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7 Best Examples Of SMB Loyalty Programs [Retail & Hospitality]

This article dives into seven of the best SMB loyalty programs, showcasing innovative strategies that will inspire your own loyalty and rewards program.

Francesca Nicasio

Content Strategy Manager

When set up correctly, loyalty programs are one of the best tools for customer retention. 

Every business owner knows that bringing in new customers is more expensive than encouraging repeat business from existing customers. That’s why customer loyalty programs are particularly beneficial for smaller businesses, where money is tight and building a loyal customer base is crucial. 

Successful loyalty programs spark an emotional connection that brings in repeat customers — which translates to greater revenue. 

While bigger companies tend to steal the limelight for their membership programs (e.g., Sephora’s Beauty Insider program), SMBs have cool strategies too!

This article dives into seven of the best SMB loyalty programs, showcasing innovative strategies that would hopefully inspire your initiatives. 

Whether an award-winning, family-owned bakery or a homegrown fashion label — these businesses demonstrate the power of personalized loyalty rewards, community engagement, and seamless digital experiences in cultivating brand loyalty. 

Let’s dive in.

 


 

1. Pinjarra Bakery

Pinjarra Bakery, led by the Pantaleo family, is renowned for Australia's top meat pie. It has garnered over 700 state and national accolades, making it one of WA's most decorated bakeries. With over 25 years of satisfying customers, locals and tourists equally flock to enjoy its delectable treats.

pinjarra-bakery-winning

Program purpose:

The company used to have an outdated point-of-sale system when it recognized the need for a more efficient sales and marketing approach. It wanted a cloud-based solution to streamline its operations and decided that Lightspeed was the perfect choice.

The bakery also wanted to integrate its loyalty and marketing with its chosen POS. So it partnered with Marsello to integrate its rewards program seamlessly into its existing tech stack consisting of WooCommerce, Bopple, and Lightspeed (O-Series).

With the loyalty program, it hoped to gather customer feedback and purchase data to enhance the customer experience and tailor offers. It also wanted to use the data for automated marketing, such as sending $10 vouchers to encourage repeat visits from inactive customers.

Program style:

Pinjarra decided on a points-based loyalty program where customers receive 1 reward point for every dollar spent. Bonus points could be earned through referrals and by sharing on social media. Members can then redeem their accumulated points for free products, exclusive benefits, and member-only special offers.

pinjarra bakery loyalty program

Here’s why its loyalty program succeeds:

  • Pinjarra Bakery recognizes the importance of cultivating a robust database of loyal customers. A point system is simple enough for program members to understand — earn certain points and get rewards. This encourages more customers to sign up.
  • It simplifies customer engagement by offering effortless QR code-based sign-ups at its locations.
  • The loyalty rewards program cleverly doubles as a referral program. It’s also a useful strategy for social media marketing.
  • One of the program’s main aims is to harness data from an active database. This helps to drive revenue during campaign launches.
  • The program offers a delightful user experience as well. Check out the fun names of its rewards — “Magic brew to kickstart your day. Caffeine hit!” or “Pop it like it’s hot with PB pop socket - phone grip & stand.” 

Program results:

Pinjarra attained a 66% repeat purchase rate and increased revenue significantly via targeted marketing campaigns and automation, generating $100k from a single automation.

 

2. Scotty's Makeup & Beauty

Over four decades, Scotty’s Makeup & Beauty has been a cornerstone of the Aussie beauty industry. Established in 1980 by founder Scott Lattimer, the company introduced global makeup brands to Australia, becoming integral to various sectors including beauty salons, film, TV, and theatre.

scottys-makeup-and-beauty

Program purpose:

Initially, Scotty’s was searching for an effective email marketing solution. When the team learned about Marsello, they decided to set up a loyalty program as well. It aimed to establish a vibrant, involved customer database. Like Pinjarra Bakery, it also wanted to implement targeted marketing tactics tailored to customer buying behaviors and preferences.

scottys makeup and beauty program

Program style:

Currently, the Marsello app works smoothly with Scotty’s Shopify and Lightspeed (X-series) setup. The brand has chosen a tier-based or tiered loyalty program where certain loyal customers (Artistry Insiders) get exclusive access to better discounts. 

Program results:

63% of Scotty’s marketing-driven revenue originates from email campaigns. Its loyalty program efforts have also enhanced customer lifetime value and purchase frequency. Best of all — it has doubled its end-of-financial-year revenue.

 

3. Pace Athletic

Pace Athletic was founded by fitness enthusiasts, Will and Stu. They loved the welcoming atmosphere in surf stores and wanted to introduce the same to running stores which felt more exclusive.

Program purpose:

The co-founders knew they needed to build a loyal customer base to make running feel more inclusive. This is where Marsello came in. With its help, Pace Athletic created — what easily qualifies as — one of the best customer loyalty program examples on our list. 

Competing in a market overshadowed by major chains posed a significant challenge for the brand. Nevertheless, it cultivated a loyal customer base by prioritizing the overall experience.

pace athletic loyalty program and running club

Program style:

Pace Athletic implemented a simple points-based loyalty system that worked wonders. Customers earn points corresponding to the amount they spend. They can earn more points from social media engagement, referrals, etc., and redeem them for exclusive products and discounts. 

The loyalty program aims to seamlessly merge online and in-store sales data, providing a comprehensive overview of customer shopping habits. This integrated approach paves the way for personalized marketing messages and promotions based on customer data. That way, Pace Athletic can enhance customer engagement and drive more sales.

Program results:

Pace Athletic’s loyalty program account helped drive 28% of its total revenue. Because customers are highly engaged, its marketing emails yield impressive conversion rates. In fact, its email marketing campaigns contributed over 40% of its revenue, underscoring the program's impact on sales.

 

download free loyalty program roi calculator

 

4. ALPHA60

Founded in 2005 by enterprising siblings Alex and Georgie Cleary, ALPHA60 has created a unique narrative since the very beginning. With a solid focus on customer happiness and an unwavering creative vision, the brand has shown that you can find success by traveling the unbeaten path.

Alpha60 rewards

Program purpose:

The company was determined to follow a customer-first approach and wanted the brand experience to be consistent for all shoppers. It started using Marsello along with Lightspeed (X-Series), Shopify, Wrapped, and Klaviyo to help with its loyalty program strategies.

On brand with its customer-first approach, ALPHA60 wanted to make its sales, marketing, and rewards programs more efficient. It also wanted to streamline its gift card usage across platforms and synchronize customer data between its online and in-store channels.

Alpha60 rewards program

Program style:

The rewards program is simple. Customers earn points based on how much they spend and for engaging with the brand on social media. For every 1000 points earn, they get a $50 voucher. 

The purpose of this loyalty program is twofold. First, it excites customers at the point of sale but rewarding them for every purchase. Secondly, the program enables the brand to utilize data for segmenting customers, which then makes it easy to launch targeted campaigns.

Program results:

Every aspect of ALPHA60's business revolves around the customer and the results of its strategies speak for themselves. With a customer-centric approach, it maintains a repeat purchase rate of around 70%, surpassing the typical range of 20% to 40% considered good for retail enterprises.

 

5. Brandini Toffee

Brandini Toffee is a family-operated company that excels in crafting artisanal toffee through time-honored techniques and top-notch ingredients. It wanted a loyalty program compatible with its tech infrastructure and operational model, requiring seamless integration, in-store and online.

Program purpose:

The loyalty program was meant to capture purchase behaviors and preferences, grow the database, and enable tailored rewards to enhance customer retention rates. This involves integrating data across all channels to ensure a seamless omnichannel experience for Brandini’s customers.

brandini toffee rewards and loyalty program

Program style:

Using Marsello, the company set up a simple, yet effective loyalty program system. Like certain brands on this list, Brandini Toffee offers customers 1 Brandini Point for every dollar spent. Bonus points can be earned on birthdays or by completing certain actions, such as sharing on social media.

Program results:

Brandini’s revenue doubled within the first eight months of implementing Marsello. Since then, it has experienced nearly triple revenue growth from 2019 to 2023.

 

6. TennisGear

Started by accountant and avid tennis player Mark, TennisGear is a tennis center that offers coaching, four tennis courts, and an attached retail store. The company needed the right tech for its multi-channel businesses and wanted to make shopping easier in stores and online. With Lightspeed POS and Marsello, it manages all its data in one spot, helping create customer groups.

Tennis-Gears-Onichannel-Customer-Data-Lightspeed-Shopify

Program purpose:

The loyalty program serves multiple purposes. It centralizes sales data from all channels into one platform, aligns transactions with customer profiles, and fosters a seamless omnichannel experience. 

Plus, it facilitates database growth and utilizes customer interaction data to enhance product offerings and marketing strategies.

TennisGear rewards

Program style:

Tennis Gear created a points-based loyalty program. Every $1 spent earns customers 1 point. Reviews, social shares, and other actions earn bonus points. All are redeemable for discounts.

Program result:

TennisGear gains full sales visibility across all channels via multi-site reports and dashboards. On implementing Marsello’s prompts for Lightspeed POS, it saw a 2.5% increase in its customer database. Additionally, Marsello's automation tools efficiently recover abandoned carts and entice lost customers to return, alongside other effective campaigns.

 

7. HobbyTech Toys

Based in Perth, Western Australia, Hobbytech Toys specializes in radio control products. The brand has recently broadened its inventory to encompass toys, games, Lego sets, model kits, model trains, and more. It has also prioritized improving its online presence.

hobbytech toys rewards

Program purpose:

Year after year, the business experienced rapid growth. About two years ago, they transitioned to a new ERP, leading to a new point-of-sale system. This prompted integration with Marcello to link Lightspeed and Shopify, enhancing the omnichannel experience.

Program style:

The store recently introduced a $5 discount voucher reward system, replacing the previous 1000-point threshold for a $10 voucher. See, many regular customers weren't reaching this threshold within 12 months due to their frequent but lower-spending visits.

Program results:

The $5 reward significantly boosted redemption rates, enhancing customer satisfaction and the store's reputation. The brand has also used its omnichannel data to improve its email marketing campaigns.

 

Customer loyalty webinar (1)


Final words

All the examples mentioned above demonstrate a crucial point — customer reward programs that fit the unique needs of small businesses can work wonders. 

Special loyalty programs, easy omnichannel shopping, and automation can help grow your business and keep customers happy. That’s why if you haven’t done so yet, it’s time to launch a loyalty program that helps you reach your marketing goals. 

To learn how Marsello can help, talk to one of our experts today.

 


 

Get advice from a loyalty expert and start driving repeat sales.

