Two Proven E-Commerce Strategies for Your Business!

Here are a few e-commerce strategies practiced by successful business owners. They help you convert more of your visitors into customers. Sure you want more traffic. But you also want to be as efficient as possible with the traffic you do get.

Optimize Your Product Page

Posting high-quality photography is the single most important component of an effective product landing page. Good photography can eliminate many questions from the minds of customers: What does the fabric look like up close? What does this pair of shoes look like from the top, side, back, and front? Invest in high-quality product photography and display a variety of large product images on product pages. Doing so makes customers more confident that the product they’ll receive matches what they see on your website.

Product copy should speak clearly to the benefits or value of the product. It should also preempt user questions and offer helpful brand advice about the product. Generic or basic product copy isn’t useful to customers looking to be convinced about a certain product. Injecting the brand’s personality into product copy wherever possible can increase goodwill and confidence among shoppers. Just in case there are questions, make sure you’re offering them the option to live chat with you.


Product Videos

These are a relatively new feature on e-commerce product pages and they do a tremendous job of taking much of the guesswork out of buying online. Product videos allow customers to see products in action – whether it’s a model walking a runway in a dress, or a product expert demonstrating the most exciting attributes of a pair of rainboots. According to eMarketer, depending on the product category between 68-90% of survey respondents found product videos useful when shopping online.

However, make sure that the videos don’t slow down your website. In another eMarketer survey, 73.9% of respondents indicated that they would leave a retail website if it was slow or unresponsive. The slower an e-commerce site loads, the fewer transactions it will be able to complete. Building a beautiful, functional site is important, but if you really want it to convert, fast load times are critical.

Optimize Your Check-Out Page

Disclose the shipping + tax upfront. The last thing customers want is to be surprised by shipping and tax costs at the final step of the purchase funnel. As advised in an earlier section, shipping costs should be clearly displayed elsewhere on the website, but it’s useful to reiterate them at the shopping cart level. Also allow users to calculate their tax costs based on area code so they have a full understanding of costs before they begin the checkout process. Make sure they can see your trust seal proving that you scan for vulnerabilities against hackers if you want to increase your sales by at least 15% – guaranteed. Visit Trust Guard today!

Take advantage of favorable ratings and reviews from Shopper Approved. User reviews are a form of a social proof, which is a powerful way to highlight how trusted a brand is. User reviews have a significant impact on the buying process. In fact, according to eMarketer, 80.7% of survey respondents said reviews were “important” or “somewhat important” in deciding which product to purchase.

Get Mobile!

E-commerce websites must be optimized for shopability on mobile devices. The checkout process should be revised to meet the needs of mobile users. Save and autofill customer information whenever possible. Use large buttons in areas of the screen that are easily accessible to the thumbs. Automatically zoom to form fields so fingers can easily fill in the required information.

Always offer a guest checkout option so customers can complete an order without creating an account. Most internet users are bogged down with dozens of user account across countless sites and are not always eager to create one more. Avoid purchase abandonment at the first step of the checkout process by offering a guest checkout. Later on, you can offer them something free for the price of their name and email address.

Make buying from you as easy as possible. Highlighting how many steps there are in the checkout process helps orient customers in the purchase funnel. When a guideline of the process is not available customers sometimes do not know how many steps until the final one and this can cause anxiety. If customers worry there isn’t a way back, or that they might end up buying something they’re not yet fully committed to purchasing, they may abandon the process altogether.

Read the complete article on Trust Guard’s Blog:

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Protection from Hackers? Trust Guard
Ratings & Review? Shopper Approved
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Two Rent-to-Own Success Strategies

These strategies are super simple to try. Once explained, I’m sure you will see the sense that it makes and follow my suggestions.

Hire and develop your best sales people to work collections.

What? Just listen. When someone walks into your store or visits your online showroom, chances are they already know what they want – they just don’t know if you are going to give it to them. That’s because they either have no credit or horrible credit – and they’ve been turned down before. They don’t need a salesman at this point.

