Magento 2 Posts

Ecommerce Marketing Automations with the Aheadworks Extensions

By automating routine marketing tasks with right tools, web merchants can organize their ecommerce operations more productively.

Ecommerce Marketing Automations with the Aheadworks Extensions

Today, we will discuss the most powerful ecommerce marketing automations to be performed in a Magento 2 store with the Aheadworks extensions.

Why Automate?

When properly utilized, the automation of marketing process becomes an indispensable solution for every online store. The stats below just prove this importance:

  • Consider that 68% of web marketers believe that automation boosts customer engagement;
  • More to it, 58% view automation as a tool that ensures additional revenue opportunities;
  • And, for 58% of marketers, ecommerce marketing automation streamlines communication with customers.

So, what are the tools able to prove all the above figures? We’ll find them soon, but before we need to find out the key ecommerce marketing aspects that should be automated.

Email Campaigns

When arranging multiple email campaigns at a time, it becomes difficult for marketers to manually track and fulfill all activities with multiple emails and even email chains. And, the larger the customer base in the store is, the more challenging this task may become.

Layered Navigation 1.8 Adds a Horizontal Filter Bar on Category Pages

The possibility to adjust the layered navigation bar to the layout and design of a web store’s category pages is able to improve overall usability and the convenience of catalog navigation for customers.

Layered Navigation 1.8 Adds a Horizontal Filter Bar on Category Pages

The latest Layered Navigation 1.8 extension for Magento 2 adds this very feature that has been long awaited by online merchants – horizontal filter bar.

Horizontal Filter Bar on Category Pages

The ability to use horizontal filter bars is undoubtedly beneficial for small business owners whose stores has the one-column layout on category pages. This way, shoppers get a great opportunity to smoothly navigate through the store catalog.

Horizontal Filter Bar Provided by Layered Navigation 1.8

Horizontal Filter Bar Provided by Layered Navigation 1.8

Small Business Kit: A Quick Start of your Business

Merchants who start an online business want to get a ready-to-operate web store asap without spending much time to find the solutions that suit their needs.

Small Business Kit: A Quick Start of your Business

Today, we will discuss the major issues every beginning store owner needs to take care of before entering the online market. Beyond this, we will cover the solutions able to handle those issues. So, let’s start with customer registration.

Customer Registration

With no doubt, nobody likes going through long and irritating registration forms in order to make purchases in a web store. And, the stats just prove this statement – 86% of shoppers opt out of stores that require them to create user accounts right off the bat.

Now, let’s take a look at this issue from the merchant’s perspective. Probably, the most obvious solution here is to allow customers to log in to the store with their social network accounts. This way, they will be able to flawlessly create accounts without the need to specify any personal info once again.

In this case, you can think about offering several login options related to the most popular social networks so that the registration process will suit most of your customers apparently.

The Most Important Email Marketing Trends in 2018

Email marketing remains one of the driving forces of ecommerce sales, and in 2018, its influence is predicted to grow even more.

Email Marketing Trends in 2018

Today, we will discuss the most promising email marketing trends of the current year.

Why Email Marketing?

By implementing email marketing strategies in their web stores, online merchants primarily get the following benefits:

  • Loyalty Establishment. By sending customers emails with relevant and informative content, merchants establish credibility and, as a result, strong relationships with their target audience.
  • Time & Money Saving. By scheduling email chains instead of individual messaging, merchants save their time. Besides this, email marketing is more cost-effective compared to other forms of advertising.
  • Better Visibility. Since people tend to regularly check their mailboxes, there is a high chance that they will be timely informed about brand’s new offers and engaged with the promotional content.

Undoubtedly, every store owner expects that all the above benefits will be followed by traffic and sales increases, which is quite right.

Email Marketing Future Perspectives

Email marketing trends often change, so merchants should stay abreast of the latest tendencies to make the most of their email campaigns.

In one of our previous articles, we already talked about such a promising email marketing trend as personalization. Now, we will explore some other equally important tendencies that will significantly influence the development of advertising emails in 2018.

Email Automation by Audience Segments

Automated email campaigns segmented by multiple customer audiences can bring great benefits to merchants.

The stats recently presented by the Direct Marketing Association show that targeted emails can increase total email returns on investments up to 77%. Such an impressive figure proves that customers willingly opt for the brands that offer them relevant content in their promotional emails.