Book a demo

 


 

Read more: 7 Steps To Building A Profitable Loyalty & Rewards Program

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    7 Best Loyalty Apps for Shopify in 2024

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    Choosing the best loyalty program app for your Shopify store isn't easy. In this blog, we review the 7 Best Loyalty Apps for Shopify, and how they can...

    Customer retention isn’t easy. Between your eCommerce and physical stores, social media, and various other touchpoints, customers can slip through the cracks.

    Shopify’s loyalty program apps make it easy to engage your customers with personalized rewards and incentives and ensure they stick around for the long term. But with so many loyalty apps to choose from, how do you know which one is right for your business?

    In this article, we’ll review the 7 Best Loyalty Apps for Shopify and how they can increase customer retention and boost sales for your store.

     


     

    What are the best loyalty apps for Shopify in 2024?

    marsello-loyalty-marketing-tools

    1. Marsello (Top pick ✨)


    Marsello helps you reward customers with loyalty and marketing tools that work in-store and online. With Marsello, you can customize the appearance of your program to match the look and feel of your brand. It’s easy to set up rewards, discounts, points, VIP tiers, and more to gamify your customers’ shopping experience and encourage them to spend more.

    Marsello’s key point of difference is the ability to run your loyalty program seamlessly across your Shopify eCommerce and POS channels. This simplifies customer loyalty management and allows for a more seamless customer loyalty experience.

    Marsello’s loyalty tools also connect with its all-in-one marketing automation tools, helping you run more effective campaigns, from email to SMS, reviews, and more.

     

    Here are some popular ways to use Marsello:

      • Customize and launch a loyalty program that works in-store and online
      • Reward customers with personalized rewards, points, VIP tiers, and more
      • Sync sales from eCommerce and POS and link them to unique customer profiles
      • Use your customer insights to run smarter, personalized marketing campaigns
      • Manage all of your marketing from one app, email, SMS, automations, and more

     

    Pricing

    Marsello offers a 14-day free trial. Paid plans start from $125 USD/month, and are based on your customer database size and the number of eCommerce and POS sites connected.

     

    What merchants think about Marsello

    Merchants enjoy using Marsello for its user-friendly interface and powerful loyalty features. Marsello merchants have seen a boost in sales through its loyalty and rewards program, email, and SMS marketing features. Marsello’s marketing automation tools and cost-effectiveness are also highlighted, along with its responsive customer service team.

    Install on Shopify

    Recommended Loyalty App for Shopify
    Marsello helps you launch a world-class loyalty program that engages your customers and drives sales, no matter how they shop. Create rewards, points, VIP tiers, and more with ease.

    Start Free Trial

     

    2. Smile.io

    smile-loyalty-tools

    Smile.io offers easy-to-use loyalty and rewards tools to help you engage your shoppers, and turn first-time customers into forever customers. Over 125 million shoppers earn points through Smile. 

    With Smile, you can create your own loyalty and rewards program that increases sales and repeat purchases, saves on acquisition costs, and boosts brand loyalty. The best part is that creating a loyalty program with Smile only takes a few minutes—with no coding required.

    Smile offers simple management of your customers and loyalty data, and if you need help, you’re supported 24/7 by a team of loyalty experts to answer your questions.

     

    Here are some popular ways to use Smile:

      • Customize your loyalty widget and rewards launcher to match your brand aesthetic
      • Encourage repeat sales by allowing customers to earn points and rewards
      • Connect Smile with your email, review, and customer service apps
      • Nudge customers to continue shopping by reminding them of their points and rewards

     

    Pricing

    Smile is free to install. Their free plan allows up to 200 monthly orders and gives you access to all the basic loyalty features, including a points and referrals program, basic brand customization, default reward emails, and an analytics overview.

     

    What merchants think about Smile.io

    Shopify store owners appreciate this app for its easy setup and seamless integration with Shopify. Smile is praised for its loyalty points system, customizable rewards options, and VIP program features. Smile’s free plan is a good entry point for new businesses looking to increase customer loyalty. The free version is robust and easy to use.

     

    3. LoyaltyLion

    loyaltylion-loyalty-program

    LoyaltyLion helps Shopify brands boost retention and increase customer engagement with a loyalty program that goes beyond points and rewards.

    The popular loyalty app helps you incentivize brand engagement and motivate repeat purchases by offering loyalty points and rewards to customers who engage with your business.

     

    Here are some popular ways to use LoyaltyLion:

      • Reward positive onsite behavior with customizable points and gifts
      • Increase brand advocacy by rewarding customer referrals
      • Deliver points and rewards through email and on-store notifications
      • Tailor how your loyalty program appears on your Shopify eCommerce site
      • Integrate with email providers, subscription partners, reward platforms, and more

     

    Pricing

    LoyaltyLion offers a free plan that gives you access to basic loyalty features, unlimited members, and up to 800 monthly orders. Paid plans start from $156 USD/month.

     

    What merchants think about LoyaltyLion

    Merchants highly recommend LoyaltyLion due to its seamless integration, customizable features, and user-friendly interface. LoyaltyLion is praised for its exceptional customer service, and merchants appreciate the app’s detailed analytics, and easy migration from other loyalty apps.

     

    4. Joy: Loyalty & Rewards Program

    joy-loyalty-program

    Joy is a user-friendly loyalty solution designed to keep your customers around with advanced loyalty programs and rewards features. It’s designed to help Shopify stores effectively convert their shoppers into loyal customers with the help of rewarding points.

    The app has a variety of features that allow store owners to manage the earning and spending of loyalty points flexibly. All of Joy’s loyalty features come in a user-friendly and no-code-required platform that’s supported by 24/7 customer support.

     

    Here are some popular ways to use Joy:

      • Reward customers for signing up, placing orders, leaving reviews, and more
      • Manage your customer tiers, points, and missions with export and import data
      • Run campaigns with built-in email notifications and automations
      • Leverage your store’s point-of-sale data to run more effective loyalty campaigns
      • Engage your customers without slowing down your shop’s loading speeds

     

    Pricing

    Joy offers a free plan, limited to 250 orders per month. You can enable points-earning options for customers who sign up and place an order. Paid plans start from $29 USD/month.

     

    What merchants think about Joy

    Merchants love Joy for its diverse loyalty features such as rewards programs and referral options, and low impact on your shop’s loading speeds. The customer service team is highly praised, and merchants find the pricing reasonable and appreciate its integration with POS. The tool is regarded as a valuable tool for growing a store’s database and social following.

     

    5. Yotpo: Loyalty & Rewards

    yotpo-loyalty-dashboard

    Yotpo’s eCommerce retention marketing platform helps Shopify brands drive repeat sales with connected solutions for loyalty, email, SMS, reviews, and more. With Yotpo, you can build a customizable, retention-driving loyalty program that offers more than just rewards.

    Yotpo’s agile loyalty tools empower store owners to launch a loyalty program quickly and iterate endlessly — with no developer work required. The platform’s out-of-the-box campaigns help you drive repeat sales from the get-go.

     

    Here are some popular ways to use Yotpo:

      • Customize, launch, and manage your loyalty program with no coding required
      • Monitor your loyalty and referral program data, from ROI to customer LTV, and more
      • Increase repeat sales and customer engagement with diverse rewards and tiers
      • Create a seamless marketing experience by integrating Yotpo’s marketing products

     

    Pricing

    Yotpo is free to install, with a free plan available to stores with fewer than 100 monthly orders. Paid plans start from $199 USD/month and provide your customers with more ways to earn.

     

    What merchants think about Yotpo

    Yotpo is highly recommended for its seamless Shopify integration. The platform helps users effortlessly boost business with features like email reminders for points-earning, and reward redemption options. The customer service, especially the live chat is appreciated, and the app’s customization capabilities are also appreciated.

     

    6. Stamped Loyalty & Referrals

    stamped-loyalty-program-and-referrals

    Stamped Loyalty helps Shopify brands maximize customer loyalty with a customized loyalty program, VIP tiers, and referrals. The platform works as a stand-alone product, but can also be integrated with Stamped’s integration reviews and ratings product to create a full suite of customer tools.

    Stamped helps brands deliver immediate value to their customers through a personalized loyalty experience. Their platform helps you increase average order value and maximize customer lifetime value through AI-powered points and rewards, VIP tiers, and referral solutions.

     

    Here are some popular ways to use Stamped:

      • Drive engagement with points-based campaigns that motivate customers to shop
      • Reward and incentivize customers to share your brand with their friends
      • Deliver a fully customized on-brand loyalty program and experience
      • Create exciting VIP tiers and perks to recognize your best customers

     

    Stamped Pricing

    Stamped offers a free plan. Paid plans start from $59 USD/month, however, by signing up for Stamped’s 12-month plan, you can save 17% off your subscription costs.

     

    What merchants think about Stamped

    Merchants love using Stamped for its intuitive loyalty integration with Shopify, along with its advanced customization features and helpful customer support team. Despite some instances where glitches and shortages in real-time assistance occur, the overall sentiment remains positive, with Shopify store owners taking pleasure in migrating from other app alternatives.

     

    7. Rise.ai

    rise-gift-card-app

    Rise is the go-to gift cards and store credits app for Shopify stores. The app is designed to manage all your brand’s re-engagement activity, from gift cards to referrals, rewards, and refund management.

    Rise helps you establish an intuitive rewards program with flexible, automated store credit flows that strengthen your customer relationships and increase customer lifetime value.

    Rise’s customer service team is excellent and has proven to go above and beyond to help customers get the most out of their products and deliver success.

     

    Here are some popular ways to use Rise.ai

      • Trigger and create store credit rewards based on customer activity
      • Issue gift card refunds and offer store credit for returns
      • Launch a loyalty program that encourages store credit accumulation
      • Remind customers of their gift cards with scheduling and sending options

     

    Pricing

    Rise’s starter plan starts from $19.99 USD/month and gives you access to essential store credit and gift card features, limited to 100 monthly store orders.

     

    What merchants think about Rise.ai

    Merchants appreciate the app for its gift cards, rewards programs, and store credit issuance. The app has high customizability and works seamlessly with Shopify and Klaviyo, helping you run more effective campaigns. The app has been instrumental for many Shopify stores wanting to increase sales and attraction, with its gift card scheduling and automation tools being a stand-out feature.

     


     

    So, which loyalty app should I install?

    Shopify’s loyalty apps make it easy for store owners to engage customers and drive long-term brand loyalty.

    The best loyalty programs are ones that make customers feel seen and valued, regardless of how they shop. In this context, Marsello’s seamless integration with Shopify eCommerce and POS allows store owners to nurture customers and manage loyalty and order data across multiple channels.

