HRoth - 1:18 pm on Dec 2, 2013 (gmt 0)
Knowing what I know about your niche customers, dickbaker, I would think that if they were taken to a new site with tons of products after they were used to being taken to your old site with not very many, that they would be afraid to buy anything and would think it was some kind of gubmint trap. That said, I have seen a drop in my income this year for the first time in 13 years. A friend with a huge store in my niche has seen 1/3 drop in his biz since spring. He has had an online shop as long as I have and it is actually much more sophisticated than mine and sells thousands of items vs. my hundreds. People are scared, and our gubmint is making them even more so with all these shut down the gubmint this, fiscal cliff that, end of Social Security, the sky is falling stuff. And there is more than that. There is the reality that great gobs of skilled people have been unemployed for more than two years and are no longer even being counted as unemployed. I know a number of them. My sense is they are not going to be getting a job, basically ever. Not because they are no good, but because of the gradual collapse of our economy. There, I said it. And the fact is that people without jobs can't buy stuff. I have noticed in my own shop that whereas in the past I had a lot of people buying $35 worth of stuff, now I have a lot of people buying $10 worth of stuff and some buying $200 worth of stuff. So there is a real spread in the amount of a sale that didn't exist before. My average sale has gone up only because I have, no evil eye, been getting very large sales from people obviously so far unaffected by the SHTF.
I think the idea of making yourself more of a presence as a person would help a lot. IMO, that is what Facebook is for. I don't buy ads on there, but I post regularly with photos both on my biz page and on my personal page. I do talk about new products some but I am there to make myself human. I can't quantify how much it has helped, but I now have a lot more contact with my customers and that has brought me some really big sales and special projects. I see people only there posting just stuff about their products and it looks like spam. But people who post about their biz as a part of their life and their life as part of the niche--to me, this cannot help but inculcate trust. And when people are soaked in fear, they need to trust us for us to survive. I think the idea about doing youtube videos is a good one. Also, what about making an ebook of the info on your site?