Category Archives: Products

Mastering Cross-Selling: Techniques to Enhance Your Customer Experience

Ever noticed how complementary accessories are always conveniently displayed alongside certain products? This is an example of cross-selling. Effective cross-selling not only increases your business’ average order value, but also provides a more comprehensive solution to your customers’ needs. Today, let’s explore what cross-selling is, its benefits, and how to use it in your business!

Mastering Cross-Selling: Techniques to Enhance Your Customer Experience

Understanding Cross-Selling

Cross-selling involves suggesting related or complementary products to a customer who is already considering or has purchased a product. Unlike upselling, which encourages customers to buy a more expensive version of the product they are interested in, cross-selling focuses on offering additional products that enhance or complete the initial purchase.

Benefits of Cross-Selling

Effective cross-selling has many benefits for your business, including:

  • Increased Revenue: By encouraging customers to purchase additional items, businesses can significantly boost their sales.
  • Enhanced Customer Experience: Offering complementary products can provide a more complete solution, increasing customer satisfaction and loyalty.
  • Strengthened Customer Relationships: Personalized recommendations demonstrate an understanding of customer needs, fostering trust and long-term relationships.

Effective Cross-Selling Strategies

Know Your Customers

To cross-sell effectively, it’s crucial to understand your customers. What do they want to see? What products or services do they associate together? You can get a better understanding of your customers by analyzing purchase history, browsing behavior, and demographic data allowing you to tailor your recommendations. For instance, if a customer frequently buys outdoor gear, suggesting a new line of camping equipment might resonate well with them.

Leverage Product Relationships

To create an attractive cross-sell, you need to identify which products naturally go well together. Use data to find out which items are frequently bought together and suggest these combinations. For example, if a customer purchases a smartphone, recommend accessories like a protective case, smart watch, or wireless earbuds.

Timing is Everything

The timing of your cross-sell suggestions can make a significant difference. Offer related products at various stages of the customer journey:

  • Pre-Purchase: Suggest complementary items while the customer is browsing.
  • During Checkout: Highlight additional products during the checkout process.
  • Post-Purchase: Send follow-up emails with recommendations based on their recent purchase.

Personalize Your Approach

Personalization is key to successful cross-selling. Analyze individual customer data and provide tailored recommendations that fit their needs. Furthermore, you can segment your customers based on their behavior and preferences to offer more relevant cross-sell options.

Offer Incentives and Discounts

One way to sweeten a cross-selling deal is with a discount. Encourage customers to buy additional products by offering incentives such as discounts on bundled items or extra loyalty points. For example, a 10% discount on accessories when purchased with a laptop can be a compelling offer.

Want to learn more?

Want to learn more about cross-selling? Listen to our latest eCommerce Made Easy Podcast where Carrie explores the best strategies for effective cross-selling, the technology that can help you get it right, and real-world examples that show just how powerful this technique can be.

The Art of Upselling: Unlocking Greater Revenue Potential

Ever wondered how you can boost your sales without acquiring new customers? Upselling might be the key. By encouraging customers to purchase higher-end products or add-ons, you can significantly increase your revenue. Let’s dive into effective strategies for upselling your products.

The Art of Upselling: Unlocking Greater Revenue Potential

What is Upselling?

Upselling is a sales technique where a seller encourages a customer to purchase a more expensive item, upgrade, or add-on to generate more revenue. Upselling includes methods such as product upgrades, add-ons, bundles, warranties and services, and so forth. This strategy not only increases sales but also boosts customer satisfaction by providing solutions that better meet their needs.

How do I Upsell my Products?

Upselling is a powerful tool to increase your revenue and enhance customer satisfaction. However, where do you get started? To effectively upsell your products or services, you need to…:

Understand Your Customers’ Needs

The first step to successful upselling is understanding your customers’ needs and preferences. By analyzing past purchase behavior and feedback, you can tailor your upsell offers to match their interests. This personalized approach makes customers feel valued and increases the likelihood of a successful upsell. Additionally, it builds customer trust and loyalty, which can lead to repeat business and further upselling opportunities.

Highlight the Benefits

When upselling, it’s crucial to highlight the additional benefits of the higher-end product or add-on. Clearly explain how the upgrade can solve more problems or provide better value. Customers are more likely to consider an upsell if they understand the tangible benefits it offers. Demonstrating real-life examples or sharing customer testimonials can further illustrate the advantages, making the decision to upgrade even more compelling.

Offer Complementary Products

One effective upselling strategy is to offer products that complement the items your customers are already purchasing. For example, if a customer buys a smartphone, suggest a high-quality case or a pair of premium headphones. This not only enhances the customer’s experience but also adds value to their purchase. Complementary product upsells also demonstrate your expertise and understanding of your customers’ needs, further building trust and customer loyalty.

