This article took me forever to write, but I did it!
By reading it, you’re going to learn all of the strategies I & our team used to increase sales for our eCommerce stores combined generating $100M in yearly revenue.
Here are the results we achieved in the past few months: I’m updating this guide every 6 months, so you’ll be able to see the best practices we use at any moment in time.
There are only 4 stats every eCommerce owner/marketer should be obsessed about:
- Customer acquisition
- Conversion rate.
And that’s exactly how this article is written.
Here’s what you’re going to learn:
- How to Increase Your Sales To an Ice Cold Audience With:
- Facebook Media Buying + Marketing Campaigns
- Email and SMS marketing
- Conversion Rate Optimization
- Influencer Marketing
- How to Increase your eCommerce AOV
- How to Increase Your Customer Retention Rate and LTV
How to Increase Your Sales To an Ice Cold Audience
01. Increasing the amount of creatives.
If you have your store already dialed in and you want to see a big scale – then there’s the only way to do it – by testing more creatives.
How do you do it?
First of all, it’s super important to have a system in place to test.
Here’s how we do it – we have a separate campaign, which we test it on the ad-set level and test every video with 2 different copies. We start testing at around 1.5x of our target CPA and leave it for 3 days to test.
After one or two days of testing, we trim down the ads that have a high cost per landing page views (I’m talking about $20+) and leave the ones that are within an acceptable range.
Once they pass our test phase after 3 days, we have 2 options (and we use them interchangeably):
- To create new campaigns with all of the creative testing winners
- Move them to the campaigns which have a high budget, but ad-sets are not working.
But the question here is – how do we increase the amount of creatives we test?
And that has been the biggest challenge of mine in the past 2 years. We’ve been relying on our creative team to create creatives for us, and it was working up until we started reaching roughly $100-300k monthly ad spend.
Once we reached that point, we realized we needed to get a lot more creatives.
So here are 2 solutions we’ve found to this problem:
- Influencer marketing.
By accessing Influencers & having them create content, we can get 50-100 pieces of raw content easily from 30-50 Influencers.
This has helped tremendously.
- External agencies/platforms.
This is a much more expensive solution to the problem, however, it provides us speed that we need to grow these businesses quickly and efficiently.
So far we’ve used many platforms (and I’m not happy with most of them) and other agencies and testing a lot more (will update when we get some results).
2. Hiring Upwork/Fiverr Freelancers as Video Editors to support our team
By doing this, we have a structure whereby our Lead Video Producers are in charge of Storyboarding + copy & then delegate to Video Editors to piece the raw contents together. That way, we don’t compromise on the expertise of our Lead Video Producers who know the conversion-driven principles plus leverage the volume of creatives by hiring other video editor Freelancers.
02. Create More Pages to Run Traffic From
This is my secret weapon, which I hope you’re gonna keep secret (or not).
Late in 2019, I was running out of ideas on what I should be testing on the ads, yet had one idea that might work.
It turned out to be the very best hack I found in late 2019, early 2020.
It was simply creating other Facebook pages.
If you’re running a supplement store – create a Facebook Page with the name “Top Supplement Brands” or something along these lines.
It creates this effect “oh sh*t, everyone is talking about them”.
Not only that, but I saw my CPMs 30-50% lower for the first 2-4weeks while maintaining the ROAS.
Awesome hack, try it out yourself. It doesn’t work for all accounts but when it does, it’ll be the scaling bullet.
03. Let Facebook Decide Who to Serve Your Ads To
3 years ago, when I started running Facebook ads, everyone was teaching how important it was to target audiences by interests, behavior, lookalikes, etc.
2.5 years have passed and all of this is obsolete.
Whenever we’re creating ad-sets, we simply exclude purchasers of 180days.
No interest targeting, no genders, no age brackets.
The structure of the campaign?
3 ad-sets –
3-5 proven, performing ads. P.S. I’m using this structure spending $100k/daily across 3 accounts. It might not be for you if you’re spending only a few hundred dollars, so take my advice with caution.
04. Try Out Manual Bidding.
I’m assuming you’re an experienced Facebook marketer and know the differences between manual bidding and automatic bidding here.
We used to have a workflow here that whatever works on automatic bidding (interest, behaviors, etc.) – test it out on manual bidding.
Since we’re not targeting in any way, we have a campaign set-up which we call “Manual Cutting”.
What we do is very simple – we take our average CPA and break it down into $5 dollar intervals.
Let’s say our target CPA is $80, we start a CBO campaign with $65 and go all the way to $120 with $5 intervals.
There are lots of ad-sets in this case, and we usually put 3-5 ads per ad-set.
We start the budgets with $1k per campaign (or sometimes more, depending on the scale we want to have) and leave it for a few days. Usually, we’re satisfied with our ROAS and whenever we’re not – we simply put some more creatives and turn off the ones that are not working.
We don’t do any changes on the ad-set level since it varies day-by-day.
05. Smart Cash-Flow Management
This is super simple.
Usually, in September, we go through the numbers with the business owners to see what’s the minimum ROAS we can be working with for the months leading up to a black week.
And we put our feet on the pedal.
‘Cause during that time we want to increase our email subscribers substantially.
You see, FB prices rise up starting in November substantially, while sending emails + SMS remains the same.
If we decide to go with 2.5x total ROAS, we’ll be able to scale the revenues before the actual Black Week…
But what’s better, is that our ROAS will be super high during the entire Black Week, when the spending is the highest.
That’s why we generate almost 50% of our entire years’ revenue in Q4.
You can do the same before any kind of big sale you’re preparing for.
P.S. I know a brand that’s breaking even for the entire year and pushes their ads to the max, to end up with 9-10% in profit by the end of the year.
06. Answer the Comments On Your Ads
Well, this is a no brainer, yet I’ve seen some brands overlooking it.
YOU ABSOLUTELY HAVE TO ANSWER THE COMMENTS ON YOUR ADS!
There’s no way around it.
If you don’t have customer service doing that – hire somebody and train them properly!
Encourage conversations, engage, be funny. Everything to increase the engagement. Because when you have it, your CPMs will go down!
P.S. that’s another added benefit of excluding only 180 day purchasers from your targeting – you get more comments from people who know about your brand much quicker.
07. Improve Your Video Marketing Game
I already assume you’re using video ads for your cold audience (if not, you should go ahead and start doing it now!).
