If you have an ecommerce website, you are always looking for ways to increase sales. Your conversion rate is a critical number that determines how many visitors actually become buyers on your site. If you notice you’re not getting enough conversions, it might be time to look at your design, layout and overall approach. Even the most effective website design can fail if you don’t take the right steps to encourage a selling environment.
Understanding Conversion Rates
Wikipedia states that a conversion rate is the number that determines how many visitors become customers on a website. There’s no such thing as an average conversion rate, because every ecommerce site and their products are different. If you sell very expensive items, your conversion rate would be lower than a company selling more affordable products. But, having a conversion rate of 1 to 2 percent is common across the board and something you could strive for.
Use Quality Product Images with Your Design
One of the biggest conversion factors is product images that can be organized using Shopify. This is because online shoppers want to see what they are buying. High-quality images will sell more products than low-quality images. That is because if customers cannot tell what they are buying or see details of the products, they are less likely to commit to the purchase. You should show products at multiple angles —both alone and with models (if possible). Customers rarely buy without seeing detailed images of what they’re buying first.
Product Copy — Writing Your Descriptions
The descriptions you use matter just as much as the photographs you use to showcase your products. People rely on product copy to tell them about the products they are buying — including size, color and overall description. You want complete information, not a sales pitch. There is no minimum or maximum word count, just use the amount it takes to tell people what they are buying, but don’t create a story out of it. Look at some other successful ecommerce websites so that you can get an idea of the typical product description. You will notice they have a short paragraph and usually bullet points to sum up everything the visitor needs to know about the product.
Create a Design That Suits Your Brand
Brand recognition is important for conversion rates. When people recognize a brand, they trust what they are buying from that company. Pick an ecommerce website design that represents your brand and the products you’re selling. You don’t want to take away from the product experience, but you do want to display your company’s image too.
Consider Offering Free or Discounted Shipping Promotions
If you look at some of the biggest merchants out there, you’ll notice one common thing: they have discounted or free shipping. Customers don’t like to pay for shipping. It is costly and makes the savings they find on the internet obsolete after shipping is charged. You don’t have to offer free shipping right out of the gate. In fact, most of the big retailers offer discounts when a customer reaches a certain price point, such as free shipping on orders of $100 or more. This not only tells the customer they can get free shipping, but might also encourage them to spend more just to get the free shipping. According to a study published by E-Tailing Group, 73 percent of online shoppers use free shipping to determine whether they’re buying from a company.
But, free shipping also makes a company more attractive. According to TechCrunch, orders that qualify for free shipping also are 30 percent higher in value than orders that pay for shipping. So, offering free shipping or some sort of shipping promotion could increase your conversion rates and even increase your average transaction amount.
Always Include a Sales and Specials Section
If you have any promotions going on, your ecommerce design should have a space specifically for showcasing those specials. Buyers are more likely to purchase from your site if they know they can save some money or take advantage of deal you’re offering at the time they’re visiting. Discount seeking behavior is becoming more common with online shoppers; therefore, having daily specials could help you stand out among the competition.
Address Your Shopping Cart Abandonment Issues
When customers abandon a shopping cart, it means they were in the middle of the checkout process and failed to complete it. Shopping cart abandonment rates that are too high could indicate users are reaching an error or there is a problem with your process. A study by Forrester discovered that 89 percent of online shoppers have abandoned at least one cart. This high rate was attributed to comparison-shopping. Before customers check out, they think about where they could find a better deal. Therefore, they leave the checkout process in search of that better deal. Some other reasons customers might abandon a cart include:
- Too high of a price
- Added shipping costs at the end — if you’re not upfront with your shipping, customers might be surprised at how much you charge and abandon their cart
- Too much hassle to go through the checkout process
- Requirement to sign up for an account
- A poor or hard-to-find return policy
- The checkout process is too slow or pages load too slow
You can address all of these issues with a better design and more simplified checkout process. You should always follow up on abandoned carts using a capturing program. Find out why customers left and remind them to come back and checkout the site again for more.
Lastly, make sure your ecommerce site is flexible when it comes to payments. You should offer credit and debit cards, as well as other online payment options, such as PayPal. Those who shop online only shop with companies that let them use their preferred payment. If your ecommerce website doesn’t allow for it, it is unlikely they will purchase from you — even if you have the best deals and they want your products.