    By centralizing your in-store and online customer data, you can get a complete view of your customers, helping you optimize your loyalty program and run more targeted and timely campaigns that drive sales for your Shopify store.

    Recommended Loyalty App for Shopify

    Marsello helps you launch a world-class loyalty program that engages your customers and drives sales, no matter how they shop. Create rewards, points, VIP tiers, and more with ease.

    Start Free Trial

    11 Best Shopify Apps to Grow Your Store in 2024

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    With thousands of apps in the Shopify App Store, it can be overwhelming to pick the one that's right for your business. Here are the 11 best Shopify apps...

    The Shopify App Store holds the key to transforming your operations and unlocking revenue growth for your business. But, with thousands of apps to choose from, it can be overwhelming to choose which apps are the right fit for your store.

    To help you get started, we’ve compiled a list of the 11 best Shopify apps to grow your business in 2024.

    1. Keeper—Recover Abandoned Carts
    2. Shopify Flow
    3. Marsello: Loyalty, Email & SMS
    4. Loop Returns & Exchanges
    5. PageFly Landing Page Builder
    6. Stamped Product Reviews & UGC
    7. Booster: Page Speed Optimizer
    8. Appstle Subscriptions
    9. Peek! Better Replay & Survey
    10. Easyship - All in one Shipping
    11. Klaviyo: Email Marketing & SMS

     

    11 Best Shopify Apps to Grow Your eCommerce Store in 2024.

     

    1. Keeper—Recover Abandoned Carts

    keeper-abandoned-carts-shopify-app

    According to the Baymard Institute, the average abandoned cart rate in 2022 was 69.99%. That means that for every 100 people that visit your online store, almost 70 of them will never make it to checkout—that’s a lot of potential revenue you’re missing out on. 

    Keeper is a one-click install Shopify app designed to recover abandoned carts and increase your store’s revenue automatically in the background. When customers log in across multiple devices they will find their abandoned shopping cart waiting for them, ready to complete their order. This makes it easy for them to pick up where they left off, resulting in more sales for your Shopify store.

    Key benefits:

    • Automatically prompt users to complete their orders.
    • Remember customers’ shopping carts across their devices.
    • Merge previously abandoned carts with current ones and drive more sales.
    • Reduce your abandoned cart rates and drive more sales.

    Pricing: Free

    Shopify Review | CHIC 414 Boutique

    “SO helpful for regaining sales and reminding our clients that they have abandoned their shopping carts. We have definitely seen an increase in our sales.”

     

    2. Shopify Flow

    flow-shopify-app

    Shopify Flow helps automate processes that solve unique challenges eCommerce store owners face. With Flow, you can easily build custom workflows to solve specific challenges and tasks that would otherwise burn precious time and resources.

    Flow is a powerful but simple automation tool. You can quickly customize unique triggers and conditions to create advanced workflows that run on autopilot, all without needing prior developer knowledge. 

    Key Benefits:

    • Create custom workflows and automate processes to streamline your operations
    • Save time by turning repetitive, time-consuming tasks into automatic workflows
    • Simple to set up: Automate workflows in a few clicks and get back to business


    Pricing: Free

    Shopify Review | Landyachtz Skateboards

    “In my opinion Flow is the single most valuable aspect of Shopify Plus! The biggest limitation of Flow is your imagination and the things I've been able to automate have been game-changers for our operations. One aspect I never expected was how effective Flow is in helping me build safety nets and redundancies for problems that would go unseen without it. Probably my favourite app.”

     

    3. Marsello

    youtube-thumbnail-loyalty-and-marketing-marsello

    Marsello is a seamless loyalty and marketing platform that helps Shopify brands drive repeat sales and engage customers, no matter how they shop. It offers a variety of marketing features, including loyalty programs, email and SMS campaigns, automations, social media management, and more.

    One of Marsello's key strengths is its omnichannel loyalty solution, which allows Shopify brands to run a seamless loyalty program across their eCommerce and brick-and-mortar channels—simplifying your customer loyalty management and improving customer experience.

    The platform's eCommerce and POS connection helps brands unify their customer data, making it easy to understand how your customers shop, and providing powerful data that can be used to run more effective marketing campaigns.

    Key benefits:

    • Run a seamless loyalty program across your in-store and online channels.
    • Save money on subscription fees by consolidating all your apps into one.
    • Get a complete view of your customer, and harness that data for smarter campaigns.
    • Incentivize customers to come back more frequently, and spend more when they visit.


    Pricing: Free plan available. Paid plans start from $135/month

    Customer Review | LEGO® Certified Stores

    “Marsello made the most sense as it offers a single loyalty program that extends to customers online and in-store. We have many customers that shop with us in both channels and expect a seamless loyalty and marketing experience.”

    Recommended app for Shopify stores
    Drive repeat sales with a loyalty program that works in-store and online.

    View on Shopify

     

     

    4. Loop Returns & Exchanges

    loop-returns-shopify-app

    Loop is a returns app that aims to simplify and automate returns, exchanges, and store credit processes for brands. With the global economy facing a potential recession in 2023, retaining customers and cutting costs are more important than ever.

    With Loop, you can analyse your customer interactions from a cost-saving lens, helping you to identify opportunities for revenue retention, and nurturing your customers through their most fragile interactions with your store. Control how and when returns get approved, optimize costs, prevent losses of returned products and retain more revenue with ease.

    Key benefits:

    • Retain customers through fragile interactions with your brand and optimize costs.
    • Save time and automatically control how and when returns and exchanges get approved.
    • Reduce refunds and negative reviews, and drive repeat purchases from happy customers.

    Pricing: Paid plans start from $59/month.

    Shopify Review | Mediclio

    “Love that this app continues to keep customers and merchants comfort in mind. They continue to vamp up the features so that returns and exchanges process can run as smoothly as possible…”

     

    5. PageFly Landing Page Builder

    pagefly-shopify-app

    Running a successful eCommerce store requires regularly creating and optimizing landing pages that help turn traffic into revenue. With PageFly, you can drag and drop your way to high-converting landing pages that engage shoppers and grow revenue for your business.

    PageFly helps bring your website pages to life with intuitive page-building features and pre-made elements that help you design your storefront how you want it. With its user-friendly interface and pre-built elements, it offers a convenient solution for new Shopify store owners looking to improve their performance.

    Key benefits:

    • Simple drag-and-drop landing page builders that help create pages that convert.
    • Build landing pages with or without code.
    • Suitable to build pages of any type and on any device.

    Pricing: Free plan available. Paid plans start from $24/month.

    Shopify Review | The Sustainable Watch Company

    “Really easy to use, similar to the Shopify page builder. Really knowledgeable, helpful support and after-sales service.”

     

    6. Stamped Product Reviews & UGC


    stamped-product-reviews-shopify-app

    When a customer has a positive interaction with your brand they’re more likely to tell other people about you.

    With Stamped, you can encourage customers to leave reviews after positive experiences with your brand, then use those reviews to improve your online reputation and stand out from the crowd.

    Key benefits:

    • Collect and showcase product reviews to build trust and transparency.
    • Improve your website’s SEO and Google Shopping rankings.
    • Gain deeper insights into what your customers think about your service.
    • Use reviews to promote your business and drive more sales via your store.

    Pricing: Free plan available. Paid plans start from $25/month.

    Shopify Customer Review, Seed Cycle Brand

    “Stamped Product Reviews is a great app if you want a more minimalist and stylish review app. Their support and technology upgrades are great also!”

     

    7. Booster: Page Speed Optimizer

    booster-page-speed-optimizer-shopify-app

    Page load speeds are everything when it comes to conversion. According to Hubspot, website conversion rates drop by an average of 4.42% which each additional second of load time. 

    Booster helps your eCommerce stores prevent lost sales by making your Shopify store pages feel like they load almost instantly. With Booster, you can pre-load landing pages and increase your website performance without needing any code.

    Key benefits:

    • Improve your store’s load speeds on desktop and mobile.
    • Reduce bounce rates and improve your chances of conversion with faster loading times.
    • Pre-load landing pages in the background when a customer hovers over a website link.

    Pricing: Free

    Shopify Customer Review, Zael Findings

    “Very friendly customer service quick to respond and if you are ever looking for a service to get a speed boost I highly recommend for you to check it out.”

     

    8. Appstle Subscriptions

    appstle-subscriptions-shopify-app

    Subscription-based selling provides a consistent, predictable revenue stream from your best customers. If you're running a subscription-based business model, then Appstle Subscriptions is the perfect solution for managing orders and driving repeat purchases.

    The app makes it easy to choose and manage subscriptions via the Shopify checkout page and encourages customers to spend more with personalized product offers, up-selling and product bundling. This helps increase customer engagement and provides reliable, recurring revenue.

    Key benefits:

    • Provide subscription plans for customers during their checkout process in Shopify.
    • Allow customers to manage their subscriptions and skip, reschedule or edit deliveries.
    • Drive consistent revenue from customers and up-sell personalized offers and bundles.


    Pricing:
    Free to install. Paid plans start from $10/month.

    Shopify Customer Review, Friendly Soap

    “This app works like a dream. It’s really popular with our customers and the support team are very responsive and helpful. Highly recommend.”

     

    9. Peek! Better Replay & Survey

    peek-better-replay-shopify-app

    Ever wonder why customers aren't converting on your website? If you do, then Better Replay can help. With free session recording and playback options, Better Replay allows you to observe how visitors interact with your site. 

    Boasting a 4.7-star rating on the Shopify App Store, Better Replay eliminates the uncertainty of why your pages aren't converting, helping you enhance your user experience and increasing conversions.

    Key benefits:

    • Learn how your visitors interact with your website with session recordings.
    • No more guesswork. See exactly why your landing pages aren’t converting to sales.
    • Gain insights into customer behavior and improve your website conversions.


    Pricing:
    Free. Paid plans start from $29/month.

    Shopify Customer Review, Smaller Living

    “I recommend gaining knowledge of what leads to a bounce rate. You can review live sessions, and it shows where you are losing customers.”

     

    10. Easyship - All in one Shipping

    easyship-shopify-app

    Online shoppers have extremely high expectations when it comes to shipping times and order management. According to a Retail Dive study, 62% of shoppers expect to receive their shipping orders to arrive in less than 3 days. 

    Easyship is an all-in-one shipping management platform that helps Shopify businesses manage their shipping operations and save time and money. The app helps customers easily compare costs and delivery times with dynamic rates during the checkout process. It helps you create a tailored shopping experience and requires little effort so you can focus on growing your business.

