ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How To Sell Your Products Online: Branding and Marketing Sales Tools

Updated on November 25, 2014

Learn How To Sell Your Stuff Online!

You have products that people want. You have a great product and you are selling it at a fair market price. One problem: Your stuff isn't selling! No matter what you try, sales just wont increase.

It's probably not the product. It's your Marketing Campaign. There are many little things that can determine success in your business. If you are using a website online to sell your goods (you should be!) then there are a lot of little things that make a difference.

In this article we will cover a variety of ways that you can increase your sales and revenue. No matter what your product is, the formula for success is the same; get people to see and purchase your product! And then get them to spread the word...

Learn How To Sell Your Products Online

Learn ways to improve your website sales online.
Learn ways to improve your website sales online. | Source

Creating a Brand for Your Business and Products

When I say the word "Brand" what first pops into your head? I tend to think of companies such as WalMart, GAP, Walgreen's and a variety of other stores and brands. What is their secret? They have their household brand that competes with other brands. When you go into these stores you can expect to find products that only they offer; this is their brand. Once a brand's reputation is good, customers will share their experiences with friends and neighbors and will become your best marketing tool; word of mouth from an actual customer. If the experience is bad, they will definitely convince their friends not to shop at a particular place or why they shouldn't buy a specific product.

Your brand should have a clearly stated promise. A Brand Promise. Make sure that it is realistic and sincere because your reputation is at stake. Don't promise things you can't fulfill. A successful brand will reflect everything about your company and the products you sell. Quality of product, sales interactions, experiences in dealing with your employees and a range of other things will fall into what becomes your brand. True branding success means you have a Loyal Customer Base that will continue to visit your site, buy your products, and share their interactions with others.

Creating a Brand Is Important To Your Business: It's How People Recognize You and Your Professional Reputation

Do you have a successful brand? Learn how to make a Brand for your Products and Business.
Do you have a successful brand? Learn how to make a Brand for your Products and Business. | Source

Creating a Brand is Simple and Complex

Creating a brand for your business is both simple and complex. It is simple because if you pay attention to your products, business, employees and customers, maintaining your brand is easy. It is complex because there are many variables that come together to make up your brand.

Some things to consider when understanding what your brand is all about:

  • How was your customer's overall experience?
  • Did you Survey them? Offering a brief survey to your customers is a great way to get feedback on what works and what needs improvement. It also shows the customer that you value their opinions and are willing to make some changes where need be.
  • Ease of Access: How easy is it to find your product on your website? On the Internet?
  • How was the customer's experience with your employees? Where they polite and knowledgeable about your products and services? Where they honest? Too pushy?
  • Marketing and Branding are 2 different aspects of business that are often confused. Marketing is the Sales aspect of your business and how you advertise your products. Branding is everything accumulated about the reputation of your business, it's employees, policies and products. It's a snapshot of your reputation as a business.
  • With that said, your brand is not just a company logo, a mascot or catchy sales pitch. Those are merely aspects of your visual appearance as a company or product. Remember, Branding is a summary of sorts that sets you apart from your competition.
  • All Employees and Company Policies must be on the same page every time to create an effective brand. If employees do not use the same approach while explaining your products and services, there will be misconceptions about your company. Each person should communicate the same message about your business or products being sold. It is wise to train and evaluate employees on a regular basis to maintain proper compliance throughout.

Make Money Selling Your Products Online

You can sell your stuff online and make some money on the side. No matter what products you are  looking to sell, there are millions of potential customers buying stuff right now!
You can sell your stuff online and make some money on the side. No matter what products you are looking to sell, there are millions of potential customers buying stuff right now! | Source

Back Up Your Brand: Have A Satisfaction Guarantee

Every successful brand has some form of Guarantee or Promise. This is the spine of your company. Keeping your word is important if you want to create a respected brand. News travels fast. Bad news travels faster. Having a guarantee on your products and services insures the customer that they will get what they are paying for and if there is an issue with quality, your company will resolve the issue. Here are some things to consider about your brand:

  • What do you Guarantee?
  • How well are you known in your industry?
  • Do you have a good reputation both online and locally?
  • What makes you stand out from your competitors?
  • How will you market and advertise your brand?
  • You see your brand differently from outsiders. Find out what they think about your brand and what type of improvements or enhancements you can make to attract more business and sales.

