But I Have Lots Of Traffic! That’s Good Right?!
First things first: pure traffic means nothing. And I mean nothing. Give me $ 50 and I will send 400,000 visitors to your store. Great, right? Not so fast. Because they won’t buy anything you just lost $50. That’s not what a business is all about. Giving away money for something you like to do is called a hobby.
Back To The Basics
I don’t want to lie here. Making sales can be hard and it really depends on your niche, your knowledge and most important your marketing efforts.
Topics like store design, fancy apps and all those other things are super easy and yes, of course some of these things are important and have to be on point. But in the end it all comes down to your marketing. I know this is nothing new. The majority of ecommerce entrepreneurs know this but they don’t act accordingly. There is this huge difference between what people know and what they actually do. And if you want to make sales you have to do EVERYTHING you know about marketing.
All the time I hear people say “I tried everything; Facebook ads, Instagram ads and Influencer marketing. Nothing seems to happen!“ But guess what: there are millions of other ways to market your business. You can go for Snapchat, tumblr, Medium, SoundCloud, YouTube, WordPress or even take your business out of the internet and into the real world. What the hell is stopping you?
All of those platforms have one thing in common:
YOU HAVE TO KNOW YOUR TARGET AUDIENCE
I really can’t believe how lazy some people are (I don’t mean you, Javer!). It’s your f*cking job to get the data of your target audience. Do you know where your target audience hangs out on a daily basis? What does your target audience love BESIDES your niche? What kind of products do they buy? … You have to know your potential customer. Otherwise the best ads (Facebook) and the best strategy won’t lead to any success.
Research? That Sounds Hard!
Have you ever done 4 weeks of research? I mean 4 solid weeks of research where you just focused 5–8 hours a day on discovering what your target audience loves? 4 weeks are NOTHING (!!!!!!) but at the end you will learn a ton of knowledge about your audience. And this ic crucial, because it’s the most important asset you can have — know what your customer wants.
Don’t go by guesswork and think “Oh ok, I’m selling earrings. My audience loves jewelry so I should buy $100 worth of FB ads on jewelry.” Errrrrrr, I doubt this will work that well.. Why? Because there are trillions of people just doing the same. But if you KNOW that your target audience loves french press coffee in the morning because it makes them feel more exclusive you have a huuuge advantage. This is something very not-so-obvious and you can even target people on Facebook who liked the pages of famous coffee brands. Your audience will notice (and like) your ads — because you use the same exclusive wording they use — and will be more likely to click on your ads.
You can — no you SHOULD — even build your store around your knowledge. If you build a customized ad perfectly designed for your audience you just can’t afford to not keep up with their expectations for your store.
So again: The actual platform where you reach people doesn’t really matter that much at the beginning of your journey. It’s all about what you say to them. If you share your words (which are perfectly designed for your audience) on all platforms you are able to collect some data. This will lead to the knowledge where your audience hangs up the most and BAM! This is your scaling point.
Okay! I’ll Do The Research. How Do I Do That Again?
Because I would like to give you some practical advice here, these are some things you can do right now.
1. Forum research
Find niche related forums with Google and jump into the off-topic section. Take a look at the kinds of things people are talking about besides that niche. Find something they (seem) to have in common. The more controversial the better. We call these topics SIDE-PASSIONS
2. Side Passion Social Media Research
Take a look on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest and find “micro influencer“ accounts around that side passion niche (around about 5k — 13k followers). Reach out to the FOLLOWERS (not the influencer themselves!) and involve them into your business (ask for feedback; store design; products; colours; wording etc). but please DON’T sell here. This step is just about collecting data. If someone then said he/she has REAL interest or really loves your stuff do step 3:
3. Collect data
Take a deeeeeep look at the images these people upload (dark, bright, fav. Colour etc), the wording they use (masculine, feminine, slang, correct grammar etc), emojis they use (or not) and stuff like that. Try to collect as much data as possible.
… If you really take the time to go through this research process (4 weeks is a solid number — to start) you’ll have a lot of information which you can use for further ads. And this time they will convert because you have done something the majority will NEVER do. So thank God you’re not that lazy 😉
No Shortcuts. Groundwork (Research!) First
I know this answer does not contain any fancy or crazy sales technique but it’s the foundation work that will lead to success. The cold hard fact is: The best ad platforms only work if you know who you have to target. Otherwise it’s (in the most cases) just luck. And even if you’re lucky and make sales you will never be able to scale your business because you can’t scale luck. It’s just impossible.
So do the groundwork and THEN build your store. You don’t have to rush.