But fast-forward six or nine months. An emergency comes up and the customer decides to return her merchandise. This, my friends, is when you need a sales person. The best sales people will listen to the customer intently and then work out what is best for the company and for the customer. Sometimes that means temporarily returning the product. But in many, many cases, that can be avoided. Can the customer pay in a couple of weeks? If so, can they send someone your way as a referral? Referrals are awesome because the customer isn’t behind in payments when she gets paid next – and referrals make for some of the most loyal of customers. If you’re online, make sure your customer support agents are your best sales people.

A solid collection specialist in this situation would immediately pick up the product. No questions asked. If your store is focused on having the lowest past-due accounts in the company, that works. However, if you are interested in customer loyalty, referrals, and improving the amount of monthly profit, get your best sales people to work collections for you. I averaged less than 6% in past due payments and more than 20% profit over my 13-year career. You can get both. But to get less than 6% in past-due payments week in and week out, you’ve got to pay attention to the next strategy.


Hire and develop your best collection specialists to sell your products.

See, I told you that my two strategies feed off each other. Unlike other retail industries, the rent-to-own industry is unique in the way customers are welcomed into the store’s family, almost without exception, and in the way that store personnel can claim a personal, real relationship with customers through weekly or biweekly interactions.

In RTO, when a customer chooses a product to take home, that is merely the beginning of the sale. The collection specialist must make sure that the new customers understand when to pay, that they can pay, that they understand every payment and return option, how to care for their product so it lasts as long as possible, and that they are willing to abide by the rules. If you have a sales person doing this job, he or she is likely to write up the sale then skip through or at most skim through the most important part of the RTO sales process.

A collection specialist will get the customer what he can afford, will get him on the right due date, and will make sure he understands how to care for the product and what the total investment will be. The specialist will also contact every referral, landlord, and boss(es) religiously before any product leaves the store – just in case there is an attempt at fraud. If a customer is ever late on making a payment, it’s easy for the sales-oriented collection specialist to follow-up because of the collection-oriented salesman’s initial efforts.


Solid, honest relationships are the cornerstone of a successful rent-to-own organization. Having the right people doing the right jobs, whether you are a brick-and-mortar or e-commerce business, will help build a multitude of loyal, paying customers and life-long friends.

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Need to secure your website from hackers? You need Trust Guard (50% coupon code is STO50)

Are You Gambling with Hackers?

If there is ever a contest between a website that is not receiving a security scan on a daily basis and a hacker, no matter how proficient, the hacker will always win. It’s like pitting a one-year-old baby (the hacker) against a plate full of spaghetti. It won’t be pretty, the cleanup could take days, and the spaghetti will always lose.

But how many of us, as online business owners, knowingly or unknowingly, risk opening up our websites up to hackers? We gamble that out of the 30,000 websites that are destroyed or debilitated every day, for some reason, hackers will continue to leave us alone – even though we’ve done nothing to keep them out.


There is an online service that monitors for more than 75,500 vulnerabilities used by hackers to make a mess of online businesses. During the monitoring process, if any vulnerabilities are found, the company sends a report to the business owner with instructions on how to fix the issue. Once fixed, the website is safe from unfriendly visitors trying to ruin the lives of business owners and their online visitors.

Trust Guard, the leader in websites security, runs security scans for thousands of websites for owners from all over the world. These business owners don’t gamble when it comes to their website’s security. They understand the risks associated with malware, trojans, and viruses that hackers can leave. They have spent too much and effort to risk losing it all to a hacker. They don’t want to face the economic, legal and/or reputational consequences that would come if their website were hacked.

The truth is, however, that there are still hundreds of thousands of website owners that are still gambling unnecessarily with their website’s security. Are you one of them? If you are, you have two choices: Continue to trust your luck or ask Trust Guard to scan your website on a daily basis against online security threats.

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Do You Like Playing Russian Roulette with Hackers?

Business owners who never scan their websites for security vulnerabilities are playing Russian Roulette with hackers.


