SpringBoard Release Brings Croatian Localization, Wire Transfer Client Payments in INR & Status UI Enhancements

Release Jan. 20, 2014

Croatian Localization

croatiaSpringBoard continues to expand its localization and has added a full Croatian translation as of this release.

FastSpring now supports 24 local languages, including: Arabic, Chinese (Traditional and Simplified), Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, English, French, German, Greek, Hungarian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Latvian, Lithuanian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Serbian, Spanish, Swedish and Turkish.

Payment Methods to Clients

wire-transfer-dropdownIndian Rupee (INR) has been added as a wire transfer currency for client payments. Additional currencies available for wire transfer client payments include USD, CAD, GBP, EUR, JPY, AUD, HKD, CHF, DKK, NZD, and SGD.

ACH (international direct deposit) payments are available for the following countries: Canada, Mexico, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Gibraltar, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

Subscription

For subscriptions, a 2-year first period has been added to the many existing first period choices.

UI Updates

A UI update has added the day of the week to the tooltip for Orders by Day graph in SpringBoard reporting, for easy reference.

Larger UI updates include a move to using toggle widgets for object status throughout SpringBoard. Below we present the new UI.

sb-ui-status-new

  • Status box and Actions box have been condensed to one area (this is the case for every status object).
  • The left-hand phrases are now actually verbs / actions, more consistent with other UIs and fitting of the header “Actions”.
  • The most common status change Test > Active / Active > Test is now a toggle requiring no page refresh. Deeper status changes are made via the action “Change Status”.
  • Product Options are now Product Choices.
Posted in Features, SpringBoard | Comments closed

FastSpring Named as Finalist in 2014 Stevie Awards for “Customer Service Department of the Year”

stevies-logoWe’re excited to report that our award-winning customer support department has again been recognized for excellence in service. FastSpring was just named as a finalist for the 2014 Stevie Awards for “Customer Service Department of the Year” in the Computer Software category. Congratulations to the entire customer support team!

A list of the finalists can be found here: http://www.stevieawards.com/…

Gold, Silver and Bronze Award winners will be selected from the group of finalists, and will be announced February 21st. We will publish here our final result at that point.

It is gratifying to receive this kind of validation for a great deal of hard work and dedication in serving our clients. Take a look at our Client Testimonials page to learn more about how clients have continually applauded our Customer Service team. FastSpring’s founding mission statement was and remains:

To offer a highly customizable, flexible e-commerce solution focused on adding value and increasing revenue for clients, while providing the best customer service in the industry.

About the Stevie Awards

The Stevie Awards are organizers of the prestigious Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service, American Business Awards, International Business Awards, the Stevie Awards for Women in Business, and the new Asia-Pacific Stevie Awards. The Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service recognize the achievements of sales, business development, customer service, and call/contact center professionals worldwide. The awards are judged each year by several hundred executives around the world.

Posted in FastSpring Info, News | Comments closed

Selling Software Online? How To Reduce Cart Abandonment In 6 Easy Steps

Cart abandonmenet selling software onlineAre online shoppers abandoning your shopping cart instead of buying? If so, you’re not alone. Research by Baynard Institute, incorporating 21 different studies over 8 years, shows that over 65% of online shoppers who start to make a purchase will ultimately abandon their cart.

If you sell software online, there are trusted strategies for decreasing your shopping cart abandonment rate. Here’s how to convert your prospects from order page visitors to new customers – and start earning more revenue.

Reassure your prospects with images

Think that you don’t need a representative image of your software? Think again. Graphical content – even when you’re selling software online – is crucial. VoucherCloud found that 92% of people identified ‘visuals’ as being a top influencing factor that affected their purchase decision. Additionally, multiple images of a product increased sales by 58%. Software used to call for a “box shot”; now it calls for brilliant eye-catching icons.

Close the deal with videos

It may be easy for your existing customers to use your desktop software or SaaS offering, but you want to make sure your prospective customers recognize and understand this, too. According to Kissmetrics, a short video tutorial or demonstration can help reduce cart abandonment rates and increase sales. Product videos, especially those that are short, fun,  even ironic, and include catchy music (which viewers can turn off easily if desired) will help seal the deal.

Anticipate last minute questions

Don’t lose sales because your prospects have “one more question,” but no idea how to reach you. MarketingExperiments found that displaying your contact information at checkout is a smart way to minimize cart abandonment.

