9 Must-Have Ecommerce Tools To Increase Your Online Sales Today
In the world of ecommerce, steady growth and a consistent income are next to impossible if you’re not willing to invest in helpful tools. When you first started, you may have been able to do everything yourself and do it well. But after building an established fan base and a decent reputation, certain tools can help increase your online sales. We've scoured the internet high and low and found 11 ecommerce tools that we’d never heard of prior to writing this article. We are lucky enough to also have the input from some well-known individuals. They've voiced their thoughts on the relationship between their industry and ecommerce.
BONUS: Selling on Amazon? Take a look at our favourite Amazon Seller Software for 2018, thanks to FitSmallBusiness.
So, with no further adieu, what interests you most?1 - Sensible numbers and graphs2 - Learning while you sell3 - Making a good first impression4 - Everything relevant, all in one place5 - How to do good English6 - Dealing with low ballers7 - Mother Nature8 -Being internet famous9 - Hashtagging 101
‘’The goal is to provide a great, engaging experience--to deliver what people want and love--and you simply can't do that without behavioral analytics. You've got to have a deep understanding of what people are doing on your website.”-Brian Kelly, Kissmetrics CEO.The role of data analysis in ecommerce is huge. Keeping track of what’s working and what isn’t, is the glue that keeps your sales growing, not just consistent.But it can get too much.
Analysis paralysis. Information overload. Too much info in too many places - and most of it irrelevant.Sometimes I need a nap with my good blanket after spending 15 minutes with Google Analytics.Sure, data like conversion rate, revenue and traffic are important stuff to know, but often it comes with a lot of other irrelevant information. And when you have that data, what do you do with it?Enter Neatly.io.Data is taken from a wide range of interfaces and presented to you in easy to read ways. Personalised insights. Everything you want to know in one place.
Connect the channels of the software you use and Neatly builds a dashboard with your information. Connect, for example, your Shopify account for data like revenue to be shown along side your average order, your churn rate and other essential information. With the click of a button, go from your Shopify Data to your Google Analytics Data.
I went one step further and built a custom dashboard. I got a kick out of building my ‘eCommerce dashboard’. I connected my Shopify and Google Analytics accounts. I then threw in notifications for Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.That’s how I ran my store for a full day – everything I needed to know and nothing I didn’t need to know.A flexible and straightforward approach to anyone with too much data and no idea what to do with it.I set myself a small Twitter goal using their neat (pun intended) KPI tool. By the end of the day, I wanted to have an extra 50 followers. Using the KPI tool, I put in my data and was presented with a progress bar.
As my follower count reached its goal, the bar progressed. A simple concept, but a great way to visually represent KPI’s. This feature can be used with other things like store revenue, email list numbers and website traffic.The data of your website plays a huge role in the direction of your marketing efforts. But sometimes, it’s just too much. Neatly.io find the simplicity in all the chaos. A smooth and simple way to drive traffic to your online store.I’ll let their own pricing page how much it costs:
The Bonanza marketplace is one that encourages users (sellers) to grow, just as much as it encourages consumers (buyers) to find what’s right for them.First of all, Bonanza is your typical marketplace. People list their items and these items are seen by people who regularly browse the Bonanza website.But being a seller on Bonanza comes with a few more perks. You can pay an extra commission to have your Bonanza listings on eBay, Amazon, as well as Google Shopping. You can even go so far as to use a free account and pay an advertising commission to list your product on these sales channels.Think about that for a second.Which other marketplaces automatically list your product on Google Shopping? Not just a link to your listing in a simple Google Search, but a Google Shopping listing, as well.
Now I don’t know about you, but I get the feeling that more people use Google on a daily basis compared to any other marketplace.As a small boutique seller, being present on Google Shopping is an absolute necessity.This comes at a fee though. A minimum of 9% of your sale price will be paid in commission to get your items listed on Google Shopping. But this means your products are promoted to regular Bonanza buyers, too.Pay a smaller commission of up to 3.5% and save some money, but this only gets you the organic traffic of Bonanza.