A Quick Guide to Popups in Ecommerce

Popups are the windows that appear on site pages informing users about the latest brand’s offers.

A Quick Guide to Popups in Ecommerce

Popups are among the strongest marketing tools in the ecommerce area. Today, we will describe their peculiarities and bring some examples of their implementation on retail websites. So, let’s start.

Why Popups?

The primary goal of a popup is to motivate certain customer actions. Those actions may vary depending on the message of a particular popup.

For example, popups work great for increasing the number of email subscribers. Several years ago, the Nikki, In Stitches handmade accessories store managed to drive 1,375% more email subscriptions through popups than through its sidebar subscription form.

Popup Types

According to particular visitors’ actions on a site, store owners can show them the following popup types:

  • Exit-intent popups. These popups are shown when a user tries to leave a site. More specifically, the system tracks the movement of the visitor’s cursor on a particular site page and displays the related popup when the cursor leaves the area of the current browser window. This way, the brand presents its offers to leaving visitors to keep them longer on its site.
  • Scroll-based popups. Scroll-based popups appear when the user views a certain percent of a site page determined by a store admin. Ecommerce stores frequently use this popup type on their blog pages. This way, they introduce their offers to users who engaged with a certain amount of the content on particular site pages.
  • Time-based popups. Popups of this type are displayed a while after the user opened a site page. Again, this value is set by the store admin. Time-based popups make their best when they appear 60 seconds or later after the visitor opens the page. At this point, he/she is already engaged with the content of the page, and, thus, more inclined to accept the displayed offers.
  • Content-based popups. This traditional type of popups is shown to users when they open particular site pages, such as, say, home, catalog, product, category, and other ones.

Based on the above popup types, store owners can determine the most appropriate ‘moment of interaction’ with their site powered by popups.

Now, let’s walk through several examples that will let us understand for what purposes online merchants can utilize popups in their stores.

Popup Usage Examples

Welcoming Popup

We begin our quick tour from the so-called ‘welcoming popup’ used by the Naja underwear web store. The popup is shown to users once they visit the store for the first time and offers a special discount on the first purchase for each new email subscriber.

In this way, the brand welcomes new visitors to its site. Moreover, it presents particular offers in a short and easy-to-understand form prompting visitors to become email subscribers with the words ‘be our special guest’ that creates the feeling of a unique offer available for each website visitor.

How to Use Coupon Codes in an Ecommerce Store: Best Ideas

Customers love discounts, and one of the ways to provide these discounts in a web store is to use coupon codes.

How to Use Coupon Codes in an Ecommerce Store: Best Ideas

In fact, coupon codes with special offers contribute to building long-term customer loyalty. Today, we will talk about the most efficient ways of using digital coupons.

Coupon Code Key Stats

Last year, the Deal Nerd resource conducted a survey of coupon code usage in ecommerce stores. According to its results, 68% of respondents said that they would leave a store that doesn’t offer coupon codes.

Moreover, 54% of shoppers expect to receive discounts as coupon codes sent by email. As a result, 83% of the stores surveyed use email as the top channel for coupon code distribution.

The above figures just prove that coupon codes can greatly increase revenues of any ecommerce store. Now, let’s walk through several important tips telling how to properly utilize digital coupon codes.

Coupon Code Best Practices

Take Advantage of Customer Segmentation

The first thing that should be kept in mind when using coupon codes is that they should be segmented by a customer group. This way, your offers will always be presented to the right audience.

Notice that you can adjust your coupon codes not only for on-site visitors but also for particular email subscribers by sending them coupon codes by email. As a result, you will be guaranteed that your loyal shoppers will not miss any of your special offers.

How it Works: Improved Import and Export for Magento 2 by FireBear Studio

This guest post is provided by our partner FireBear Studio.

How It Works: Improved Import and Export for Magento 2 by FireBear Studio

In this very post, we will introduce the Magento 2 Improved Import and Export extension developed by FireBear Studio. The extension is a complete solution for automating Magento 2 import and export procedures, saving store owner’s time, and helping him/her deal with arriving supplies.

Let’s talk about why import procedure enhancements and automation are so essential.

Why Importing Products is Important

This year continues the line of globalization. Stores are becoming more catalog-heavy, customers are becoming more demanding to product collections, and new suppliers appear of the blue offering better prices.