Create Bundles

Bundling products together at a discounted price can be an attractive upsell strategy. Customers perceive bundled offers as getting more value for their money. Ensure that the bundle makes sense and adds genuine value, encouraging customers to spend more while feeling they are saving. Beyond just upselling, a well-crafted bundles can simplify the decision-making process for customers, making the overall purchasing experience more convenient and satisfying.

Utilize Scarcity and Urgency

Creating a sense of scarcity or urgency can prompt customers to make a quicker decision. Limited-time offers or highlighting low stock levels can encourage customers to act swiftly, increasing the chances of a successful upsell.

Want to learn more?

Want to learn more about upselling your products and services? Listen to our latest eCommerce Made Easy Podcast where Carrie uncovers the secrets behind effective upselling strategies, the psychology that makes them work, and how you can implement these techniques on your site to see immediate results.

Bundling for Success: Creating High-Value Packages That Drive Sales

One way you can stand out amongst the competition is through offering bundles. Bundles are collections of products and services that are grouped together into a single product. These bundles provide added value to customers, simplify their purchasing decisions, or offer cost savings for both you and your customers! However, how do you create an effective bundle?

Bundling for Success: Creating High-Value Packages That Drive Sales

Bundles can come in many shapes and sizes. They can be a collection of products, of services, or a bit of both! They can also be sold as one-off purchases or turned into a subscription service. Overall, bundles are flexible, but have a few base requirements to work effectively:

Your bundle needs to fulfill a customer need

As with any product, your bundle needs to be something your customers want or need. The products and/or services you decide to bundle together should work together to solve a pain point for your customers. For example, if you are creating a bundle of products that is related to hair care, you may create bundles that target specific issues people have with their hair. A variety of bundles can be created depending on the type of hair problems your customers are facing: a bundle for dry, frizzy hair, a bundle for oily hair, a bundle curly or straight hair; the list could go on and on. By creating a bundle that aims to solve a customer pain point, your bundle can become more enticing and attractive.

Your bundled items should be complementary

The key to creating a successful bundle is bundling products and/or services that work well together. Much like with the example of hair product bundles, your bundled items should be related to each other. This could be like having a hair care bundle that includes shampoo, conditioner, moisturizer, and serum. All of those hair products are related to each other and work together to improve your hair health. Bundles with complementary products and/or services are an excellent way to offer a complete solution to your customers.

Your bundle should be simple

Ideally, your bundle should aim to simplify your customer’s shopping decisions. Instead of having your customer sort through products, determine what products they may need, and add those products slowly to their cart, a bundle should offer them a complete solution to make the shopping process easier. However, a bundle is only as simple as you make it. It is possible to make a bundle that is over-complicated. This could be due to having too many products that do different things, or even just describing the bundle in a complex manner. Keep your bundles focused and easy to understand in terms of what’s included and what the bundle aims to do.  

Your bundle should be valuable

Your bundle should offer value that can’t be achieved when buying the included products separately. Making your bundle valuable can be done in a few ways. When customers buy your bundle, they could get a discounted price compared to buying the items or services individually. You could also offer exclusive services, products, or features in your bundle that customers can’t buy outside of the bundle.  It could be as simple as including a hair care planner as a bundle exclusive or could be a small discount. Your bundle should already have a lot of its value through its focused items and convenience, so your last bit of value ensures that your bundle is an easy choice to make.

Want to learn more?

Want to explore even more possibilities when it comes to bundling products and services? Listen to our latest eCommerce Made Easy podcast where we explain why bundles are a win-win strategy for both you and your customers!

Magento 2: How to Create Simple & Configurable Products

Just starting with Magento 2? One of the first things you may be eager to do once your shop is up and running is create your products for your store front! In Magento 2, creating a product comes with multiple product types and a wide range of attributes to choose from. Where do we get started?

Products in Magento 2

In Magento 2, there are a variety of product types to choose from. However, each type has their own suggested use and required attributes. In a basic installation of Magento 2, there are six default product types available:

Product type options in Magento 2.
  • Simple product – a product that has no variations, or rather, there are no options (such as color, size, material, etc.) for the customer to choose from. It is a set product.
  • Configurable product – a product that has variations. An example could be a shirt that comes in multiple colors and sizes. In Magento 2, configurable products are composed of simple products. These collections of simple products represent the individual options customers can choose from.
  • Virtual product – a product that has no variations nor is physical. This product could be a service, membership, warranty, and so forth. A virtual product doesn’t require shipping or delivery.  
  • Grouped product – a group of individual simple (or virtual) products that can be bought together as a set. These grouped products may be subject to some sort of promotional offer or discount when bought together.
  • Bundle product – a group of simple (or virtual) products that have to be bought together. Unlike grouped products, individual items from the bundle cannot be bought separately. The customer must purchase the full bundle.  
  • Downloadable product – a virtual product that is available immediately after purchase. This could be a downloadable file, software, ebook, video, etc.

