have necklaces, bracelets, earrings all of these category pages will show you lists off the different products that I sell within that category for the most part that's going to be pretty simple but this is the second step that people are most likely going to be going into after they land on your home page if they're not checking out your about page, they're going to go let's look at necklaces let's look at the best sellers collection and essentially your product listing page is also very important you want to make sure you have more than one photo for every product and show all the different angles for your product show these scale of your product you also want to be sure you have all that important information like pricing you're copyrighting and we don't we did talk briefly about copyrighting in our previous workshop starting a subscription business and again you're buying no button is going to be on this product listing page so really figure out a way for your by now button to be really prominent meteo big make the ad to cart button really large well, not not too large that takes up all of the screen, but you know, larger than everything else and give it a different color than your regular brand color, so it really stands out and your cart and check out page as well. So if there is a way for you to brand these pages, definitely going and do that and make sure that they were correctly, make sure that they run smoothly and in some ways that you can brand it. So in to give you a few examples of what I mean by branding some of thes website elements instead of saying related products, I can say other sweet treats that you might like instead of saying your card is empty, you can say I'm empty and feeling lonely and give a little smiley face that's a sad face little things like that are going to kind of surprise people in a positive way, and they're going to remember your your your shop a lot more than if it just is your cards empty everyone's cars if it's emptied, saying your card is empty, so find some way to stand out and be different from everyone else out there and these are all opportunities for you to do that your shopping experience also includes how you interact with your customers, your emails or social media. How can you brand that experience? My brand is really trippy it's really cheerful it's pink it's really girly so I'm not afraid to use smiley faces and exclamation points in my conversations with my in my emails with customers I've seen brands out there that are kind of like tough and and kind of sarcastic and mean and like those brands really ought to use that branding and translated into into their shopping experience to and your customers are going to love that treat your customers with respect but in that way you can brand your email conversations with customers with your social media going back to checking out you want this to be as easy as possible for your customers to do how easy it is for your customers to check out how quick is it for them to check out, eliminate as many barriers as you can so if you can the fewer questions you ask the fewer choices that you have the faster someone is going to take from adding something to cart and giving you their credit card information so what's really great is if you use some of these web site builders you can turn on guest check out so you don't have to force someone to create an account a guest check out will be a lot easier and faster for someone to complete that purchase with you so a great place for you to actually go on and and submit your website to is peak dot user testing dot com and it's free to use but what you get what you get out of this is you have a real life person go on to your website and record their entire where they're clicking on and the even talk through about oh this doesn't really make much sense like all this part's really confusing so we'll give you feedback and the critique your website and I think they do that in like five minute videos but you can keep resubmitting and so that's a great way for you to see how well your website is doing and of course ask your friends ask ask your friends friends to review your website do we have any questions about website stuff building websites and I'm totally I'm really techie and I love talking about that kind of stuff so if you want a question I'm an artist and illustrator and so the way that I would set up my site would be there's work that I make to show and then there's also illustrations that aiken dio on spec and you know that kind of portfolio commission work and selling prince of you know some of the other fund illustrations ideo so entails of in terms of branding and salesmanship do you think that they would have to be like kind of a split between those two types like whether it's a fine art side and an illustration side because traditionally um ah lot of fine artists have kind of shied away from this kind of like hey buy the stuff and like super cute but some of my stuff is if I do say so myself, so do you think between your fine art in your illustrations? Are they do they share a similar theme? Do they have a common thread? They do have common threats? Yes, I would keep them together then I would not separate them too much and so this will be something you put in your navigation link so you could have some that custom work or commissions and then another link that goes to shop for your regular prince. I think that's going to just make it a lot more streamline for you and someone who's coming to your website for the artwork that you do if they're going to buy a print or if they're going to ask you to make something from them it's all under the same website and I think that's the best experience you can give to them because if you're going to start separating things and you're going toe kind of change out that experience for them it's going to be harder for you it might be it might be a little bit of a cognitive dissonance for them, so the smoother of an experience you can make it and because you said that you do share similar common thread between two styles between the two products to carry or the two collections or projects that you were gone, I think that's fine, yeah, to just put it all in one place. Thank you. Interested in switching over to shopify and I'm wondering, does it integrate from its here do you just pretty much? It sounds straightforward. You just plug everything in and just go from there, I believe was shopify. They probably have a really easy way for you to impose all of your current at sea products into shopify, but if you just have a few of them and you don't want to figure out how to do all that imports stuff a few listings, I mean, then it's pretty easy to just go in there and create new products from scratch, but there should be existing transfer or import feature. Automatic import features toe link the two together, but it's going to be so easy, I promise you it's very easy to do.