Aug 29

Discount Schemes

Posted by BMT Micro

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Customer retention and its importance to one’s business has been discussed in multiple of our blog posts. Customer retention is vitally important to maintain a successful business, but it is not easily achieved. E-commerce companies are constantly striving to gain new customers while encouraging existing customers to continue to purchase from their sites. It is a lot less costly to continue to bring back these current customers than to advertise and draw in new customers. One strategy that will increase your customer retention is discount schemes or programs.

Discount schemes help create urgency, increase awareness and drive purchases. Things such as quantity discounts, specialty item discount, buy one get on free, etc. are considered discount schemes and they can be offered to consumers. These discounts are aimed at grabbing customers attention and can also be offered to current customers to encourage them to come back. Companies can even go a step further and make the discount personalized, which will create a sense of loyalty from the customer because it has enhanced their experience. Most of the times customers will purchase additional items than the discounted items, giving you more sales while they still feel that they are getting a good deal. We have listed a few different types of discount schemes below:

  1. Simple immediate discount issued when the customer purchases for the first time.
  2. When a customer purchases from you, they will receive a discount off their next purchase. For example, purchase another item in the next 7 days and receive 20% off!
  3. Customer is emailed at intervals with targeted promotional material.
  4. Offer discount for customers buying in bulk.
  5. Generic coupon codes that you advertise.
  6. Buy one get on free” or a promotion similar. They have to purchase a set number of items before receiving a free item.
  7. Bundled discounts. This works well with online software. For example, if a customer is playing a game that requires them to purchase in-game apps, you could offer a bundle of tokens with a specific weapon at a discounted rate. They only receive the discount if they purchase the specific items together.

There are some things to keep in mind when structuring these discount schemes as well. There needs to be a time constraint in order to create a sense of urgency. For example, “This sale ends tomorrow at midnight!” Also, you want to make sure your most valuable customers do not feel less valuable by you offering everyone the same discount all the time. The discounts need to change and they should also be tiered to a customer’s value with your company. Lastly, you want to incentive your customers to share or talk about these discounts on social media, if you are looking to increase your awareness and gain new customers. For example, if they share the discount on Facebook and three people click the link they post and purchase from you, then the customer that shared about your company receives the item for free.

By using discount schemes, you can encourage your customers to keep coming back to you, but also at the same time encourage them to spend more. Discount schemes can increase your customer retention, customer frequency, customer spend, customer referrals, and increase the success of your marketing strategies. It can also enhance your image in the customer’s eyes. With BMT Micro, you can offer all of the discount schemes listed above! You can set automatic discounts based on the quantity of a single product, the quantity of multiple products or the total dollar amount being purchased, with support for rounding the final price. Discount schemes allow you to distribute a single discount code or multiple single-use discount codes for special promotions. If you would like to learn more about how you can use discount schemes through BMT Micro’s robust system, please contact us!

Buy One Get One Free

Aug 21

Why should you Localize?

Posted by BMT Micro

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Language localization is the adaptation of a product to a specific language and culture. It is not just the translation, it is the comprehensive research and understanding of the culture in order to adapt the product to the culture in all aspects. This can include signs, symbols, customs, and other characteristics of the region.

The wide-spread popularity of the internet has allowed companies the access to international markets, creating a global presence for businesses. They are not limited to the old brick and mortar business anymore. However, making information about your products and services available in other languages and doing extensive research into a new culture requires good planning and execution. The global platform for communication and collaboration has opened new opportunities, but there is a correct way to expand your product globally, and that involves localization. We have spoken about globalization in a recent article and a major part of globalization is localization, which we will discuss the benefits of throughout the rest of the article.

Research from Rosetta Stone says that 72.4% of people said that they are more likely to buy products with information written in their native language. Your products and services are more accessible through localization. If your competition is already localizing their products, then they have an advantage over you. However, if they are not localizing, this will give you an advantage if you begin to localize. Don’t underestimate the power of localization. The research done by Rosetta Stone shows its importance of it to a company’s success when globalizing.

Localizing and expanding your international reach is beneficial when you are looking to increase your number of customers and profits. You can do this by increasing your market penetration in a current region or by selling to a completely new region. If you are already selling globally, but have not yet localized, localization will increase your market penetration in these foreign regions. The more exposure your company receives in these regions, the better. Some customers are not comfortable shopping in a foreign language and localization will make them more comfortable knowing you will be able to communicate with them if an issue arises. Making your customers more comfortable by being able to communicate with them in their native tongue, will lead to them spreading the word about your company as well.

Localized content is very important when it comes to Search Engine Optimization (SEO). This is content that is specific to consumers in a certain region. Major search engines have made localization a part of their ranking algorithms. In order to implement a successful localization content strategy, you need to identify which content will be unique to a particular region and publish it. This will help with your SEO and your customer retention. It will create a more custom experience for the users in the region you are highlighting and enhance their experience with your product or service.

