You work hard on your digital marketing efforts to ensure your ecommerce brand is getting the visibility it needs to be successful. You’ve got a great social media team, talented content writers, perfect SEO to help with organic traffic, and a paid advertising platform that is generating paid traffic. That’s great! However, is all of this increased traffic actually paying off? Are the users that are heading to your site actually converting before they leave? If the answer is no- you’ve got a problem on your hands. Surely some of them are converting, but does your conversion rate seem a bit low?
If so, you need to take a critical look at what you are doing and figure out what needs to change. An increase in traffic should result in an increase in conversions. Not sure where you should start? No worries. Here are some suggestions on how to ensure your traffic is resulting in increased revenue for your ecommerce business. We’ll walk you through each step of the customer journey and advise you on areas you need to consider improving in order to increase your conversion rate.
Are there technical difficulties you need to address?
First off, if there is something deterring your users from accessing your site, it doesn’t even matter how great your content or products are. This is one of the easiest ways to turn people away from your site and you might not even be aware of it. There are a couple of things that you must keep in mind and monitor to ensure users can easily access all aspects of your website.
Page load time is a huge one. We have grown incredibly impatient when it comes to the Internet- we expect pages to load pretty much instantly. As you can see in the chart above, a short increase of just a few seconds can drastically decrease your number of visitors. There are plenty of tools on the Internet that you can use, including Google’s own PageSpeed Insights program to test your load speed. If you’ve got load problems, consider removing unnecessary elements to streamline the overall UI of your website. Decrease image size, reduce the number of plugins, or even consider improving your hosting plan, just to name a few.
Being mobile friendly is another big area. By now, you don’t need to be told that you need a mobile version of your website. This is no longer a suggestion but a requirement in today’s mobile world. However, just because you have a mobile version, this doesn’t mean that your users can easily access all of your content via their mobile device. Optimally, all content is easily loaded and optimized for smaller screens- either smart phones or tablets. If a user can’t easily read your blog post on their phone, there’s a pretty huge chance they won’t search for it on their laptop. They’ll just abandon your site all together.
Are you creating the right content?
Now that people can easily and quickly access your content, you need to ask yourself this next question: Is the content you’re creating actually relevant to your audience and to your products or services that you provide? You might be producing really great content that people enjoy reading, but if it isn’t ultimately inspiring people to buy, it is honestly a waste of your time or resources to create it. Or, alternatively, maybe you aren’t focusing enough of your time on your content and in fact that content you are putting out there is bad, which can easily turn people away from your brand.
In both scenarios, you’ve got content, but the content isn’t right. So, how can you fix this? For starters, take a look at some competitors of yours and see what content they are creating. This doesn’t mean you copy their content, but it can be really helpful to take a look at what other brands are doing. In particular, look at successful content and see if you can’t get a better idea of what you should be doing. As for the actual creation, if you don’t have the time yourself, consider hiring someone (such as a freelancer) to take on the content creation. Someone who specializes in this area will give you much better content than what you could create yourself.
Do people trust your business?
At this point people can now easily access your site and they like your content, but do they feel confident enough to buy from you? Ecommerce businesses regularly run into this problem. While ecommerce is only continuing to grow and people are more willing than ever before to make a purchase online, you still need to follow some necessary steps to make your customers feel comfortable. While people buy online frequently, they are also very aware of security risks associated with sharing personal information online.
In fact, studies show half of American consumers are discouraged from buying online because of various privacy and security concerns. Data breeches seem to be a regular occurrence these days, and this can make life difficult for ecommerce brands. However, there are things you can do to help inspire confidence in your users. Great customer service is one such thing, a topic we have discussed in detail before. If a user doesn’t feel like they can get in touch with you, they will be far less likely to want to buy from you. The above example shows a great customer service page that encourages users to reach out if they have a question. Dedicate a significant amount of time to your customer service page and overall system- it is an investment you are sure to get back in the long run.
Additionally, there are other “truth signals” that you can implement on your website that will help users feel more confident. Most popularly, ecommerce brands frequently utilize user reviews or testimonials. A customer may not want to trust your brand, but they are much more likely to trust their peers. And finally, in terms of actual security, it is a must to have a secure checkout process. Stolen or hacked information results without this.
Is your conversion process easy?
Finally, once a user is actually going through the conversion process, is there something along the way that is making them turn away? Is your checkout process overly long or confusing? There is a certain level of understanding when a user makes a purchase that they have to provide certain information, but if you are asking for a bunch of extraneous data, customers are going to get annoyed. Instead, your process should be streamlined, secure, and incredibly clear.
Consider taking a look at your analytics for your checkout page and see if you’ve got a high bounce rate. If you do, it seems you’ve got a problem. Maybe people are unaware of your shipping policy (or maybe they just don’t like it). Or, maybe they have a question but don’t have an easy way to ask it. When in doubt- try going right to the source and asking your customers. Their insight can be invaluable, so listen and make sure to make necessary adjustments.
Are you monitoring what works and what doesn’t?
Finally, sometimes all it takes is looking at your existing data and analytics to see where you’ve got a problem. No matter if you have a highly successful business or are struggling to get off the ground, you need to monitor what is working and what isn’t. Marketing and ecommerce is a constantly evolving industry and simply guessing what is working for you is not good enough.
With this data, there is a lot you can do to try and improve engagement and most importantly, conversions. A/B testing is a great way to test elements on your blog posts (or anywhere else) for example. Even small changes like CTA button colors, image locations, and headline copy, can result in big changes. This is a process that requires a lot of patience, but it can result in big improvements for your brand.