Make your checkout process simple

Time is money. Research shows that the less time it takes to complete the checkout process, the higher the conversion rate. Additionally, having a progress indicator during checkout helps people visually see where they are in the checkout process.

Just say no to registration

According to research by Convince & Convert, a staggering 86% of people leave a website when asked to create a new account. Offer new customers a guest checkout option instead. You can always prompt people to register with your site after the purchase is complete.

Provide peace-of-mind with “trust logos”

Research shows that 80% of consumers feel safer seeing trustworthy credit card logos prominently displayed throughout the website. By including those logos at checkout, you can help minimize your cart abandonment.

Cart abandonment happens to every business. But if you apply these 6 simple steps to decreasing your abandonment rate, you’ll start converting more of your browsers into buyers and further boost your revenue.

Special Thanks

We would like to thank vouchercloud.net for their part in collating the research that helped us identity the importance of images in e-commerce checkout flows. They have also made their impressive infographic on “Consumer Psychology & E-Commerce Checkout” available to us, which we offer here as a PDF download.

Posted in E-Commerce Insights, Increasing Revenue | Comments closed

SpringBoard Ad Tracking Improvements, New Reporting Export Functionality, New Dropbox Feature, & More

Release Jan. 6th, 2014

Reporting UI Upgrade

SpringBoard has improved the Reports > Exports UI. It is now in a listing format that better matches other UIs. It also now tracks the creator of reports, which can be helpful in medium to large businesses with various User Roles and multiple individuals accessing the reporting functionality.

Dropbox for PDF License Fulfillment

dropboxBuilding on the popular use of Dropbox as a file fulfillment upload method introduced in 2013, Dropbox now works as an upload option for PDF license fulfillment.

Additional Options for Subscription Customers

Previously, an end customer could only change his or her payment method, updating a card’s expiration date or, as of a recent release, switching payment method between PayPal and credit card. Now, customers of a subscription product can change their physical address on file or add a VAT ID for European tax exemption (this last option only shows for European customers).

Release Dec. 22nd, 2013

Expanded Tracking Functionality

Google Tag ManagerSpringBoard’s external tracking functionality has been upgraded. It now allows for more flexible external tracking placement & functionality, including support for Google Tag Manager, a popular service that aggregates a site’s tracking tags and serves them asynchronously. Here are the highlights of SpringBoard’s upgraded tracking functionality:

  • You can now include tracking code on every page of the order process (previously, this was limited to final/conversion page only).
  • You can optionally switch out code on completion page only. This code can take advantage of common order variables such as #{order.id} and #{order.subTotalUSD.textValue}.
  • You can insert custom code in 3 locations: head, after body begin, before body end (previously only before body end).
  • You can test external tracking before going live – tracking instances now have a status like many other objects within SpringBoard, as you can see in the screenshot below.
Tracking Modules as Objects

In upgrading External Tracking, SpringBoard has also introduced some new template tags to make outputting JSON easier.

These additions facilitate Google Tag Manager integrations, as well as other more complex integrations not previously possible.

Tags are snippets of code, usually JavaScript, provided by 3rd party vendors or partners, which are implemented in the source code of a web page or site, with no visual impact on the site. Tags gather and send data to external servers in order to track user interaction, such as clicks, click paths, site engagement, social media actions, and conversions (newsletter subscriptions, sales, sign ups and other measurable user actions). Conversions are sometimes known as goals, and tag-based metrics help companies assess the ROI of ad spend, SEO efforts and UI design in leading users to attain these goals – faster & in greater percentages.

Google Tag Manager is a platform for aggregating a site’s various tags and serving them in an optimized manner that can improve page load times. It is designed to allow marketers to manage their analytics needs within a web-based service, while easing demands on a company’s IT department. The service has built-in templates for many common 3rd party tags and can accommodate a wide variety of code snippets. It also has permissions and version history features.

Posted in Features, Marketing Tactics, SpringBoard | Comments closed

SpringBoard Moves to Rapid Release Schedule – Platform Updates November-December 2013

logo-springboardSpringBoard, as you’ll see with these bundled release notes, is now adhering to a more rapid release schedule, enabling faster turnaround of feature requests and other upgrades. For this post, we’ve bundled all our November and December releases, starting with 11/14/13 and finishing up with 12/16/13.