Here are a few tips to improve your video marketing:
- Eye-catchy first 3 seconds – have a look at masterclass ads. Whenever you look at their ads, you have this one question in mind: “wtf?” and they drag you in.
- Use high-color contrast for it.
- Close up shots to show your products.
- Try to disguise your marketing in a native/storytelling format. You can get an inside look on our Top-Performing Creatives for almost every account by opting in to receive it here.
- Have many cuts in your video. Remember, our customers (and us) are dopamine junkies. We want to satisfy our cravings by seeing something new and we want to do it quickly. That’s why it’s super important to grab and hold our attention throughout the video. The best examples for it would be youtube influencers – they’ve mastered this game.
- Have a “meme” bar at the top of your video to grab your attention (example below)
08. Use Testimonial Video Ad
These videos are the most powerful for us so far and some of them have generated over $500k in revenue (this is the most I’ve seen a video can generate for us so far).
Here’s the structure for it:
- Eye-catchy first 3 seconds. Example: “I was about to die”.
- Introduction. Example: “Hey, I’m Camille and am a mother of 2 wonderful children”
- Their lowest point: “Before trying product x, I was miserable, had no self-confidence and was about to die…” (don’t judge me for my examples)
- Explanation of how they decided to start using our products. Example: “I saw an ad on Facebook 10 times and saw all of these amazing reviews & I decided to give it a go”.
- How did their life change using our products? Example: “Since I started using your products, I’ve started to feel a lot more confident, and was able to go out and meet my friends”.
- In the end of the video we include how many customers we’ve served, show all of the reviews, journals we’ve been featured on and include a call to action.
For this one to work through, we usually need to try many different “faces”. Out of 30 videos we’ve tested, only 3 were working incredibly well, and the women on them were gorgeous.
If you want to go more in-depth about our video ads – we have created a podcast episode talking only about creatives.
09. Competitor Comparison Video Ad
This does not work as well as testimonial video ads, but it’s something we pull off ourselves from time to time – competitor comparison video ads.
We simply include why we’re better than anyone else in the industry.
Example: “Our competitors use only 4 active ingredients, while we use over 100 active ingredients which work in unison to provide the results you’re looking for. “
10. How To Video Ad
We’re curious human beings.
That’s why these types of ads work so well.
Simply go to buzzsumo, look at what kind of “how to” articles work best in your industry and have someone to replicate them for your Facebook ads.
Once again, use the same principles I’ve covered in the 8th point when editing the video.
Here’s an example
Although it’s not a physical product, you could do a few changes and incorporate your product.
11. “Borrow” Influencer Accounts to Run Traffic From Them.
This is a very similar concept as mentioned in the hack 2, however, it takes much longer to set this up.
It’s still a very foreign concept for influencers to understand how it works, so there has to be a system for it to be put in place.
In our case – we do have a “funnel” set-up for influencer marketing.
First they do a shout out. If that works, we offer them to create some content for us that we’d try on the ads in general.
If that works out, we offer them to put their accounts under our business manager and run ads from their pages.
Pretty simple, right?
While technically it’s not difficult, it’s difficult to negotiate, trying to have influencers understand what we’re going to do & setting everything up technically, is the difficult part.
We usually offer them “followers” in return, meaning their page will be seen by a huge amount of people and some of them will become their followers.
With the bigger ones, we offer them a trial period of 1 month and $100-300 to begin with and if it works out, we can go into bigger sums.
I know some brands are doing revenue-share deals with them, but we don’t want to overcomplicate our ecosystem, which is pretty complicated already.
12. Give a Go For Poll Ads
As I’m writing this article, we’ve tested this on quite a few accounts and they work incredibly well.
Last month we spent $3k on them and got $7k in return.
Not something you can scale with, but we’re getting those customers that wouldn’t buy from us otherwise, actually buy because of it.
Here’s how they look like:
13. Use Advertorial for F*ck Sake
Ok, affiliate marketers will be yawning at this one…
But some of the marketers still don’t use them properly (or don’t use them at all)!
Here’s the format I’ve found work best for me:
- Create a sales page I’ll be using again and again.
- Write blog articles for SEO purposes (we have writers to do that for us)
- Rewrite the same articles and make them super short – if possible, bullet points. Example: “4 Reasons Not Do X”
- Hook them on top of your sales page.
Voila, you have a sales page that you’ll be able to constantly use (just test if it works first) and your job will be to change the top of the page at all times.
I got this strategy from Ezra Firestone by shamelessly stalking on his ads from Boom By Cindy. They’re using it for more than a year, so it must be working.
You can find an example here.
14. Move Fast. Break Things.
This will not be the most tactical advice I can give you, but might be the most useful one in this entire article.
Because back in 2019, September, when we were making approximately $300k with a skincare brand I’m a shareholder of, nothing was helping us get through this magic number.
Could it be that the market was that small? Was I doing something wrong?
Having these thoughts I decided to improve my game and invest into self-education and went to a conference in Austin to improve my copywriting game.
I’ve taken away many things from that conference, but the biggest one was given by a VShred founder, Nick Daniel – “I can out-test anyone”.
And that’s when it clicked.
After that event, I closed myself off in Antigua, Guatemala and worked 12-14 hour days, taking nootropics (will write an article about it) and managed to put out 10x the tests that would normally be put.
After the same month, our revenues started climbing like crazy.
October we hit our record month of $450k, November we 3xed the business and generated $1.5M in revenue!
That’s 5x the revenue that we were making back in September.
And it all comes down to a simple rule – test more if you want to move quicker.
P.S. Most of the hacks you’re reading here were tested in this period since September, 2019.
15. Model Ideas From Your Competitors
We’ve got more than 20 competitive brands for each eComm store we work with.
Lots of competitors have a very different understanding of marketing and generate very different ideas.
If you see something they’re using successfully – model it and test it out for yourself.
Be it a creative, an ad, a piece of copy – everything can be modeled and applied to your own brand.
In fact, this is what many competitors of ours do – they use very similar copy, offers, visuals, etc.
Simply go to their Facebook page and check their ads.
P.S. I don’t say COPY them, I say model them. Even try taking the ads from completely different industries.
16. Fear of Missing Out – FOMO Principle
It’s real! And it’s a big fear!
For years I’ve been having it and even though I’m conscious of it – I’ve never been able to get rid of it.
I’m constantly thinking about traveling to other countries, cause maybe in a few years I may not be able to do it…
I’ve seen this principle work wonders on eCommerce too.
