growth hacks for ecommerce businesses

The idea of growth hacking is to create a marketing strategy that will result in a measurable, sustainable, and scalable business.

Typically, business growth is defined as an increase in the customer base, market share, and profits. Here are some simple growth hacks that you can try to jumpstart your business’s growth:


Highlight Social Proof

Social proof is all about customer reviews, statements, and actions. When businesses display the number of fans, followers on social media, likes, views, comments, and shares, it positively affects the perception of potential customers. The more social proof your online store has, the better the perception of potential buyers have about your brand.

How to do it: Start with displaying social proof on your website. Include testimonials, reviews, the number of past customers your store has served, and other user-generated content.

Also, consider using online tools and apps, like  Sales Pop, that make it easier for businesses like yours to showcase social proof to potential customers.


Start a Referral Program

Referral programs are another tried and true growth hack. This type of program typically offers existing customers and the potential consumers they refer a reward, discount, or deal when they make a purchase. The bonus for your business is that you receive the contact information of the new prospective buyers.

How to do it: Set up your referral program using software like Extole, Sweet Tooth, or Ambassador. If you don’t know if it is the right step for you, check out this beginner’s guide to an ecommerce reward program.


Use Exit Intent Pop-Ups

Shopping cart abandonment rates are high. In fact, it’s estimated that as many as 70% of shoppers abandon their carts during the buying process. One of the best ways to prevent abandoned carts is by using exit intent technology. Exit intent technology is a pop-up form that works to capture potential customers when it’s detected that they are about to leave your store without making a purchase. You can choose to entice them with an award or maybe try a softer approach to capture their email.

How to do it: Try a tool like Exit Pop to display an exit intent pop-up to attract potential customers who are about to leave your site with some type of offer. You can try incentives, discounts, or freebies to encourage them not to leave.


Find Influencers in Your Industry

Online influencers can be found in just about every industry. Influencers are the people that online shoppers turn to for advice, opinions, information, and the latest trends. Working with these influencers is an effective way to spread the word about your brand to potential customers. In fact, nearly three-quarters of online shoppers rely on word-of-mouth marketing when they are making their purchasing decisions.

How to do it: Find the online influencers for your industry just like you would find your target audience. Reach out to establish a personal connection, and then determine how to make a mutual value exchange to start the influencer relationship.


Be Smart with Retargeting

Wouldn’t it be great if all your customers made purchases the first time they visited your store? Unfortunately, that doesn’t happen all the time. It’s more likely that shoppers will use multiple devices and take anywhere from a few hours or even days before they make a purchase – and that’s if they decide to buy at all. Retargeting allows you to win back some of those lost prospects.

How to do it: Utilize a retargeting strategy with a platform like Facebook to lower your abandonment rate and create more conversions.


See Which Growth Hacks Work for Your Shoppers

The path to successful growth hacking isn’t the same for every ecommerce business. It’s a case-by-case outcome. What may work great for one company, may not for others. You have to try different tactics to see what works best for your audience.

When you understand why a particular tactic didn’t work, it will help guide you toward the ones that will. Remember, with fast, informed growth hacking, you’ll find your stride in scaling your business and increasing your sales.

Editor’s Note: This blog post was originally published March 2016 and was updated in July 2019 to reflect more accurate and relevant information.

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