Release 2013.11.14

FastSpring’s mid-November release offers improvements to the Fulfillment Actions UI, a new Subscription API ability, file uploading verification when auto-logged off and file name stability during download in files with spaces or special characters.

  • The Fulfillment Actions on a product will appear in the following order, if you have them on the product: Email / Web Fulfillment, File Download, all Licenses (including Signed PDFs), Physical Shipment.
  • The User Interface when adding Fulfillment Actions to a product has been redesigned, allowing at-a-glance fulfillment actions, some of which were previously at deeper levels of the interface:

fulfillment-ui

  • You now have the ability for the Subscription Update API to change a subscription’s referrer field.
  • Coupon codes used on a subscription are now available to be included in notifications. Now the coupon code used on a subscription order (that can be found by using Order Search for find the order, clicking the subscription, and clicking Edit) can be used in any Subscription Notification using the variable #{subscription.coupon}.
  • For the default browser/Flash uploader, the system now allows verification of an uploaded file after logout. Clicking verify while logged out via auto logout/timeout could previously cause file loss and the need to re-upload. Now Springboard can properly verify the file when logged out.
  • Payment instructions and payment methods can now be deleted.
  • A report can now be created to show sales of a group of products.
  • Issues with filenames with spaces or special characters now are corrected, so that downloaded files have the exact same name as the upload. Previously, if you had spaces or certain other characters in your filename, incorrect file names could occur when downloaded to the customer’s computer, due to an HTTP header issue.

Release 2013.11.27

FastSpring’s late November release offers permanent links to order and subscription details and updates to order page translations.

  • There are now permanent links (permalinks) to a customer’s order details or subscription details. This feature provides better integration with external back office systems, and has been high on our client request list. Simply replace XYZ in the following links with the Order ID or the Subscription Reference, respectively:
    https://springboard.fastspring.com/home/order.xml?ref=XYZ
    https://springboard.fastspring.com/home/subscription.xml?ref=XYZ
  • Hungarian has been added as a full localization to the platform, making 22 foreign language localizations in total to date.
  • Updates have been made to the Spanish translation on order pages containing subscription products.
  • The referrer has been added to the Order Export (CSV) report for returned products.

Release 2013.12.01

FastSpring’s first December release offers updates to custom orders, notifications for changes to contact or payment information, and IE style updates.

  • Better support for order pages in Internet Explorer. Now we defer to the meta tags defined in the window.xhtml file, and we do not emit our own X-UA-Compatible tag (for new styles only).
  • On custom orders, the open event now shows the creator of the custom orders.
  • When someone updates the contact information or payment information on your SpringBoard account, FastSpring now sends you an email notification.
  • Simplified Chinese is now the default for Chinese speaking countries.

Release 2013.12.08

This SpringBoard release offers flexible subscription charge options for end users, additional information on reports and improved clarity in the coupon UI.

  • Springboard now allows customers to change subscription payments from credit card to Paypal or from Paypal to credit card. This piece of functionality makes maintaining current & preferred payment details on file even easier for end users.

Release 2013.12.16

  • Direct access URLs have been implemented for subscription management URL actions “update payment method” and “cancel”.
  • UI update: When working within the context of a product, test options are only shown for that product, not all products. This upgrade allows users to focus on context-based display of order pages during testing, and declutters the testing preview window.
Posted in Features, News, SpringBoard | Comments closed

FastSpring to Attend 2014 CES & Affiliate Summit West

ces2014FastSpring will kick off the new year with representatives in Las Vegas attending both the 2014 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES), which runs January 7th–10th, and Affiliate Summit West 2014 (January 12th–14th). If you are a client or prospect of FastSpring and will be attending either of these shows, please contact us. We will be available to meet with you in person.

CES 2014

As the CES site states, “The International CES is the world’s gathering place for all who thrive on the business of consumer technologies … the global stage where next-generation innovations are introduced to the marketplace.” CES showcases more than 3,200 exhibitors, including manufacturers, developers and suppliers of consumer technology hardware, content, technology delivery systems and more; a conference program with more than 300 sessions; and more than 152,000 attendees from more than 150 countries.

welcome-to-las-vegas

With thousands of exhibitors showcasing new products, CES is the biggest event of the year for the consumer electronics industry. The show includes exhibitions and a diverse selection of conference tracks. Keynote speakers this year include two series: “Tech Titans” and “Technology Innovators.” Among the Titans are Intel CEO Brian Krzanich, Audi Chairman Rupert Stadler, Sony President & CEO Kazuo Hirai, Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer and Cisco Chairman & CEO John Chambers. The Innovators aren’t listed, but are promised to be “thought leaders and disruptors – the ‘rock stars’ of their industries.” For more information, visit www.cesweb.org.

