You might have your own eCommerce website, where you sell quality products and even run paid campaigns on it thinking you’re doing all you can to be a success. But is it enough? The hardest part of the job is to get visitors to the website, and then to convert them into customers.
Even with a great product line and your credibility to operate in the market, there are certain ways you can make sure that the person who clicks on your website, stays and makes a purchase. Certain tactics can ensure this happens.
Raul Galera, the Partner Manager at Referral Candy and Kata Gatzso, the CRO Specialist at Optimonk recently conducted a webinar, discussing six actionable tactics that can help you grow the sales on your eCommerce websites. We base this piece on their discussion and further expand on their ideas from the webinar.
What are the 6 Actionable Tactics to Grow Your Ecommerce Sales?
- Conversion Rate
- Generating Website Traffic
- Email Opt-in
- Reduce Cart Abandonment
- Geo Target Customers
- Use Product Recommendation
For an ecommerce website, the conversation rate is a percentage of users who visit the site and end up purchasing from it. This percentage is in regards to the total number of visitors and the ones who are actually doing the buying.
While for most websites, the figure may vary from somewhere from 1% to 3%, this number can certainly improve.
How to Improve Conversion Rate
There are multiple ways to improve consumer rates, some more effective than others. We have shared some of the best actionable solutions here.
Visual Website Optimizer conducted a study revealing that large product images increase sales by 9%.
“Most of the purchases are based on emotions and feelings; we always want to see how the product looks like before we receive it in our house. That is the main barrier of ecommerce, we can’t touch the physical product until we receive it.” — Raul Galera, Partner Manager, ReferralCandy.
A high-quality image; where a potential customer can see the product in detail, can gauge a decent idea about what the product will be like, and is an option which is second best to actually physically inspecting the product.
A study conducted by Blue Fountain Media revealed that the conversation rate on its website improved by 42%, just because they added a VeriSign trust seal on their page. Trust seals like this provide ecommerce websites with much-needed credibility since they deal in financial transactions.
By adding trust badges like McAfee Secure, Hacker Safe and VeriSign, etc., websites can gain their visitors’ confidence and convert them into customers.
While professional pictures can look a lot better aesthetically on a website, user-generated content such as reviews and pictures taken by customers who have no affiliation to the store results in more sales since they give the store a lot more credibility.
“Customer feedback is like the best of both worlds, user-generated content and customer review.” — Raul Galera
It’s a documented fact, that customer reviews especially reviews with organic photos improve conversion rates by 26%. Therefore, it is essential that your website includes a prominent feedback section dedicated to user-generated content, providing your customers with incentives to leave reviews with photos to add to the credibility of your site.
Live Chat System
A live chat system eliminates the need for customers to fill out tedious forms if they want their queries to be answered, and then having to wait to hear back from the store. With multiple alternatives and options available in the market, customers have short attention spans, especially on the internet. If they need specific information, it must be provided on the spot.
A live chat system is a messaging option on an ecommerce website, where customers can talk to a customer service representative in real time. This service provides a window for the customer to get their queries instantly resolved. While hiring a customer service team to answer messages can cost you a little initially, it’s a sound investment as the live chat option significantly improves customer retention.
Generating Website Traffic
An ecommerce business relies mainly on its website. Therefore, it is more important first to generate traffic on the site than do anything else. Conversion rates and other techniques will work only if a visitor base exists for the site. There are a couple of ways you can generate traffic for your ecommerce website.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
SEO is the process of affecting the visibility of a website or web page on a search engine without paying for ads.
“30.5% of all ecommerce traffic originates from SEO.” — Raul Galera
Search engines mainly set the rules for SEO, and you must play by those rules to rank better on internet searches. There are a couple of ways you can do that. For example, Google and Facebook give priority to video content over text and images. Therefore, having more video content on your ecommerce website, such as product tutorials and other engaging videos can have more benefits for you online.
Similarly, Google also appreciates Long Form Content over short or non-descriptive information. Diverse content about your products can help you rank better online. The content can include product descriptions, reviews, case studies, etc.