Don’t want to pay a commission? No problem. For a fee as little as $25USD per month and a 9% commission, you can have your listing exposure doubled. This means you’ll reach organic Bonanza traffic, as well as your posts being sponsored in search results.Access to your store analytics in Google Analytics with every membership means that you can really see what’s popular in your store. The access to tools and other benefits increase with the membership levels.Yes, the membership concept of Bonanza can be confusing.But nothing good is easy.The tools and sheer exposure provided by Bonanza is an incredible gateway into the bigger world of online selling.The features are what makes the difference between ‘Yay I got 3 sales this month’ and ‘My God, I cannot keep up with this’.The sign-up process to is simple and easy. If selling elsewhere online, you can easily import from a CSV file. Ebay or Amazon sellers have the option of syncing their stock automatically.Bonanza sellers sell from their virtual ‘booth’. Much like a real-life market, this is where your visitors come and browse your merchandise.
The next steps are simple. Make a name for your booth, create your Bonanza account and set up payment methods.This next part is fantastic perk – preset return policies.For a long time, marketplace sellers have been confused about making their own returns policies. Bonanza offers a handful of the most common return policies as presets. You can add your own return policy for each individual item, too. A great way to remove a little nuance of selling on a marketplace.The next step is credit card validation to make sure that you’re a real person.Pick your level of membership or what percentage you want to pay, and you’re basically ready to sell. Traffic will start visiting your website and soon enough, your first Bonanza sale will come!The Bonanza marketplace is full of other helpful things for anyone selling online. The Seller success page is full of tips for anyone selling online. The Bonanza guide is a glossary on getting the most out of the marketplace.Bonanza made this list for a reason – it wasn’t the first, nor is it the biggest. But these are the exact reasons that make it one of the best places to sell your wares.The team educates and informs sellers about the bigger world of ecommerce and how to boost ecommerce sales outside of their marketplace. External resources like Google, Bing and eBay are utilised to give customers the most bang for their buck.Whilst the pricing structure may not be the most straightforward, it is certainly a step in helping vendors grow their business.Back to the top
One of the joys of selling online is that you control your customer experience from start to finish. Design, branding, the tone of voice, everything is your call.Brands that take this consistency through to their product packing are the brands that set themselves apart from the pack.Branded product packing guarantees that you deliver more than just a product - you deliver an experience.Packhelp helps you deliver that experience with custom designed product packaging.They also have a fantastic little app that helps you design your box the way you want.We’re going to design a box for our formal men’s shoes that I sell. The biggest pair of shoes that I sell measure 32cm x 28cm x 11cm so we need a box that is at least this big internally.Packhelp’s Mailer Boxes look like the best place to start. They’re strong and lightweight which promises security but saves money. They’re also completely customizable. The secure locking mechanism means that the box won’t accidentally open in transport, even without extra tape.
Next up, it’s time to choose the box variant I want to use.
At this point, I want to take into consideration my product branding. The colour of the products I’m selling, for example. The darkest shoes range from a navy blue and black through to a deep brown, reddish colour. For this reason, I don’t think the ‘Eco White’ option would best suit me.I have the option of full colour but I believe that may over complicate the branding. My website is a minimalist and full of earthy colours, so I think the simple ‘Eco’ box is best for me.Now another tough decision - quantity. When it comes to making this decision for your own brand, here are some things to consider:
- Do you want to do it over your whole product range or just premium products?
- How many of these products do you sell a month?
- How can you factor the cost into product price?
- Do you have room to store 10,000 boxes or only 20?
Having made this decision, it’s on to designing!Packhelp offer 2 ways to design your custom packaging. Download their software and design it all from scratch. But since we’re not that advanced, we’re going to use their online tool. This way, most of the hard work is done and we can still make our design just the way we want.