Affiliate Summit West

affiliate-summit-logoAffiliate Summit West is a three day conference scheduled just after CES. Affiliate Summit, the premier affiliate marketing conference, was founded by Missy Ward and Shawn Collins in 2003 for the purpose of providing educational sessions on the latest industry issues and fostering a productive networking environment for affiliate marketers.

This three day conference includes an exhibit hall with affiliate merchants, vendors, agencies and networks, as well as multiple tracks of educational sessions covering the latest trends and information from affiliate marketing experts. A list of speakers for this year’s program can be found at www.affiliatesummit.com/14w-speakers/.

In addition, making its debut is a Newcomer Program whose goal is to connect first time attendees with veterans: “Conference veterans volunteer their time to share their past experience, ideas and information to help newcomers optimize their time at the conference.”

Posted in FastSpring Info, News, Tradeshows | Comments closed

FastSpring Ranked 61st Fastest-Growing Company by Deloitte’s Fast 500; Third Consecutive Year in Top 75 of North America’s Fast 500

deloitte-logoSANTA BARBARA, Calif., Nov. 20, 2013 /PRNewswire/ FastSpring, a leading e-commerce payment platform for online vendors of desktop software, software-as-a-service (SaaS), and downloadable games, has announced that the company has been named to Deloitte’s 2013 Technology Fast 500 List. Deloitte ranks FastSpring the 61st fastest-growing company in North America (U.S. and Canada). In 2012, FastSpring ranked 26th on Deloitte’s Fast 500, and in 2011 the company ranked #13. Winners for 2013 were selected based on the highest percentage of revenue growth from 2008 to 2012.

Downloads

“New technologies like cloud and SaaS are at the forefront of the exponential growth we are seeing in software companies,” said Eric Openshaw, vice chairman and Deloitte’s U.S. technology, media and telecommunications leader.” The growth is beyond revenue, with SaaS and cloud technologies allowing software companies to pop up in locations outside of your major tech hubs with workers no longer tethered to a physical workplace. As these technologies become more widely adopted we expect that other technology sectors will begin to embrace them and that will be reflected in our ranking.”

“We’re excited to be recognized by Deloitte for the 3rd year in a row as one of the fastest-growing technology companies in North America,” said Tom Tzakis, CEO of FastSpring. “Our continued growth serves as a testament to our relentless focus on client and customer satisfaction and the power of our easy-to-use, next-generation technology.”

FastSpring delivers solutions to more than 2,200 desktop software and SaaS companies worldwide seeking to sell products online through one-time purchases or on a recurring subscription basis. In addition to handling global payments and order management for software companies, FastSpring provides a suite of merchandising capabilities that enables companies to grow online sales by maximizing customer order size and optimizing the order page and checkout experience. FastSpring enables software and video game publishers to focus on growing their own business through marketing efforts and product development while leaving the complexities of building and maintaining an e-commerce infrastructure and product merchandising system to FastSpring.

About Deloitte Technology Fast 500

The Deloitte Technology Fast 500 is the pre-eminent technology awards program in the U.S. and Canada with 2013 being its 19th anniversary. Combining technological innovation, entrepreneurship and rapid growth, Fast 500 companies large, small, public, and private are on the cutting edge and are transforming the way we do business.

About FastSpring:

Based in Santa Barbara, California, FastSpring provides an all-in-one e-commerce payment, merchandising and fulfillment platform for online vendors that sell desktop software, SaaS, and downloadable games. Over 2,200 clients worldwide, from new start-ups to large enterprises, rely on FastSpring’s flexible, next-generation e-commerce platform to power their web stores, enable purchasing from inside their software products, and handle both one-time purchases and recurring subscription payments. Founded in 2005, the company has been consistently ranked as one of the fastest-growing companies in the world by Inc. Magazine, Deloitte & Touche, and other industry sources.