We use it in our eCommerce sales launch formula and product launch formula. We see that during the last hours of our launches we have the biggest increase in sales.
However, I do have to warn you – don’t be lying to your customers. They will notice it. I’ve once seen an ad in the summer with a copy “Christmas Sale Is Almost Over! Grab NOW Before It Ends! Only 100 items left!”.
Do it ethically and try to think of the ways you can utilize this principle.
17. Get Clear On Who Your Customers Are
Knowing who your customers are is one thing.
But getting into a conversation they’re having in their head is a completely different one.
How do you do it?
Go to amazon reviews, comments on your ads, talk to your customer service team, get on a call with your customers, and ask them questions.
Once you have some stories, phrases they use – use them in your copy. The success can be seen when you get comments on your ad saying “this is exactly what I’ve been through” or “it seems they’re reading my mind”.
That’s when you can see you’re getting success.
Here are some questions you could ask your customers:
- What was the lowest point suffering from x?
- What’s the highest point dealing with y?
- What horror stories have you had when dealing with z…
These are amazing questions to get stories out and see how exactly they speak.
18. Show Your Dirty Laundry First.
People appreciate honesty. They know products can’t achieve results overnight (not everyone, but most of them I would hope).
That’s why while most of our competitors promise to achieve results in a few hours, we zag and tell them upfront:
“No. We can’t achieve X in 2 days… But what we can do…”
We’ve been using this copy for almost a year and it works wonders!
19. Segment Your Personas Into Sub-Groups.
Yesterday I went through a recipe book that came together with my new NutriBullet.
After going through the whole book, I identified 3 customer personas they were targeting.
Even though one of them was more visible than the other 2, they still had these “secondary” ones included.
Here are the target personas I could identify glancing over the book:
- 55+ female and male couple who are retired, yet still love an active lifestyle – main target audience
- 45+ female with 2-3 children, who’s also a career woman (she’s drinking smoothie in her car).
- 40+ couple with 2 children
20. Use This One Sentence to Fuel Your Marketing Message
“People will do anything for those who encourage their dreams, justify their failures, allay their fears, confirm their suspicions, and help them throw rocks at their enemies.” – Blair Warren.
This is a sentence that encapsulates the entire marketing.
If you think about it, all of the religions are built on that…
Politicians are using this as their core marketing strategy. Look at Donald Trump. He created a clear enemy – illegal immigrants, Mexicans, etc. that created a polarizing effect.
But we don’t have to take such an extreme example.
Let’s take Steve Jobs as an example. Even though I didn’t hear or see him attack his enemies the way Trump did, his whole pro-innovation marketing message was automatically viewed as an anti-establishment message.
There is an entire book written on Sales Force, how they were trying to position themselves against their biggest competitor Oracle.
Since I’ve read Blair Warren’s book, I have this sentence in my notebook, so that whenever I wrote copy, brainstormed a marketing campaign, or started a new project, I would always answer these questions:
- What do my customers dream about?
- What is their enemy?
- What are their fears?
- What are their suspicions?
- How can I justify their failures?
I made various tests with them and wrote many copies trying to hit super hard on one of them. “Attacking their enemies” was always the one that was converted the best.
21. Build Real Estate With SEO
Since the very beginning, I was trying to look at SEO the way investors look at investing into a property.
They know it’s a long-term game and it will take them quite a long time to build it out.
But once they build it out – it will serve them for a long time.
That’s the way I approach SEO.
Whenever I want to write an article on a particular topic, I don’t want to simply write an article that would be seen and forgotten.
I want to build the best article there is online and simply update it as time goes.
Why do I not chase all of the keywords I could be optimizing for?
That’s not sustainable.
However, I know I can write an article about certain subjects better than they can.
And I invest lots of time doing that.
Because it will keep driving traffic for years to come just like the article you’re reading right now.
22. Have a Separate Instagram Page For Your Before/After Stories
4 months ago my friends started to notice how I’m balding.
Before that, I wasn’t too concerned about it. I saw that I was losing some hair, but I thought it would be fine.
But whenever I met a childhood friend who would point out I’m balding, I started getting concerned. Even though I don’t care about my looks that much (probably ’cause I have an amazing girlfriend), I decided to go through the buying cycle of shopping bald-saving hair products and was noting down how I was behaving.
To begin with, I went to the pharmacy and asked about what scalp products I should buy. I was then given direction to buy a certain product.
It was a higher-end product with a price tag of $150. I decided to give it a go.
Going out of the pharmacy I realized how it didn’t take them long to persuade me to buy this product.
My pain point was that strong.
However, when I started to think about online sales, I saw a similar pattern.
Those people who have a massive pain point – they’ll buy immediately.
However, those who are more conscious, they’ll research everything they can about the brand. They’ll go to Google, Instagram, and other places to see what others are saying about it.
And that’s what one of our biggest competitors is doing – they created an IG account called “SandAndSky Results” where they can collect all of the testimonials & before/after photos to make it easy for their clients to find them online. Needless to say, we did the same thing.
23. Go On Facebook + IG Live
Social media platforms are SOCIAL. And it doesn’t hurt for the CEO, or an employee of a company to go on a live to answer the most important questions their customers ask.
Whenever we go on live, we see a surge of traffic coming to our website, and sales going up.
This is because Facebook wants to be our next TV – and they promote live parties (aka gives much better reach for your efforts).
Added benefit of it – it’s good for branding. Which brings me to another point…
24. Have a Face of the Brand
Let’s be honest with yourself – marketing online is a bloodbath. To find a niche in it takes a long time, and creativity.
Products are becoming commodities quicker than gurus are launching their new courses.
And that’s super fast.
In any case, you need a big differentiator from you and your brand.
And what better differentiator can you get, than the story of the founder?
That’s why our brand, in an ultra-competitive environment, is thriving. We have a story that connects to our customers on an emotional level.
They not only buy our product – they buy a story and the promise we’re giving them.
25. Use Unique Mechanism In Your Copy
This is the strategy I learned from the Justin Goff and Stefan Giorgi conference and it changed the way I looked at copy ever since.
If you’re selling a product with a clear pain point – chances are your customers have already tried a bunch of your competitor products and none of them worked.
Because of that, they have this objection in their mind: “Why should it work this time?”
And that’s where your marketing skills should shine…
Here are 2 main parts to the Unique Mechanism:
- The Unique Mechanism, explaining why none of the existing solutions were NEVER supposed to work (I see a chance to “attack the enemies” here).