Get Your Brand Out There on the Market

Start selling your stuff online today! There's money to be made on the internet selling your products and services.
Start selling your stuff online today! There's money to be made on the internet selling your products and services. | Source

Starting Over: Start Your New Business On a Clean Slate

If you have tried and failed at other businesses there are two ways to look at it: You either messed up or the timing just wasn't right. That's OK because you are starting all over again from scratch. You get to learn from your mistakes.

One problem: You are still connected to your past reputation. Your failed endeavors are public and it will hurt your reputation as a new business. What can you do to clean up your name? Here are some tips for clearing your name:

  • Delete all outdated or inappropriate blogs, videos, pictures etc. Anything with poor quality should not be connected to you. If you use Google's Webmaster Tools you can have old links removed from the web.
  • Keep up With Comments. When your customer leaves a comment you should read it and thank them for participating and leaving feedback. Your customer is your best asset. Pay attention to them.
  • Engage in conversation with your clients and customers. Listen and speak with them. Tell them why your product is important to them and how it can improve their lives.
  • Monitor and Update your content regularly. Continue to add content as you develop more experiences. New Content gets noticed in search engines. Update your content often.
  • Share your products on Social Media Networks and find a Targeted Audience. Those are the people that are searching and looking for your products, solutions and services.

Do You Have a Product To Sell? Try Selling Your Stuff Online!

You can sell your products online to make money. Millions of people are buying and selling every day on the internet. Learn how to market your goods online for profit.
You can sell your products online to make money. Millions of people are buying and selling every day on the internet. Learn how to market your goods online for profit. | Source

Online Marketing and Sales Strategies: SEO, PPC, CPM and CPC...What Is That All About?

What are all those acronyms? What the heck do they stand for and what do they mean? Those acronyms are abbreviations for how earnings are calculated on a website.There are many ways to make money online, here are a few of the best strategies you can employ to make money selling products online:

  • You can sell your own products through a website or an Online Auction like eBay or QuiBids. Another great site that caters to home made products is Etsy. You will have to figure out shipping costs and fees for selling and include in the price of the item listed.
  • You can create web pages that are Search Engine Optimized (SEO) that promote a product or service. You can make money by allowing Ads (Advertisements) on your pages if you are an Earnings Affiliate with advertisers such as Google AdSense, Amazon, eBay, and many others. You will get paid per click, meaning you get a payment when someone clicks on an ad on your website.
  • You can become an Advertiser yourself. If you sign up for Google AdWords you can pay for Advertisements that will be placed on other people's content when people use search engines to find information or products and services related to the products you are selling. Google AdWords allows you to create custom Ads and you can set a budget on how much you are willing to spend daily to promote your Ads.

Smart marketers will use a variety of different methods to draw traffic to their pages and products. You can create several different pages that reflect back to each other. Think in terms of a spider building a web. There is an organizational aspect where the entire web is spread out. The product or service can be considered to be the center of the web. When a fly comes along, no matter where they enter the web, they will be connected to the center. They will find your product.

What Do All Those Acronyms Mean?

Acronym
Principle
Explanation
SEO
Search Engine Optimization
If a website is Search Engine Optimized it means that it is likely to be found when people search for the information on your website.
PPC
Pay Per Click
Refers to the amount of money earned from a click on an ad on your website.
SEM
Search Engine Marketing
A compilation of variables related to marketing a website online; a summary of the elements to a successful advertising campaign.
CPM
Clicks Per Mille
Average cost of an ad per 1,000 site views
CPC
Cost Per Click
The average cost to an advertiser per click on an ad.

