E-Commerce websites always focus on strategies to increasing web traffic but does it help in sales conversion? The answer is “Yes” but it comes with its own limitation. The actual sales conversion that happens by purely driving traffic to a website is very limited. If you wonder about what is actually needed to increase the conversion rate of a website then you must understand it is nothing but the user engagement model you employ!
But what is user engagement model?
What is User Engagement Model?
Like the term suggest, User Engagement Model, is not really a complex model – but the focus on understanding and analyzing how your website visitors engages your with your online store and then make changes that may help you convert more visitors into buyer. With the help of the same, the e-commerce business can attract a lot more visitors to buy, and buy more from you!
So if you understand how your website visitors engages with your website, you can improve your store’s conversion rate. Yes, that’s Right! I will shortly show you how using the following proven strategies that will help you improve your store’s conversion rate:
You can’t improve what you can’t measure! Make sure to use a good analytic tool for your e-commerce website.
You need to track how your visitors engages with your website, what pages they visits, how often they visits, how they arrive at your website, what actions they take, what actions they perform on your site, when and why they leave your website.
There are many great free, open-source and paid alternatives for e-commerce analytic tools exists including Google Analytics and Piwik, and many others! Pick the one that works best for you.
Go for an analytic tool that helps you also perform A/B and Multi-Variate Testing, and then create campaign to convert more visitors into buyers considering the data you collected.
Research has found that 47% of users expect your web page to load in under two seconds, and 57% of your website visitors will abandon your website if its load time is 3 seconds or more.
If you don’t have a fast loading website, then you’re loosing a great online business. Only a fast loading website will prevent the users from abandoning the site and moving to your competitor’s website.
As per an Econsultancy survey, it was found that 32% of respondents trusts site if it looks professional and well designed.
Compromising on design costs a lot of business for e-commerce stores. Make sure your e-commerce store has a simple yet compelling web design. Make it very easy for your visitors to buy on your online store. Use the design that is simple; so your visitors doesn’t requires someone’s help to buy on you website.
There are many areas where you can improve design – like use high resolution graphics, make your search prominent, use easy to use navigation menu and filters, make your contact details easy to reach. Most important, use a very clear, big and prominent Call to Actions. For e-commerce sites “Add-to-Cart” and “Checkout” are the most important call to actions. Make sure your customers can find it easily and don’t struggle to figure out how to proceed to next step.
There are many other things you can do here. The key is to make it easy to use for your visitors to buy on your website.
If your website is not search engine friendly then you won’t be found by people using Search Engines. Make sure your website is not blocked for search engine crawlers and submit XML Sitemap to all major search engines. Monitor for errors in crawling and fix it. Make good use of Google Webmaster Tools to perform the same. Also make sure that your HTML mark-up is error free and you’re using semantic markup.
Also ensure that you use Structured Markup that makes it easy for search engines to understand your content, and help them create rich snippets. If you’re not sure how to do this in-house, hire an e-Commerce agency or expert to help with these.
“Quality product descriptions can transform e-commerce conversion rates — it’s common to see increases of 30-100%.” – Craig Anderson on E-Commerce Copywriting: The Guide to Selling More
Both Search Engines and your website visitors don’t like sites with crappy product description content. Write a unique and neat content for all your Products and other pages. Try to make it as useful as possible for your buyers. Double check spelling and grammar errors. Silly spelling and grammar mistakes may turn down potential sale. Moreover, make sure to use good font size that matches with your site overall design as well as easy to read.
Its important to note here that you must not use copied content or manufacturer’s content on your website as Google considers it as Duplicate Content, and can penalize you in your search rankings.
Understand that your website is literally a store where some prefer to do window shopping and others buy. Your store irrespective of the fact it is an online store must give the customers the feel of buying the product like how they do it in a walk-in store. Only high resolution images which will let them feel the product much better, inspect it deeply, check out the designs better can satisfy the buyers. Provide the zoom facility when the roll over the image so that the buyers can decide better about the product.
If your product demands, add multiple product pictures for your visitors.
