While driving the key business decisions, there are three important metrics for online stores to be aware of, namely Customer Acquisition i.e. driving in more traffic to your storefront, Customer Retention i.e. increasing the frequency of purchase and the third is Increasing the Average Order Value i.e. making customers buy more when they shop through the storefront.
Your storefront’s average order value is “the average dollar amount spent each time a customer places an order on a website or mobile app. To calculate your company’s average order value, simply divide total revenue by the number of orders.”
Where customer acquisition usually involves researching and executing complex marketing plans to attract new customers, increasing your AOV is one of the most effective and comparatively inexpensive ways to increase revenue and cash flow. Needless to say, it differs from country to country, its demographics, its business environment and culture, the availability of good quality vendors, etc. So how can you convince your customers to add more items to the cart before checking out and spend more money with each purchase?
Up-selling is one of the best ways to increase the value of an order. By Up-selling you make customers to purchase a higher-end product in order to make a more rewarding sale. While up-selling a product on your print storefront would usually involve outlining more profitable products, on the other hand it can be simply showcasing the other options available to the customers, which were perhaps not considered. Every time a customer comes to purchase a customised product, keeping a section in your storefront showcasing the higher end customisations or similarly customised products with better features may work well.
Source: Custom Logo Cases
Cross-selling, as a sales technique depends on various factors. The objective of cross-selling on your print storefront can be either to increase the average order value or to protect the relationship with the clients.
Broadly, this technique can be done in three forms: Selling unrelated additional need: Here for an example, one may offer customisation on mobile covers for free if a person purchases customised laptop covers. Here actually the person may not be in need of a customised mobile cover but might opt for it as a combined offer. The second is selling related additional (complimentary) need where say a college student at your storefront looking for a customised printed T-shirt for his annual day is more likely to purchase a customised cap with their group or individual name printed on it and lastly the third form is selling a combined solution. Let’s say, when one buys a particular amount of customised T-shirts, you can wave off the shipping charges for them as a part of the discount. Here, you provide a solution for the entire purchasing t-shirt process.
Source: Silk Letter
BUNDLE PRODUCTS / PRODUCT PACKAGES
Bundling products or giving product package deals is a nice way of selling two or more related products at a discounted price. It’s a great way to move your slow moving goods and because it is convenient for the customer too, you are most likely to increases your average order value. Let us take the same example where a college student is looking for customised apparels for his annual day or maybe a corporate that is looking for a set of customised stationaries for its every employee. Here you may offer a clubbed discount if they buy an entire package including the predefined products.
Many print storefronts have found success by selling bundled products as a package rather than individual offerings. Even if the savings are nominal, customers still do relate bundles with savings, making it a much easier for you to sell your products. You can always try and keep your bundles a little flexible because a potential customer may reject a bundle because only three of the five products fit within his or her use. The more flexible you are here, the more the chances of increase in average order value. The upgraded offer can even be highlighted in the cover e-mail to your existing customers or with a creative banner on your storefront.
Source: Alma Mater Store
OFFERS ON MINIMUM ORDER VALUE
So just in order to clear all your dead stock, are you planning to offer this awesome 10% flat discount? Think Again. Give some, take some. Offer the customers a discount on a minimum purchase of $50 or $100 or any particular figure that sufficiently makes up for your lost margins. Anyone going for a purchase of $40 or $45 will tend to get tempted and go for a minimum purchase discount on $50 and hence will increase the AOV.
BULK ORDER REWARDS
Offer discounts on bulk purchases of the same product or even for same customisation on other products. But before you get carried away, a word of caution. You have to determine the right discount value that attracts customers and at the same time doesn’t throttle your profit margins.
CORPORATE ACCOUNTS AND MEMBERSHIPS
Create a customer club with particular benefits (newsletter, coupons, special events, extended hours) and offer free membership with any purchase over a set dollar amount. Otherwise, membership should cost something. You may even offer a personal shopper service to your clients with higher AOV in order to increase it more. Take your staff through some training on assisting customers in making their shopping decisions, and then assign these newly trained personal shoppers to your valued clients who may assist them in their customised purchases and even manage their order history and status. This may give the client a feeling of personalised and privileged service.
Source: Alma Mater Store
Your opt-in offer is your tool helps you to know the interest of your customers towards your featured product. It helps you to know whether the message is communicated correctly or not. Apart from this such offers are used for gathering your customers’ information, which allows you to regularly keep in touch with your subscribers, build relationships of trust and loyalty, and keep them updated about your products or services. You can test placing your opt-in offer either on the top left side of the homepage or even on every page of your site so it’s always in front of your visitors, and try placing it in a “hover ad”. The more sign-up opportunities you provide, the more subscribers you’re likely to get. Test it and see.
Give something to the customer and see them happily returning the favour. Whenever they make a purchase, either give them reward points through a loyalty card, gift vouchers or a cash back offer under your loyalty program and apart from ensuring a second-time visit and fostering customer loyalty, you can expect your average order value to increase significantly. A study found that loyal customers can make up to 70% of total sales and also a survey by Technology Advice in 2014 states that about 80% customers are more likely towards shopping at stores that offer loyalty programs.
LIMITED TIME SALE OR PROMOTION
Offering a slight discount can make your designs and products more attractive to a client. Make sure to clearly define the start and end dates along with all the other details so the customer isnt confused working with you even after the promotional period is over. Adding offer for a limited period creates a sense of urgency and encourages the customers to buy more in one go. For example, ‘Get 40% off on all products’ might motivate the visitor to browse more products. But if you say ‘Get 40% off on all product customisations for next 3 days’, it will compel them to not only purchase the product but to even go for the customisations right away.
Offering a straight 20% off on all personalised greeting cards on the occasion of Father’s Day can serve as a great idea to increase your AOV.
FREE SHIPPING THRESHOLDS
Offer free shipping or faster shipping for purchases made within a certain time or over a certain billing amount. Order free shipping on orders which are a slightly more than your current AOV. ‘Slightly’ because free shipping is a tricky subject. You’ll end up increasing the AOV, but the additional shipping charge might reduce the total number of transactions.
Source: Bigger Better Banner
Source: Business Insider
Highlight a particular item and put it front and centre. Sales will increase just because it is “the featured item” even though it isn’t discounted. The trick is to use the home page as an excellent platform to funnel in traffic towards a specific customisation or product. One can just feature the most popular customization or the product and see the respective sales increasing.
Source: Dino Drops
SOCIAL PROOF/ CUSTOMER REVIEWS/ TESTIMONIALS
Social proofs encourage customers to buy more as it provides authenticity and instils confidence in their purchase decisions. Social proof includes your storefront statistics, reviews from other users, even from a celebrity or expert endorsements would work. Gather positive customer reviews and put them beside the customisation or even the product offered.
Here, for a print business, the advantage is that you can also ask satisfied customers for testimonials and then use those on your website and in sales emails or newsletters. Always be sure to ask permission first when using a customer testimonial.
Source: Alma Mater Store
Source: Logo Bar Products
While the LOGO BAR PRODUCTS showcases their customer review ratio on the bottom right corner, ALMA MATER went on stating their social proof on their homepage itself. Reviews and testimonials do matter a lot in the decision making process; they are always powerful.
Adding more to your average order through up-sells and cross-sells isn’t something to set-and-forget. It requires continuous and rigorous adjustments and diversification of your product lines. Test your offers to know what works best. Just remember that you shouldn’t overdo it. That said, cross-sells and up-sells are smart ways to optimize your website and raise the value of every conversion but do not forget to strike a balance between discounts offered and your profit margin.