Google Keyword Tool Steps (Via HubPages Learning Center)

Learn How to Use the Google Keyword Tool to increase your online earnings by selling more products.
Learn How to Use the Google Keyword Tool to increase your online earnings by selling more products. | Source

Do You Hold the Keys to Your Future?

Do You Hold the Key? Unlock the Doors that you have been afraid to knock on! Take control of your future.
Do You Hold the Key? Unlock the Doors that you have been afraid to knock on! Take control of your future. | Source

What Are Keywords? How Important Is It To Research Keywords? How Do You Research Keywords for Search Engine Optimization (SEO)?

What are Keywords? Keywords are the words that will be used by search engines to find, allocate, and index your website. Keywords should appear throughout your web page and most importantly, in your Title. Before you choose a title you should research what keywords are commonly searched, how much competition there is for particular keywords, and of course, what the keywords are worth in terms of advertising revenue.

The best tool on the market for Keyword Research (which also happens to be free) is the Google Keyword Tool. It isn't that difficult to use once you understand the basics. It will show up-to-date statistics on what a keyword is worth and how many searches there are per month. It will also show you the competition on specific keywords. Here are some things to consider when choosing keywords for your title and article:

  • You want to try to use exact search keywords in your title. That is, exactly what people are typing when they search for something on a search engine.
  • People are more likely to click on a link if the words are exactly what they typed into the search query.
  • Using "Long Tail Search" is a great way to get traffic from specific searches. For example: If you are trying to convey something definitively you will want to use Long Tail descriptions: "How To Make Fat Free Donuts At Home" is long tail becouse it represents certain distinctions of your article:
  1. How To Make
  2. Fat Free
  3. Donuts
  4. At Home

Do you see how each phrase is something that can be searched separately? By bringing it all together and creating a "Long Tail" title, you will be able to cash in on all of the keywords coming together for a superior article or website. You have just found your Targeted Audience.

Picture a word that you want to use as a Keyword and imagine that word is a key to a door. The more Keys (keywords) you have the more doors you can open. But there's a catch...you can not stuff keywords into titles and articles. If you do, the search engines will identify you as Spam.

So what can you do? You can do research to find out what words and phrases have value in relation to potential earnings from your content. When you research your important statistics before you write you will save time and energy. Researching gives you insight to what will make you money and how you can set up a successful advertising campaign.

The Importance of Using Social Media Networks To Gain More Traffic and Sales: Facebook, Twitter and Google+

Why should you get a Facebook Account? Why join Twitter? Great questions; easy answer! If you don't know it already, our society is getting closer because of the easy use of Social Media Networks. Social Media allows you to share content with the push of a button. You can add Photos, Text, Videos, Links and just about anything.

Remember when we mentioned a "Targeted Audience"? If you can build bridges and create associations with people that share your interests on social sharing sites then you have found another Targeted Audience. Here are some other Social Networks that can Increase Backlinks and Traffic:

  • Pinterest: Share you photos from your published articles and you can include a link to your original source.
  • Facebook: It speaks for itself... It's your personal link to everyone you know. It also can be a useful tool for a company or entity trying to sell products or services to a Targeted Audience. There are over 500 million registered users! That's a huge audience!
  • Blogger: Maintain a blog that you update regularly and can share your products and websites. Remember the Spider Web? Blogs are a perfect platform for creating backlinks to your Auction Listings, Articles, Websites and Products.
  • Twitter: Twitter is simple and fast. The site automatically shortens your link and you can write a brief description about what your page is about. You can also use hashtags (#hashtag) to relevant topics. This will allow people who are looking for specific information. For example, if you wrote an article about gardening, you can use the hashtag (#gardening) and your link will be categorized under that topic.
  • Google+: A great and fairly new edition to Google's portfolio. Google Plus is similar to Facebook but a lot different. There are less ads and the site is more organized. You can video chat live, text chat and do so much more. You can create a professional profile and share photos and videos as well as links to your sites.
  • For more suggestions check out the link above to the right.