Suppliers are our primary concern here. Whether you just resell goods from larger markets or stock up for your store, stock management is what takes most of the time. And, the Improved Import and Export extension for Magento 2 helps you automate the stock updating routine making quick and efficient store management possible.

Leveraging Store Location Functionality in a Web Store

Online merchants use store locators to primarily help shoppers find the nearest physical outlets or pave the way to brick-and-mortar stores.

Leveraging Store Location Functionality in a Web Store

Today, we will give you some recommendations on how to successfully allow customers to find the locations of physical stores online. First, let’s take a look at the key benefits of the above functionality.

Why Store Locators?

Apart from showing buyers the locations of particular brick-and-mortar stores, ecommerce businesses can benefit from the following advantages of store locators:

  • Customer retention. Customers will be grateful to the brand that helps them to find the nearest outlet when they don’t have much time for searching.
  • Rationalized workflow. The address-related info provided on store locator pages allows contact persons to avoid general questions about their address and focus on more specific customer requests.
  • More buying options. With the store locator functionality utilized in a web store, shoppers can find the required products online and then negotiate to pick up them at the nearest outlet.

The above benefits just prove that store locators became an indispensable tool for both merchants and buyers. Now, we will find out how this functionality should be arranged on a website.

Store Finders Best Practices

Take Advantage of Locating

The first feature that should be included in the store locator functionality of any ecommerce store by default is the possibility to find the nearest store based on the current user’s location.

So, a shopper specifies his or her location to find the nearest store, but what does the term ‘nearest’ exactly mean? Are these the stores that located within 100 kilometers or 200 kilometers, or only the stores within the walking distance? In other words, how a shopper can know what the search radius is?

The best solution here is to allow customers to manually indicate the radius of their search in terms of radius measurement units and their values. Consider implementing the solution in your website, and the process of finding a particular store is going to become transparent to your customers.

Shop by Brand 1.1 Manages Products on Brand Pages

The advantages of branding are undeniable as soon as brand names allow you to improve product recognition, build loyalty, consolidate product position on the market, and make new product launches successful.

Shop by Brand 1.1 Manages Products on Brand Pages

In order to present brands properly in their stores, Magento store owners can successfully use the Shop by Brand extension for Magento 2, especially that it was updated and improved just recently.

As soon as brand pages presenting products are the central elements of any brand strategy, the latest Shop by Brand 1.1 improves the possibilities to manage and sort products on that pages significantly.

Shop by Brand 1.1 New Features

Manage Products on Brand Pages

From now on, Magento admins are able to add products to brand pages easily from the Edit Brand section in the backend.

In order to enter the grid please follow Catalog -> Shop by Brand by Aheadworks -> Brand Pages -> Particular brand -> Brand products grid. The grid enumerates all available products and allows adding any of them to a particular brand page in just one click.

Organizing Mobile Checkout in an Ecommerce Store: What to Consider?

Mobile checkout is undoubtedly one of the most promising ecommerce trends of this year since the mobile payment market grows dramatically.

Organizing Mobile Checkout in an Ecommerce Store: What to Consider?

In this article, we will consider the key elements of the mobile checkout process, each of which is equally important for any ecommerce business. Furthermore, we will explore how these elements are arranged in the Smart One Step Checkout (Smart OSC) extension for Magento 2 by Aheadworks. So, let’s begin.

Mobile Payment Challenges

In the light of the constantly growing number of mobile payments, there are certain challenges to overcome:

  • Too much to tap. According to the recent statistics, 31% of mobile shoppers abandon checkouts because they are asked to fill out numerous fields.
  • Tedious process. 21% of mobile users leave checkouts because the whole process seems too long to them.
  • Payment safety. More to it, nearly 70% of shoppers are highly concerned about the security of mobile payments and along with the above reasons, drop checkout because of poor safety.

So, how can we overcome all the above and other obstacles and make mobile checkouts really comfortable and successful? How to effectively adjust ecommerce stores for mobile usage? Let’s take a look at the major aspects of the convenient mobile checkout.

Mobile Checkout Key Elements

Easy-to-find Checkout Page

Suppose, you want to make a purchase in a clothing web store via smartphone. You found the desired jacket in the catalog, added it to your cart, and now, need to proceed to checkout. But, finding the corresponding button on the shopping cart page almost drove you crazy, as it was hidden below the fold of your device’s screen. Needless to say, you will hardly make another purchase in this store.