    Pricing: Free plan available. Paid plans start from $29/month.

    Shopify Customer Review, Mokuyobi

    “I use this app to help fulfill our orders efficiently. It has worked great in the 3+ months that I have been working where I currently am. So far I have not had any real issues with Easyship.”

     

    11. Klaviyo

    klaviyo-shopify-app-recommendation

    In the world of eCommerce and retail, customer relationships are everything. Klaviyo is a unified customer marketing platform that revolutionizes the way you connect with your customers, helping you build profitable relationships with intuitive features like email marketing, SMS, automations, forms, and reviews.

    Klaviyo's intelligent marketing automation features make it easy to earn more revenue without resorting to ineffective batching and blasting. The well-known Shopify app delivers unmatched speed and time-to-value, empowering you with best-practice marketing templates that are ready to go live from the start.

    Key benefits:

    • Deliver tailored experiences to each customer, increasing the ROI of your email marketing.
    • Save time and effort with automated workflows that nurture leads and engage customers.
    • Leverage your customer data and analytics to make informed decisions that drive growth.

    Did you know? You can integrate Klaviyo's advanced customer marketing features with Marsello's loyalty software to create advanced customer segments that can be leveraged to craft highly-personalized campaigns that engage customers and grow revenue.

    Learn more about Klaviyo and Marsello's integration.

    Pricing: Free to install. Paid plans start from $30/month.

    Shopify Customer Review, Wingback

    "Klaviyo provides vastly superior data on every customer, every automation, and every campaign, helping us make better decisions and drive greater ROI each month. The support guides are really comprehensive, their team is always quick to provide guidance and the platform is constantly improving."

     

    So, which Shopify apps should I install?

    Whether you're a new eCommerce entrepreneur or an established Shopify store owner, you'll want to take advantage of the many great apps the Shopify App Store has to offer. From all-in-one marketing solutions to shipping and customer service apps, Shopify has something for everyone.

    But the truth is, there's no one-size-fits-all solution for Shopify stores. Each business is unique and faces its own set of challenges, but with the right app, you can overcome these challenges and achieve success.

    Before you start your app store search, we suggest you take a moment to reflect on your business goals and needs. Ask yourself these simple questions:

    1. What challenges am I facing as a Shopify business?
    2. What specific tools do I need to address my problems?
    3. What does my ideal state look like, and will this app help me get there?
    4. Does this app have what I need, what is the cost, and am I willing to pay for it?

    By answering these questions, you'll gain a clearer understanding of your business objectives, and it will become easy to choose the apps that align best with your goals.

    Remember, with the right tools at your disposal, you'll be poised for success and ready to take your Shopify store to new heights. Best of luck with your app store search!

    Next read: 7 Steps To A Profitable Loyalty & Rewards Program

    Recommended marketing app for Shopify
    Drive repeat sales with a loyalty program that works in-store and online. Marsello has everything you need to grow your store's revenue.

    View on Shopify

    What’s new for Marsello x Shopify retailers in 2022?

    ClockIcon  READ
    From Shopify Theme Extensions and Google reviews to a new and improved user experience, we wrap up the biggest changes to Marsello for Shopify users.

    Retailers need to know the tech they invest in will meet their needs and help their businesses grow while also adapting to current trends. In response to changing customer shopping trends, 2021 saw more retailers than ever move into the eCommerce space, and the importance of creating a cohesive shopping experience across in-store and online locations was highlighted again and again. To master this, retailers have needed faster websites, smarter tools, and better connectivity between their different store types.

    To meet the growing needs of omnichannel retailers, Shopify released several exciting changes in the last 12 months – from Themes 2.0 to Shopify Flow. To build on these additions and create more and more marketing opportunities for Marsello x Shopify retailers, we released several complementary features that are helping retailers make the most of their retail toolkit.

    Let’s dive in and discover Marsello’s latest features and biggest updates for Shopify users.

    What features has Marsello released for Shopify users?

     

    The last year saw the development of several stand-out features, and many of these were designed specifically for Shopify powered-retailers looking to grow their business with smart marketing. 

    Introducing Marsello’s  biggest releases of 2021 and a sneak peek of what’s to come very soon:


    Shopify Theme Extension – Product Recommendations:

    The announcement of Themes 2.0 at the Shopify Unite 2021 conference was a cause for a flurry of excitement. With some sources calling it Shopify’s biggest investment in their platform to date, Themes 2.0 opened up a world of opportunities for retailers looking to create their perfect online store, edit and customize themes, and prioritize user experience. 

    To meet the needs of fast-growing retailers who need smart, data-driven marketing tools, we developed a product recommendations extension for Shopify Themes 2.0 users. With this tool, users can add personalized product recommendations to their eCommerce store to encourage bigger cart sizes, improve customers’ online purchase experience, and help customers find products they’ll love.

    Product recommendations built into eCommerce store themes makes it easy to create a seamless experience for customers


    Marsello’s product recommendations are powered by our purpose-built, data-driven product recommendations engine that recommends products based on buyer behavior and purchase history. And the potential doesn’t stop with data-driven recommendations either. Retailers can also select specific products to implant into the recommendations block and encourage sales of specific products. 

    Learn more about our Shopify Theme extension – Product recommendations.

     

    Marketing Extensions:

    Shopify’s extensions feature allows merchants to integrate tools and apps into their Shopify admin almost as if they were in-built. There are countless options to choose from merchandising to stock management; however, none would allow you to create loyalty points campaigns designed to multiply customers’ loyalty points on purchases automatically – this is where Marsello’s Marketing Extension for Shopify comes in.

    Shopify Marketing Extensions users can now create points campaigns in their Shopify admin with the Marsello marketing extension, reducing steps to creating and managing loyalty points campaigns that boost customer loyalty. For example, to increase customers’ motivation to make purchases, you can easily create campaigns where customers earn double loyalty points during a set promotional period directly from the Shopify admin. 

    It's easy to create Marsello-powered loyalty points promotional campaigns directly from within the Shopify admin


    Loyalty points promotion campaigns are a great tool to help promote and encourage engagement with your store's loyalty program.  You not only give customers an extra reason to shop and increase their cart size, but points campaigns are a great alternative to running a sale or discount and help your customers to feel appreciated and respected.


    Marsello’s Shopify Flow connector:

    2021 was a big year for marketing automation – in fact, one study found that 51% of companies were reportedly moved to or were already using marketing automation in some way by 2021. This increased demand for automated marketing capabilities saw the perfect opportunity for Shopify to release Shopify Flows for their Shopify Plus users - in our opinion, one of the most exciting features released in 2021. 

    To help Shopify Flow users tie their loyalty program to customer activities, we released a Shopify Flow connector designed to augment the potential for loyalty marketing. Customers can now earn loyalty points for actions like leaving Google or social media reviews, purchasing specific products, or even purchasing at a particular store location through carefully crafted flows and triggers. 

    Give points and tag a customer directly after an order is fulfilled with Marsello & Shopify Flow


    Learn more about Marsello’s Shopify Flows connector in our launch blog.


    Learn more


    Google Reviews:

    Do you request Google Business reviews from your customers? Do you manage and respond to the reviews left about your business? 

    Google Reviews are integral to helping business owners improve their Google ranking and appear higher in search results, which, in turn, plays a huge role in influencing customers’ purchasing decisions.

    To help you collect, manage and respond to reviews, we’ve developed a Marsello-powered Google Reviews marketing feature. A soon-to-be-released addition to the Marsello toolkit, consider this your sneak preview into our latest tool for retailers who want to increase their presence through local SEO and Google recommendations. 

    The Google Reviews feature from Marsello make managing and acquiring new Google Reviews easy

    Marsello’s Google Reviews feature will make it easy to automate the review process and create a consistent flow of quality reviews that increase online visibility and help to acquire new customers. 

    With email and SMS automations built into your Marsello admin, it’s easy to promote and generate Google reviews as soon as a customer makes a purchase (when their experience is fresh in their minds). You can then easily track, manage and respond to reviews directly from your Marsello admin. Subscribe to our blog and emails to stay up to date with each new release as it happens.

    Subscribe


    What’s changed for the Marsello platform?

    One of Marsello’s biggest updates within the last year has been to implement a new look and feel for our existing app. Since June 2021, we’ve been launching a variety of improvements to the Marsello admin to save you time and make your life easier. With a cleaner design and faster tech, new-look Marsello will now launch universally in April 2022, and we can’t wait to hear what you think.

    New Look Marsello provides a faster, more responsive user experience.

    Can't wait? Get access to new-look Marsello now. 

    Try New-look Marsello

     

    How can Shopify merchants make the most of their Marsello marketing?

     

    Hopefully, you're familiar with Marsello’s core features. If not, let’s recap quickly with just a few bullet points:

        • Customer loyalty marketing – use a branded loyalty program, automated notification emails, varied reward types, and achievable earn options to garner customer support and engagement. And you can build customer relationships that span a lifetime with VIP tiers that segment your loyal customers based on their purchase history. Learn more here.  

        • Marketing automationdelight customers by communicating with them how they’d prefer. With Marsello’s email & SMS campaigns, you can create one-off campaigns from scratch or choose from a library of professionally designed email campaigns developed to get results. And once you’ve sent your campaigns, it’s easy to monitor their success, create new campaigns, or even boost your original with a new subject line for those who didn’t open the first. Learn more here.  
        • Email & SMS campaigns – delight customers by communicating with them in the way they’d prefer. With Marsello’s email & SMS campaigns, you can create one-off campaigns from scratch, or you can choose from a library of professionally designed email campaigns developed to get results. And once you’ve sent your campaigns, it’s easy to monitor their success, create new campaigns, or even boost your original with a new subject line for those who didn’t open the first. Learn more here

        • Marketing listsUse forms, landing pages, and marketing opt-ins to grow your customer database and your return on investment. You create marketing opportunities with new customers by capturing customer information at your POS and eCommerce site. Marsello also automatically segments your customers based on their shopping history, making it easy for you to leverage your customer database and target specific customer groups through email, SMS, or even Facebook ad targeting. Learn more here.  

        • Feedback surveys – Gather customer feedback to understand their shopping experiences and create memorable shopping experiences that they adore. By adding feedback surveys to your communications (for example, a points-earned email that is sent when a customer has just made a purchase), you get confidential, real-time insight into what it’s like to shop at your store. Monitor your growth, see how your business improves, and celebrate your success by measuring customer satisfaction and feedback. Learn more here

    And Marsello has much more to offer our Shopify users too – just think of the combination of possibilities! What if you were to create a custom Shopify Flow that rewarded your customers with loyalty points when they leave a 4-5 star review? Or, if customers shopped during an annual secret sale, you could reward points to purchases over a set price! Get creative and start delighting your customers in all-new ways with all new experiences. 