Lastly, localization will strengthen your image. This will let your customers know you are thinking about them and that they are valued. By going that extra step to make their experience better, they will be more inclined to become loyal customers that will promote your company. Making them feel special and giving them peace of mind are two ways to strengthen your image.

When considering a localization strategy, it is also necessary to consider your branding and how it will be perceived in different regions. In creating your localization strategy, decide where you want to prioritize and how to maintain your company’s core message. Finding the resources to support your localization efforts may be difficult. Look to companies with whom you are already working with to see how they support localization. Our localization efforts, here at BMT Micro, offer the customer a complete purchase experience, from start to finish, in their own language. We are constantly working to add languages to our localization repertoire and can already provide services in German, French, Spanish, and more! We can customize your order forms and shopping carts to suit your localization needs. BMT Micro possesses an extensive understanding of differences in culture, customs, and idioms due to years of working with international vendors/customers. Please feel free to contact us to find out more about how we can assist with your localization needs and with the expansion of your business to global markets.

Map

Aug 15
Reading Time: 2 minutes

Many would agree that it is a good business practice to offer your customers multiple options when making online payments. These options include credit card, debit cards, PayPal, purchase orders, money orders, cashiers checks and more. Methods of making these payments should also be offered online, by phone, or by mail. There are statistics that support the fact that your conversion rate will increase if you offer multiple methods of payment . When you think about all of the different demographics that make up online shoppers, they all have different expectations when doing online transactions. Multiple options are necessary to meet all of their needs.

Online companies need to adapt with the changing times, but also remember the older generations and make sure they are comfortable making online purchases as well. Many users like to have options or they have their own preference as to which payment method they use. This is why offering multiple payment methods can increase your conversion rate. If there is not an option that the customer specifically likes or feels comfortable using, they may well abandon their cart and you will have missed a sale.

A lot of people already have a specific preference for their payment method and do not want to change. They may solely use PayPal for online transactions because they believe it is the safest or because they do not have to enter credit card information every time. However, some people may not be registered to Paypal and if that is your only option, they may decide not to purchase the product. You want to make sure you offer PayPal, but some may prefer credit cards through a secure payment gateway.

People like to have options and control over which payment they use. If you limit them to one option that they are forced to use, it can reduce your chance of selling and increase your cart abandonment rate. The last thing you want is for your customer to get all the way to checkout and decide not to proceed due to the lack of payment options available

Lastly, offering multiple payment options makes your company look professional and trust-worthy. How many times have you used a major retailer and only had one payment option? This never happens. Bigger, well-established companies are perceived as trust-worthy. Consumers want to know that the information they are providing is safe and secure.

This can be hard for individual vendors, as setting up different types of payment methods usually involves a long and complicated process of compliance with banks and/or other applicable rules and regulations. Therefore, using a company like BMT Micro who offers many methods of payments including ten different credit card types, PayPal, Amazon Payments, Money Orders/Cashier Checks (US Funds only), Visa/MC Debit Card (UK Debit Cards), paysafecard, or wire transfer in Euros is beneficial. We can handle all of your payment processing over our secure sites and offer your customers many different payment methods to help increase sales and reduce cart abandonment.

payment types

Aug 8

Branding and Rebranding

Posted by BMT Micro

Reading Time: 3 minutes

When establishing a new company, you need to make your name and brand well known throughout your target market. This is typically done with a branding strategy. Branding is the process of coming up with a name, image and possibly slogan unique to your products and services, which consumers will associate with your company. After the name and image are decided, the association and reputation of the brand are established through consistent advertising over all mediums. The goal of branding is to establish a presence that sets you apart from all competition and creates loyal customers. Branding is typically done when new products or companies are first coming to market. Sometimes the branding you have already established needs to change for a number of reasons. In this situation, you will need to use rebranding. Rebranding is a marketing strategy which involves the creation and establishment of a new name or image for an already existing brand, for the purpose of developing a new, differentiated identity in the minds of consumers. These changes are intended to reposition the company due to, for instance, negative press or company mergers.

Branding is recognized as successful when consumers can recognize a brand solely based on their image. A great example of a company that has successfully branded themselves is Apple. When you see the image of an apple with a bite taken out of it, you automatically think of the Apple company and the brand they have built. To make branding successful, the message needs to be repeated numerous times and through all mediums. Mediums such as your website, business cards, any signage, advertising, and anything else your name may be on, needs to have the same message and image.

Rebranding can make a fifty-year-old company seem brand new. A complete rebrand calls for a new image, a new message, and usually new products or services. All of these things are meant to change the way consumers see the company. This can also create new opportunity by appealing to new markets or demographics. Rebranding can be very positive for a company if they do it correctly. We will discuss things to consider when rebranding.