- The Unique Mechanism explaining how your products are different and have a much better chance of working.
This is how you’ll be able to overcome an objection and convince them you’re different.
It has worked marvelously for me.
Here’s a video by Miles Becker explaining the Unique Mechanism in more detail.
26. Have a Referral Program
In the last 6 months, a referral program has brought us $50k in revenue.
It’s not much considering our total revenues, however, it’s still something we didn’t have to work hard to get to, plus these smaller initiatives add up & the success compounds on itself.
I’ve seen many brands that are super aggressive with it and have “talkable” on their sites, however, we simply use Loyalty Lion and encourage our customers to share their referral code with them.
27. Answer Every Objection Your Customers Have
Your customers have many objections and your job as a marketer is to answer them all.
Simply ask your customers: “what doubts/hesitations did you have before buying our product?” or “What almost stopped you from buying our product?” and list these objections down.
One way we’re able to collect this data is by using Hotjar’s ‘Poll’ feature.
Once you have a full list of them, try to answer each one of them by the level of importance.
Use this copy in your email marketing, SMS marketing, and social media ads.
Even better – answer them before they get onto your page. This could be done by having a long-form copy on the ad itself, video, or in your advertorial.
28. Start Your Affiliate Marketing Program
Ok, I’m still not experienced in it, as we haven’t started our affiliate marketing program.
However, there are quite a few affiliate networks that can help you scale your marketing efforts by joining them.
The best part about affiliate marketing is that you only pay for the sales – you decide what’s the amount you’re willing to spend for each sale and pay them every 7 or 14 days.
It’s like having an army of media buyers, copywriters, and business owners working for you based on performance.
The reason why we didn’t want to do it just yet: we couldn’t keep up with the demand for our products and we prioritized Youtube Ads over affiliates.
But the time will come.
29. Pinterest Advertising – Be Careful!
I was super hyped about Pinterest advertising late in 2019.
It didn’t last long.
In February 2020, we started scaling the campaigns and were spending $1-2k in daily ad spend, yet the traffic or sales were not coming.
That’s when I had to dive deep into the data, where I realized – delayed attribution for this platform is MASSIVE.
If we continued to scale, it could have caused us some serious cash-flow issues.
After talking to other Pinterest ads specialists, reps from the platform itself, I decided to stop Pinterest ads for a few months to see whether our sales are dropping or going up.
Two months have passed since, and I’m NOT looking back to advertise on Pinterest.
Although I do have a very small budget set over there for re-marketing, I only want to create an omnipresence for the brands.
This is the one I say try – BUT be very careful with it.
P.S. This photo was taken from a client of mine and even though it looks awesome on the platform – they use a 30/30/30 attribution model (30 day click, 30 day view, 30 day save). You can obviously switch it up etc., however, I’ve not seen any decrease in our revenues since we turned it off.
30. Youtube Ads – The Most Exciting Platform Right Now
I was excited about Youtube since September of 2019, however, the team I had in place did not have infrastructure to perform.
It requires quite a few ads to be tested, although media buying is not a difficult part.
This is the platform we’re going to be testing extensively in 2020 and I have high hopes we’ll be scaling to 5-10k daily budgets profitably.
The only problem with it is – it’s an expensive entry point mainly because of the video production.
It requires a certain script to pass you through the 5sec mark, however, it has to include the “disqualifiers” just before the 30 sec mark (to pay less for your ads), voiceover, and great visuals.
Quite a bit of work.
However, because the entry point is high – not many eCommerce brands are utilizing the power of Youtube ads and I encourage you to try it out.
If you do decide to tackle it yourself – here you can find the best (by far) resources on Youtube Ads by VidTao.
They also have the only Spy tool available in the market (to my knowledge), which is super useful starting out.
31. Include Info Products in Your Entire Funnel
When the coronavirus hit us, we started to think outside the box and were coming up with new ways to increase revenues for our businesses.
We quickly created a few emails asking people what kind of info products would our customers buy and started creating them.
We haven’t tested them yet but will do very soon.
What’s the thinking behind it?
Well, we’re paying quite a bit of $ to drive traffic to our website. Some people buy our products, some don’t.
However, it’s the same customer we’re targeting. Just that the same customer has many different reasons for not buying it.
But if we know who this customer is, why can’t we create other products they would buy?
While we do it with physical products, it takes time to develop the best ones in the industry (yes, we only want our products to be the best).
But info products? PDFs especially?
Well, noom did almost $250M in 2019 selling PDFs only. I have a friend who grew to $70M in his first year of business doing just that.
Also, by creating other Facebook and Instagram pages I’ve noticed that retargeting doesn’t cost much more running traffic from other accounts.
So we’ll be building out a funnel.
If they don’t buy our MVP, physical products – we’ll have a retargeting funnel, selling them an info product related to their pain point.
P.S. we’re in the process of trying this out, so if you want an update on it – sign up for an email newsletter from me below.
32. eCommerce Value Ladder
This is a much more simplified version than the one above.
Simply have different tier products in your store.
For example, we have structured one of our stores to have some products that would be instant purchasers and that product is our MVP.
So by pricing it relatively low (at $49), in order to attract instant purchasers, we acquire a customer who comes back and buys higher priced products next time.
In addition to that – we acquire a NEW customer into our funnel!
Increase Your eCommerce Sales By Using Email Marketing + SMS Marketing
33. Change The Offer Mid-Way Email Funnel
You’ve got a new subscriber on your email – YEY!!!
Yet after sending 3 emails to him, he doesn’t buy anything from you…
What do you do?
Do you still try to persuade him to buy what you have to offer?
You can, but after sending 3 emails it’s very unlikely he’ll be buying from you…
Instead, what you could do is simply change your offer.
Let’s say you were promoting skincare… Change things up and sell shampoo instead.
Obviously that depends on whether you have so many products, yet for those who have them – I suggest to try it out.
34. Scrubbing Your Inactive Email List
Yes, I hear your ego saying “nooo, I’ve worked hard to get these emails, I’m not gonna let them go”.
I understand you, I’ve been in the exact same situation.
We had almost 110k email subscribers and I was offered to clean it up…
We lost almost 30k emails…
Yet our open rate shot up to 20%, click-through rate to 2-3% (depending on the email) and our revenues climbing.
Here’s how to do it:
- Upload your email list to kickbox.com
- Here’s your clean list.
