If you’ve been in the e-commerce industry even for a while, you may have noticed: the difference between choosing one website over another to purchase the same product isn’t just about prices.
Why should youoptimize your website conversion rate? Because it is one of the most important factors to the success of your online store. It means getting your visitors to do what you want them to do.
A lot of companies are driven to attract more visitors and often neglect their ability to convert them into clients. Do not even think about using paid marketing such as Google or Facebook Adwords if you don’t have a fully optimized website. What’s the point of investing in traffic growth if it cannot be converted into sales?
In another blog article (once you’ve followed our advices), we will explain how to increase your visibility and attract visitors but first, you need to be sure that the so-called visitors are going to turn into customers. Follow our next advices and make sure that your visitors leave your website only after buying one of your products!
I. Use a sales funnel your visitors are used to
The only thing your visitors should be focused on is their “buying instinct” and not on trying to understand the ergonomics of your website.
See an Ad/Visit Site Using URL – > View Product Page -> View Checkout -> Go through Checkout Process.
In other terms, the process outlined above could be referred to as the funnel that most potential buyers go through before an actual transaction is made. Following this process is the easiest way to avoid any visitor’s frustration.
When a visitor browses your website, he or she either looks for more information on your brand or is willing to purchase something. Your optimization goal is to create the easiest browsing possible. How many clicks does it take to go from the frontpage to the checkout of a particular item? If it takes more than 3 clicks, you probably need to do some optimization and avoid unnecessary pages.
This being said, do not forget to respect the balance between a user-friendly look and feel and good SEO practices.
II. Merchandise your website and products
Merchandising is all about designing an enjoyable experience for your customers and ensure that your website is usable for their shopping needs.
Make sure that all the relevant information about your products and services is eye-level in every category and that you never make your customers search too long for the information they need.
Transform your website into a real online store by promoting your new products and best sales directly on the front page.
Create a kickass search engine for your online store. Make sure that your visitors can quickly find their dream product. Picture your search engine as if it were a salesman in an actual shop. When the customer visits your website, he may or may not have a clear idea of what he or she wants.
It is the role of the search engine to guide them to the right product. The more efficient the search engine is, the more likely your visitor will buy from you.
Here are a few examples of what you can do to improve your search engine :
A search with orthographic and phonetic tolerance, resistant to typos.
Rich and customizable auto completion that suggests and highlights products, brands, categories and sales.
A semantic search that includes the words used by your visitors and customers even if they are not the same as the ones used in your product presentations.
III. Display reasons of trust
Even if internet is becoming more and more secure, the amount of bad customer services and scams have turned the frequent internet buyer suspicious. Especially when your business is new and you need to convince your potential customer that you are professional and that your service is totally safe.
17% of those who abandon their charts do so because of “concerns about payment security”. Be sure to place “trust badges” during the checkout process Feel free to install a live chat option on your website.
Consumers prefer lie chat over all other forms of customer service. It allows you to quickly answer all their concerns and turn a “prudent” visitor into a “secured” customer.
Consider creating a FAQ. Be sure to display answers to the most frequently asked questions. By providing answers about guarantee conditions, refunds or delivery options, you will secure your customers in their will to buy products from you.
Provide testimonials on the checkout page. Testimonials are probably one of the best forms of social proofs. Properly used, they will reassure your website visitors before clicking on the buy button. Talk to your ex-customers and guide them with the right questions in order to get the best testimonials!
IV. Make your checkout process as simple as possible
"Think of every field in your checkout as a hurdle your prospect has to leap over. Then ask yourself if it is worth the possibility of losing a sale - or thousands - because you want to fill a data base"
Joanna Wiebe, from “CopyBlogger”In order to sell a pair of jeans, do you really need to know the name of your customer’s pet? Or his birthdate? Reduce the number of information fields that your prospect would require to fill in.
It’s all about finding the right balance between getting the data you need (delivery address, etc.) and making the checkout process less tiresome.
Furthermore, you can even remove the need for your customer to ‘sign up in order to checkout’ and provide them with an option to ‘check out as a guest’ (Just ask for their email, you can acquire more data during another sale).
V. Transform your product presentation into your own online salesman
A lot of e-commerce websites underestimate their product presentation. When your potential customer is reading the product presentation, he or she stands at the gates of the checkout. Do not waste your chance and do everything you can to convince him to click on your buy button.
Do not focus on the boring technical aspects (height, color, etc.). Instead try to highlight the added value of your product. The technical characteristics should be written somewhere for the ones who want it, but you don't need to highlight them.
Transform your product presentation into a unique selling proposition. Why is your product better than the others? What does it allow the customer to achieve?
Of course, it comes without saying that your product presentation quality will be linked to how well you know your target needs and persona. Find out why your ex-customers bought your products and display these reasons for your product presentation.
VI. Don't take your customer for a fool by hiding shipping costs
A recent study made by Hubspot claims that the average checkout abandonment rate is 67.4% and the majority of abandoners cite hidden delivery charges as the main reason for cart abandonment.
We are not saying that you should get rid of your shipping costs. A lot of e-commerce giants offer free shipping without a minimum spending but we know that a lot of companies can’t swallow the cost of such a practice.
The key is in the transparency of the costs. If these shipping costs and options are shown to the customer as early as possible in its journey through your website, this will certainly prevent a lot of unpleasant surprises.
Either it is on your front page, your product page or at the beginning of the checkout, be sure to explain all your delivery options and minimum spending requirements for free shipping. Another possibility is to include these costs in the price of your items and use “Free shipping” as a marketing argument.
Have fun optimizing your website and tell us about your results!
We hope these advices will help your online store to be more efficient. Of course, there are technical aspects like loading speed and responsiveness that also impact the selling potential of your website.
But these are issues that should be optimized for every kind of website, however, on today’s article we preferred to only focus on e-commerce tips - long story short, go fast and mobile!
If you found our article interesting or if you’d like to add any inputs, feel free to leave a comment below! Be sure to subscribe to our newsletter so you can be notified when our future articles about improving online traffic goes live (SEO optimization, content and social media marketing, paid marketing and many more.).