Hard Work Pays Off

The bottom line for any success with marketing and selling your products online is hard work. You need to be patient and have a desire to learn and the ability to change. You will work many hours researching and developing your content. You will spend countless hours creating your brand and marketing it to potential customers. That is why most businesses fail in their first year; people just give up or they don't have a business plan and model.

For those who don't quit and stick around for the long hall, they will eventually reap the benefits of their hard work. All that hard work will create your brand and once your brand has a good reputation you will experience growth and wealth over time. Hang in there! Never give up on your dreams. Success is a journey, not a destination.

How Useful Was This Hub Article? Please Take This Brief Survey:

Was This Hub Article Useful To You? (You may leave Comments Below)

See results

© 2012 JS Matthew

Do You Have Any Suggestions or Questions? Feel Free To Leave Comments Below!

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • jpcmc profile image

      JP Carlos 4 years ago from Quezon CIty, Phlippines

      This is a great reseource. It's a competitive world out there. The internet is no different. The tools and strategies may differ a bit, but it boils down to creating a brand. The identity of the product or service is essential.

    • J.S.Matthew profile image
      Author

      JS Matthew 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      Thank you jpcmc! It's nice to hear from you again. Product and company reputation are the most influential aspects of your Brand. There are different tools used in different situations that add to our experiences. We should always learn from our mistakes and work on our successes. Thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment. I appreciate it very much.

      JSMatthew~

    • Julie DeNeen profile image

      Blurter of Indiscretions 4 years ago from Clinton CT

      First of all, thank you for the shout out! I really appreciate it. But number two, and more importantly, WOW- this hub was incredible. You packed so much information in here, it's incredible. Nice job.

    • J.S.Matthew profile image
      Author

      JS Matthew 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      Any time Julie DeNeen! With quality content like yours, it is easy to link to! Thanks for checking this out and leaving a great comment. I'll be linking to you again in the future...

      JSMatthew~

    • Glenn Stok profile image

      Glenn Stok 4 years ago from Long Island, NY

      I do many of these things with my business website because I sell online. But it was very useful as a review to read your hub. You listed a lot of useful information here for anyone who wants to improve his or her online sales. This also applies to improving traffic to written content.

    • cclitgirl profile image

      Cynthia Calhoun 4 years ago from Western NC

      Fantastic information. I'm glad to see I'm following a lot of your talking points here. I have struggled with "branding" in the past, but I'm getting there now. :) This hub is really helpful, too. Voted up and tweeted.

    • Dreamhowl profile image

      Jessica Marello 4 years ago from United States

      This is a lot of good information! Definitely a hub to bookmark for later. Thanks for the advice!

    • J.S.Matthew profile image
      Author

      JS Matthew 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      @Glenn Stok: I am glad that this was a useful review for you. It's great to hear that you are already using many of these ideas on your sites. I appreciate you validating this information. You are right that these suggestions help in content and traffic. Many of these principles I have adapted to HubPages. Thanks for stopping by Glenn!

      JSMatthew~

    • J.S.Matthew profile image
      Author

      JS Matthew 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      @cclitgirl: Hi CC! Branding can be difficult but once we understand the principles and we are consistent it becomes second nature. I am glad this helps! Thanks for the comment, vote and for sharing! Nice to see you!

      JSMatthew~

    • J.S.Matthew profile image
      Author

      JS Matthew 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      @Dreamhowl: Hello there! Glad this was useful to you. Thanks for stopping by! Feel free to check out my other articles on building a business and a brand!

      JSMatthew~

    • cclitgirl profile image

      Cynthia Calhoun 4 years ago from Western NC

      Well, this is an awesome, and timely hub for me personally - I am developing my brand as a writer and photographer and just created my website. Next is AdWords. Plugging away - countless hours - but hacking away at it, little by little. I'm sticking to it; I have no choice. I quit my job to do this, LOL. Thanks for these great tips! Shared all over.

