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5 killer tips for building your footwear brand

With literally thousands of online shops selling all types of shoes, launching into online shoes sales can feel overwhelming and at times even impossible.

However, with careful planning, customer targeting, outstanding customer service and of course, an excellent product, you’ll be well on the way to online sales success.

When I built my label ‘Covet Shoes’ I knew I would be faced with research, trial and error and loads of time spent putting in the hard yards of work. But it all paid off, within the first year of operation Covet was showcased at Miami fashion week and is now well established both online and offline as a leader in luxury shoes. 

To help you launch your shoes label into the digital world with confidence, I am sharing my 5 killer tips for selling shoes online.

Less is more

Having a lot of different styles to try to cater for everyone isn’t usually the best strategy.  Customers will often feel overwhelmed with choice, so narrowing in on a few key styles can help the decision making process for the customer, as well as, make it easier to manage stock for the business.

The old saying “If you try to please all, you please none” is a perfect way to explain this approach. It helps to make sure you clearly define your target customer. Who exactly will wear your shoes? Get to know them personally and cater exactly to their needs. 

Have a clear purpose

You should know how you’re different to your competition and what you specialise in.  Ask yourself what makes you stand out? Why would customers want to buy from you rather than your competition? What can you offer that others can’t?

Alongside this, constantly evaluate yourself. Pay attention to your offering and look for items that don’t fit. Consistency is key to building a loyal buying base and ease in finding a strong place in the industry.

Keep it fresh

Even if you’re not changing your stock weekly or monthly, keep everything looking fresh. Change your images, re-merchandise your online store just as you would a front window in a bricks and mortar boutique.

Sometimes, something as simple as repositioning an item or changing a product lifestyle image can be the difference between selling out and missing the sale.

Never stop building trust

Customers want to know they can trust you.  Showcasing your credibility front and centre can make all the difference in a customers decision.

Highlight your customer testimonials, both the positive and the constructive – bring your referrals front and centre and show your customers who else is talking about you and what they’re saying.

This also allows your customers to establish a personal relationship with your label. Your customers will see that you care about the needs, reactions and emotions of them and will reciprocate by also connecting with your brand emotionally.

Information, information information

People like to make informed decisions.  Make sure you are always transparent and give your customers all the necessary information to answer any question they may have whilst going through the buying process. 

However, don’t overwhelm them with too much information, instead keep it simple and easy to read at a glance. Keep online navigation as intuitive and as simple as possible.

You want your customers to feel confident and at ease when buying from you – not overwhelmed and confused.

Jennifer Marks is the owner and founder of Covet Shoes.

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