Over the past couple of years or so, the e-commerce industry has experienced a surge of activity largely thanks to the pandemic and the many lockdowns that came with it. A lot of stores, restaurants, and businesses had to shut down their physical locations for their safety and that of their customers.
Even so, people still needed food, supplies, and other essentials such as cleaning products. As such, many businesses moved to the online space and invested in e-commerce to survive the pandemic economy.
However, with over 1 million e-commerce websites in the United States alone, many businesses quickly realized that many other websites were trying to get their product and content on the faces of the right people, trying to engage them and get them to buy or opt-in.
The truth is as much as there are plenty of eCommerce stores, the average eCommerce website often has its conversion rates hovering at around 2 to 3%. But who wants to be average?
Let’s break down some of the most effective ways you can increase the conversion rate of your eCommerce store so you can start selling like a dream.
But first, we’ll take a look at how you should measure your eCommerce conversion rate and some of the reasons why shoppers don’t convert.
What Is an Ecommerce Conversion Rate?
The conversion rate for an eCommerce store is essentially the percentage of web visitors who actually go on to make a purchase. So, if you have 40 sales from 2,000 web visits, 40 ÷ 2,000 = a conversion rate of 2%.
As highlighted earlier, the conversion rate across the entire eCommerce industry lingers between 2 to 3%. Therefore, if you can get a better eCommerce conversion rate, say increase it by a further 2%, you will have doubled your sales.
Reasons Why Web Visitors Don’t Convert
Understanding why online shoppers choose not to convert is important. This insight can help you not just anticipate, but also avoid repeating the same costly errors. As long as you know what you need to do to fix the issues, your business should make gradual progress.
That said, some of the reasons your website visitors are not buying include:
- They don’t understand your product.
- Your images are poor or unclear.
- Your web copy isn’t persuasive.
- There’s no clear call to action.
- The buyer’s journey isn’t straightforward.
- Your site isn’t optimized for mobile.
- You aren’t targeting the wrong audience.
The good news is, there are steps you can take to improve your conversions before, during, and after an online shopper visits your website. The best part is they aren’t really rocket science.
Here is a list of seven actionable tips you should consider to better your conversions, and positively impact your bottom line.
1. Optimize Your Website Design
One secret you might not know about online shopping is that simplicity converts.
Imagine walking into a physical retail store that had its products spread out haphazardly. You would almost definitely make a u-turn out of the store. The same goes for your eCommerce website.
Therefore, try and get rid of clutter from your website that might distract your online visitors and make it easy for them to navigate your page. Use visuals sparingly and take advantage of whitespace on your homepage.
Simplifying the design will allow online shoppers to focus more on what you’re selling, including other elements that may convince them to make a purchase such as the product description and CTA. When they can find what they’re looking for with ease, they’re not likely to navigate away to your competitors’ sites.
Additionally, simple designs load much faster and improve the page loading speed, which brings us to our next point.
2. Enhance Your Page Loading Speed
You also need to consider how quickly your website loads. If your website is too slow, it might cause the web traffic to bounce at different stages of the consumer buying journey. Therefore, you need to come up with strategies that will help your website load much faster.
For instance, you might want to upgrade your hosting package to accommodate more traffic or even switch your web host provider if you feel like they’re the problem. You should also compress your images and get rid of any unnecessarily large files or code from your online store.
Using advanced performance measuring tools to analyze your plugins for slow performance can also go a long way in shaving off seconds off of your loading time.
3. Make Your Online Store Mobile-Friendly
Yes, many consumers often do eCommerce-related research from their mobile phones before proceeding to make the purchase from a computer. But that’s because people are exposed to a lot of ads and information about products as they browse through social media pages on their phones.
Mobile eCommerce sales are gradually rising meaning if your online store is not optimized for mobile, you might be losing out on sales. Note that mobile shoppers spend twice as much money as customers who buy from other devices.
A mobile-friendly online store has a 67% likelihood of converting but websites that are not mobile-friendly have a 61% chance of visitors navigating away and buying from their competition.
4. Leverage Heatmap Tools
You have probably had to do a lot to develop the best user interface for your store, fine-tune the customer experience, and use several artificial intelligence (AI) modules for personalized targeting. But after all these efforts, you are still left wondering why you have an unusual bounce rate.
You need to know what your customers are doing on your online store, which elements they interact with, and at the point at which they leave your website during the customer journey. You can only gain this insight by the use of heatmap tools.
By assessing customer behavior on your website, heatmap tools can give you a detailed picture of what’s going wrong and where the problem lies.
These tools work by analyzing user cursor movement to determine user behavior. This way you can figure out which CTAs work best, what sections of your online store don’t get any clicks, and how people interact with pop-ups and other elements on your site.
5. Don’t Include any Hidden Surprises
Customer cart abandonment is one of the most worrying concerns for online store owners.
Cart abandonment happens when online shoppers navigate from a website after adding items to their online carts. This could mean either they were not particularly interested in buying products from the online store, or something happened during the buying journey that made them abandon their site before making a purchase.
It could either be they were forced to create an account before they could finalize the purchase, or they found hidden costs that increased the overall cost of the product.
Any of the case scenarios listed above can be a major turnoff. So, to avoid cart abandonment, don’t force new visitors to sign up since it could stall the sale. Give them an option of checking out as guests so they can earn your trust. They will be more likely to create an account the next time they buy from your site.
Also, adhere to the WYSIWYP (What You See Is What You Pay) model. Show the total prices of all your products upfront, including the shipping costs. This way, your customers won’t feel cheated by your site.
6. Make the Checkout Process Simple
Another largely overlooked reason behind cart abandonment is users finding the checkout process inconvenient because it was too long.
Bear in mind that each step you add to the check-out process reduces the chances of your making sales. So, if your checkout process has eight steps, then the shopper has eight chances of changing their mind.
Avoid asking your buyers for information that’s not essential to the sale and try to fit the checkout process on a single page. This will save users the time and effort of having to scroll to more pages.
7. Take Advantage of Customer Reviews
Humans are social beings and it shows even in our consumerism behaviors. Sometimes, all we need is a bit of extra convincing to buy a product hence why we read dozens of reviews before eventually making a decision.
As such, try to include customer reviews on your product pages rather than have your customers visit third–party review sites. Yes, there will be the occasional bad review but this will show that your products are being reviewed by real people, making your brand appear a lot more trustworthy.
Winding It Up
Whether you’re new to the eCommerce space or have solid years of experience under your belt, you must know that improving your conversion rates is the most cost-effective method of getting more sales and building your revenue.
Pay attention to the customer journey and increase your marketing budget to add persuasive content to your website. This will go a long way in reassuring your clients of the value of your products and ultimately, giving you a better conversion rate.