Contact

Michael Johnson, FastSpring PR Team
michael.johnson [at] fastspring.com
(770) 846-9163

SOURCE: FastSpring

Posted in FastSpring Info, News, Press Releases | Comments closed

How To Build A Stronger Connection With Your Customers Through Story Telling

Do you remember having a teacher in school who constantly read his or her notes as he/she lectured at you day after day? You could not keep yourself from yawning and zoning out.  You couldn’t concentrate, and the teacher was not making a connection. There was no relevance to you.

Perhaps you also had a teacher that rarely used notes, that told fascinating stories about actual experiences that made you question the world, and your place in it. You paid attention throughout the class. You wanted to hear the next riveting detail. You connected with the story.

Story Telling is a Powerful Tool for Selling Software Online

tell-your-story-concept
Companies that sell software online can increase their sales by telling a story and making a real connection with their prospective customers.

Customers will pay more for digital products and services that have the ability to make them feel good about their interaction and connection with the company. So create a connection by telling a brand story on your website.

Every company has a story.  How did you come up with the idea in the first place? How did you agree on the name of the company? How did you get where you are today?  Why do you love what you do?

A good story will create positive interaction with potential customers and can lead to increased conversion and more loyal long-term customer relationships. The most effective stories entertain, inform, and offer value for potential customers.

Let’s explore an example. Ikea has a compelling story. According to their website, “At IKEA, our vision is to create a better everyday life for the many people. Most of the time, beautifully designed home furnishings are usually created for the few who can afford them. From the beginning, IKEA has taken a different path.”

Ikea empathizes with the customers and responds to “the home furnishing needs of people around the world: people with many different needs, tastes, dreams, aspirations and wallet sizes; people who want to improve their homes and their everyday lives.”

Ikea then involves the customer in their story. “Our business idea is based on a partnership with the customer. First we do our part … so that we can get the best deals, and you can get the lowest price. Then you do your part.”

Stories to Tell to Create Connections with Customers

Stories are what make your company human. They are what makes your company unique. Let those stories speak for you.

Ikea puts customers first. They “want to create a better life for people. That includes people and communities all over the world.”

Having trouble writing your own stories? Ask your current customers! What do you do better than others in the same business niche? What do they love most about your company? How do they describe your company to others? How did they find you in the first place? Turn their answers into stories that make connections with new customers.

Connect with your Customers through Photos and Video

Customers enjoy looking at photos that give them a sense for your company, its culture, and what sets it apart. Photos allow them a little peek into your company.

father-son-meal-smUse imagery to share your company values. Ikea’s focus is on their customer and relationships. Their imagery, shown right, often shows families interacting, like a son tasting his father’s meal.

Share important milestones in your company. Milestones include reaching X sales, expanding into X market, or having so much demand for your products that you hire more staff. Also, use attention-grabbing and relevant images when sharing links on social media networks.

Go a step further and tell your story through video.

Tell Your Customers’ Success Stories

success-business-man-woman

Have customers told you how satisfied they are with your product? Have they shared inventive ways they’ve used it?

Providing customer testimonials and telling a customer’s story are great ways to promote your business. They allow potential customers to learn from previous customers.They inspire your other customers to share their stories. And they create a better relationship between your company and the customer that shared the story.

Use content that they shared with you. Or go a step further, interview your customer about how they successfully used your product or service, and create a case study which new, prospective customers can read about as they are making their purchase decision while visiting your site.

Detailed customer stories can help foster a sense of community within your brand. Just make sure that you have permission to publish their stories.

You can see examples of how FastSpring shares client stories and feedback on our Client Testimonials Page and in the FastSpring blog.

It’s valuable to share meaningful content with potential and current customers. Telling a captivating, relevant, and compelling story is a marketing strategy you can use to help your company grow. So make your story one that will inspire and motivate your customers.

Posted in E-Commerce Insights, Marketing Tactics | Comments closed

New & Updated Support Documents

info-support-docsTo document the SpringBoard platform’s ever-growing capabilities, FastSpring continues to broaden and deepen its knowledge base — adding and updating support articles on detailed feature workflows, documenting new features coming out of release cycles, explaining steps for 3rd party integrations, and answering frequently asked questions.

This is the third installment in our support article roundup series. In case you missed them, you can view the first post here and the second post here. Here are some recently published articles with brief summaries. To search or browse all topics, you can go to support.fastspring.com/forums.

FastSpring’s APIs

https://support.fastspring.com/entries/23517003

An application programming interface (API) is a protocol intended to be used as an interface by software components to communicate with each other. An API allows your servers to talk to our servers. FastSpring offers five types of APIs, each of which is described in this article.