    • J.S.Matthew profile image
      Author

      JS Matthew 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      Glad to see you are making progress cclitgirl! It can take a little while to "figure" it all out but if you do your research, set personal goals and never stop learning and working you will get to where you want to be. With your motivation and drive you will get there in no time! Quitting your job to this full time is risky but can be very rewarding. Never stop! Keep up the good work and thanks for the comment and shares! Hope all is well for you after Hurricane Sandy.

      JSMatthew~

    • Ruby H Rose profile image

      Maree Michael Martin 4 years ago from Northwest Washington on an Island

      Wow, JS another jam packed learning session. Thanks for the great insights on keywords I still struggle with. Explaining the acronyms really helps too. Learning affiliate marketing is my dream, great help here.

    • J.S.Matthew profile image
      Author

      JS Matthew 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      Hello Ruby H Rose! Keywords are hard to learn and I am still learning every day! There's a lot of information and Google keeps changing their algorithms so we have to keep learning and researching. I am glad this was useful to you. Glad to help! Best of success.

      JSMatthew~

    • rasta1 profile image

      Marvin Parke 4 years ago from Jamaica

      Some very beneficial tips here. I have to check out quibids.

    • J.S.Matthew profile image
      Author

      JS Matthew 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      Hello rasta1! Glad this was helpful to you. Good luck on Quibids! Thanks for stopping by!

      JSMatthew~

    • Amibba profile image

      Amibba 4 years ago

      Such an informative article. Well written and very helpful!

    • Vinaya Ghimire profile image

      Vinaya Ghimire 3 years ago from Nepal

      Matthew,

      I have never sold anything online. Its not that I don't appreciate this idea, but the problem is with our government policy regarding international transactions. But anyway, thanks for sharing tips and tricks.

    • my_girl_sara profile image

      Cynthia Lyerly 3 years ago from Georgia

      Very thorough blog. The most difficult thing about branding yourself is making it profitable. I suggest starting at the craftshows and there you can give people cards for your etsy/website. Another great idea is to send samples of your item to magazines. You never know, one of them might feature them in an article.

    • J.S.Matthew profile image
      Author

      JS Matthew 3 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      @Amibba: Hello. Somehow your comment did not make it to my inbox 6 months ago. I apologize. I appreciate your comment. Thank you!

      JSMatthew~

    • J.S.Matthew profile image
      Author

      JS Matthew 3 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      @Vinaya Ghimire: Hello Vinaya! Nice to see you. I hope that some day Nepal will change their policies for online sales. I know that many countries have restrictions. I do appreciate you stopping by. Nice to see you!

      JSMatthew~

    • J.S.Matthew profile image
      Author

      JS Matthew 3 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      @my_girl_sara: Branding yourself takes time and skill. Many people give up before they even get the chance to get out there. Look at the humble beginnings of companies like Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) and McDonald's. They both started with one idea in one store...look at them now!

      I agree that starting at craft shows and sharing your business cards and materials is a great way to break into getting your brand out there. With hard work and persistence, anyone can be successful. I had never thought about the magazine idea. Thanks for adding that suggestion. Thank you for your insightful comment.

      JSMatthew~

    • profile image

      Yemi 2 years ago

      Two things:

      I want my church to advertise in such a way that when people google some words they can get our church's information - to join us on Sunday for service.

      Secondly, I also want to werite a handbook of Legal code in an African language, will this be a good thing to use online advert (infopreneur) for?

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 2 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      I learned about things I used to read about online marketing and understood your detailed explanation. Thanks for putting these all together.

    • J.S.Matthew profile image
      Author

      JS Matthew 2 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      @aesta1: I am glad this helped bring everything together for you. I wish you the best of success and I appreciate your comment. Thanks for stopping by. Happy selling!

      JSMatthew~

    Click to Rate This Article