Enjoy massive open-rates and increasing revenue (and getting out of spam)!
35. Use SMS Marketing As Your Extra Revenue Source
Even though we’ve been using SMS marketing for quite some time, we haven’t been able to use it to its max.
A few months though, we’ve switched our platforms from SMS Bump to Attentive and started to see some noticeable results.
The reason why it works better – Attentive comes together with the team (imagine Facebook reps, only 10x more competent) + it has far better functionality than any other tool on the market.
At the moment it’s generating around 3% of our total revenue.
All of the small things add up.
Increase Your Sales by Improving Conversion Rate on The Website
36. Secret Gift After Spending X Amount
Let’s start with the best strategy of them all – secret gifts after spending x amount of money.
Similar to the pop-up strategy, this is a curiosity driven strategy (yup, we’re very curious beings).
Here is how it works:
- At the top of your website, have a note to the website visitors “Free Secret X On Orders Over Y”
- Go to Shopify – discounts – create a new one. On percentage press 100%, select a product, select a specific product you want to give away and select minimum requirements according to your business.
You’ll see your conversion rate surge together with your revenues.
37. Have AfterPay Set-Up
A substantial amount of our revenue comes from AfterPay.
In fact, when we installed AfterPay on our website, we saw a 3-7% increase in the first-time customer.
It’s a simple hack to get more people into the funnel and make them buy.
For those who don’t know how it works it’s simple:
Afterpay splits your price into 4 pieces and asks your customers to pay only ¼ to begin with and allows them to pay the rest of them over time.
38. Have Paypal Set-Up
For some of you it’s a no brainer.
But for those who don’t have it yet, I can only encourage you to do it ASAP!
Lots of people are using PayPal for quick transactions (I’m among them) and if you’re not doing it – you’re missing out.
39. Set-up Push-Notification App On Your Store
It can seem annoying at first, and might overwhelm your customers, but push-notifications drive quite a bit of traffic.
Although lately I’ve seen a drop in the amount of people who subscribe for it, I still highly recommend having it on the website and building another traffic source that way.
Super easy to set-up, yet brings revenue long-term.
My app of choice – PushOwl
40. Change the Wording On Your Checkout for Discounts
Shopify does not make checking out on mobile intuitive. This is a method that helps push the customer along the checkout process by reducing the friction to checkout.
All we need to do is to replace the wording. Here’s what we found works:
Instead of having ‘Expand Order Summary’, we change it to ‘Click Here To Apply Discount’
Here’s how to do it at the Shopify’s back-end:
- – Click ‘Online Store’ on left navigation button
- – Go to Themes
- – Click ‘Actions’ button
- – Click ‘Edit Languages’
- – Search ‘Expand Order Summary’
- – Input the text ‘Click Here To Enter Your Discount Code’
41. Have a Science Back-Up
The more persuasion you can include – the better.
Here’s an example of hanacure showing stats of the studies made on their skincare to prove a point.
Yes, it costs money to book these studies with your products, yet it’s totally worth it with the increase of the conversion rate of the website and claims you can be making.
42. Add a Guarantee and Put It On Steroids!
Customers are scared of buying from a brand they have never heard of before.
“What if it doesn’t work for me?” “What if they’re gonna scam me?” and other doubts are going through their mind.
Info marketers know it better.
If you’ve ever read their sales page, at the bottom of it you can usually see an amazing guarantee.
Here’s an example by Ramith Sethi:
Pretty convincing, right?
43. Install Live Customer Service App
We live in an instant gratification environment. When we make an order, we want it delivered NOW (Amazon – you’re to blame here!).
It’s the exact same situation with customer service.
If you have a question about a product – you want it now! There’s no time to wait!
Yes, you can use FAQs to find the answer, but who wants to waste 5mins to find the answer to the question?
Certainly not me…
That’s why having a live customer service app is crucial…
For a long time we didn’t have it, but once we installed it – we saw a conversion rate boost.
Yes, you’ll need to hire more people for your customer support, but it’s well worth it.
44. Improve Your Product Descriptions
Super simple solution (especially since you only need some time) is to improve your product descriptions. As mentioned above – you should try to include a unique mechanism into it and cram as much relevant information to it as possible. Here’s the formula to perfect product description:
- – Short description at the beginning (before -> agitate the problem / after -> imagine what it’d be like, having a problem solved / bridge -> your product / service)
- – Benefits of using -> bullets
- – How to use it
- – What is in the package
- – Overcome doubts
- – Short story about product / founder
Is the copy simple, specific and clear and directed to deliver sales, does it touch buyers’ EMOTIONS and REASON why they buy? (Sell a hole not a drill).
45. Don’t Ask For Users To Sign Up Before Buying!
The more steps you give them to complete – the more customers you’re going to lose at each one of the steps.
Don’t ask them to create an account. Don’t ask them for unnecessary things.
Make the process as simple as possible.
What can you get rid of in your funnel to make it easier for them to buy?
46. Improve the Quality of Photos on The Website.
Photos are your face.
If you’re selling a high-end product, your website, your design, your branding has to tell you that.
Since we improved photos on our website, we saw an immediate uplift in our revenue.
47. Use Product Reviews To Your Advantage
Whenever I look at hotjar recordings – I usually see people go straight for the review section.
That’s one of the most powerful persuasion tools we have at our disposal.
Use them everywhere – on your product page, home page and wherever you feel necessary.
As I mentioned – even have a separate IG account dedicated to reviews, and before/afters.
Human beings need assurance and your job as a marketer is to give them that.
48. Optimize Your Site Speed
If you only have one thing to do to improve your conversion rate – this is it!
Minimize your photos, make it clean, uninstall unnecessary apps!
You might need your developers help, but it’s well worth it.
49. Include Explanation On How to Use Your Products
Once again, hanacure is crushing it with their explanations.
Actually, when I was shopping for products for my balding problem – I couldn’t find an explanation on how to use their product, which would’ve been useful.
50. Include Before/Afters On Your Page
Do you have a pictures that can clearly show what results your customer can expect?
Include them on your product page!
These are super convincing. In fact, last year, we found a few loopholes advertising our products and managed to include some before/afters in our videos – our revenues went up, through the roof.
51. Optimize For Mobile First
80% of our purchases happen on the phone.
It simply makes sense to optimize for it first.
52. Use A/B Testing Tools
There are many options when it comes to A/B testing your website.