Bazaarvoice found that products with reviews have a 12.5% higher conversion rate than those without and products with 20+ reviews have a 83.85 higher conversion than those products without reviews.
What a shop assistant in a walk-in shop does is exactly what a product review does in an online store (this is like getting first-hand opinion). So make sure your product review is compelling as it answers everything a user is looking for. In the products details page you can also include the product reviews to give the customers a good feel about buying the product.
Moreover, a good review helps you in improving your search engine ranking as well.
Yes! About 30% of online customers abandon a website for the complication or delay involved in logging in or signing up for the website. Make sure you stay alarmed of such customers by offering easy Login and Registration process. Offering social login like Facebook Login or Open ID login is an instant and easy login process that makes the customer feels comfortable with. This can greatly improve your sign-up and conversion rate.
As per a research 56 percent of buyers have left items in their carts because they intended to come back later and purchase. Persistent shopping carts enable consumers to come back, find their nice full cart saved previously, and complete the transaction. This allows visitors to start from where they left. This can greatly save customer’s time and help you convert more.
As per an Econsultancy survey, it was found that hidden charges may turn away 70% of buyers during checkout.
Many websites do not reveal the delivery charges until the buyer has reached the check-out page. And it could be a shocking finding an additional shipping charges for customers at the last stage of order. This can turn down a potential sale for you.
Make sure to display delivery and shipping information as early as possible to avoid these. Most sites offers Free shipping, if you do make sure to advertise it. Or if you charge additional shipping, go for a fixed fees if possible. For example, some website displays exact shipping cost and approximate delivery dates on the product details page and on cart and checkout pages to improve conversion.
You can also display stock availability status on your product details pages. All these information helps buyer decide and make them more confident about making purchase at your online shop.
As per an Econsultancy survey, it was found that 36% of respondents will deter purchase if the checkout process is too long.
Optimize the Checkout of your e-store with simple flow, detailed information, guarantee/security badges, support contact no., etc. Checkout page of your website should answer all the delivery and shipping related doubts a buyer has. This not only helps in retaining your existing customers but also increases the reputation of your service.
Use your e-commerce analytic tool to perform A/B split test to check what performs best for you.
As per an Econsultancy survey, it was found that 58% of respondents will deter purchase due to concerns over Payment Security and 48% respondents told that displaying Trust Marks on website make then trust the website.
Make sure that you’re displaying security badges and trust marks on prominent pages and checkout pages of your store! SSL Certificate gives the confident to your customers that they are shopping with a reputed and a Global Certificate Authority certified seller.
As per an Econsultancy survey, it was found that 46% of respondents trusts site that displays clear contact number and address details. Moreover, in the same survey it was also found that lack of contact details can turn down 33% buyers from buying from your e-commerce store.
Make it easy for your visitors to contact you. Be it the contact information about your store and offices or the contact information of the customer care center, they should be bold and clear. You should have a dedicated contact page with all the details. Moreover, display your contact details on checkout pages too.
You can also leverage using a Live Chat to help your customers. Make sure your support is online when your customers are buying. This help customers to ask questions about the problem they are facing on your website related to order or checkout or any other issue they encounter. If they have someone real, with whom they can talk instantly about the problem they are facing, it can make them a permanent buyer at your online store.
Product Recommendation helps your visitors to find the best product for his need. If your visitors are not sure what to buy, they won’t buy! Help them find the best product. Most e-commerce software has in-built Product Recommendation Engine that suggests relevant products based on pre-defined list or using some complex logic.
If your visitors can’t find product on your store, they won’t buy from your store!
Imagine a situation where you need to go through several pages to find a product you want to buy. Tedious! Isn’t it! I won’t shop on such sites. And I’m sure you will not be buying there too. Make it easy to find products on your store using a powerful full text search engine on your e-commerce store. You can also use auto-complete suggestions for search term to offer an enhanced experienced to your visitors while they search.
As noted by Jim Kalbach on ROI Of Faceted Navigation, Faceted Navigation helped Kiddicare and Otto Group to double their Conversion Rate.