The first step is determining the extent of the rebrand. This is usually determined by the reason you decide to rebrand. When two companies merge and become one company they need to have one unified brand, so a complete rebrand is necessary. When a company’s original brand strategy did not work or their name has been tarnished by scandal or poor reputation, a full rebrand may be necessary. The intent is to get rid of the old brand identity completely and replace it with the new image and message in order to maintain credibility and integrity in the eyes of the consumer. On the other hand, if the company is well established and has a good reputation, but is outdated or has new products or services, a partial rebrand may be suitable. In situations when a brand has been firmly established, yet is simply outdated or needs to be refreshed due to the addition of new products or services, tweaking is required, rather than a full-blown rebrand. Since you do not want to eliminate the brand value that is already established, you only need to make small changes. A complete rebrand is a large project for companies of all sizes. All businesses may not benefit from a rebranding strategy: this is something that would have to be decided upon internally, depending on each specific case.

If a rebranding strategy is the best decision for you, you will need to not only decide on the extent of your rebrand, as we have explained above, but also determine the reason behind the change and plan out your goals. You need to decide what you are looking to get out of the rebrand. You will need to determine your positioning, message, and image. In these meetings, you need to clearly define your brand and find your unique value to attract customers.

Lastly, an action plan needs to be put in place. All of the planning will be wasted if action is not taken. How will you roll out the new brand? Which advertising mediums will you use? How will you benchmark your success? These are all questions that should be answered in your action plan.

Whether you are just starting to brand your company or doing a small rebrand, the important thing to remember is the end goal, which is to set yourself apart from competition and build loyal customers.

apple-logo

Aug 1
Reading Time: 4 minutes

Video advertising is online advertisements that contain video, or more commonly, when a video about a product is shown before, during, or after a video stream online. With the amount of people you can reach on the Internet these days, video advertising is a crucial part of any advertising plan. Consumers like video advertisements because they would rather watch a video than read about a product. YouTube is a very popular site used for online advertisements. It is very prominent in today’s culture and can be a highly effective venue for advertising to reach a large audience. YouTube is currently getting over a billion views a day and with that much viewership, it makes sense to market where the consumers will see it!

YouTube is a great place to advertise. It is very easy to use and there are many different options. The latest video ads in YouTube advertising are called True View advertisements. They are called this because you only pay when viewers choose to watch your videos. We will discuss the traditional types of advertising and the true view advertisements in the next few paragraphs.

YouTube display ads are advertisements that appear next to related YouTube videos or as pop ups ads next to the related video. This is a very common form of advertising used on YouTube and other various sites. These are ideal to reach your target market. The great thing about these ads are that you can use keywords to indicate which videos you would want them to appear next to. You want to catch your target markets interest. Display and banner ads are very popular, but may be easily overlooked due to the advertisement overload that consumers experience on a daily basis.

Another type of advertisement is in-video overlay ads. In-video overlay ads are essentially pop-up ads that appear within targeted videos. They interrupt the video you are watching and pop-up in front of the screen. In order to get rid of them, you have to close out of the ad. Sometimes the close out button is difficult to find, causing you to watch the video longer. While many people may find this particular ad annoying, it definitely grabs their attention and makes them acknowledge the ad. In-stream ads are when you are trying to watch a video on YouTube and you are required to watch a video before or after the video you are trying to watch. This is a very popular type of ad because the consumer is required to watch the video if they want to see the video they originally clicked on. You are typically allowed to skip the video after about 5 seconds or more, but they can continue to watch the full video as well. The best part about this type of ad is that if they do not watch at least 30 seconds of the ad, then you are not charged. This is a great opportunity if you know your target audience well. If your targeting is good and the video grabs their attention in the first few seconds, they may watch the entire video. However, if they choose to skip the ad, you didn’t spend any money and you still received a bit of exposure.

Another type of advertising is in-slate ads. These advertisements appear before lengthy videos. For example, if you are going to stream an episode of your favorite TV show that would normally have three commercial breaks, this ad would allow you to skip all commercial breaks. The consumer is allowed to choose between a few different videos they want to watch as opposed to having the regular commercial breaks. There is a chance that people may not pick your video over others, but if they do, then they are required to watch the entire advertisement.

The last type of ad we will discuss today is in-search video ads. These ads appear on the page of YouTube search results either above or on the side of the results. Advertisers can bid on certain keywords to determine which search words will cause their ad to display. This is similar to using Google AdWords, but YouTube is not nearly as saturated with advertisers bidding for keywords, so you will be able to bid on more popular keywords to get noticed.

We have detailed all of the different types of advertisements, but as a BMT Micro Vendor you still may be wondering, when should I use YouTube ads? How can I benefit from these ads?There are a few different ways in which YouTube ads can help your business. They can help you create brand awareness. If you are a relatively new company, it may help you to get recognized and reach a lot of consumers. If you are launching a new product, this could also be a way to get the word out. Lastly, it can be a way to offer how-to videos for your customers. These videos could be an interactive Q&A session or they can be videos that give your customers an advanced understanding of the features your product offers.

There are a number of different options to choose from when using YouTube’s advertisements. The benefit to all of the different options is that it allows you to experiment with different ads to determine which works best for you. YouTube’s advertising platform is relatively unsaturated and has a lot of potential for growth into the future. It is a great way to get your brand out there and gain exposure!

 youtube