Well, I prefer to use either VWO or Google Optimize. Why? I’m simply used to these tools and don’t see any need to go into more expensive tools like DynamicYield. Not at this point in time.
However, I do have to warn you – you need quite a bit of data to have data significance for your test.
I’m talking about tens of thousands of traffic on the page you’re testing.
That’s quite a bit of traffic.
The mistake I often see is that marketers get overwhelmed with lots of small tests that don’t make a huge difference in the business.
Even now, when we generate over $1.5M per client, I’m thinking of things that will help me generate extra $50k-300k revenue, not lift my conversions by 0.1% (although it all adds up).
I still don’t see like it’s the time to be taking care of small wins as there are so many big wins to be taking care of.
53. Use Prioritization Sheet to Prioritize Things
There are so many things you can be focusing on growing your business.
Even this list is a massive one – over 80 hacks to grow your business! How do you not get overwhelmed and make sure to focus on the right things?
Well, here’s the secret tool we use for everything within the agency (and other businesses).
Our creative team uses a variation of it, I use another variation for different projects, and you can adapt it to your own needs.
Click here to get access to it. Here’s how to use it:
- Attach values to each one of the columns.
- In the end you’re gonna get a sum of all of them.
- The ones with the highest sum are the ones you should be focusing on executing first.
54. Have Badges On Your Site
There are only a few reasons why your customers buy your products… However, there are far more reasons why they would NOT buy your products…
That’s why it’s so important to eliminate every doubt in their head so the objections don’t make them leave your website.
Are your products vegan-free? Are they cruelty-free? Are they made in the US? Are they made in Europe? Are they dairy-free?
Include all of these badges on your website!
55. Direct Them to Your Bestsellers
“I wonder which product should I buy?”
By showing which products are your bestsellers, you’ll reduce the mental overload your customers might be having landing on your website.
Here’s another example on Organifi’s Shop.
56. Use Your Names Wisely
What does your product do? Does it clean your skin? Does it make you lose your weight? Does it boost your collagen levels?
Name the product after it!
Here’s an example from Banish
57. Use Quiz On the Website
Noom did over $250M last year using quizzes alone!
This tells me something.
For the past 3 months I have been analyzing multiple quizzes, and have been writing notes about what makes a successful quiz and why they work.
According to my research, there are 2 things your quiz has to achieve.
- They’re just like sales pages – just hidden in a quiz. If you take a look at Noom’s quiz – they include social proof, before/afters, & some statistical data.
- Make your customers believe you’ll get a custom solution to your problem.
As I’m writing this today, we’re building quizzes for a few brands. If you want to get my updates on it, sign up for the email list below and follow my emails – I’ll include my observations there.
58. Allow More Payment Options
Apple Pay, Amazon Pay – there are multiple of them.
Figure out which options your customers want to have and provide them with these options.
59. Don’t Give Them Too Many Options
One of the jobs of a marketer is to keep the balance between enough options, but not too many options.
Whenever we have too many options – we get overwhelmed and go into “paralysis-analysis” mode and risk not choosing anything.
My rule of thumb is to give people 3 options to choose from. It doesn’t matter whether it would be products or payment options.
If it’s a product – indicate which one is a bestseller as mentioned in the hack #50.
If you want to dig deeper into it – here’s a book I highly recommend reading Predictability Irrational
60. Use Videos on The Product Page
Whenever your product needs more explanation, or you can show it better by utilizing video – do it!
Do it on the product page.
We once did a survey with our customers and some of them were complaining they didn’t know exactly how to use our products – so we created an explanation video on it.
We included it on the product page, as well as Facebook & IG advertising + included it into the browse abandonment sequences.
It worked wonders for us.
61. Decrease Your Shipping Cost and Time
What’s the main reason people abandon checkout?
Apart from not having their card nearby or changing their minds there are only 2 reasons:
- Unexpected costs. It can be shipping costs, tax costs, or anything else you’re charging them
- Shipping time. They figure out they are going to have to wait for their item for more than they would want to wait for.
Work on decreasing both of them. My advice – offer them a free shipping option after a certain amount. You’ll increase your AOV this way and decrease your checkout abandonment rate.
62. Treat Your About Us As a Sales Page
What’s the best sales page on your website?
Product page? Home page? Special landing page?
In our case it’s – About Us page. Whenever our customers visit our “about us” page, they are very likely to buy our products.
Here are the things we have included in our about us page(and we’re constantly optimizing it):
- – Video explaining the story of the brand
- – Copy explaining the things our founder has gone through to come to the current position
- – Link to the product
- – Unique differentiator (have a look at hack #16 about Unique Mechanism as we’re trying to include it everywhere we advertise on).
Here’s what Drunk Elephant has on their Philosophy page:
Boost Your Ecommerce Sales Using Influencer Marketing
Our Influencer Marketing team is super versatile and has quite a few roles to fill.
That’s where we’re getting massive quantities of visuals we need, to run paid social media campaigns and we’re adding additional sales from this department.
Here are some of the hacks they’re using to boost our sales and get more traffic to our website .
63. Giveaway Campaigns
We simply create prizes around our products and announce them on Instagram. Sometimes they go viral, sometimes they don’t do well.
However, we always see a slight boost in traffic to our website, as well as an increase in follower count (which is always useful pitching influencers do hack #18 with us).
The rules are usually simple:
- Tag your friend
- Follow our page
- Join our email list
If the prizes are higher, we ask them to do a bit more, like send us a photo, share our photos or a contest etc.
We sometimes use our influencers to shout out during the contest.
Pretty easy to do, however, if you don’t have a dedicated team, I wouldn’t concentrate on it too much, as the results are insignificant and mostly result in a breaking even in sales and a few thousand more followers.
64. Loop Giveaway
We haven’t participated in this one yet, but it’s something we’re going to do in the following months.
The way it works – you have 5-10 brands chipping in for the prizes. Because of that, the prize pool can be massive and the giveaway itself can actually go viral.
It’s important to choose the brands you’re going to do it with carefully.
In the end, you’re going to be sharing emails among each other and you don’t want to have emails of people who will never buy your products.
The rules can be similar as a normal giveaway, just they will have to follow all the brands participating in the giveaway.
I’m not a strong believer in these giveaways, mainly because it attracts a certain demographic, which might not be our ideal demographic to buy our products.
Last month one of the brands I work with decided to buy a shout out from Kylie Jenner. During the first day of the shout out, our follower count went up to 200k, however today we only have 160k followers and our engagement levels went down.