Here we see our box in a fantastic 3D layout. Using the buttons to the top right, I can focus on any side I want.Creating a simple design is, well, simple. 2 buttons on the left let you add text or images. Keep in mind the overall size of the images you want to use. I had to redesign the image used in my example here because the files2 buttons on the left let you add text or images. Keep in mind the overall size of the images you want to use. I had to redesign the image used in my example here because the files were too small. A helpful little popup comes up if you are going to make your image too big to the point where it’ll be pixelated.Speaking of help, I was unable to find out how to resize text. Using the built-in chat feature, Marcin answered my question in about 15 seconds.
Once I was satisfied with my design, it was simply a matter of completing a simple checkout procedure.Packhelp makes it incredibly easy to create unique packaging perfect for your brand. Unique packaging goes a long way in separating yourself from the pack.First impressions last and you only get one!Bonus: Why people love unboxing videos and how they can help your ecommerce brand.Back to the top
Metrilo is 3 fantastic creatures all in one suite. Ecommerce analytics, email marketing & CRM. All 3 of these elements are important parts of your ecommerce store. Master these to really make an impact on your sales.Metrilo brings them all together into one simple dashboard that integrates with WooCommerce, Magento and Shopify.The built-in CRM puts together a complete customer profile that shows habits, order history, product interactions, contact details and so on.Your entire customer base can be segmented with over 30 different filters. Great for finding out as much as you can about everyone and market to them accordingly.Automated emails can be set up from within the platform, too. The same applies for any kind of email campaign, too – upsells, transactions, cart recovery, so on and so forthSigning up and connecting a Shopify store is simple.We start our adventure here:
After logging in, I was greeted with this smooth, clean and crisp dashboard. A little overwhelming at first, it doesn’t take long to realise the sheer power and abundance of information that Metrilo delivers.The revenue and visitors tally is great. I really like the percentage of total sales and conversion rates from different platforms.
Want to know more about increasing your ecommerce conversions?
Read the article:25 Ways to Optimize your Ecommerce Conversion Rate (read now.)
The ‘people’ tab is another great feature. The data is very informative about your visitors, even unidentified ones. A great way to make your marketing laser precise.
Visiting my own store in incognito mode, I was able to follow myself. Pages I visited, products I added to my cart and then abandoned, as well as the time spent on each page.For repeat customers, a complete back history of their purchase history and pages viewed is available.The aggregation of this data is shown off in another really interesting feature.
In probably the most informative feature of Metrilo, we have ‘Trends’. Select the time frame you’d like to know about and this plethora of information tells you anything you want to know.Seeing revenue from each traffic source is a handy way of seeing which streams are paying off. The same with seeing revenue plotted against referrals.The sales funnel data is another nifty tool that can show you where you’re leaking conversions.
The ability to follow trends is where the Analytics and CRM side of Metrilo crossover. I am able to see the patterns of visitors, one-time buyers and repeat buyers. I can then take this knowledge into the email campaigns section and create relevant emails.Firstly, define the people you want to email (cart abandoners, repeat customers, inactive customers), write the email in the email interface and send. All progress is tracked within the ‘Email Performance’ tab where you can see a complete report on the performance of your email campaign.
If you’re slowly trying new things with your eCommerce venture, Metrilo is a great tool to have in your arsenal. Use correctly, it's a fine tool to drive more traffic to your store and boost your sales. Nowhere near as confusing as Google Analytics, yet informative enough to really make a change in your profits and how you operate.Metrilo pulls off well-equipped CRM system tied in with email marketing. I particularly like the visual representation of sales funnels.To get you started, Metrilo offers a 14-day free trial and after that, plans start at just $119USD per month. Bonus: Explaining customer’s buying patterns using lightsabers.
