You’ve got your website store up and running. You’ve developed a content marketing strategy through the use of a blog and several social media platforms, resulting in thousands of hits per day. But, you still aren’t getting good sales volume. What next? If your visitors aren’t converting into customers, consider these 30 ecommerce conversion rate optimization tactics.
30 Ecommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Tactics
1. Choose your metric.
“Conversion” is a broad term in the concept of ecommerce conversion rate optimization tactics. You can’t start optimizing until you know your metric for measuring success. Are you assuming a conversion is an online sale, an email subscription, a share on social media, or something else?
2. Add a one-click checkout.
In the first quarter of 2017 alone, 75.6 percent of consumers across all industries abandoned an online cart before finalizing the purchase. The ecommerce conversion rate optimization tactic of one-click ordering removes steps from the process. And, it decreases the likelihood of someone backing out of a transaction.
3. Use auto-filled checkout fields.
The ecommerce conversion rate optimization tactic of automatically completing fields in the order form removes another step in the process. It also has the potential to reduce the risk of errors.
4. Allow guest ordering.
Not everyone wants to create an account or store credit card details with your online store. Consider allowing guests to order without registering first. Rather than requesting details up front, prompt visitors to save their details for next time after confirming the order.
5. Remove distractions.
Once a user has clicked “checkout,” remove any distractions, including navigational links and banners. You don’t want customers going anywhere until they finish the purchase. Of all of the ecommerce conversion rate optimization tactics, this is likely the most important.
6. Think mobile.
With 52.3 percent of all abandoned transactions happening on mobile phones, it’s worth considering how easy it is to use your checkout on a phone. Large text fields and chunky buttons go a long way.
7. Keep site navigation simple.
If a keen consumer lands on your site and can’t immediately determine how to make a purchase, that consumer is likely to click away. Keep your product pages simple and clear.
8. Limit choices.
As part of keeping your site navigation clean, consider reducing the number of filters available in your store. Presenting customers with too many options may make them uncertain about which option is best, and they may end up not making a purchase at all.
9. Keep buttons visible.
Good navigation means always keeping the buttons visible. Making “purchase now” buttons that scroll down the page is a good idea, especially for items with long product descriptions or lots of technical information.
10. Make the process visual.
Help visitors to visualize the next step in the process. Reading through walls of text is a barrier to committing to a purchase, but an easily identifiable “buy now” button shaped like a cart makes it clear what to do next.
11. Use calls to action.
If visitors arrive at your blog, it’s a good idea to make sure they leave via the gift shop. If they’ve followed a query such as “local craft store” or “cheap fabric,” it’s likely they’re already keen to make a purchase, so make sure the information you present includes a call to action (CTA), such as a “buy now” link.
12. Use pop-ups.
Consider a pop-up that asks visitors to subscribe to a newsletter in exchange for an incentive such as a discount or free download.
13. Be helpful.
In a brick-and-mortar store, a customer assistant is always close by to lend a helping hand. Try to offer online customers the same experience, with pop-up assistants or helpful tools such as sizing charts.
14. Answer every question.
How big is it? How tall? What decor would it look good with? The more information you provide, the more confident buyers are. If you have a blog relating to the product, link to it.
15. Don’t let customers leave.
If customers navigate away from your site, use a pop-up to make them verify their choice. Remind them if they’re leaving a transaction incomplete, and ask if they’d like to make the purchase first.
16. Follow up.
Your customer abandoned a transaction halfway through? Send an email with a reminder, and a direct link back to the cart.
17. Follow up again
Your customer actually completed a purchase? Great. Send an email asking for a user review for your site, or send an incentive to make a second purchase.
18. Check your links.
Broken links are inconvenient for users, and could bring their visits to a premature end. Make sure all of your navigational options are working.
19. Check your layout.
You wouldn’t be the first person to accidentally nudge the “buy now” button off the bottom of the page during a site redesign, or to have a website that doesn’t display correctly on mobile phones. Test layouts in multiple browsers on multiple devices to make sure you’re seeing the whole picture.
20. Check your security.
If your website URL begins with “https” rather than “http,” it means you have an SSL certificate. This helps to build a customer’s confidence, and even gives you a boost in the search engine rankings.
21. Display stock levels.
Your customer has carefully selected the perfect item, but when it’s time to add it to the cart he or she gets an “out of stock” message. Clearly displaying the stock levels reduces disappointment, and ensures your customer quickly starts looking for other products rather than walking away from the computer in annoyance.
22. Minimize downtime.
Accidents happen, and sometimes are unavoidable — but the website going down while customers are shopping is a recipe for frustration, and affected buyers may never return to complete checkout. Schedule maintenance, and announce it well in advance, sending a notification to your registered users.
23. Use a heat map.
There are various computer programs that allow you to monitor where people are clicking on your website landing page. This highlights how visitors use your site and navigate between pages, and makes it easier to design pages in a more intuitive manner.
24. Track visitors.
Install some tracking software that logs where visitors arrive on your site, where they go, and how long they stay. The insights may reveal key choke points where users lose interest and drift away.
25. Use quality images.
A picture is worth a thousand words, and high-quality images sell. Your customers don’t have an opportunity to see your products in real life before they commit to buy, so providing lots of images — with options to zoom in or to get a full 360-degree view — gives them the confidence to purchase.
26. Offer free shipping.
People love to feel like they’re getting great value. Free shipping is a big incentive to buy.
27. Have a good returns policy.
Buying online comes with extra risk compared to buying in a store. Items may arrive broken, or may not be exactly what the customer expected. Making sure your customers know they have the right to return items for a refund or replacement builds trust and encourages visitors to complete their purchases.
28. Use other marketplaces.
Fed up of waiting for customers to visit your website? It’s time to start selling on Amazon, eBay, and any other sites that provide a storefront for your business.
29. Encourage user-generated content.
Trust encourages visitors to make purchases, and 75 percent of people believe user-generated content adds authenticity. Encourage your existing customers to leave product reviews to boost future sales.
30. Keep testing.
You tried a new checkout system and nothing seemed to change? Don’t give up. Of all the ecommerce conversion rate optimization tactics, this is the hardest to master. Try something different. Make small adjustments and see how they affect your conversion rate.
Final Thought: Ecommerce conversion rate optimization tactics are a numbers game
Even if you’re doing everything right, don’t expect miracles. The global conversion rate for the first quarter of 2017 was just 2.48 percent. If your ecommerce conversion rate hits around 2 percent, you’re doing well — and the 30 ecommerce conversion rate optimization tactics listed here can help you do even better. Just remember, if you want to improve your conversion rate, the solution isn’t to throw more customers at the problem — it’s to make sure the experience your existing customers have is a good one.