Feel like you can get so much more from your ecommerce website? I have put together nine tips for you to help you get more from your website.
1. Make sure your site search works
Using a sub-standard on-site search is one of the most frustrating barriers for ecommerce users, as it prevents them from finding what they’re looking for and from navigating around the website.
Most ecommerce platforms will have third party modules available that will help you to at least partially eliminate this issue.
Lots of people search ecommerce sites for SKUs and product codes, so it’s really important to optimise your search solution for these queries.
Make sure you analyse the data as searches on your website are your customers directly telling you what they are looking for. These are low-funnel buyers who typically know what they want, so they’re more likely to produce greater ROIs.
2. Bring back your cart ‘abandoners’
Focusing on bringing back the people that have left your cart can be a really cost effective strategy for improving your conversion rate.
There are a number of things that can be done to reduce the amount of people choosing not to buy within your checkout process. Here are some of the ones that I’ve seen work well.
Contact information retrieval:
I would strongly recommend obtaining user contact details as soon as possible by setting your first step to be solely focused on contact details.
Once you’ve got the user’s details and you know that they’ve abandoned a cart, I would recommend getting in touch with them as soon as you can.
Alternatively, you could send them a discount code to help to try and entice them to return to the site and convert.
3. Ecommerce tracking / analysis
Use event tracking to monitor where users are clicking on the page (clicks that don’t change the URL), so that you can see how they’re engaging with the pages. Using event tracking on the checkout page is particularly useful as there are generally lots of options that are hard to track for example checkout with PayPal.
With product pages, monitoring how users are using additional image and video content is really useful and can help illustrate their role in conversions.
Goals / Funnels:
Goals (and goal funnels) provide a great way of visualising user journeys and identifying the stages where your visitors are dropping off or leaving the site. You can use goals to track common journeys through websites (homepage > brand page > category page > product) so you can see where people are dropping off along the way.
Attribution is a huge part of ecommerce and for smaller retailers who haven’t invested in attribution models, the multi-channel conversions section of Google Analytics is a really valuable feature.
We’ve had a lot of success with attributing sales from direct visits to organic queries, as users tend to use Google for research and come back to the site later (via the direct URL) to purchase.
4. Make sure your site architecture is up to scratch
The architecture of an ecommerce website is hugely important for both SEO and user experience.
I generally recommend that ecommerce sites have as many static category pages as possible, as it allows them to optimise for longer tail queries.
If you have more specific landing pages ranking for longer tail queries, they’re also far more likely to convert than a generic category page. An example could be a branded collection page ranking for a keyword rather than the brand landing page. For more information on growing your online store with SEO, why not check out our ecommerce SEO checklist?
5. Invest in rich media
Over the past few years more and more websites have been investing in high quality imagery and video content for their products – and have reaped the rewards as a result.
6. Work on your product page proposition
It’s vitally important that as a retailer you promote the benefits of the products that you’re selling, especially on the product pages. The content you feature on your product pages should outline the specific benefits to the user, more so than focusing on particular features and specifications.
I would always recommend using your sales team for this, by asking them what questions they get asked and what pieces of information generally persuade a user to convert. You can also use the transcripts from live chat.
This information can then be used to re-align your content and imagery to match what your customers are looking for.
7. Regularly conduct user testing
Testing is the place where all CRO activity should start, as it gives you the data you need to make a decision. Often, designers and developers think they know what their customers will respond to, but in reality you can only find out by testing users in an unbiased environment.
8. Improve the performance of your website
Image compression services can help to improve the load time of image-heavy pages on your website, particularly with product pages. Make sure you spend time compressing all of your images. Each image you use on your website should be optimised. That means, it should have an optimal size so your site’s loading doesn’t get affected by it.
9. Get feedback from your customers
One of the best ways to find out what you could be doing to improve your user experience and reduce the barriers to conversion for your customers is simply asking them what was difficult and what could be improved.
Using Live Chat transcripts is a great way to get an indication of what’s working, how customers feel about your website and find out obvious barriers to conversions. You can also have a pop up box or floating feedback link.