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Gotta Have It! Impulse buying on the Web? Why not? Sometimes all customers need is a little nudge.

By Melissa Campanelli

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

You've seen impulse selling in action at the grocery checkout line. But impulse selling on the Internet?

That's right-believe it or not, the Web offers a great opportunity for persuading your customers to make purchases beyond their original intents. In fact, Ruth P. Stevens, president of eMarketing Strategy, a New York City customer acquisition and retention consulting firm, points out that the Net is a perfect forum for impulse selling. "Consumers on the Web are roaming all over the place, with their minds and pocketbooks open," she says. "They are ready and willing to be influenced."

When it comes to encouraging visitors to buy on impulse, you've got plenty of strategies to choose from. But first and foremost is making sure your Web site is designed for fast, convenient sales. "Do everything you can to get out of the way of the purchase," suggests Stevens. "Make sure your site has smooth navigation. Reduce the number of clicks required to get to the purchase. Streamline the order page. Rework the page content to eliminate scrolling."

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