In my opinion, it’s only good if you want to have lots of random followers, which can boost your ego. It doesn’t do much for the sales, nor do I think it’s useful for the brand.
Anyhow, as I mentioned, we’re going to try loop giveaways and if you’d like join my email list where I’m going to update you in real-time how they worked, do it now.
65. Do Influencer Shout Outs With a Discount Code
After hack #11 with influencers, this is the most useful one.
One of the brands that I work with, they make ¼ of their entire revenue from influencer shout outs, which results in almost $500k in monthly revenue.
The way we do it is simple – we gather the influencers we want to do a shout out with and give them 2 dates during the month.
One of them is at the beginning of the month, the other one – at the end of the month.
The mistake we were making before was that we were allowing them to do it at any time…
Which resulted in us chasing them throughout the month, also lots of tracking issues etc.
In other words – lots of inefficiency.
Now we always have shout outs at around the 5-10th and 20-25th of the month and the rest of the time we spend preparing for it. Gathering new influencers to work with us, negotiating with them, and getting more visuals for our social media campaigns.
How to Increase Your eCommerce Store AOV
66. Add a High AOV Bundle or High Prized Product
This is the easiest thing you can do to increase your AOV – bundle up the products that make sense.
6 months ago I created a “super bundle” combining 11 products. The cost of the bundle: ~$400.
My AOV went from $105 to $110 within a day.
We were selling 3-6 super bundles per day and my AOV went from $105 to $110. Not only that, people started choosing more expensive bundles at the store, because of the contrast they were seeing.
That’s why Info Product “gurus” have products/services that cost $100k or even more – that’s because of the contrast they’re creating (and hardly ever buys their top tier products).
Once again, I recommend you reading a book, Predictably Irrational, which goes into depth of the way people choose.
67. Use An Upsell App
This is an easy one and you’ve probably thought about it or already have it installed.
However, there are quite a few apps to choose from.
I’ve tried the Zipify One Click Upsell app and I didn’t like it that much. The functionality wasn’t great. The revenue it was generating was really low (2-3% of my entire monthly revenue).
I was on a hunt for another upsell app and found another one that I’m using right now – Reconvert.
My revenue from an upsell went up to 5-6% (which is extra $50k compared to zipify).
It uses native Shopify checkout, so we save on fees too (with zipify we had to use stripe). Amazing, isn’t it?
Not so fast. If you’re using LoyaltyLion, you’ll run into some issues with it. Because it creates 2 orders, you have to use another one of their apps (Order Merger), which creates 3 orders in your store. Order Merger doesn’t archive previous orders, meaning customers are getting 2x the points from their purchase.
At this moment I’m trying to solve this problem by looking into other order merging apps or will be going to find some other upsell app.
With that being said, I’ve already looked into Carthook and spoke with my eCommerce entrepreneur friends, and it seems they’re not entirely happy with it, because of the tracking issues it has.
I’ll be on the hunt.
68. Add a Minimum Requirement For Free Shipping
This one is a simple one, yet super effective. Because I’ve been using it forever, I don’t know exactly what kind of increase we’re talking about now.
However, here are two places you should have it communicated:
- At the top bar of the website
- At the checkout and have it customized so you can clearly see how much more they need to spend to qualify for free shipping. For this one though, you’ll need to have a developer to implement.
69. Increase Your Prices
You’ll be surprised how much you can increase your AOV by simply increasing the prices of your product!
Be on the lookout for conversion rates though, as they might drop!
70. In-Cart Cross-Sell
In combination with FREE Shipping and having a bar in cart, you can have more products, so your customers can easily add more items to their cart.
Here’s an example of NativeCos
71. Thank you campaign
We’ve been using it for almost 2.5 years now and it works wonders.
After every purchase our customers make, the very last thing they see is the thank you video made by our founder to thank them for their purchase, remind them about her story and connect with them on an emotional level.
We use the same exact video for them on Facebook ads, which has tons of engagement.
How to Increase Retention Rate for Your eCommerce Store.
72. Reactivate Your Old Customers
We’ve noticed a pattern – if our customers don’t buy again within 90 days after they’ve made their first purchase, it’s very unlikely they’re going to buy from us again.
That means we have to think what of kind of campaigns we have to do with them so that we win them back.
In the beginning, we simply did an email campaign offering them a bigger discount than they previously got.
That was working pretty well on its own, however, we wanted to try something more.
For the first time last year, we tried having postcard campaigns and since then we’re using them constantly!
The very first time we used them was during Black Week. The results were astonishing & we managed to get 5x return (however, we didn’t spend much in the very beginning).
How does it work?
- Register to PostPilot pressing here (yes, we’re going to get affiliate commissions that we’ll use for our clients – merci beaucoup for registering via the link).
- Design your postcards and upload the design onto the platform
- Upload your email list you want to send postcards to.
Our very last campaign did 3x in return, which we were happy about, however, before spending lots of money on it – make sure to test it and have a compelling offer for them to take.
73. Open Up a Facebook Group For Your Customers
We’ve opened up a Facebook community for most of them.
There are soooo many benefits like:
- Building a tribe around your brand who’ll be buying from you over and over again.
- Having your customers in one space where you can ask any questions and they’ll reply immediately.
And I know what you’re thinking… What da hell am I going to write there?
In the beginning I thought so too, however, I took my chances and opened it up. After the first 300 people in the group, it started to take a course of its own.
Customers started interacting between each other, asking questions and posting on their own.
The only thing we do now, is approve or disapprove posts, accept or decline people coming in to the group.
It’s very much the same as any other Facebook group.
74. Launch a New Product
When I visited one of my clients 2months ago, I showed them a unique concept I came up with – “eCommerce Growth Cycle”.
It consists of product launches, sales, and “black swans” that can catapult the business to another level.
What I’ve noticed is that every time we do a product launch or a sale, our overall revenue of the store goes up by 5-10% next month. In other words, we experience 5-10% growth.
For the sale, we attract people who are on our email list and are still waiting for a good-enough offer to buy from us.
And during the product launch – we get our loyal customers trying out new products from us, which in turn makes them stay longer with us and spend more.
So the importance of sales + product launches is massive. I make a point of having a sale every 2 months and having a product launch every 2 months too.
1 month you have a sale, another product launch and that’s how you can grow your business 5-10% every month.