"Digital communication is becoming an increasingly significant part of brand identity. The ability to communicate with others in a concise and relatable way can impact your online success more than clout and physical appearance."– Celeste Mora,Grammarly Social Media ManagerA badly written product description is just as bad as no product description. Truth be told, bad writing in your web store is more than skin deep. It goes on to further affect your website traffic, brand image and SEO.
Your current product descriptions may be good at explaining what the product is, but does it actually sell the product to someone that’s interested? Why is it good at what it does?If you can’t put it into words yourself, you need the skills of a talented wordsmith.BKA Content don't make software like everyone else on this list. Instead, they offer a service that is by far, the most important thing any business of any industry can have.Writing. Words.But these guys just don’t make pretty words - they specialise in pretty words for eCommerce to boost yours sales. Product descriptions are just one area that the BKA team can take control of and use to boost your sales.
Unique and original writing all throughout your website is what helps your product stand out. This equates to conversions and your brand being remembered. If a buyer is sitting on the fence about a sale, some cleverly crafted words may be all that’s needed to convert someone.Quality writing is even more important if English isn’t your native language. If you're trying to get noticed in English speaking markets and you’re not sure if you ‘do mistakes’ or ‘make mistakes’, it’s time to find some help.Even for a native English speaker, a fresh set of professional eyes can breathe some new life into your titles. Fresh product descriptions and SEO and get that stagnant stock out the door.We all know how important a blog is to the credibility of your brand. And we all know that you’ve been neglecting your blog for quite a while. Yep, BKA can write your blog for you, too.Need the copywriting on your website redone? BKA will put together a team dedicated to perfectly articulating the wording for your project.Product descriptions, social media, press releases are just a handful of the services that the team can provide perfect English for.Each BKA writer has gone through rigorous training to make sure they can write with SEO in the back of their mind.Long has a battle been fought between the relationship of SEO and good writing.These guys kill those 2 birds with one stone. Back to the top
It will come as no surprise to retailers, that buyers love control. Given a choice, buyers will prefer to create their own combination of products than buying a set 'combo'.Giving the buyer control in your online store is a great idea. Giving the buyer control of the price they pay for a product - well, that’s got some potential.Shopper psychology of earning or winning a discount is powerful. Use it right and increase your chances of conversion.And that’s exactly what Pricewaiter does. Pricewaiter gives the buyer the ability to name their price. When adding a product to the cart, buyers use the tool to ‘haggle’ on price.
When both you and the customer are satisfied with the final price, the product is added to the cart. At all times, the seller is in complete control of all transactions manually or in a pre-defined manner.Integration is as easy as copy/pasting some code into your back end. The next steps are as simple as connecting payment methods for your shoppers and setting up your profile. Now, our dashboard shows a graph that displays your total revenue generated from the PriceWaiter application.Now, our dashboard shows a graph that displays your total revenue generated from the PriceWaiter application.
What I like most about this dashboard though is the data represented underneath. Total clicks, offers and orders, as well as important information about your averages.But now it’s time to set up a campaign. A campaign is simply one way that people will be able to bargain with your final sale price.
This initial page shows us all the different kinds of ‘discounts’ that are possible. It also explains in which situations they’re best used. Bonus points for also showing how the button will look on your product page.For this example, we’re going to use a simple ‘Make an Offer’ campaign.Our next screen is where things get serious!
Designing the window that customers will see is very simple and to be honest, fun. From this same area, you design the confirmation, counter offer and declined emails.Setting campaigns up like this means that you need to manually interact with every offer. That’s great if you sell small numbers, but when you’re moving larger numbers, automation is essential - and that’s where PriceWaiter thrives.To do this, you place your products into ‘sets’. These product sets are then given rules. The total amount that each product can be discounted or the number that a customer must buy to receive a price break, for example.Price Waiter also goes one step further with the targeting. You can make your offer valid to people only in certain countries. You can even work free postage into the equation to sweeten the deal even more.Price is the one thing that every single person who visits your store will look at, regardless of the reason they're there in the first place.Unfortunately, the price is also something that a lot of sellers refuse to budge on. They set their price with profit margins and won’t budge.But with a tool like Pricewaiter and a little tweaking to your pricing plan, you can empower your buyer and lead yourself to a flood of conversions.Back to the top
If there is any tool listed in this blog that can literally change the world, it is Seed the Change.Based in Sydney, Australia, Seed The Change is a for-profit subscription-based business. It allows vendors to have trees planted around the world every time a product is sold in their store.Empowering the buyer to help a charity can have a big impact on your conversion rate.
