Optimized Ecommerce EP 002 – Stop Burning Money—Traffic Is Not Your Problem

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Business Tech Ninjas Apr 15, 2020

Welcome to Episode 002 of Optimized Ecommerce – Stop Burning Money—Traffic Is Not Your Problem. We are your hosts, Tanner Larsson CEO of BGS and Matthew Stafford CMO of BGS.

BGS means Build Grow Scale! It is a community that we founded where eCommerce entrepreneurs and physical product sellers come to learn how to take their businesses to the next level.

Today, we are going to talk about the dangers of caring too much about getting more traffic. The fact is, more traffic does not necessarily mean more money.

Here’s just a taste of what we talked about today:

Traffic is Not the Problem

Let us uncover the thought process behind these people who are more concerned about their traffic.

If they have a 2% conversion rate — which we are being generous about — which is a global average that includes all stores kicking ass and nailing it. They come in happy with their current results having two sales for every 100 visitors. So, they would naturally want to double their traffic to double their sales.

“Let’s buy another 100 visitors!”

No. Doing this will quickly exhaust your audience. To be fair though, the thought process there could work, theoretically. But it is wasteful!

BGS tries to get people focused on improving their store — the customer journey — so that the conversion rate improves from 2% to 6%.

All of a sudden, you’re doing so much better with your profitability from the traffic that you already get and you can buy more market share and dominate your net!

Falling Prey to Traffic

Matt used to be a traffic wizard but fell prey to traffic. Yes, Matt and Tanner made a lot of money running a lot of traffic back in the days when traffic was crazy.

The thing is, it is still wasteful — burning a lot of audiences and available customers. As a result, a lot of their products and stores died out much quicker because of being so wasteful.

Here’s the thing, there is a 2% conversion rate just because it’s working. The magic word everybody wants is “to scale”.

If it’s working now, that doesn’t mean it’s going to keep working. It is actually only going to get more difficult for you as you scale because when you are in a traffic zone like this, you are hitting the honeypot.

You can nail it, you can get all that cheap traffic that works on a 1% store. But as you scale, you have to continue to get wider rings of traffic. That means broader and more generic traffic.

Designing the Catalog with the Buyer’s Journey in Mind

Matt and Tanner had a store that had so much difficulty with traffic. And the reason was that it was designed by developers to be an online store catalog. So it was not really designed with the buyers’ journey in mind.

So, what is the catalog and where did it come from?

The catalog is basically an inventory solution. It is not meant to handle the buyers’ journey. Now, when Tanner wrote the book, Ecommerce, he talked about how to create sales funnels and how to choreograph that journey.

BGS has taken the same principles behind sales funnels and applied them to a store. By doing that, they were able to triple the average conversion rates.

Because we look at each specific page on the store as having a specific intent, and for a specific reason.

We also discussed a few other fun topics, including:

  • As you scale traffic, the cost also goes up.
  • The importance of ensuring that each page on the store has a specific intent.
  • The category page is used only as a filtering tool.

But you’ll have to watch or listen to the episode to hear about those!

How To Stay Connected With Tanner Larsson and Matthew Stafford

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