Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO) is more prominent than SEO now in the e-commerce world. Many e-commerce start-ups spring up only to close down even before they can get the feet off the ground.
The reason, poor user experience, and usability.
User experience and CRO are now like two inseparable twins.
Maybe you too have done the same mistake and put your CRO on the backseat.
This happens when you ignore the customer touch points – all the levels where visitors engage in your website. The word they read and the image they see creates a final picture in their mind of your e-commerce website.
If it is not captivating and engaging, they leave your store in a fly, never to come back again. If many visitors keep doing that on your store then your conversion rate will fall.
If the downward trend continues for some time, you may even think of closing down your e-store.
Use 9 important techniques in your e-commerce store and increase the conversation rate. Here they are:
- Feel your customers’ pulse. Understand how they behave on your website
Know what they want from your store.
Use tools like SurveyMonkey, Qualaroo, and Olark
Survey Monkey: Use it to email slightly longer surveys made up of 4 to 5 questions. Offer a freebie in return for their feedback. This tool you can put to good use to unearth the hidden conversion issues because your users have the best eyes to point them out. It works best if you already have a good email subscription base of your users. It is a no big deal, you can accumulate that over the time.
Qualaroo: It is an online survey tool you can use on your website to ask one or two questions on the most important pages.
You can ask questions like:
- How was your shopping experience on our store?
- What problems you, faced?
- Will you come back to shop again? If not, why?
- Would you recommend us to your friends and relatives?
Your customers’ answers give you the clue to how to improve your store’s user experience.
Olark: The direct chat tool that you should not fail to implement. You can see the issues crop up during the live scenario when your customers are actually buying on the store. Without waste of time, you can reach them and get crucial insight. This tool gives you the opportunity to address the situation at the moment.
- Make your Home page a sweet spot. Users stick to it.
The homepage is the most important landing page on your store. It is better you treat it that way because if you look at your Google Analytics data you will find it the most trafficked page on your store. Put your top selling products right there. Catch your visitors’ attention and lure them with discounts to click further. The deeper they go more are the chances of them making to end of the conversion funnel.
See how Urban Ladder offers hefty discounts right there on the homepage.
Different customers have different ordering preferences. Cater to everybody’s if you want to increase conversion rate. If “order by fax” or “order by Phone” button are missing add them.
If you have customers outside your country, then localize. Suppose they are from China it would be better to add product pages with content in Chinese and currency in Yuan. This strategy helps you connect better and deeper because you are speaking the language of your customer.
- Make navigation smooth. Users are there in a fly, where they ought to be.
See below, how you can easily find your appliance on the Amazon. It is all because of a well-designed and structured product navigation system.
Poor navigation confuses and drives away potential customers, forever from your website.
So do not commit that blunder with your e-store. Follow the tips to keep your product navigation smooth and easy.
- Do not create too many categories and overburden your navigation
- The category links should be in the ascending order of their popularity (the most clicked links on the top)
- Create a navigation system based on user’s preferences and popularity of products
- Use Crazy Egg tool and Google Analytics to create a focused category structure, based on what the users are searching in the product search box.
- Product search is super-fast and precise. Buyers are bang on their target
Follow the path Content>Site Search> Usage in your Google Analytics account. You will know whether visitors on your store are using the product search feature or not.
The visitors who use product search feature, convert more than visitors who do not use it.
A store that has more numbers of active product searches has a higher conversion rate than the one where product search is much less.
So get an efficient product search box in your store. Following are the must-to-do tips for a great product search box:
- Create a distinctive search box, well placed on all the pages of the store
- Fast and Accurate – Quickly returns back with the right results. Keyword in singular or plural form should return back with same results.
- Intelligent enough to return back with the result as per the intent of the user. Should be able to handle well spelling errors and get the intended result.
- Implement auto-suggestions to help user search for relevant keywords
- Let the user know what they searched. Should display the list of relevant keywords of the product being searched.
- Product Presentation is perfect. Stop, engage and Impress buyers in their tracks
Embed high-resolution default picture of each product on the relevant product page. Add other photographs shot from different angles. If you do it, you get a two-fold benefit: add life to your store and increase the conversion rate.
Hire a witty copywriter to write some crispy, unique description for each product.
Optimize it with business keywords in the body, heading and sub-headings. Create engaging product description that convinces readers and converts them into buyers.
Add product demo (how to use) video for the top selling products (if possible). Embed videos alongside the image. Through video, you connect better and faster with your potential customers.
Price should be bold, clear and competitive. Check your competitors’ website before you fix your products’ price.
Mention the price in currencies of countries from where your buyers come. Give that localization feeling to the product page.
- Make your Checkout process a breeze. Slow down your cart abandonment rate.
Bellroy has made the checkout process express by including everything on the same page.
Check out is time-sensitive. The longer it takes to check out the higher the abandonment rate. So make your checkout process quick and easy. For that, you have to follow these tips.
- A persistent shopping cart where all the products added to cart stay there as long as the buyer wants.
- Remove extra or avoidable fields in the checkout process and never make user fill the same information twice.
- Provide the pre-fill feature and let it fill the information for the buyer when the same information needs to be filled twice in the form.
- Automatically pre-fill city & state field as soon as user enters a zip code
- Keep the form linear
- Don’t complicate password selection
- Form field length should match the expected length of the input
- Display validation checks against each field
- Make account registration an optional process. Do not force users to register or else the abandonment rate will go high.
Make your check out process a breeze and see your cart abandonment rate go down and the conversation rate up.
- Speed up loading time. Increase the conversion rate
The Internet speed is a modern day convenience that most of the people depend on. If your e-store loads slow you take away that advantage from your visitors. So speed up before they start leaving you forever.How?
- Rely more on caching because that eliminates numerous HTTP requests and consequently reduces the total payload size of the responses.
- Optimize images and serve scaled images
- Minimize HTTP redirects from one URL to the other.
- Compress page data
- Use fast hosting servers
- Get your shipping policies right. Push up the conversion rate
Shipping is a very sensitive customer touch point. It can make or break your e-commerce business. So the way in which you handle your shipping decides your conversion rate. Free shipping is a big magnet for buyers but willing to pay a nominal fee to receive the product faster. Following are shipping policies you should stick to in your store to improve your conversion rate:
- Show different shipping timeframes and give buyers the option to select the best one for them.
- Show estimated delivery date and time with email alert facility
- Mention true shipping cost. No hidden charges
- If possible offer free shipping (even if it means cutting down the discount proportionally)
- Display the free shipping threshold order value to encourage call-to-action.
- Offer a good returns policy. Provide complete transparency in it, otherwise, buyers will hesitate to buy.
- Integrate trusted shipping gateways
- Display the Trust Badges. Win buyers’ Confidence
When it comes online shopping people are hesitant to buy from new stores. If that is the case with you then do everything in the book to earn their trust. Here the tips:
- Get the accreditation badge like BBB, Bizrate, Verisign.
- Offer multiple trusted payment options like Mastercard, Amazon, PayPal, and Google Checkout.
- Show social proof like number of your Facebook visitors through Facebook Like widget
- Show customer testimonials.
- Display third-party reviews.
- Sign-up with Trusted Google Stores.
The above-mentioned CRO techniques improve the user experience. They do at different crucial touch points in your e-commerce website. As a result, more visitors take the path to the conversion funnel and become buyers.