Ecommerce Best Practices To Ride Out A Tough Economy


Working in ecommerce and marketing are tough jobs, even in the best of times. There’s a never-ending demand to perform well, beat goals, and grow your audience with limited resources. These expectations become even more challenging when there are things going on in the world that negatively affect buying power. 

Even if the economy hasnt affected your business yet, CEO’s and CFO’s are still bracing for their impact. With hiring and budget freezes and the looming possibility of layoffs, it’s important to show the value of your team and the tools you use to reach your goals. 

The truth is, economic downturns are nothing new, and there are ways to come out on the other side having reached or exceeded your sales goals – with your current team intact and a tech stack that works for you

The most important thing is to keep cool and get to work building strategies that get you across the finish line. 

Shopper Experience 

When the main goal is to convert more sales, providing a great shopper experience is vital. A great shopper experience improves customer loyalty and attracts new shoppers to your store. 

This is where Searchspring can help. 

Shoppers want to find what they are looking for fast. Anything that gets in the way of this puts revenue in jeopardy. Shoppers who use search are 4 times more likely to make a purchase, so it’s important to make this shopper journey as user-friendly as possible. 

Use the following Search best practices to keep shoppers coming back for more (even in a tough economy):

  • Ensure relevant search results are returned
  • Set up autocomplete and synonyms to help guide shoppers and produce relevant results 
  • Reduce searches that end in “zero-results” by recommending similar items
  • Add spelling corrections to make sure shoppers get to where they need to go

Tailor experiences for each shopper with the following Personalization and Merchandising best practices

  • Recommend products and display search results based on previous shopper behavior 
  • Use inline banners, landing pages, and merchandising campaigns to promote sales and communicate with shoppers
  • Implement boost rules to make sure shoppers see what you want them to see first
  • Customize filtering options

It’s well known that nurturing established relationships is more cost effective than acquiring new customers, so with the right tools and strategy, you can do more with less. This isn’t to say that you can ignore new shoppers since it’s important to continue to grow your customer base. Both of these audiences start and end with shopper experience. 

Show ROI 

As we’ve previously pointed out, during economic downturns, it’s more important than ever to show value. To be effective, you need to be data driven in everything you do. Have solid proof that you, your team, and the tools you use are necessary and worth the investment. 

Unfortunately, marketing is usually one of the first areas where leadership makes cuts to budget and resources. If you can’t clearly show how the marketing you’re doing is creating more sales, you risk more cuts.

Nearly everything spent in a downturn should have a clear return on investment. A solution that performs multiple, necessary functions like Searchspring, keeps all your reporting in one place

Not only is reporting in a neat package, but it’s easy-to-read and can be accessed quickly. Searchspring takes the guesswork out of the equation to help save you time. 

Searchspring has helped us to overcome the technological hurdles that were holding us back. The time we saved is now being better spent, enabling us to scale our marketing, and become more effective in our merchandising efforts. Ultimately this has led to h2 revenue growth.

Erik Goodlad, Chief Technologist, MacSales

Searchspring clients consistently experience higher conversion rates and earn more revenue. In fact, it’s not unusual to see over 90% yearly ROI from Searchspring, clearly showing that the right solutions help cut costs while improving team efficiency, enhancing the shopper experience, and increasing conversions.

No matter what you sell, you need a powerful search tool on your site. Searchspring is a no-brainer, it pays for itself and then some.

Becky Klukas-Brewer, Director of Marketing, Sales & Consulting, Prairie Moon Nursery

Need a quick and easy way to measure your ecommerce site’s ROI? This simple ROI calculator can help in a pinch.

A Great Team Deserves Great Partners + Support

It’s a classic cycle: you’re expected to grow sales and slow churn, yet your company announced hiring freezes to preserve funds until the economy bounces back. How can your team be expected to do more when your current team is already performing at their peak? 

The answer may be in investing in the right technology to streamline processes, freeing up time for your team to focus on the bigger picture vs day-to-day tasks. 

Solutions like Searchspring do just that. With the right tools in place, a task that takes several hours to do manually can be done in a matter of minutes. Not only does this give your team time to strategize, it also eliminates the need for external resources. 

Ecommerce solutions come at a fraction of the cost of hiring new employees and their value often far exceeds the cost. Using a great solution that comes with great customer support can help fill in gaps you may be experiencing due to hiring freezes. 

Searchspring has helped us to free up so much time that we can now spend on other areas of the business. With our product line growing all the time, it would be a huge challenge to effectively merchandise our site without Searchspring.

Vanessa Vumbaca, Content Supervisor, CostumeBox

All Searchspring subscription tiers include premier customer support, but Advanced and Expert tiers go even further with a dedicated Account Manager who is there to help strategize and implement solutions designed to convert more sales.  

Doing More With Less 

Budget cuts and freezes happen from time to time. When they do, it’s important to figure out what tools are vital to your team’s success. 

Ask the following questions to determine needs:

  • How do we use this tool?
  • Does it make our lives easier? How?
  • Does it bring in money?
  • Does this tool help provide a better shopper experience?

You want to make sure to include tools that bring value to your team (and the company as a whole) in your budget. Value can be determined by several factors including providing efficiency, increasing sales, and creating a better experience for shoppers. Of course, all these factors feed into one another. 

The simplest and most cost-effective approach is to find tools that fulfill multiple needs. When it comes to ecommerce solutions, find one that is easy-to-use and checks off several boxes. 

Other applications I’ve used over the years have been powerful but quite complex to use, which means that teams don’t get the full value from them. Searchspring was fast to pick up, made reporting and analysis easy, and allowed us to make tested, data-driven decisions to improve the shopper experience.

Matt Page, Head of Digital and Marketing, St Frock

Teams use Searchspring to simplify the merchandising process, create personalized experiences, analyze data, and get relevant products in front of shoppers. The many features included with Searchspring minimizes budget constraints while increasing conversion rates.

Create Your Own Calm

Remember that times like these come and go, and in the end, we’ll all come out on the other side with better skills, experience, and knowledge. By keeping cool, you can come up with effective solutions to budget constraints and meet or exceed expectations. 

As always, keep your audience in mind and find solutions that will give them the best experience possible. This is the key to converting sales and building customer loyalty. Adjust as needed, and invest in people and tools that help provide and prove value.

Special thanks to our friends at Searchspring for their insights on this topic.
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