Store Testing Outside of SpringBoard

https://support.fastspring.com/entries/21734724

With so many factors available to you when setting up your products, it is important to run tests to make sure that the settings chosen work the way you expect. Store testing is often the best way to make sure the user experience is optimal; testing also confirms how SpringBoard notifies you of completed transactions. Once you have completed store testing within SpringBoard, you should set up your website to link to your FastSpring store. You should then run additional test orders and they should begin on your website, where you will click a Buy Now or Add to Cart link for your product, and then you should continue through the FastSpring order process.

Variable Pricing Setup for Subscriptions (updated)

https://support.fastspring.com/entries/21130867

The setup for variable pricing, typically based on usage charges or overage charges, is slightly complicated, and depends on a number of variables. In SpringBoard, we have tags, which are really named variables that are able to hold a positive integer value. We can use tags or quantity to accomplish variable pricing. The following are two scenarios for various situations for which we have already used tags to accomplish variable pricing, as well as an example that uses quantity. Look for a scenario that is most closely related to what you need to accomplish. If you need any assistance with setting up variable pricing, our support team can help.

Editing Pre-Existing Email Fulfillment Templates

https://support.fastspring.com/entries/24006482

Once you have created an Email Fulfillment Template that is reusable on multiple products, go to SpringBoard’s Store Home » Products and Pages. Select a product that has the Email Fulfillment Template you want to change. Click to Edit the Email Fulfillment. Edit the contents and click Save. This will change the Email Fulfillment Template, which, in turn, will change the Email Fulfillment for any products that uses this template.

License Management & Copy Protection with CryptoLicensing

https://support.fastspring.com/entries/22011934

FastSpring easily integrates with CryptoLicensing, whose secure licensing and protection software includes everything you need to safeguard your digital product, including unbreakable cryptographic licenses, hassle-free activation, and a hardware locking scheme.

Integrating DLGuard Download Security with FastSpring

https://support.fastspring.com/entries/24019767

Do you provide a paid or free membership area? DLGuard, a download management and payment security systems application, is an excellent tool to easily manage your memberships, and has many other features. Integrating DLGuard with FastSpring is easy to do. It simply involves adding a Web Fulfillment to your products and a Notification in SpringBoard. After the setup in SpringBoard, create the matching product in DLGuard and edit the details in the Edit Product page.

Adding a Quantity to a Subscription (updated)

https://support.fastspring.com/entries/21042303

This article will teach you how to add a quantity field to a subscription product. This ability is often needed when you want a customer to be able to purchase multiple licenses of a subscription product.

Single Email Fulfillment for a Product Bundle

https://support.fastspring.com/entries/24027938

When creating a product bundle to offer several products for sale as one combined product with an overall discounted price, instead of an Email Fulfillment being set up and sent for each product in the bundle, you can create a single Email Fulfillment that will provide delivery information, including download links and license codes, for all the products in the bundle.

File Download Policy for Customers

https://support.fastspring.com/entries/24005432

The secure download links created for File fulfillment, which are sent to your customer in an Email Fulfillment, are limited by the number of download attempts and a time period for which they are valid. The default limits on download attempts and time are based on our experience in balancing support versus security for your digital products. If necessary, you can manually reset expired file download links for customers.

Setting Up Tiered Pricing (or Volume Pricing) for a Single Product

https://support.fastspring.com/entries/21952570

One way to attract and convert buyers in your store may be through tiered pricing: offering different price points when volume is the key differentiator. Tiered pricing is especially welcome to educational buyers and businesses with multiple employees who will be using your software. In the digital products world, offering customers an incentive of lower per-unit pricing as more products are purchased is very appealing because the cost of selling an additional unit of your product is minimal – creating another license key for a piece of software requires no additional cost. This article will help you create volume discounts based on quantity tiers for one specific product.

Setting Up a Remote License Script

https://support.fastspring.com/entries/23530093

Setting up a remote license script is a somewhat complicated, but often-used method for creating license codes. Using this license type will typically cause the order process to send an HTTP POST, with or without customer data, to a remote URL or web service on your server. The remote server response (the license string that you would like given to the customer) will be captured and stored as a license for the order and will be based on basic information sent, such as license name and quantity. Remote Fulfillment Actions require a URL setup on a remote server to intercept requests from our system.

