strategies posted in business strategies  on 10 November 2013
by Andrew Lang 
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So You Want Quick Sales After Launching a New Website

The anticipation of sales is palpable after launching a new site. There's so much to discover about how your target market responds to your offering. That first sale is a big relief, but how quickly can you start making sales on a brand new website? This will depend on a number of factors:-
  • how saturated / niche your market is
  • how much you're willing to spend on advertising from day 1
  • what you sell
  • your prices - high cost items may take more time as people realise you're new and may feel a bit uneasy spending a lot of money with a brand new business
  • your website's content - have you got the necessary information to reassure shoppers such as delivery and returns information, payment methods available (somewhere clearly on your site, not only after you've added to the basket)
  • is this a new business as well as a new website? If it's not a new business, make sure you let visitors to your site know that. Let them know you've been around for a while, show customer testimonials etc.

How saturated / niche is your market?

A saturated market means you have a LOT of competition. Quite often that means you're selling a commodity product, with your only distinguishing factor from your competition being service and price. Getting in early sales will really depend on your advertising budget - you need to be seen in a crowd. It may sound tough, but in such crowded market spaces, you tend to have large target markets.

What you sell

Are you selling a bespoke service or product? This may slow down initial sales as your market have to get used to your offering. You're likely to get enquiries before sales, which is no bad thing. If you're selling a commodity product, your market are already familiar with what you sell, and getting sales from day 1 is a real possibility.

If you're in a niche, then it's easier for you to be seen by your market, and it may be best to actually go to your market and engage with them directly on messageboards, Facebook and Twitter and let them know about your new offering.

How much are you willing to spend on advertising from day 1?

Regardless of what you're offering, you should set aside some budget for advertising from your launch day going forwards. Instant traffic to your site will allow you to learn quicker as to how your target market react to your offerings. A website is a constant work-in-progress. You'll be adjusting your pricing, services and products based on what your market tell you explicitly (literally, telling you directly) and implicitly (e.g. their browsing behaviour on your site).

Your prices

High cost items will more likely bring you in enquiries more than sales - it's human nature to do due diligence when spending more. Again, no bad thing if you're getting enquiries. What business doesn't want sales leads? Lower cost items (likely commodity products) will be a lower barrier to cross for your market - a familiar product at a reasonable price isn't such a dilemma for the shopper.

Your website's content

It doesn't matter if your site is one day old, or ten year's old - your website's content heavily influences how well you're going to sell. Have you got your basic information on there such as delivery and returns information, business contact information, concise and full product information, with clear imagery to help represent what is being sold? Have you introduced your business in a friendly and informative way? I'm always amazed at how some sites have practically NO information on who is selling the items I'm looking at.

New website, but old business?

If you've been in business for years, let people know. Maybe the new website is a brand new business, but you've got years of experience in the market you're selling in. Let your visitors know that. A new website that simply says "we're brand new and have no history!" is going to asking visitors to trust you a lot more, especially if you're selling a service or bespoke product. Show your experience!

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