A quick to open website with easy navigation and an uncomplicated menu make a significant difference for a visitor. Not only do search engines rank such sites better, but these factors also help retain potential customers and gives them a smooth experience
It is therefore essential to have a website that is easy to navigate, quick to open, and one that is also mobile-friendly.
Influencer Marketing is another excellent way to generate traffic for your website. The general public has grown immune to conventional marketing methods.
Overexposure and increased media literacy have led to a sharp decline in the impact made by celebrity endorsements. People understand that the celebrity is just promoting a product for the money, that they have not personally used it or have any attachment to the product.
“Influencer Marketing is a halfway between an ad and a friend referral.” — Raul Galera
Influencers are people who have a moderate fan following and have built up their credibility in a certain field. For instance, there are many ‘beauty gurus’ on YouTube and Instagram models with a large follower base who are considered to be influencers.
Products they endorse on their pages become immensely popular as people tend to trust that they are actually using the products. Hence, when a referral comes from them, people take it much more seriously.
Email Opt-in is an option for customers which they can select if they want to receive emails from a website. These emails are a great source of marketing, and for keeping a loyal customer base. By choosing to receive these emails, customers can be in the loop about what is happening in the company, be aware of new products, learn about all the new deals and discounts or make direct purchases.
However, it is essential to keep things simple. Emails are the backbone of professional communication, which is why nobody appreciates spam in their inbox. The message should be catchy yet concise and if it includes an incentive for the customer to visit the website and buy something, the better it is.
You can collect your visitors’ email addresses at your landing page, through a pop-up message which should appear after your customer has spent a few seconds on your website. To make things interesting, you can also ask your customers through games and offers when they are about to close the page.
Reduce Cart Abandonment
“Only about 2% visitors end up making sales on ecommerce websites, which means 98% people on the website leave with doing so.” — Kata Gazso, CRO Specialist, Optimonk.
While this tells us that not all people who visit ecommerce websites actually end up making a purchase, the worst is when people abandon items in their cart and leave for one reason or another.
It is important to remind these people that they have pending items in the cart by encouraging them to proceed to checkout. You can remind them through pop-ups, or notifications which include time-bound offers which would incentivize them to complete their purchase. For instance, you can offer them a discount if they complete the purchase within a specified period.
You can encourage your customers by making the checkout process simple. The more difficult, confusing or time-consuming the checkout process is, the more people will abandon their carts. You can simplify the process by asking for basic contact and billing information only. You can always contact them later if required. You can keep cart abandonment to a minimum by adopting this practice.
Geo Target Customers
You are in a unique position since you have a goldmine of customer data at your disposal. Since you know your visitors’ IP addresses, location, and time of visit, you can customize your visitors’ experience according to their region to provide the best possible service.
For example, if a customer from Canada is visiting your site, and you offer free shipping throughout North America, advertise this fact to them so that they are encouraged to purchase.
“A bad shipping policy or confusion in it can dispel a customer.” — Kata Gazso
You should utilize Geo IP targeting, and learn the origins of your visitors so that you can best anticipate your customers’ needs and improve your retention rates.
Use Product Recommendation
Lastly, it is essential to inform your customers about the best or most popular products on your website to interest them in making a purchase. A customer cannot possibly know about all the cool things your website has to offer- but with your unique insight on the customers’ shopping habits, you can make them aware.
For example, if a customer is visiting a product page with a high conversion rate, you can recommend a similar page with a high conversion rate that they might be interested in. Or if they are looking at a certain product like shoes, you can recommend a complementary product such as socks or shoe cleaner along with it. You are already aware of your customers’ choices, capitalize on the knowledge!
Knowing the Audience
While all these tips do help increase your ecommerce sales, the most critical factor to remember is to understand your visitors. Kata Gatzso divides these visitors into the categories of, ‘Hot Prospects,’ and ‘Cold Prospects.’
While hot prospects are visitors who are most likely to buy a product and may require little guidance or interference in their onsite experience, cold prospects are new visitors who may need to be educated on the website and its products before they make their final purchase.
Hot and Cold Prospects are identifiable through their traffic sources. While the former will have returning IP addresses and would search for specific items, the latter would arrive on website browsing through generic content and with new IP addresses. Once identified, it is important to address them accordingly, so that you can increase your sales efficiently, without wasting resources and effort.