How can this help a seller?One word: Empowerment.You empower your buyer to change the word by buying things. This increases the shareability of the name and can ultimately increase the conversion rate of a store. Giving back to the environment in this way tells the customer that their purchases are changing the planet.Aligning with a charity or good cause like this can help define a brand's image, too.
One of the first companies to use Seed the Change was an organic skincare company. Very little relation to trees and deforestation. After integrating Seed the Change into their checkout process, the company saw 35% increase in conversion rates.A second company, selling novelty pyjamas based around the TV show ‘How I Met Your Mother’, saw a 25% increase in conversion rates. Regardless of what it is you sell, this tool clearly works.
Moral gestures like this are a kind of investment in your customer.The customer sees that the more they spend, the more tree’s they’re planting. The customer spends more.Integration requires you to do little more than copy/paste some code into the right places on your website. There is also the option to have an image displayed on your website, showing how many trees that your store is responsible for planting.
Whilst Seed the Change don’t actually plant the trees themselves, they work hand-in-hand with the conservation charity responsible for rebuilding forests.
This charity plants trees in places like Nepal and Haiti, which is still recovering from the 2010 earthquake. The charity involved also maintain and protect the tree for 5 years after it’s planted.
The psychology behind cart abandonment can be is worth being aware of. One of the main reasons that people abandon their cart before completing the checkout is guilt. By doing something good on behalf of the buyer, you take away that last minute guilt.Their train of thought goes from "I really shouldn't be buying this for myself..." to "I buy this for myself and I'm making the world a better place too!"Integration into your store is free. For every tree that is planted as a result of a sale, you're charged less than 60 cents (USD) to plant a tree and maintain it for 5 years.A negligible price to pay to change the world, increase average cart spend and boost your conversion rate!Back to the top
I sell phone cases and natural soaps. I’m doing everything I can on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to get my brand seen, but I’m not having much luck. My website is set up very well, but I’m just not getting the attention or traffic needed to make any decent sales.Enter Intellifluence.Intellifluence is a community of influencers who can make a difference to your brand by delivering social proof. What is social proof?Social Proof is defined as a demonstration that other people have made a choice or partaken in a product or service. Social proof is proof that your product exists outside of your website in many different ways. Reviews, testimonials, or social media shares - and that’s what Intellifluence helps you with.Individuals with large social media followings can validate your product. Influencers give you an online presence away from your own website while also thrusting your product in front of their loyal followers.A tasteful and more effective version of product placement, almost.
Simply browse the community for an influencer that’s right for you, reach out and make contact with them. Suddenly your product is in front of that individual's social media following.The influencers will help promote anything: electronics, garden, fashion, homeware, cookware, just about anything.So let’s figure out how to use it to find an influencer for my products. I’ve signed up for my free trial and it’s time to find someone who can help me get my brand some attention.I’m based in the UK and would like my product to be seen across the pond in America. I’m going to make sure to search only for individuals in the U.S.
Here’s Leslie. She’s in the USA and has a huge Twitter following. She's interested in reviewing ‘Clothing & Apparel’ and is very responsive to messages. These notes under her name mean that she would like a product a product of value up to $50, or cash up to $50 for reviewing my product.
