“If your business was a rock band, sales would be the lead singer. All eyes are on sales and revenue performance, and a strong (or weak) performance can become a potent rallying force for your entire team.”
--- Katya Zeisig, Marketing Consultant at Klipfolio
In e-commerce sales, being detail-oriented can really set your business up from the rest. To monitor and predict your sales performances, you should know every single detail about your products and customers. You want to know the time people spend on a listing page so that you know how interested they are in your product. You want to know your in-stock rate, because a constant low in-stock rate often indicates a high percentage of refunded or cancelled orders, which leads to a low customer retention and eventually harms your sales.
Anything that can affect your sales is within the scope of sales analytics – you name it.
Suppose you want to sell your things on Amazon - would simply taking a photo of your products, writing a brief description and listing it make you to become a leading seller? No, no and no. That way you will definitely become one of the losers.
So, what should you do? Well yes, customer analysis is a must, but what else? You need to know how Amazon’s platform works–you need to know the specific context of this market place. For instance, when you know that the journey of every customer in Amazon mostly begins by typing keywords, then cram as many keywords as you possibly can, as long as it is within the 80-character limitation! When you know Amazon’s A9 algorithm uses conversion rate, relevance and customer satisfaction to rank products, then make sure you constantly stand out in every aspect! You should tailor your selling strategy to fit in this market place, and this is, of course, part of sales analytics.
Metrics and data you should be tracking at a minimum:
Transactions broken down by date, time and product
Transactions broken down by channel
ROI by sales and marketing channel
Social media engagement and conversion
Email funnel engagement and conversion
Website engagement and conversion
Speed of loading pages on your page
Analysis and reports that should be done:
Competitor analysis and tracking
Search traffic optimization
Look-alike audience analysis
Customer segmentation study
Companies like WayFair [i] have excelled at keeping itself as one of top sellers on Amazon. When we poke around Amazon, we can notice that they show up in many of our searches. WayFair has over 40,000 listed products with more than 200,000 reviews–clearly, they know what they are doing. Almost every item in their shop is winning its Buy Box. Without doubt, they must have done enough homework in sales analytics.
As sales analytics become mature, there are more new tools and types of services out there for you to choose.
Web analytics [ii] and Google analytics are good examples of sales analytics tools that are specifically designed to track consumer activity on the Internet. Both tools use log files or cookies to collect data on website visitors. The information is later analyzed to determine the number of visitors, which pages were being visited, and whether those visits converted to purchases. Insights regarding advertisement placement and website optimization can be extracted.
You can also use a sales leaderboard to increase transparency and accountability for your sales analytics process [iii]. A leaderboard can be displayed on a TV and used to track revenue performance against a time-bound target. For example, tracking your team’s performance towards a monthly revenue objective.
Sales analytics is a must-have investment for every business. Investing in sales is investing in the future.
[i] Mitchell, Will (2018). 5 Dirty Hacks for Amazon Sellers to Dominate the Marketplace. StartupBros. Retrieved from here
[ii] Techopedia explains Sales Analytics. Techopedia. Retrieved from here
[iii] Zeisig, Katya (2018). 12 sales metrics to kick-start your sales analytics. Klipfolio. Retrieved from here