Setting Up A/B Split Testing (updated)

https://support.fastspring.com/entries/21698752

A/B testing (also called split testing or bucket testing) is a method of marketing testing by which a baseline control sample is compared to one or a variety of single-variable test samples in order to improve response or conversion rates. In A/B testing, you have two (or more) different situations: Situation 1 and Situation 2. There are two restrictions which will allow you to identify the impact of each change: (1) there should be only one difference between the situations, and (2) the situations should be run simultaneously. For example, if you change the price of your product in mid-December, it will be difficult to tell whether an increase in purchases is due to the new price or more users shopping for the holiday season. Instead, it would be better to run 50% of your purchase links to one price and 50% to another price, so that you can directly compare the results.

Manage Mailing Lists with MailChimp (updated)

https://support.fastspring.com/entries/20771088

This article will teach you how to integrate MailChimp, an email marketing and email list manager, with FastSpring. If you have not already, go to www.mailchimp.com and get an account with MailChimp. Once you have an account, you can either complete the FastSpring setup yourself, following our five easy-to-follow steps in this article, or you can open a support ticket with specific information from MailChimp. Other mail programs are supported as well.

Setting up a View Shopping Cart Link on Your Website

https://support.fastspring.com/entries/22829706

If you have multiple products in your store and you would like your customers to be able to see the current contents of their cart while continuing to browse products on your website, you can add a View Cart link. Before using this feature, make sure you have set up your Catalog Behavior and Catalog URL to make sure the Continue Shopping button in your FastSpring store takes a customer back to your website. The View Cart feature is especially useful if you are using page linking option 4: Shopping Cart – Add Product to Order or page linking option 5: Shopping Cart – View Product Detail Page.

Limiting Customers to Specific Countries for Purchasing (updated)

https://support.fastspring.com/entries/23481873

For various reasons, many including legal issues, you may want to limit the purchasing of your product to customers in one or more specific countries.

Offering a Coupon in an Email Fulfillment

https://support.fastspring.com/entries/22032494

If your customers tend to buy one product and never return, offering them a coupon in the email fulfillment they receive (with their download links and license codes) may create a repeat customer. Additionally, you can create a great incentive for high-volume customers to continue buying from you by rewarding large purchases with a coupon only after the order total has reached a set dollar amount. Depending on how you set up the coupon, it can create a discount for a specific product or for any product in your store.

How to Change your SpringBoard Password

https://support.fastspring.com/entries/24008571

  • Updated for the latest SpringBoard UI design

Did you know that FastSpring’s support team recently was honored with a Stevie® Award for Customer Service Department of the Year? If you’re interesting in selling through FastSrping and enjoying award-winning customer service while taking advantage of these and many more features of our SpringBoard platform, please visit us at www.fastspring.com.

Posted in FastSpring Info, SpringBoard | Comments closed

How To Remarket To Prospective Customers After They Have Abandoned Your Cart & Complete The Sale

remarketing-emailPotential customers who started, but have not completed, the checkout process are close to making a purchasing decision. Studies have shown that, in general, about 67% of online users abandon their shopping cart before completing a purchase. After you have spent countless hours designing and optimizing your website, perfecting your pricing strategy, and developing your product, almost 7 out of every 10 customers will intend to purchase it but do not do so. However, you can significantly increase conversion rates if you follow up with these potential customers.

FastSpring Now Captures Customers’ Email Addresses

Don’t give up on these potential customers so easily! Instead, FastSpring can easily and automatically capture email addresses of abandoned potential customers and send them to a specific (e.g. re-marketing) list in your MailChimp account or other third-party mailing list account. There you can design re-marketing emails to turn potential customers into actual customers.

Reasons Why Potential Customers Abandon Carts

cart-abandoned02Potential customers abandon carts for a number of reasons, but the three that matter most to companies selling software online are described below.

