7 Tips for Increasing Your eCommerce Conversion Rates
Conversion rates are often at the forefront of discussion in the conference rooms (and living rooms) of ecommerce businesses of all shapes and sizes. Once you have optimized your strategy to increase organic traffic, and implemented a paid search strategy, you may see a large influx in traffic to your site, and yet those visits may not be translating effectively into actual revenue. What can be done to improve conversion rates on your online retail site?
The average overall conversion rate for online retailers is 2-3 percent. Conversion rate is essentially the number of sales divided by the number of unique visitors to your site. So for a site with 15,000 unique visits per month and 300 sales, the conversion rate is 2%. Of course, to generate more sales, you could certainly increase your pay per click budget to generate more visits to your site, but there are more cost-effective ways for online retailers to increase conversion rates without breaking the bank.
1. Speed and Security
Site speed and information security are perhaps the most vital elements of converting clicks into sales. Customers have little patience for slow-loading sites, so make sure you have the servers to adequately handle your traffic. Having a faster site will not only increase the quality of customer experience, but will also directly translate into a higher conversion rate.
Having an encrypted and secure payment process is also essential, as consumers are now more wary than ever with their information, due to highly publicized info leaks in recent news. These elements are basic, but very important to generating conversions.
2. Multiple Payment Options
In addition to the option to pay with credit card, allowing new payment options from services like PayPal will give your customer more options at checkout, and make them more likely to complete their purchase. If you have a high tech clientele, you may even want to consider accepting Bitcoin as a payment option. The more options for payment type, the more conversions you are likely to capture.
3. Optimized Landing Page and Site Design
In the realm of ecommerce, consumers can, and will, be fickle, and first impressions are often the most important. This is why it is so crucial to optimize the design and content of your landing page. Work with your design team to fire up your landing page, giving the customer some eye candy that will keep them clicking through to products and make the sale.
Be sure that the navigation and search capabilities for your site are intuitive and user friendly. If your customer has to struggle to find the products they want to buy, you may end up losing them to a competitor with a better interface.
4. Live Chat
A great, simple way to boost conversion rates for your ecommerce site is to add a Live Chat option. One of the challenges of online retail is that customers often add items to their cart and then are stalled in the decision making process by uncertainty. With the Live Chat option, your customers will be able to talk with a live representative and ask any questions they may have. Information to have on hand could include item specifics, size and fit information, inventory status, and shipping/delivery information.
5. Abandoned Carts
If you aren’t already, start paying attention to your abandoned shopping carts, where the customer has placed items in the cart but has not proceeded with their purchase. SearchFit allows you to see all of your abandoned carts, and to follow up with the potential customers, either via automated or personalized email. Many times, the reason the customer has not proceeded is as simple as an unanswered question they may have about the product. You also may want to consider offering special offers to customers with abandoned carts, to incentivize purchase.
6. Free Shipping/Handling
For many consumers, shipping and/or handling fees can be the deciding factor when it comes to completing their purchase from your site. Depending on the products you sell, you may want to consider eliminating shipping and handling fees all together. If you do opt to do this, be sure to let your customers know right away (on the landing page) that you offer free shipping, as this will be a huge incentive for them to stick around and to make purchases. Take a look at your budget to see if implementing this change could work for your business.
If offering free shipping and handling is not a viable option because of your industry or products, consider implementing the free shipping option at a certain price level. For example, you could offer free shipping on purchases of $75 or more. This method may also lead to increased revenue per order, as customers will often add extra items in order to meet the minimum order total.
7. Test, Evaluate, Repeat
Think of the process of conversion rate optimization as a little bit science, and a little bit art. There is no other site exactly like yours, and for this reason, your process of optimizing conversion rates is going to be a custom job. It will probably be necessary to experiment by tweaking and tailoring CRO strategies that work for your business and its unique clientele. Be sure to evaluate the effects on conversion rates after each change is implemented, and use this data to determine which strategies are working the most effectively in the long run. Continue to streamline and focus your CRO strategies, and watch your conversion rate begin its ascent.
If you have anything to add, or any additional tips for conversion rate optimization, we would love to hear from you in our comments section.