Russian Roulette is the practice of loading a bullet into one chamber of a revolver, spinning the cylinder and then pulling the trigger while pointing the gun at one’s own head. There is a one in six chance that the bullet will kill you. It’s an activity that is potentially very dangerous.
There are people out there that love to take risks. They go climb cliffs, swim in oceans, and walk into dance clubs leaving very little to the imagination. Hobbies aside, some people take unnecessary risks with their online businesses. More than 30,000 websites of all shapes and sizes fall prey to hackers every single day, holidays included.
But for some unexplainable reason, there are those who believe that, although they have done nothing to protect themselves from viruses and malware, getting hacked could never happen to them.

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Top 15 Characteristics of Successful Customer Support Agents

There are certain universal customer service skills that every successful customer support agent must master to win over their customers for life. Without them, you run the risk of mediocrity and customers who stay with you until they find a better option

Customer Service Skills that Matter

When most business publications talk about successful customer support skills, things like “being a people person” tend to take the spotlight.

It’s not that this trait is outright wrong, but it’s so vague and generic that it hardly helps those looking to get involved in support positions within a company. And it certainly doesn’t help owners who are looking to hire people with the right skill sets to take care of their customers.


1. Patience

Not only is patience important to customers, who often reach out when they are confused and frustrated, but it’s also important to the business at large.


2. Attentiveness

The ability to really listen to customers is crucial for providing great customer service.

Not only is it important to pay attention to individual customer interactions (watching the language/tone/attitude/terms that they use to describe their problems), but it’s also important to be mindful of and attentive to the feedback received.


3. Clear Communication Skills

Make sure you’re getting to the problem at hand quickly. Most customers don’t want to hear about how your day is going.

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Who Is Protecting Your Website?

Just as State Farm, Geico, and Farmers protect our vehicles, Trust Guard, the leader in website security, protects our websites. Our websites, just like our cars, are vulnerable to thieves. There are several ways to steal or damage a car. People run into cars – even when they aren’t moving. People break the windows of cars and steal tires and rims – even when they are parked at home.


If we didn’t have car insurance, we’d have to pay for all of those expenses by ourselves. Even when we don’t use the insurance, we feel safer and more protected knowing that it was available to us just in case. We should use the same line of reasoning when we consider who should be protecting our websites.

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Your Website Needs a Lifeguard!
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Your Website Needs a Lifeguard!

Lifeguard for your website

You wouldn’t swim in a public swimming pool or at the beach without a lifeguard on duty, would you?

Well, you shouldn’t spend time on a website that isn’t secured by Trust Guard either. And if you’re an online business owner, you shouldn’t let your potential and current customers run around on your website, confidently sharing their personally identifiable information with you, without Trust Guard their to protect them.

To ensure that your online visitors know that you have an experienced lifeguard on duty, Trust Guard provides business owners with a trust seal. It’s a small digital image that can be placed on the front page, footer, and checkout pages to show concerned citizens that your site is periodically scanned to keep shark-like hackers away from your site. Several cases studies have proven that when people on your site see the Trust Guard Security Scanned trust seal, 15% more of them (on average) will buy from you.

Just like beaches with lifeguards are always busier than beaches without lifeguards, so are websites that use Trust Guard.

Visit Trust Guard today to access their reasonably priced, guaranteed, online lifeguard services.

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Generate More Sales & Traffic with Pinterest!

Pinterest, when initially launched, took the world by storm, while the social network skeptics called it just another site. Since then, this company has come a long way. Today it is successfully used to promote business around the world, including TopDentistsOnline. But, at the end of the day, it all comes down to traffic and sales.

PinterestIn that respect, Pinterest is among one of the highest referral-driving social media platforms after Facebook. Unlike Facebook posts, a pin does not get lost in the sea of billions. They, on the contrary, tend to have an average lifespan of 3.5 months. Though highly effective, this platform can waste a lot of your precious time. So, in order to generate traffic and sales without wasting too much time, a few tools can be used to automate the tedious activities involved in posting and to increase the brand’s exposure.