  1. Pricing and Unexpected Cost: Your potential customers want to know they are getting the best deal for your product. If during the order process, there is a coupon field, they may search the Internet for a coupon, and if they can’t find one, they may not purchase. Statistically, however, most people who place items in their cart and then try to find a coupon fully intend to purchase, and will eventually purchase at regular price. One unexpected cost that may dissuade customers from purchasing is the value added tax (VAT is 13% – 27% of order total depending on country) applied when purchasing in European and South American countries. That’s why FastSpring offers a Gross Pricing Model as an option, whereby you set prices on products that include any VAT. The upside is that there is no unexpected cost for the customer; the downside is that you will receive a varying price for the sale of your product, depending on the country in which it is sold.
  2. Distractions: Potential customers easily get distracted in their personal and online life. They may fully intend to purchase your digital product, but then they receive a text message, phone call or email – or their attention is suddenly demanded by their family – and they forget all about it. While they may intend to come back later to purchase, their best intentions may remain just that – intentions. The intent to purchase can be reawakened; it’s still there, just dormant.
  3. “Just Browsing” Experiences: Potential customers may just be browsing through you site and adding items to their cart. In fact, according to SeeWhy, a company whose focus is to help e-commerce companies reach website visitors who abandon carts, 99% of first-time visitors will not purchase on their first visit. Although 25% of these visitors will never purchase, 75% will abandon their cart but in fact intend to purchase. Sometimes customers put items in their cart that they would like to purchase, but that they cannot afford to purchase at that time. In effect, their cart becomes a wish list.

Email Remarketing Best Practices – Timing

Shopping-cart-abandonment-time-to-recovery1.jpg

Source: See/Why Research 2/11 – Click to Enlarge

  • Send 1 to 3 emails to potential customers who abandon their carts. Sometimes companies think three emails is too many, but sending the third email takes very little time or money, and has been shown to convert at similar success levels as the second remarketing message.
  • Start remarketing within 24 hours of the cart abandonment, if not sooner. Customer’s interest in making a purchase decreases significantly over time, as shown in the graph. 54% of those customers that are going to purchase your products will do so within the first 12 hours after cart abandonment. According to Listrak, an eCommerce email marketing company, companies should send the first message within one to three hours of cart abandonment to reach their customers while they are still contemplating their purchase. They found that they receive the highest open and click rates for emails sent after one hour, but the highest average order values for emails sent after three hours.
  • Send the second email between 24 and 48 hours after cart abandonment and the third message between 48 and 72 hours after that. These emails provide you three chances to reach your customers within the first six days, after which the rate of conversion is almost none.

Email Remarketing Best Practices – General Content

  • Address your customers by name to increase the personalization of the interaction.
  • Make it easy for customers to contact you.
  • Phrases such as “Your shopping cart with expire in a few days … place your order now!” or “We cannot guarantee the items left in your cart will continue to be available. Act now!” can create a sense of urgency and prompt customers into action.
  • If you are only selling one product, then you know what your potential customer wanted to purchase. Include an image of or quick feature list for your product in the emails to help encourage them to purchase. In many cases, the added image or a particular feature/benefit is enough to prompt a customer to purchase.
  • Use the remarketing email to market a number of your products. When compared to customers that complete a purchase without remarketing, those customers that abandon their carts spend an average of 55% more when finally completing an order.
  • If you are using FastSpring’s View Shopping Cart Link on Your Website, then you can also provide a link in your remarketing emails that could take potential customers back to their shopping cart. Please note: this will only work properly if the customer clicks on the link during the same browsing session as they were in when adding items to their cart.

Email Remarketing Best Practices – Offering Discounts

  • Do not include a discount offer in the first email. Instead, use that email as a simple reminder that the products remain in the cart. This is often enough to prompt a customer into action. You can also offer assistance in the first email, such as “Can we help you?”, which helps create trust while reminding potential customers that they still have items in their carts.
  • Include a small discount in the second email to entice potential customers who are still contemplating making a purchase. In the second email, emphasize why the customer should buy from you and let them know the benefits of ordering from you. For example, you could add “Secure Shopping: We value you as a customer so we never give out your information. Our shopping cart is handled by FastSpring and is secured by the industry leader, Norton Security (formerly VeriSign) to ensure our customers have the highest level of security.” You can also provide benefits to ordering now such as instant access to the product or by telling potential customers you will provide them with a free gift after purchase.
  • crazy-priceFor potential customers who have not purchased after the second email, offer a larger discount in the third message that is too tempting for customers to pass up. Remember that any purchase, no matter the price, still equates to valuable income and the acquisition of a new customer.

Good luck.  We’re very excited to be offering this new re-marketing functionality. Remember…we’re always here to help you in any way we can.

Posted in E-Commerce Insights, Features, Marketing Tactics | Comments closed