In many cases, the most used product types in Magento 2 are simple products and configurable products. These two product types are very flexible and fulfill most of our basic product needs.

How to make a Simple product

If you are wanting to make a product that has no variations, a simple product is the way to go! To get started on a simple product, do the following:

  • Log in to your Magento 2 Admin.
  • In the left-hand menu, go to Catalog -> Products.
  • Once in products, go to the right-hand corner and click the drop menu arrow next to Add Product. In the menu, select Simple Product.
A simple product template in Magento 2.
  • Before looking at all the attributes, take a look at the top attribute: Enable Product. By default, your product is enabled, meaning its live. Toggle it to No until you are ready to release the product live.
  • On the product creation page, there are many options. First, select your attribute set. If you aren’t sure what that is and haven’t configured a different attribute set, use the default option.
  • Next, you must fill out the following: product name, SKU and price.
  • There are other options you can fill out. Fill out any attributes that are relevant to your product. Note that not all the fields need to be used. We suggest taking some time to at least fill out quantity & inventory source, assign your product to a category, and add content descriptions & images of your product.
  • Once done, click the orange Save button in the right-hand corner. Congrats! You have created a simple product!

How to make a configurable product

If you are wanting to make a product that has variations that the customer can choose from, you should make a configurable product. While making a configurable product, multiple simple products will be made during the process to represent the various choices customers can choose from. To get started on a configurable product, do the following:

  • Log in to your Magento 2 Admin.
  • In the left-hand menu, go to Catalog -> Products.
  • Once in products, go to the right-hand corner and click the drop menu arrow next to Add Product. In the menu, select Configurable Product.
  • Before looking at all the attributes, take a look at the top attribute: Enable Product. By default, your product is enabled, meaning its live. Toggle it to No until you are ready to release the product live.
  • On the product creation page, there are many options. First, select your attribute set. If you aren’t sure what that is and haven’t configured a different attribute set, use the default option.
  • Next, you must fill out the following: product name, SKU and price.
  • There are other options you can fill out. Fill out any attributes that are relevant to your product. Note that not all the fields need to be used. We suggest taking some time to at least assign your product to a category and add content descriptions & images of your product.
  • Now that the basics are set, its time to create the simple products that make up your configurable product. Under In the Configurations tab, you will be able to create the different variations of the product. These variations will automatically create several Simple Products that are not Individually searchable by customers. To create them, click Create Configurations.
Selecting attribute type for a configurable product in Magento 2.
  • First, select what the variation is: color, size, etc. Once you have selected your variation type by clicking the left-hand check box, click the orange Next button at the top of the page.
Selecting specific attributes for a configurable product in Magento 2.
  • Next, click the specific choices that this product has. For example, if we are dealing with colors, you may choose things like red, yellow, and blue. If a variant you desire isn’t present, you can create a new one by clicking Create New Value at the bottom of the list. Once you select your variations via the check boxes, click the orange Next button at the top of the page.
Determining images, price, & quantity for a configurable product in Magento 2.
  • Next you will be asked to determine images, Prices, and Quantity. Products will vary at this stage, as some variations may be different. Click the options that suit your product situation best and fill out the details about them. You can also skip these to do later. Once done, click the orange Next button at the top of the page.
Reviewing configurable product variations in Magento.
  • On the final page, you will be asked to review your variations. If you are content with them, click the orange Generate Products to create your variations.
  • Once done, click Save in the right-hand corner to save your Configurable Product. Congrats! You now have a configurable product!

Note: Your variations may need individual edits

For each variation you chose for your configurable product, a simple product was generated. These variations will be bare bones and will need some edits. You will want to either open each variation in a new tab from the Configuration tab of your configurable product or open them in edit mode from your Products page list. You can edit them by clicking Select & Edit. Add detail to your new Simple Products. Areas such as product descriptions, dimensions, and so forth will not be filled out, so you will need to go in and complete those as if you were making a Simple Product like we did above.

Want to learn more?

Want more Magento 2 content? Contact us and tell us what you would want to learn about! In the meantime, read our blog or listen in to our podcast for more tips and guides to help you through your eCommerce journey!

The Effectiveness of Email Marketing

There are many ways to attract customers to your business. In previous articles, we explored the ways quality web design and search engines optimization can turn visitors into customers. However, another aspect of bring traffic to your site is advertisement. One of the most powerful, yet simple methods of advertisement is email marketing.