    Get in touch with our team to learn about Marsello’s full product offering for Shopify.

    Get in contact

    Final words


    The last two years have seen tremendous growth for retail and eCommerce technologies – and that growth doesn't seem to be slowing down. That's why meeting the growing needs of retailers in the retail and eCommerce market is at the forefront of platform and tech providers like Shopify (and Marsello). 

    To help our Shopify-powered retailers achieve their goals, grow their business, and stay ahead of the competition, we needed to continue to innovate with Shopify's product offering in mind. And we don't plan on stopping in 2022. 

    From automated campaigns and complete customization to set-and-forget style flows and fully integrated customer loyalty programs, the future is looking bright for Marsello x Shopify retailers. Book a demo today to grow your business with Marsello.

    Book a demo

     

    26 Shopify Apps for Retailer’s Grappling with COVID-19

    ClockIcon  READ
    Post-COVID-19 retail means adapting to a changing online retail landscape. Check out our selection of apps that could help to streamline your business.

    Marsello gradient over a Shopify logo. 26 Shopify apps for retailesr grappling with COVID-19

     

    Steering your business through the COVID-19 pandemic means adapting to a changing online retail landscape. With many businesses going through a temporary slowdown, it’s more important than ever to give your Shopify customers the optimum shopping experience they deserve. View these useful apps that are designed to streamline your business operations.

    Sales and Marketing

    Many people have temporarily cut back on online purchases, so it’s crucial to attract Internet shoppers who are searching for quality products. That’s where top-notch sales and marketing apps can make the difference.

     

    Marsello logo

    Marsello 

    Marsello can help you develop a customer loyalty program that lets you reward customer behaviors that benefit your business. You can also streamline and uplevel your marketing initiatives with automated, customizable email, promotional campaigns, and highly effective SMS text messaging service.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    In the retail business realm, having a steady stream of loyal customers who purchase from you again and again is like hitting the jackpot. Marsello can help you achieve that by powering an attractive loyalty program plus automating your marketing and customer communications. That way, you can focus on growing your business and serving shoppers better.

     

     

    Gift Box logo

    Gift Box  Free Gift Motivator

    This handy app encourages your customers to spend a little more and receive an enticing freebie. You design the free gift framework, and the gifts automatically appear in your customer’s cart when they meet the free gift criteria.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    Customers are often willing to spend a little more to get a free gift, which helps to increase your business’ Average Order Volume (AOV). Offering a free gift with purchase can help to build customer loyalty and encourage repeat business.

     

     

    Spin-a-Sale logo

    Spin-a-Sale

    The popular Spin-a-Sale app demonstrates retail gamification at its best. When a visitor enters their email address, this interactive pop-up displays a spinning prize wheel that settles on a random, one-time discount. Visitors can use those discounts on your eCommerce site.  

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    Visitors are likely to stay engaged with your emails and prize wheels, helping to boost your email signup rate and build customer loyalty. And, discount-laden shoppers are more likely to jump on your eCommerce site and make a purchase. This app easily adds subscribers to your Shopify customer list and automated email integrations.

     

     

    Yotpo logo

     Yotpo

    This customer-themed eCommerce marketing platform enables you to easily collect favorable customer reviews and referrals, plus photos and videos. Yotpo’s powerful marketing tools can spur on-the-fence visitors to become enthusiastic customers.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    Favorable customer reviews and referrals attract new customers who already have a positive impression of your business. Showcasing customer videos and photos on your website helps to strengthen your customer relationships and build customer loyalty.  

     

     

    Financials

    Tracking your online business’ financial indicators is especially crucial right now, so arm your business with solid financial apps. Here are some suggestions.

     

     

    Quickbooks Sync by Bold logo

    Quickbooks Sync by Bold

    This workhorse app automatically syncs your Shopify orders into your Quickbooks Online program. Data for expenses, payouts, and fees also migrate into your accounting program.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    You won’t have to manually enter your Shopify data into your Quickbooks Online program. This system efficiency enables you to quickly obtain a Shopify financial status report.

     

     

    XERO logo

    Xero by OneSaas

    OneSaas targets workflows that start with a specific transaction. When you create a quote, an order, an invoice, or a receipt, you only have to enter that data once. OneSaas shares that data so it’s available to all functions in that sequence.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    Xero by OneSaas can free up your time for other higher-value tasks. And, because time is definitely money, you’ll spend less time on mundane tasks that don’t enhance your bottom line.

     

    TaxJar Sales Tax Automation logo

     

    TaxJar Sales Tax Automation

    All businesses are required to pay sales tax to their respective state and local governments. The hardworking TaxJar Sales Tax Automation app maintains daily sales tax balances due for all your selling platforms’ sales. Plus, TaxJar automatically submits your business’ tax forms before their due dates.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    TaxJar Sales Tax Automation makes time-consuming manual sales tax calculation a thing of the past. Save valuable time crunching the numbers, and be confident that TaxJar is on top of sales tax payments for every applicable state. TaxJar submits the sales tax report to all required state and local government tax offices.

     

     

    SimplyCost logo

    SimplyCost ‑ Profit Tracking 

    Tracking your business’ expenses and profit is important, but you don’t want to spend excessive amounts of time getting the answers you need. SimplyCost – Profit Tracking automatically calculates your store’s profit after considering all recurring and one-time expenses associated with your sales.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    SimplyCost – Profit Tracking helps you save time by effortlessly calculating your store’s profits. By generating fast custom reports, you can gauge your store’s performance and determine your most profitable products. This valuable data will help you to execute better business decisions.

     

     

    Social Media

    Wide-ranging “stay at home” orders are keeping potential customers within their homes for weeks on end. With viewers constantly browsing their social feeds, smart retailers are executing compelling social media initiatives that will ideally translate into completed sales.

     

     

    WhatsApp Chat logo

    WhatsApp Chat

    For eCommerce retailers, smooth order communication and processing are key to completed orders. Toward that end, the WhatsApp Chat + Abandoned Cart app provides fast customer support and order functionality. To minimize abandoned cart problems, the Abandoned Cart Recovery app sends messages that include discount codes to help complete sales.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    Beyond WhatsApp’s eCommerce order functionality, this is a hugely popular communications platform. By blending it into your eCommerce online retail operation, you’ll gain added credibility with social media-savvy customers.

     

     

    Instagram Influencer Marketing logo

    Instagram Influencer Marketing

    In the realm of social media powerhouses, Instagram influencers carry a lot of clout. The Instagram Influencer Marketing app’s Carro program lists all the influencers that appear on your store’s customer, follower, and email subscriber lists. After Carro facilitates your collaboration with an influencer, you’ll be able to communicate with and supply products to them.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    When used properly, Instagram Influencer Marketing can widen your reach on social networks. By cultivating a long-term relationship with Instagram influencers, you have highly credible allies who will help to promote your brand.

     

     

    Facebook Messenger Marketing logo

    Facebook Messenger Marketing

    If you’re looking for an additional marketing medium, Facebook Messenger is an increasingly popular choice. In fact, Messenger boasts an impressive 80%+ message open rate. With that optimistic backdrop, you can use the platform to generate more engagement. But do it soon before the space gets too crowded!

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    Why leverage Facebook Messenger Marketing? Chances are, you’ll reach customers and prospects while they’re browsing through their favorite Facebook channels. It’s simple, in this relaxed and familiar setting, customers may be more receptive to your marketing messages, so it’s a great opportunity to try and reach them.

     

     

    Instafeed logo

    Instafeed – Instagram Feed

    Instafeed lets you boost your store’s online presence by adding crisp, new Instagram content. Images and videos are welcome, and you won’t need coding skills to complete this fast, easy installation.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    Adding Instagram content to your store will encourage browsers to enjoy the photos and videos. When visitors stay longer, they’re more likely to explore your store’s offerings and purchase products.

     

     

    Analytics

    As a retailer, you need to know exactly what’s working (and what isn’t working). You also want to pinpoint your revenue sources, and learn about emerging financial problems, so you can make smarter business decisions.

     

     

    Hotjar logo

    Hotjar Install

    Hotjar views your site from your visitors’ perspective and analyzes each aspect of those interactions. Note: The Hotjar Install (Unofficial) app isn’t affiliated with Hotjar. You’ll need a Hotjar account to implement this app.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    Hotjar will carefully analyze your store’s instant feedback, feedback polls, form analysis, surveys, and conversion funnels drop-offs, among other metrics. Using that data, you can determine what is (and isn’t) working so you can make adjustments to improve site effectiveness.

     

     

    Conversific logo

    Conversific

    Conversific has funneled varied Google Analytics data and eCommerce metrics into one powerful app. Even better, Conversific has distilled those mountains of data into 10+ action-oriented reports.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    With just a few clicks, you can view your gross profit, profit margins, and other reports that support profit growth and conversion. Doing so will allow you to get a steer on how your business is doing and you’ll get a good picture of your profitability and market position.

     

     

    Glew logo

    Glew: Multichannel Analytics

    You don’t have time to hunt through your inventory, marketing, sales, shipping, and other functions to get the analytics data you need. Enter Glew, a multichannel analytics app that gathers all your eCommerce tools in one place. View your data via customized dashboards that enable segmentation and filtering.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    Glew’s analytics solutions can identify your most valuable customers. Analytics results also help you to determine how (and when) to invest in channels with the best ROI potential, and develop other strategies to improve your bottom line.

     

     

    Customer Service

    Providing excellent customer service can set you apart from your competitors, and can help to build long-term customer loyalty. Armed with the right tools, you’ll be well equipped to provide your customers with customer service they’ll rave about. 

     

    Messenger Channel logo

    Messenger Channel

    While customers interact with your store’s Facebook Page, they can also buy products from your online Messenger store. If shoppers have questions, you can address them in Messenger. You’ll be able to fulfill Messenger-based orders through Shopify and track your Facebook sales through your Analytics pages.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    When customers order products while chatting on Facebook Messenger, you receive that sales revenue. At the same time, you’re engaging with customers, which boosts your profile and encourages relationship building and long-term loyalty.

     

     

    HelpCenter logo

    HelpCenter

    You want to provide good customer service, but spending time on emails and live chats is time-consuming. Instead, the Help Center app posts frequently asked questions on a searchable Help Center Page. Customize the page to match your brand, and offer services in varied languages.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    By serving your customers via the Help Center app, you’ll provide valuable details on your store and its offerings. You’ll spend much less time answering questions, enabling you to focus on helping your business grow.