The point is that customers are most likely to abandon their mobile checkouts if they can’t easily find a checkout page on a site. Magento 2 based stores handle this issue by placing the shopping cart icon at the top of site pages so that they are immediately visible on mobile screens.

Personalization as a Key to Success in Ecommerce Business

Ecommerce personalization relates to presenting individual offers, product recommendations, and the like for particular customers and customer groups to make offers more attractive for them.

Personalization as a Key to Success in Ecommerce Business

Today, we will discuss the major types of ecommerce personalization and consider how they are implemented into the Magento 2 extensions by Aheadworks. But first, let’s take a look at some figures.

Ecommerce Personalization Trends

The main reason to personalize content in ecommerce stores is that such content is perceived by shoppers to be much more relevant than the non-personalized one. The stats just prove this:

  • 74% of buyers say that they are less motivated to make purchases in the store with no personalized content;
  • Rather, 75% of customers are more inclined to buy from the brand that gives them personal recommendations;
  • As a result, 63% of companies view ecommerce personalization as an essential part of their marketing strategy.

Arranging Customer Support Services in an Ecommerce Store

Every day, help desk specialists of any web store deal with a constantly growing number of customer tickets, which may seriously affect the overall productivity of a support department.

Arranging Customer Support Services in an Ecommerce Store

In this article, we will give you the ideas how to make the whole customer support process in a web store more efficient.

Customer Support Major Aspects

Ticket Monitoring & Management

Imagine the situation in which you have hundreds of tickets in your store, each to be handled properly. First, you should think about storing them in one place where they can be conveniently monitored and managed.

Most likely, we are talking about a grid that contains general information about each ticket, including customer name, status, responsible department, priority, and the like so that you can view all the required data and even create new tickets from there.

Still, general information can often be insufficient, especially when you need to view customer-related details and purchases for particular tickets. In this case, you should think about the solution that will give you the possibility to ‘drill-down’ customer tickets in the database of your store to view their detailed info.

Also, think about the possibility to edit specific ticket parameters on the fly, including ticket priority, assigned departments, order IDs, and so on, as these variables may need to be changed while processing the ticket. For more convenience, this should be done on dedicated ticket pages.

Advanced Reports 2.6 Introduces a Brand-New Reports Dashboard

Any online business, even a small or starting one, needs to deal with a huge amount of information, but staring and seeing, are two completely different things.

Advanced Reports 2.6 Introduces a Brand-New Reports Dashboard

The data a merchant has as a result of its daily sales and other activities are so abundant that they need not only to be collected properly, but also arranged in the way, which would allow merchants to correctly interpret they, discover valuable insights, and make efficient decisions.

Advanced Reports 2.6 Functionality

Today, we’d like to present you our new enhanced Advanced Reports extension for Magento 2 stores, which pays a great deal of attention to the reports usability, clarity, and meaning. Still, the latest Advanced Reports 2.6 has even more to offer, and the major feature of it is the new reports Dashboard.

Advanced Reports Dashboard

The dashboard has 10 widgets in total, including 8 numerical widgets and 2 charts. A Magento admin can easily change their content according to their business needs and display any of the provided by the extension reports there. The drop-down changing the content is located in the top right corner of each widget.

Powerful Loyalty Programs in Ecommerce: Best Examples

Ecommerce loyalty programs present additional sales opportunities that cannot be ignored since they intensify customer engagement and boost sales of any web store.

Powerful Loyalty Programs in Ecommerce: Best Examples

In this article, we will guide you through the beneficial loyalty programs and give you some ideas on their forms and rules. So, let’s start our quick tour.

Reward Program Examples

Point-based Programs

Last year, the Walgreen cosmetics store established a point-based reward program, where customers received points by making purchases in their store. The number of points earned per a single order depended on the value of a particular purchase.

This way, shoppers were motivated to earn more points by spending more money. For example, 1$ was equal to 1 000 points, $2 to 2 000 points, and so on. Such convenient and easy-to-understand system saved them from long-term calculations of the points to be earned from each purchase.

Once the points were earned, they could be used to get discounts on future purchases. This reward program allowed Walgreen to increase its average order value per customer.