Although sometimes you might hit an ad that will go viral and will skyrocket your sales 2-3x, this is not a section to talk about.
How do you know what product to develop?
Ask your customers! Ask them what kind of formula they want, ask them what they do not want and you’ll be sure to hit a jackpot with your next product launch!
75. Have a Funny Email to Send out After Purchase
I had lots of fun writing them.
Back in September 2019, I read Tim Ferriss book – Tools of Titans and in one chapter someone was sharing the funny email they’ve written for their customers (can’t remember the name) and how their customers started sharing it and it went viral.
Well, the ones we created (3 of them), did not go viral, however, from time to time, our customers are sharing them on their social media and we connect them on an emotional level.
Which means they are much more likely to come back and buy from us again.
It took me a few hours to write all of them, yet since they’re automated, the returns keep coming back again and again.
Highly recommended hack.
76. “Improved Formula” – Tide
We haven’t used this one and I don’t think we will, but I couldn’t leave it out.
Back in the day, when Tide just started their detergent business, they realized how much people like new things.
They decided to be launching new products every few months. However, instead of creating a brand new product, they would only “improve” their current product and advertise it this way.
I’m not going to go into ethical issues with it, as maybe, just maybe, they were improving the formula and, maybe, just maybe, it did work better than the previous one.
However, I can totally see it working from a marketing perspective and if you do change your formulas, even slightly, I do encourage you to try it out and let me know how it went!
77. Have a Superior Product
If you’re selling something, it has to be the best in the market.
Why else would you start a business?
And I know it’s a difficult one to achieve, yet this is the main reason why we keep getting 40-60% returning customers every month(among other hacks I shared with you in this section).
78. Hidden Cash-Flow Flood Campaign
Running low on cash, yet don’t want to do a full-on sale?
Survey your customers and at the end of the survey give them a discount!
We’ve used it time and time again – whenever we needed to get to know anything about customers (bet it a CRO survey, new product survey or any kind of other surveys we were creating), we’d give them something at the end of it. Be it a free product or a discount.
Note: you don’t want to incentivize them telling them they’ll get a discount before they fill it out. You’ll simply get the wrong data.
79. Use Our eCommerce Product Launch Formula to Launch Sales or New Products
We’ve developed this formula over 2 years and now it’s pretty much dialed in to maximize our sales or launches.
Here are the campaigns included in it:
Pre-launch (VIP email collection) – VIP launch – regular launch – scarcity (last 24 hours).
During the pre-launch we’re collecting emails and those who register for our VIP list, they’ll get a special discount code for 24hours (we usually give 5% more than regular launch or give a free product). It also accomplishes another thing – hypes them up and prepares them for the sale.
We usually create 1-2 very clear ads, 2 emails, and SMS campaigns. The reason why it works well – there is a massive scarcity play. We give them 24 hours to complete their purchase and we make them feel exclusive. At the same time, you can create even more scarcity, by limiting the amount of items you’re going to sell during the VIP launch.
We usually plan our regular launch for 2-3 days as we start seeing diminishing returns after that (with an exception of black week, or black month as others do it now). We give them a very simple offer like a discount and prepare all of the usual suspects – emails, SMS and ads.
Last 24 hours.
On the 3rd day of the sale we start playing scarcity big time. We create ads that say that the sale is going to end at a certain time, as well as create SMS, emails and push notifications to inform them about it.
It’s a very simple formula, yet executed perfectly, can get you 20-30% more sales than you’d get from a regular sale.
80. Have a Loyalty Program on The Site.
10-15% of our sales come from our loyalty program. Our software of choice – LoyaltyLion.
This is by far the best loyalty software I could recommend and their support team is just amazing.
How do you build it out?
Well, when I started, I didn’t know much about Loyalty programs and how they interact between each other.
So I started having regular meetings with LoyaltyLion reps, who gave us all the recommendations we needed and we started executing on them.
We’re still in the process of improving the entire program and we’ll be improving it over time.
My suggestion in this case is – start, maintain contact with Loyalty Lion’s staff, and be building your program.
81. Offer a Subscription On Site
Subscriptions are tricky.
Once introduced to the store, they change the entire behavior of your customers.
You won’t be following the same metrics as you usually do and will rather start paying attention to churn rate and will be wondering how to increase it.
We’re still testing it with our clients, and it seems there’s a very long road ahead of us, however, companies using subscriptions are far more valuable than ones that don’t.
The only reason why I’m still hesitant about it is that once people cancel their subscription – they’re unlikely to return to your store.
That’s why when you introduce it first – start with the most loyal customer base. The ones that have bought from you 2-3x and would likely benefit from having a subscription.
Create a separate landing page and drive them there, get their feedback and start improving from there. Only when you did robust testing, and when your most loyal customers are happy with the subscription you created – put them on your main product pages.
As I told you, there’s a very interesting dynamic with subscriptions and it requires quite a bit of thinking.
82. Introduce an Ambassadors Program
The way I see it – brand ambassadors are extensions of the founders.
If we’re telling the story of the founder – ambassadors will be telling it in their own words and attract people from their circle of influence.
If you have a Facebook group or if they’re active on social media, they’ll be your best advertising partners too.
And if you decide to give them discounts and try out a new product – it will help you increase your retention rate.
Depending on how you structure your ambassadors program – you could be getting visuals for your ads too (which you need hundreds of when you’re scaling your business).
83. Keep Your Message Consistent
You will not be able to notice it immediately, however over time, if you do NOT keep your message consistent – people will start getting confused.
Have a bank of stories you want to be telling your customers over and over so they’re ingrained in their brains.
The truth is simple – if you want to develop a strong relationship with your customers – you need them to remember your stories.
And see how I’m bolding stories – because that’s the only thing they’re going to remember about your brand.
Stories stick & marketers have to be great storytellers.
Here’s a great book about it by Seth Godin.
84. Have Your Email Marketing + SMS Marketing Dialed In
There are quite a few campaigns we do to retain customers. I’ve already mentioned a few of them in this article; in #73 (win-back) and #72 (thank you), but there’s a lot more you can do.
Education campaigns, funny emails, “Weekend” emails, emails about new products, new features, ambassadors program, loyalty programs and soooo much more!
Don’t forget to do the same with your SMS Marketing game!
So… What do you think?
It took me 30 hours to write the entire list.
However, I still think we’re missing something.
Have I missed any tools, campaigns, or hacks I should include in the list?
Let me know by leaving a comment below.