     

     

    Tidio logo

    Tidio Live Chat

    Tidio Live Chat gathers your email, live chat, and Messenger channels together in one location. The Live Chat function utilizes intelligent bots that jump on abandoned cart issues and often save the sale via live chats and discounts. In fact, studies have shown that live chats can increase sales by 40 percent. Tidio Live Chat is available in multiple languages. 

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    Tidio Live Chat is an invisible partner who never sleeps. By interacting with customers on your behalf, you’ll see increased sales and fewer abandoned carts. You’ll also enjoy easy access to your email and Messenger channels in one location.

    Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

    Depending on your budget, you may need to reduce paid advertising in the short term. As a result, you’ll need to work extra hard to drive organic traffic.

     

     

    SEO Image Optimizer logo

    SEO Image Optimizer – Auto SEO

    Recognize the value of SEO-optimized images, but don’t have the time or expertise to handle these tasks yourself? With a one-click installation, the SEO Image Optimizer – Auto SEO app monitors and optimizes your store daily to comply with Google’s best image search practices.  

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    This hardworking app will automatically optimize your images to comply with Google’s best image search criteria. As a result, you’ll be favorably positioned in Google’s search rankings.

     

    Plug in SEO logo

    Plug in SEO

    The one-stop, Plug in SEO app fixes existing SEO issues with your Shopify store. The app also optimizes your blog, adds valuable keyword tools, and performs updates as search engines change their algorithms.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    Your improved SEO position will drive more organic traffic to your store. Better-optimized SEO also helps to improve your search engine rankings.

     

     

    SEO Manager logo

    SEO Manager

    This value-packed SEO package includes varied tools, and real-time feedback, designed to help your store rank better in search engines. SEO Manager also identifies and automatically repairs your website’s broken links.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    SEO Manager helps you to improve your search engine rankings. In turn, your store enhances its online visibility and will likely see increased traffic to your eCommerce store.

     

    Inventory Management & Order Fulfillment

    With more people shopping online, efficient order processing has become extremely important. Ecommerce merchants need an order fulfillment system that handles all transaction aspects. Brick-and-mortar stores need a proven tool that helps them to manage their curbside pickups and delivery orders.

     

     

    Shippo

    Shippo

    Processing orders through several sales channels can be a laborious process. Shippo syncs your channels so you can manage your orders on a single platform. You can also generate discounted shipping levels, efficiently track your shipments, and update your customers.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    Shippo’s time-saving order processing and tracking app saves time and reduces your frustration factor. This all-in-one solution reduces duplication of effort, giving you more time for higher-value tasks.

     

     

    ShippingEasy Logo

    ShippingEasy

    If you regularly ship via the United States Postal Service (or USPS), the ShippingEasy app can save you money on domestic and international shipping costs. You’ll receive a free Postal Service postage account, plus discounted rates on all services. ShippingEasy also supports delivery to APO/FPO/DPO locations. 

     

    Plus, you can print labels in batches, avoiding laborious one-at-a-time printing tasks. As an added bonus, ShippingEasy boasts an award-winning support team.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    ShippingEasy’s discounted USPS shipping rates will certainly save you money, and the savings will increase with your processed volume. Printing labels in batches will also save valuable time. 

     

     

    Stocky logo

    Stocky

    Managing your store’s inventory is a balancing act. You don’t want to run out of popular products, but you also don’t want to tie up too much money in inventory. Stocky enables you to manage your purchase orders from one location, and you’ll quickly learn when it’s time to replenish stock. Use Stocky’s data to evaluate inventory and make decisions accordingly.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    By giving you an accurate inventory snapshot, Stocky helps you to avoid spending your hard-earned cash on excessive stock. When an item reaches the “Replenish Now” level, you’ll get an immediate alert. This timely data makes it much easier to gauge your ongoing inventory needs.

     

     

    Store Pickup + Delivery logo

    Store Pickup + Delivery

    Retailers of all sizes can benefit from having store pickup and delivery options, so this app is a game-changer. Store Pickup + Delivery, you can implement local delivery and curbside pickup, while keeping your shipping calendar clean and up-to-date.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    Utilizing the curbside pick-up method saves you money on picking, packaging, and shipping costs. Local product delivery is a desirable concierge service. Social-distancing customers will appreciate these options for receiving their products with minimal risk. By offering these choices, you’ll help to build customer loyalty and encourage repeat business.

     

     

    Now Back In Stock logo

    Now Back In Stock

    This handy app tells your customers when their desired out-of-stock items are now available for purchase. Send alerts via email or SMS text messaging, and customize the messages to reflect your store’s brand.

     

    Benefits for Your Business

    Because the customer already wants to purchase a “Now Back in Stock” item, you’ll likely generate a sale. By obtaining the customer’s email and mobile contact information, you can add the customer to upcoming marketing campaigns. You’ll also promote customer loyalty by offering this desirable service.

     

    Your turn

    Now we’d love to hear from you. Which Shopify apps are invaluable to your store during these times? Let us know in the comments. 

    13 Shopify Apps to Take Your Retail Store to the Next Level

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    Shopify has a growing marketplace of apps and solutions that can boost your business' revenue and reach. Read about our top picks for 2020 and beyond.

    Shopify is one of the most popular eCommerce platforms, allowing merchants to create an online store in just a few steps. In addition to giving eCommerce and brick-and-mortar store owners all the tools they need to build, launch and grow their business, Shopify also has a growing marketplace of apps and solutions that can extend the capabilities of the platform. With the developments of Coronavirus (COVID-19), now is the perfect time to be analyzing which apps will help you to master the management of an omnichannel store.

     

    To date, the Shopify’s app store offers upward of 2,400 apps to its users, and on average, 33,000 are downloaded each month. 

     

    But not all apps are created equally, and with 2,000+ to browse, it can be challenging to find which app is going to get the best results for your business. 

     

    So, we've saved you the hassle of browsing thousands of solutions and identified the 13 best Shopify apps to get you through marketing, analytics, accounting, staffing, merchandising, and much more. 

     

    When it comes to loyalty marketing and automation for your Shopify store, look no further than Marsello

     

    Our app equips you with powerful tools that can help you run delightful marketing campaigns across physical and digital channels. Want to set up a loyalty program that seamlessly works online and offline? We got you covered. Need to send targeted messages via email and SMS? You can do that too! 

     

    Marsello also puts the power of AI at your fingertips. The platform uses customer segmentation to organise and track customers based on their shopping behavior (i.e., purchase history, recent interactions, etc.), helping you to run the right campaigns at the right time.

     

     

    eCommerce support is critical to keeping customers on your site, engaged with your brand, and moving through to purchase. Kiri assists with just this through the use of artificial intelligence.  

     

    Kiri allows store owners with an eCommerce site to increase their profits and customer satisfaction with automatic replies, intelligent sorting, and assessing the customer value and risk, so support staff know which conversations to prioritize. 

     

     

    Wishlists enable customers to identify and store items they like. Smart Wishlist helps merchants to make this process as smooth as possible, even before customers have registered or logged into your site. 

     

    Smart Wishlist is a simple tool that gives customers the ability to add to their wishlist in just one click, no sign-in needed, and no coding required from merchants.

     

     

    Tagalys logo

    4. Tagalys

    The Tagalys Personalized Recommendations app for Shopify allows you to tailor the product categories and recommendations shown on your website, based on the interest of the user as well as what’s trending. 

     

    Tagalys lets you create data-driven product listings and recommendations, so your website displays products that shoppers are most likely to buy. Product recommendations on your online store, in turn, keeps customers on your site and helps to increase conversions and revenue.

     

     

    Easyship logo 5. Easyship

    Shipping is a crucial piece of the eCommerce business puzzle, and finding the right shipping solution can help businesses to save drastically – both their time and money. 

     

    The Easyship app for Shopify gives merchants access to low shipping costs all over the world. With more economical shipping costs offered to customers, the barrier of freight is removed, paving the way to increased conversions and more repeat purchases, not to mention cost savings for both sides.  

     

    SEO Booster logo
     

    6. SEO Booster

    Being seen online is the primary battle in building a customer base. To be seen, your eCommerce site needs to be search engine optimized and to be optimized, you either need an in-house team, or you need systems working to support you. 

     

    SEO Booster by Secomapp helps eCommerce sites to boost their SEO with no prior SEO skills required. With a number of automatic functions, tools, and insight features, the SEO Booster app helps your site to set up SEO like a pro. 

     

     

    Setup Optizen logo

    7. SEO App ‑ Setup Optizen

    We've said it already: SEO is critical to getting seen online. But, thankfully, there are many ways that eCommerce businesses can improve their SEO, and SEO App - Setup Optizen is one handy app to help you do just that. 

     

    SEO App ‑ Setup Optizen by EcomXSEO allows merchants to add content below product grids on collection pages, which boosts the relevance of the page, making it more SEO friendly and thus better ranking. With the SEO App ‑ Setup Optizen app for Shopify, you can include more internal links and heading tags, bringing validity to improve product page rankings. 

     

     

    Bulk Products logo

    10. Bulk Products Editor

    Editing product information in bulk can be a nightmare, no matter whether it's tens of items or thousands. To counter this, SpurIT developed Bulk Products Editor for Shopify users to streamline the process and make it possible to edit in bulk from one page. 

     

    Through the app, merchants can edit product and variant details in bulk, with just a couple clicks, all from the same page. This could be bulk tags, vendor details, product titles and descriptions, SEO information, or bulk price changes. 

     

     

    Staffy logo 9. Staffy

    With smoother staff management, retail store owners and managers can focus less on admin and focus more on important work – such as growing your online and offline sales, keeping your customers happy, and strategizing where to take your business. 

     

    To that end, Staffy is a Shopify app that helps you stay on top of employee management, scheduling, and payroll. With quick and easy shift scheduling, salary calculation systems, payment integrations, and team communication tools, Staffy is an all-rounder system for sites managing staff. 

     

    Staffy is a platform that is made to ensure teamwork productivity and payroll in Shopify. It's designed for merchants that rely on remote teams, physical employees, and/or POS store retail employees. Staffy's time tracking capabilities ensure that employees are working during business hours, no matter if they're at home, or at your fulfillment center.  Staffy also comes with in-depth integrations to provide key features and insights such as custom made reports, one-click payroll, project management tools and more - all while being fully integrated with your Shopify system. 