Design beautiful viral images for Pinterest using Canva

Pinterest is all about posting and pinning viral pictures with a perfect content along with it. To make that happen, Canva is an awesome image editing tool that already has predesigned templates tailored for Pinterest and other social media platforms, blog posts, or websites. Further, the image in it can be optimized at 2:3 aspect ratio that is absolutely perfect for pinning. A paid version of Canva will let users create images with transparent backgrounds for a more professional feel. 

PinterestThis tool has tons of stunning layouts that make it easy for even a novice to craft viral as well as beautiful looking pins. It’s all possible because of its user-friendly interface, that allows you to easily view the changes in your image and the templates you choose, all side by side. Engagements on Pinterest have shown to increase 15 % traffic when tall images are used. Whereas, the pictures with dominant colors and less than 30% background are said to get more response. Another perfect and incredibly useful alternative to this one is Pinstamatic. Go get creative now!

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Don’t Ignore PCI Compliance Regulations

Don’t Ignore PCI Compliance Regulations

The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) has been in existence for years, requiring any merchant that processes, transmits, or stores customer’s cardholder data to achieve PCI compliance. The PCI compliance process comprises of 12 high-level PCI DSS requirements. Getting your website scanned and then repairing holes found in the security report is just one of the regulations.


With the effort involved, entities may question whether they should allocate their time and financial resources or just ignore PCI compliance altogether. However, in the case of PCI compliance, the benefits ultimately outweigh the drawbacks. The risks associated with ignoring PCI DSS requirements can range from loss of reputation to financial ruin.

What Happens If You Do Not Follow Regulations?
1. You May Suffer Financial Losses from Which You May Never Recover
Merchants ignoring the growing adoption of PCI DSS do so at their own peril as the penalties for non-PCI compliance are severe. Non-PCI compliant merchants and payment processors can face fines from $5,000 to $500,000, depending on a variety of factors. In 2006 alone, Visa reported imposing $4.6 million in fines.

Additional costs and repercussions include:

Notification, card re-issuance, and credit monitoring costs for affected parties
Forensic investigation and remediation costs
Increased rates charged by banks and/or processors

2. You May Lose The Ability To Accept Credit Cards
Credit card companies may revoke the right of a merchant to process credit card transactions. This can be the cause of a “virtual death sentence” for many organizations.

3. You May Loose Clientele Due To Negative Reputation
Reputational damage, lost business, and reduced partner/consumer confidence and trust are just some of the after-effects of a data breach. Reports demonstrate that 69% of consumers would be less inclined to conduct business with a breached entity, which can even lower share price and impact the ability to raise capital in the future. It is evident that the cost of keeping PCI compliant regulations is pale in comparison to the potential costs and fines associated with data breach.

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Trolls & Hackers are Bullies!

Trolls and hackers are similar to each other in several ways. Both species are annoying and enjoy causing problems.

I’m not talking about the trolls that try to upset everyone in online forums with rude and obnoxious posts. Although, who’s to say that that’s not how hackers spend their free time. Here are five ways that hackers compare to trolls.


Living Conditions

Both are cave dwellers or live under bridges. The point here is that hackers keep to themselves. They ostracize themselves from society and spend their time alone in dark basements until they strike it rich at other people’s expense. Then they move into a plush penthouse with exceptional security. In both cases, they separate themselves from the rest of us and usually live in somewhat unhealthy, secluded environments.

Thinking of Them Incites Fear

Just the thought of coming into contact with a hacker should make you want to shrivel up and hide. They can access sites that are not secure. That’s why so many online businesses stay as far away from them as possible by scanning their sites for vulnerabilities that hackers use to get into sites and mess things up.

They Destroy Things

Hackers are  good at making beautiful websites completely shut-down or go to a different URL. What was once a well-oiled machine, when touched by the hand of a hacker, is quickly destroyed. Like a troll that loves busting your vehicle in half, or throwing you half-way across the river, hackers like to…

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