What makes Zappos one of the premiere e-commerce platforms in the industry? Why do they continue to post high growth and stability just by selling shoes online? How do they amaze customers and keep shareholders happy at the same time?
All of these questions can be answered by a few simple successful business and workplace culture practices. Even if Zappos was not an e-commerce website, the techniques used by this Las Vegas based company in customer service and user experience are unmatched. If you want to understand e-commerce done right, I suggest you keep reading.
How it’s Done
Marketing Strategies – With most e-commerce businesses, regardless of the products or services you are selling, marketing strategies demand attention. In fact, most business done online is driven by creative marketing strategies because, let’s face it, most people are doing the same things with few variances. What makes you different? What makes you better? As a business owner or one-man entrepreneurial venture, success or failure could be a result of marketing strategies employed by your company. I’ve seen it before – great product and great enthusiasm – but wrong approaches ruin potential success that you deserve.
So what does Zappos do so right and can you get some of that creative action? Yes, you can with a few simple tips. As you read the strategies below for inspiration, be sure to check out Wishpond Social Marketing Suite – Zappos uses this internet software to run great marketing campaigns on social channels.
- Getting information from the buyer – Just like point of sale information is crucial to a supply chain – customer feedback, cross-promotion, and buzz marketing is critical to driving sales. Zappos has cultivated a consumer community over the past five years that are online junkies. They love social networks, blogs, and shopping – sometimes all at once. With Zappos connecting and communicating with its customers in real-time, traditional marketing surveys are obsolete. These studies are replaced by actual valuable words from customers expressing interest or dislike in customer service and/or product catalogs.
- Know Thyself – Wise men have preached it for hundreds of years, “Know Thyself.” Well, in business we called this market segmentation and target marketing – both of which Zappos is remarkably good at accomplishing. Zappos knows that it is an e-commerce website that sells shoes and customers know that as well. The core of their business model is that they love being an e-commerce website and customers know what to expect when typing the URL www.zappos.com. Talking is one thing, but executing is a whole another animal – Zappos started online and will probably end online without deviation. If you are an e-commerce company, first understand who you are and ask yourself, “Would I be okay doing this forever?” Even if you do not find yourself running the business forever, that mindset is the culture of Zappos.
- Product Placement & Exposure – Using other online portals for product placement and exposure is basically free marketing. Sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words and social networks such as Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook provide you with all the exposure you need – everyone on the planet. Marketing has never been easier, and Zappos uses these networks to their advantage through pin creations on Pinterest or picture posts of new fashions available thru Zappos on Facebook or Instagram. These avenues create organic traffic and referrals, which usually are the most loyal.
- Phone number provided – Zappos hits home on customer relationships and service because they make themselves available, informative, and excited about consumer interest in their company. Zappos has such confidence in its call centers that it puts the company phone number in big, bold print on every single page of the website. In a world where online safety and purchasing confidence is cautioned, Zappos invites human interaction through communication, not a one-sided relationship. If you can invest in a few customer service reps or can handle call inflow yourself then making yourself transparent to your customers may be the best thing you could ever do.