    - Harel Ishay, CEO at Staffy

     

     

    Matcha logo10. Matcha

     

    They say content is king, but unfortunately, it can also be tough to measure, and many eCommerce businesses have historically struggled to learn what content is converting. 

     

    With Matcha for Shopify, merchants can see exactly what content their customers respond to and what impact this content has on their revenue. With these insights, Matcha also assists merchants in creating content strategies with conversion, not just engagement, in mind.  

     

     

    PriceWhiz logo

    11. PriceWhiz

    Applying changes to products can have a significant impact on how they sell, and this can be particularly difficult to track. PriceWhiz gives Shopify merchants an app to easily measure these changes by setting goals that measure how long it takes to sell an item against how long you want it to take to sell.

     

    With better measurement, eCommerce owners can make smarter decisions through experimentation, rather than guesswork, with a full report on the number of orders from each product line within the goal time. 

     

     

     

     

    Analytics tools are what makes the Internet go round and allows eCommerce businesses to get ahead of their competitors. For Shopify sites, Conversific ‑ Store Analytics is the analytics tool of choice, bringing up actionable analytics and reports so that merchants can make sense of and harness their data.

    With no need to develop technical skills, merchants can optimize for traffic and conversion, access benchmarking and insights tools, and master Google Analytics to boost their online sales.

     

    Simprosys Product Questions and Answers Logo

    13. Product Questions and Answers 

    The modern consumer is a research savvy, internet literate individual with a penchant for seeking answers to hunt down the best deal. Answering questions all day, however, is time-consuming for merchants or customer service teams; hence Product Questions and Answers become so valuable. 

    With this free app on Shopify, eCommerce site owners can create product-specific FAQ sections on various product pages. Not only does this answer consumer questions, but it also helps with SEO and product questions and answers.

     

    The biggest benefit [of Product Questions and Answers ] is it helps merchants maintain the FAQ page for each product on their respective product pages. Plus, questions and answers are rendered via In Page HTML and via JS rendering. This helps Search Engines read the content of the pages more efficiently.

    - Amit P Jivani, CEO at Simprosys InfoMedia 

     

    Bringing it all together

    Retail success requires you have a strong presence on both physical and digital channels. If you’re a brick-and-mortar store looking to go online, then installing some of these apps from the get-go will help you kick off on the right foot. Already have an online store? These apps will optimize it further so you can take it to new heights! 

    Mailchimp for Shopify: Getting through the eCommerce break-up of 2019

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    If you’re a Shopify retailer who previously used Mailchimp, you’re probably trying to find an email marketing solution. Learn about your options here.

    You’ve likely heard about the statement released by Shopify. On May 12, 2019, it was announced that Mailchimp would no longer have native integration with Shopify due to poor merchant experience as a direct result of Mailchimp’s refusal to respect Shopify’s Partner Program Agreement.

    If you’re a Shopify eCommerce marketer who uses Mailchimp, you’re probably thinking about what to do now. There are two options: look for an alternative, or use a third party to sync Shopify to Mailchimp. Let’s explore them both:

     

    Looking for a Mailchimp Alternative

    If you had been using Mailchimp to automate emails triggered by customers’ shopping behavior in your Shopify store, the good news is – there are alternatives. When it comes to email automation, some Email Service Providers (ESP) are more powerful than others, some are easier to set up than others, and some have better reporting than others. Here’s a helpful comparison of the leading alternatives.

    If you’ve already gone through the process of setting all this up in Mailchimp, you’re probably dreading having to do it all over again. The good news is, using an app like Marsello, everything is ready to go and defaulted with best-practice email flow settings and triggers, and pre-designed templates. All you have to do is add your business’ logo and turn each email flow on, or you can customize the designs and settings to suit your brand. You can do everything you could do with Mailchimp Automation (and more with easier to set-up product recommendations, Shopify discounts, and segmentation):

    Encourage new customers to shop again. To make a great first impression and bring new customers back to your store again, say thanks with a First-Time Email.

     

     

    Look after your best customers. Automate an email flow that encourages your best customers to keep shopping. If product recommendations in the first email don’t motivate a purchase, automatically follow them up with an exclusive discount just for them.

     

     

    Build loyal relationships on customers’ birthdays. A cheerful ‘Happy Birthday’ message or offer designed to delight your customers will get them shopping again, and help move them to more desirable segments.

     

     

    Win back At Risk customers. Bring back at-risk customers with an automated email flow designed to win them back. If product recommendations in the first email doesn’t motivate a purchase, automatically follow up with a limited-time discount email.

     

     

    Recover abandoned carts. Automate great-looking abandoned cart emails to be sent when your customers don’t complete a purchase and leave items in their cart. Go the extra mile and pull through product images from their cart and a button to take them back to complete their order.

     

     

    Send one-off email campaigns. Update your customers with on-brand, creative, and easily built one-off email campaigns. Send and schedule newsletters, promotions, or new stock emails to your entire database or to a certain customer segment with just a few clicks.

     

    Marsello-one-off-email-campaigns.png

     

    So how do you make the switch? All you need to do is install Marsello on the Shopify App store with a 14-day free trial (no payment details required). Marsello has been built for Shopify, so all of your customers will automatically sync. Still have questions about migrating from Mailchimp? We’ve put together a helpful page of FAQs on making the switch.

    Still can’t decide what to do? Ask our marketing experts for help.

    Guide to Getting Your First Key Sales in 2022

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    In this blog, learn how to generate quality leads for your first key sales and turn new customers into life-long brand advocates.

    In retail, momentum is one of the best ways to generate your first key sales. 

    Getting momentum and customers early on not only puts money in the bank (so you can re-invest in your growth), but it gives you the motivation to keep going.

    So, how exactly can you drive your initial sales? We’ve put together 10 ideas to help you gain paying customers as you kick-off, as well as important sales KPIs and keys to building an effective sales process in your new retail biz. 

     

    Top sales KPIs to track your progress 


    Tracking sales KPIs is the only way to know if you are making progress in your retail business. The sooner you start tracking your progress, the sooner you will see trends in key metrics such as customer loyalty, churn rate, and how it costs to bring in a new customer. 

    Below are some of the best sales KPIs you should include in your analytics. 


    Customer Loyalty 


    Your loyal customers Repeat customers spend 33% more than other customers, so it is worth focusing your marketing efforts on them specifically.

    Loyalty can be measured through: 

        • Net Promoter Scores (NPS), i.e. how likely they are to recommend your brand to someone you know 
        • Customer Loyalty Index surveys 
        • Returning customer analytics
        • Loyalty programs and points redemption (customer loyalty platforms like Marsello track this for you!) 

    If you can build customer loyalty from the very first sale, they will help you build momentum as you grow. 

     

    Customer Lifetime Value 

    The Customer Lifetime Value KPI is how much your business can reasonably expect from a single customer. You can use this to identify your best customer segments and therefore where to focus your marketing budget. 

    Companies that prioritize customer experience have profits 60% higher on average than those that don’t. This emphasizes the need for ongoing customer relationships and long-term investment. Loyalty is not a once-off marketing tactic. 

     

    Customer Churn Rate 


    Another sales KPI is your Customer Churn Rate. A high churn rate indicates that although someone has signed up, they are not sticking around. It is measured by 

    For retail, KPIs that go alongside churn rates are

        • Customer loyalty and NPS scores 
        • Retention and returning customers (do customers make one purchase and never come back?) 
        • Loyalty program redemption (are customers engaged with your brand’s rewards?) 

     

    Customer Acquisition Price 


    Customer acquisition price measures how much it costs your business to bring in a new customer. The lower this number, the more efficient your marketing and sales process. 

    Ideally, you want your average purchase order per customer to be much higher than the cost of acquiring them. This is why you should focus on customer loyalty just as much as marketing. 

     

    Average Order Value 


    The Average Order Value is calculated by dividing the total revenue by the number of orders placed. Tracking average order value doesn’t just give you insight into customer behavior. It also correlates with a stronger profit margin.

    Using upsells, rewards points, and bonuses like free shipping thresholds are all ways that you can incentivize higher average order values when you start out. 

     

    Key elements for an effective sales process from the start 


    No matter what you’re selling, there are a few proven factors for success in sales. These steps integrate into any sales process, whether that is through website copy, market positioning, social media, or email marketing. 

     

    Identify customer needs clearly 


    Before you can make your first sale (or any sale), you need to know if your product serves your ideal customers. 

    This is done in the planning stage of your business. Ask questions about your product like:

        • Do you have a unique value proposition?
        • Have you done the market research? Is this something people ACTUALLY want or need?
        • Who are your competitors? What are their measures of success?
        • Why do people NEED or CRAVE your product? 
        • Have you done a test run to see if there is demand before investing everything in a product? 

    Putting in the effort to clearly identify your customers’ needs will set you up for success with your first few sales. 

     

    Build Rapport
     

    Prior to launching and getting sales, it is important to start building a rapport with potential customers. 68% of customers leave a brand because they feel like you are indifferent to them. Building rapport and community is crucial!

    One way you can create ongoing rapport with your potential customers is to build a loyalty program. Effective loyalty programs can help build hype and a sense of belonging for your customers which all contribute to more sales. 

    A good example of a loyalty program community is Our Bralette Club. They have a loyalty program that not only resulted in a 278% increase in revenue generated from program members alone but also creates a fun, inclusive community for their “Peach Party” members. 

     

    Present a solution
     

    When you boil it down, sales and business are just identifying problems and solving them for people. Whether that's showing customers how to build their spring wardrobe, selling the highest quality dog treats on the market, or helping people get into hiking by giving great boot recommendations. 

    Your marketing, visual assets, storefront, and website copy should all emphasize why your product solves their exact needs. 

     

    Close the deal 


    Once you have done your market research, started building rapport, and have a product people want, the most important step is to actually make the sale! 

    We have a few tips to help increase your chances of closing the deal:

        • Make your website as user-friendly as possible - According to a study by eMarketer, the only thing online shoppers like more than customer reward coupons is a quick and easy checkout process. 83% of shoppers marked this as their top priority for loyalty.
        • Set up abandoned cart emails- People get distracted, people change their mind mid-payment- increase your chances of making the sale by setting up automated email campaigns for abandoned carts.
        • Start collecting customer data - Set up a loyalty campaign that rewards loyal customers and gets them to sign in. This will help with retargeting and building relationships.
        • Create an omnichannel marketing campaign - omnichannel marketing campaigns allow you personalize and target specific groups to increase your chance of converting them to sales.
        • Sweeten the deal - How can you convert interested shoppers to paying customers? To make those first sales, consider sweetening the deal with rewards points for people who sign up and spend thresholds for things like free shipping.