Is Email Marketing Still Profitable?

When you hear email, you may wonder if email marketing is still useful. With social media now playing large roles in advertising businesses, you may assume that email lists are outdated. However, that is not the case. Email lists continue to be one of the most profitable methods of gaining customers.

Why is Email Marketing important?

It’s Cost Effective

While we can advertise our businesses in many ways, email marketing is an easy and often free method to get our product out there. Even email marketing software tends to be very affordable. Email Marketing offers some of the highest conversions rates when compared to other advertising methods, such as social media. This makes email marketing an option that gets the biggest bang for your buck, generating better results than its counterparts.

It’s Easy to Implement

Bringing traffic to your site can sometimes involve complicated software that can be hard to use and implement. Email on the other hand is simple and, for the most part, universal. A large part of the world uses email, which makes it not only easy to use as a business, but easy for customers to understand as well. Its accessible via multiple devices, scalable as your company grows its email list, and even measurable in terms of its effectiveness.

It Aids Customer Engagement & Retention

Part of creating traffic on your site is encouraging people who have already become customers to use your business’ products and services again in the future. Emails is a non-invasive method of reminding people that your business exist and has a lot to offer. Sharing information about your products via email not only reminds and educates people about your business, but also could compel them to purchase.

It Builds Relationships & Credibility

One aspect of your business that separates it from other competitors is your brand. A good email illustrates your values and mission, whether that be shared through your products, blogs, or personal stories. Your brand may be what keeps people coming to your business, making email a great way to remind them of what makes your company special. Email is also an easy way to share customer feedback, like the success stories of your products or services. They remind customers of the quality and expertise of your business.

Where can I start in using Email Marketing for my Business?

Want to get started in email marketing? At BCS Engineering, we use AWeber to keep our customers informed. With the help of email software, you can create and schedule emails, divide customers into email lists, and track how well your emails are doing! Check out AWeber and other email marketing software out there to start your email marketing journey!

Product Descriptions: Making the Intangible Concrete

The popularity of E-Commerce has pushed all sorts of businesses to open online stores. Consumers can find almost any product with the click of a button using the internet. On top of that, search engines can provide a wide selection of companies to choose from. Making your company stand out is key to beating the competition. One way we can make our products stand out is through product descriptions.

What makes Product Descriptions so Important?

With brick-and-mortar stores, customers can walk into a store and physically interact with a product. They can see what it looks like on the shelf, can ask a nearby sales representative questions about it, and may even try out the product before purchasing it. Online stores do not have that luxury. Instead, we have to work harder to make these products feel like they are real.

Photographs and text descriptions are the most important selling points for online products. Quality images and informative text help make your product tangible for online customers. Understanding what your product is, how it works, and what it can do for the customer are key to converting users into customers.

How do I Improve my Product Descriptions?

Remember your Audience

The first step in making good product descriptions is to know your audience. You may understand your products like the back of your hand, but how do customers see your product? How do they talk about it and search for it online? Identifying the words, situations, and value of your product can help you optimize your product description.

While focusing on your product from the customer’s perspective, it is also important to identify the problem your product solves. A potential customer may not know the name of the product they are looking for. Instead, they may search for an unknown product that solves a specific issue. Incorporating these uses into your product description can help bring new customers to your site.

Keep it Simple

While we can go into grand detail about our products and share our feelings about how great they are, too much detail can push customers away. On one hand, your product description should stand out when compared to others. Using the generic manufacturer info alone to describe your product will cause your product to blend with similar items. on the other hand, however, over describing or relying on clichés and superlatives to make your item stand out can cause customers to distrust or misunderstand your product. Overall, it is best to keep your descriptions simple and straightforward.

In our previous article, we discussed search engine optimization. The use of keywords can help guide search engines through our site when determining our rank. While we want search engines to rank our content highly, user experience should always come first. We are writing product descriptions for humans, so our descriptions should convey the human value of the product rather than just the associated keywords.

Use your Story

Product descriptions are an avenue to establish a relationship with your customers. A defined voice or narrative through your product descriptions allow you to share a bit of who your company is. You want to show that your product is a good experience. Illustrating that through your story and goals can make your product more enticing and help your company stand out.

Another way to illustrate your company’s story is through user experiences. Who better to sell your product than customers who already bought it? Whether it be visuals of customers using the product or written reviews, customer stories can help explain your product to other potential customers.

Converting visitors into Customers

In her upcoming course, “The Converting Website,” Carrie will explore the variety of ways you can optimize your website to increase visitor to customer conversions. Join the waitlist today to stay up to date about the course’s release!