Faceted Navigation or Drill Down Search (also known as Ajax filters or multi-facet filters or facet browsing) helps your customer to perform a drill down on catalog and search pages using a set of pre-defined filtering criteria that could be a product features, stock status, discounts, etc.
Faceted Navigation helps your visitors to find exact product they are looking to buy very quickly by applying their choice of filtering criteria on the pages to filter the products that matches with criteria.
With e-commerce sites with large catalogs this is a must have feature. This also enables you to offer a visibility into the merchandizing you sell online and greatly help you convert more visitors into buyers.
As per the research, it was found that 47% of online buyers would only buy discounted products, except under exceptional circumstances. 62% said they are looking for a section that identifies sales and specials.
Make it easy for your visitors to find products with discounts or offers. The best way is to have a separate section where all those products with discounts or offers are available at one place.
Offering a clear progress indicator while your customers are checking out is a great way to convey the buyers where they are in the process. It gives them sense of control and helps them proceed with next step during checkout.
It means that customer left at the time of checking out from the cart without completing purchase. This is a widespread issue for all online stores. Make sure you monitor this and tackle this. There could be many reasons for the cart abandonment, like high prices, additional shipping or payment method related charges, tax, forced registration with lengthy process, slow site speed, etc.
Try to monitor and understand what could be the issue and resolve them. More importantly, send a follow-up email to those who abandoned cart may be with a reason to complete the purchase like discount code!
As per the survey it was found that 50% of those who regularly shop online said that if their preferred payment method is not available, they will cancel the purchase. Similarly over one third (40%) said they would feel more comfortable purchasing from a retailer who offers a wide range of payment methods than a retailer who only offers one payment option.
If your buyer’s preferred payment methods are not available, they won’t buy at your store. Make sure to offer multiple payment method options to make payment to your buyers.
If your store does not support product returns, buyers won’t buy from you. Make it easy for your customers to return products to you. Also make it easy for them to find their recently placed orders and cancel it if they want to. Make sure to collect the reasons as why they’re canceling or returning as it may give you a lot insights into the behavior or your buyers.
Make sure to send personalized email and SMS notifications to your customers when they register or buy with you and on all important events related to orders. Also, customize default templates that comes with your e-commerce shop to match with your store personality.
Most sites only collect data when orders are placed. They miss an opportunity to collect pre-purchase data. Pre-purchase data could be anything like customer’s location / zip codes, their wish-lists, their email address, how did they visit your sites, how many pages they have visited, what pages they viewed, what products they compared, what products they added to cart, when did they abandon purchase, why did they completed purchase, etc.!
Most of the e-commerce websites fail to capitalize pre-purchase data because they do not know how much they can utilize it. Pre-purchase data helps a lot in understanding your customers better. Once you have these data, analyze it to understand it, and then plan the promotional campaign for converting them to buyers or buy more from your store. Make sure to use this information to drive email marketing for your stores.
As per ComScore, use of Mobile devices for online shopping is growing at a whopping rate of 47% percentage compared to just 10% growth in shopping using Desktop devices.
Majority of online store traffic now comes from mobile, which is expected to grow even more. If your e-commerce store is not mobile friendly, then you are loosing a huge potential pie of the market. Use responsive layout for your e-commerce store and make sure to check it on all major mobile device platform with mostly used resolutions. Track the important metrics using your analytic tools to make sure you’re not falling behind.
Monitor your website regularly. Fix any problem your customers are facing. Keeping your website fresh and live with new updates and enhancements that makes it easy for your visitors to buy. Use Multivariate testing tools to perform A/B split testing to see how new enhancements are helping you improve (or find that its not working!).
This not only help you create a successful e-commerce stores, but your customers will notice it and value it. And eventually they buy more from you!
If you are also having a physical stores, then make sure your visitors are having a streamline experience through out your physical stores and online stores.
Above are just few proven ways to engage visitors with your e-commerce stores to make them buy more. Applying these things will definitely help you improve your conversion ratio. Please share what steps you’re going to take, and also what worked for you and how it helped you improve your revenue from your online store.
And if you’re looking for hiring a great e-commerce agency to work for you, we can help. Contact us today!