    Create upselling opportunities 

    Businesses with higher Average Order Values have higher profit margins. That’s just simple math! Creating upselling opportunities is a great way to increase the amount a customer spends in a single transaction. 

    Examples of upselling opportunities you could try out are:

        • Free Shipping - Let customers know how close they are to a free shipping spend threshold 
        • Free Items - Give customers a free (exclusive!) gift if they spend a certain amount 
        • Loyalty Points - Set up a program that lets customers earn loyalty points and rewards for every dollar they spend which they can exchange for other products or exclusive experiences 
        • Similar Products - Give targeted recommendations for items usually brought together
        • Discount Bundles - Group together similar products and offer a limited time discount to buy multiple items.

     

    10 marketing ideas to help you get your first sales 

     

    Ready to make your first key sales and get that momentum going in your new retail business? Whether you’re selling online, in person, or both, these marketing ideas will get you started. 

     

    Start marketing before you launch your products


    Aim to build your audience even before you officially launch your business. You can do this by creating a website or social media account, and then posting high-value content that appeals to your target audience. You could also join relevant groups or forums and start connecting with their members.

    Doing so benefits you in a couple of ways. For starters, finding an audience prior to creating your product or business enables you to validate your ideas and determine if there’s a strong demand for your offerings.

    What’s more, building an audience early on paves the way for a stronger launch. If you already have an email list or existing social media followers, then you can unveil your products to an audience who already knows who you are, and are thus more likely to buy from you.

    Andrew Alexander, the owner of FindaBusinessIdea.com, put this strategy to work in his own business and has seen tremendous results.

    In 2011, I was making posts on niche forums, Facebook groups, and other niche websites [...] Three years later when I released a program of mine… I already had people who were familiar with my name and what I wrote about, so the content I put out there (before I even had a product) allowed me to get my first $1,200 in sales within the first few weeks of launching my business.

     

    2. Be clear about your Unique Value Proposition (UVP)


    One of the biggest challenges when it comes to getting your first sales is standing out in the marketplace. If your company is brand new, it can be difficult to win over shoppers, particularly if you’re selling something that people can buy elsewhere.

    An effective way to get around this is to identify your unique value proposition and then market to a specific niche that would benefit from your UVP. Doing so enables you to be more targeted with your messaging and positioning, which then allows you to cut through the noise, so you’re speaking directly to your niche.

    Jonathan Prichard, the CEO and Founder of MattressInsider.com says that finding his business' UPV and niche helped keep his business from sinking.

    “When I began my mattress company, I almost went bankrupt selling the same thing every other mattress company in America sold, which made it difficult to stick out. Luckily, I found the custom mattress size niche and was able to reposition the business before we went under,” he shared.


    Jonathan’s key advice is to showcase your UPV in compelling ways.

    “It’s a no-brainer that this is going to make you stand out from the crowd to draw people in for your initial sales. If you don’t stand out in the market you’re entering, you’re not going to get those sales that will keep you afloat, thriving and motivated.”

     

    3. Tap into your existing network

    Your current network could hold the key to unlocking more momentum in your business. If you haven’t done so yet, start reaching out to your friends, family, and existing supporters to see if they can help spread the word or send shoppers your way.

    This step doesn’t have to be complicated. As Kathleen Cutler of Bespoke Commerce notes, you can get going with just a pen and paper.

    Write down your most connected friends and family who've bought from you in the past. Email them directly to ask who they might know who'd be interested in your eCommerce shop. Follow up with the referral leads directly with highly targeted and personalized communication.

     

    4. Create an engaging storefront (both online and in-person)

     

    As a retail business, your storefront can either drive traffic and sales or send people packing. This is why it’s important to keep your window displays attractive and enticing. Here are some general guidelines to keep in mind:

        • Always have fresh merchandise and themes – See to it that your storefront keeps up with seasonal trends. Update your displays every week or two with new merchandise to give customers reasons to check out your store.
        • Keep elements at eye level – Decide on the products or elements that you want to draw attention to, and then position those key components at eye level. This ensures that people will immediately see the most important elements of your displays.
        • Avoid clutter – Overcrowded displays can cheapen the look and feel of your merchandise. Prevent that by keeping your display clean and uncluttered. The objective is to use your best products to attract customers, and encourage discovery while they’re inside your shop.

    Here's a great example of a display following the above best practices. Created by Smack Bang, the window display incorporates clear links to the brand colors and aesthetic (which match the online store) and showcases Smack Bang's outstanding pet products by cleverly displaying them at various levels. 

    They've even added links to their store and socials with window decals which is a clever way to encourage social media engagement – something they reward with their customer loyalty program.

     

    For eCommerce stores, your homepage is the online equivalent of a window display, and the same design principles apply. Be sure to showcase your seasonal products and new arrivals, and avoid cluttering up the page with unnecessary information.

    Anna Beck, a Shopify Plus-powered jewelry retailer, has mastered a well-branded, visually appealing online user experience. Their online store is always tastefully-designed with a beautiful homepage banner featuring their high-quality product photography.

    Anna Beck's online store with three ornate gold rings featured in a full-width product photo under the fold.

    With their logo at the top of the page, a simple set of navigation options, and clear but unobtrusive banners, Anna Beck's online store feels inviting and enjoyable to explore – something that's essential for 'E-tail' success.

     

    5. Collaborate with other companies

     

    Consider tapping into the audiences of other retailers and brands. Identify non-competing companies that share your target customers and see if you can team up with them. Collaboration between brands and retailers is becoming an increasingly popular strategy, particularly when it comes to eCommerce companies teaming up with physical retailers.

    Case in point: Australian women's ethical surf brand Salt Gypsy. Salt Gypsy started as an eCommerce store specializing in women's surfwear (swimwear that meets the needs of surfers). While Salt Gypsy has a bricks-and-mortar location, they've been able to grow their brand and make waves into new areas by branching out into technical surf equipment – namely, surfboards!

    Now, numerous stores in Australia and locations around the world have teamed up with Salt Gypsy to sell their merchandise – and their boards (designed specifically for female surfers) are flying off the racks! Sometimes, the Salt Gypsy team gets a chance to pop into one of these locations like they did at Byron Bay surf store, Surfection.

     

    And the Surfection team is quick to cross-promote Salt Gypsy too! It's exactly this kind of co-marketing that creates life-long customers from just one sale!

     

    6. Team up with influencers


    Research shows that 92% of consumers trust influencers more than traditional celebrity endorsements, which means that building relationships with the right individuals can pay off for your brand.

    If it makes sense for your business, start identifying social influencers who can amplify your messages. Use tools such as Peg, Reachbird, and Scrunch to find the right people and create outreach campaigns.

    You can engage influencers through a number of ways, including:

        • Free products
        • Content collaborations
        • Sponsored posts

    For best results, throw in a special offer or discount that influencers can promote to their followers. That’s what Lokus Nutrition did when they ran their influencer campaign.

    “We targeted Instagram users with audiences that matched our desired customer. We reached out to them directly and engaged an Influencer Marketing Agency to help,” explained Paul Miller, president at Lokus Nutrition. “We [then] offered a 10% discount code for our Instagram influencers to use in their posts.

     

    7. Tap into relevant groups and websites

    In addition to sending freebies or discounts to influencers, see if you can apply the same strategy when reaching out to websites and social media groups.

    According to Paul, they also reached out to Facebook groups whose members matched their target market and offered a discount for all group members.

    The Lokus Nutrition team also reached out to websites that were coming up with gift guides, and sent those sites free products to sample, review, and include in their guides.

    Consider doing something similar in your business. Identify groups, forums, or websites that are frequented by your target audience, and then explore partnership opportunities with them.

     

    8. Encourage referrals

    Create momentum and drive additional sales by encouraging your current customer base to refer your brand to their network. To streamline this process, use a referral program that makes it easy to track referrals and rewards.

    Carolina Lifestyle, a women's clothing retailer, implements this strategy quite well through their customer loyalty program. Carolina Lifestyle's referral program instantly rewards their customers with 100 loyalty points (the equivalent of $10 off in-store) for every friend who successfully makes a purchase.

    The program not only attracts new shoppers, but it lets the brand reward their existing customers, which builds goodwill and brand loyalty in the process.

    Marsello-Loyalty-Program-Case-Study-Carolina-Lifestyle-Banner

    Marsello lets you automate the referral process with instant unique URLs for different social media platforms, email, and SMS, then reward customers for successfully referring their friends who complete a purchase. 

     

    9. Consider third-party online marketplaces

     

    It’s worth considering if marketplaces like Amazon, Etsy, and eBay are good sales channels for your brand. These websites reach hundreds of millions of users daily, so with the right marketplace strategy, you can drive additional sales.

    Each website is different, but here are a few general pointers for how to succeed in online marketplaces:

      • Craft compelling listings – Make your product listings as compelling as possible by using attractive images and rich media that showcase your items from various angles. You should also craft unique and compelling copy to effectively communicate the features and benefits of your items.

      • Optimize your listings for search – You want your products to show up on relevant searches, so optimize your listings by incorporating targeted keywords in your titles and descriptions. Just remember not to overdo it! The key is to write for people, not bots.

      • Build up a strong seller reputation – Marketplaces like Amazon, Etsy, and eBay strongly favor sellers with high ratings and reviews. So, strive to build a stellar reputation by selling high-quality products at fair prices, and by providing excellent customer service.

    10. Win back lost sales


    Are shoppers leaving your website without completing their purchases? Don’t let those potential key sales slip away. Implement abandoned cart email campaigns to remind shoppers about the items left in their basket.

    Take a leaf out of OnceWas’ playbook. Whenever someone adds an item to their cart but leaves without completing the sale, OnceWas' Marsello-powered marketing triggers an automated email flow to give the customer the opportunity to finish their purchase and even throws in the added incentive of a 10% discount.


    Marsello-OnceWas-Abandoned-Cart-Email-Flow


    Automated win-back flows are just one of the many ways you can implement automation into your marketing to help you get more and more sales and scale your business. Book a demo with one of our team to learn more about marketing automation and all the other features available with Marsello. 


    Book a demo


    Final words

    Gaining your first key sales may seem daunting, especially if you’re just starting out, but it’s completely doable! With a bit of resourcefulness and creativity, you can start winning over those initial customers and obtain the momentum you need to keep going.

    Need a hand tracking sales KPIs, automating your marketing campaigns, and building engaging loyalty programs to keep those sales rolling in? Marsello is the all-in-one retail platform to help you start, grow, and scale with ease. 

     

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