I followed the links on her page and found Leslie’s Twitter. I can see she has a large following and a lot of her tweets get interacted with.I also checked out her Instagram and saw that she loves dogs. Maybe I’ll reach out to her and offer her one of my French Bulldog Phone cases!The Intellifluence team give you some great tips when it comes to reaching out to influencers.The most important part of your pitch is to nail the subject line. Just like email marketing, the subject line is what will leave a good impression.Be clear with terms & conditions. Mention a time frame that you’d like a review done by, how many pictures you’d like shared on social media, so on. Be clear with what you want, but also remember to be flexible!There’s no need to ask them if they do reviews - they’re already here to do that. Get straight into your pitch and why they should review your product!Using the built-in messaging platform, I’ve written her a ‘pitch’.
I nervously clicked send and it didn’t take long to get a reply!
Now it’s just a matter of getting postage details and I send the product!What about the natural soaps? Well for this one, I’d like to build a bigger audience at home in the UK. Searching for influencers just in the UK, I found Tatjana.
One of the categories that Tatjana wants to be involved with is Health & Beauty. Perfect for my natural soaps! She has a big following over a lot of channels, as well as a blog - perfect for a review!
She also has a very good Instagram following, which is great, as we know how good Instagram is for social proof!
Again, reach out to her with a well-crafted pitch:
And our influencer replied:
Again, all we have to do now is discuss terms and the finer points of the transaction and we’re all set!Social proof is a very important part of selling online. It increases notoriety, validates your product, pushes it in front of the loyal followers.Intellifluence makes the process of locating a relevant influencer and reaching out to them, much more straightforward - and more promising - than simple cold calling. The fact that every influencer listed in their database wants to do this, takes most of the hard work out of approaching the individual.Used correctly with the right influencer and Intellifluence can increase online sales fast. Get the right influencer and your product can be going viral for all the right reasons.Intellifluence offer a free 14-day trial to help you find your perfect influencer. After that, plans start at $39USD per month to keep you in contact with people that can help your brand out.Special thanks to Leslie Brooks and Tatjana from Fashion Artista their contributions! Back to the top
‘Twitter is an e-commerce sellers dream come true. Twitter, if done correctly, can send your site consistent traffic each month, virtually automated.’-Michael Kawula, Social Quant CEO‘Twitter is dead’ they’re saying.Wrong.It’s evolving.And while it does that, there’s still traffic to tap.Yet an online presence over multiple social media channels can be time-consuming. Customer service, marketing and promotions, a lot of these things happen via social media - and Ritekit makes that easier for Twitter users.The ‘kit’ consists of 4 individual tools:
But today, we’re going to talk about my 2 favourite - RiteTag and RitForge.RiteTag - takes care of hashtags. Using the web page, type in the hashtag you want to use and you’ll be presented with a range of hashtags like yours.Extra information includes how many tweets, retweets use that hashtag. What percentage of tweets with that hashtag have photos or links in them is another useful feature.
RiteForge - is a tweet building suite. Most tweets aren't worth engaging with. ‘Visit my store’. No. Your job is to make it interesting and give me a reason to click.The panel lets you build tweets using .gifs and images, but also lets you tag influencers and suggests hashtags, too. The tool also has it’s own schedule to let you post at certain times.
I logged in to Buffer and started building the social media queue using the RiteForge Chrome extension. This was way too much fun. It is a fantastic tool to easily build unique and memorable tweets!All of the tools in RiteKit come with Chrome extensions, but by far, my favourite is the RiteTag extension.Anytime you write a hashtag in Chrome, a small banner will pop up and show how frequently that hashtag is being used. A very handy way to get the most out of your tweeting!RiteTag has become my go-to tool for hashtag research.
Over to you!
So there you have it. An in-depth compilation of our favourite ecommerce tools to boost your sales and boost your traffic!Some may work for you, some may not. Go forth and try them for yourself to see how they work for your products.What didn't make the list that should have? Let us know in the comments below!
What’s a Rich Text element?
The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.
Static and dynamic content editing
A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!
How to customize formatting for each rich text
Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.