So you have your ecommerce site set up and you’re making sales, now what? The answer is growth. You need to optimize your website and trading strategies to make them more effective and more user friendly. If you’re at this point you have done the hard work, the heavy-lifting, the spadework. It’s now time to implement measures to take your business or brand to the next level.
Define Your Sales Cycle
Your sales cycle is the process of making a sale from the point when the customer is simply a lead to the first point of contact with the product or website, then into the sales funnel. Some customers will convert immediately while others may take some time: a day, a week, a month, or longer. You need to understand your sales cycle and pay close attention to the analytical data coming back. Make decisions on what platforms to users for checkout and what on page strategies lead to sales.
Optimize Checkout Processes
The great danger in the checkout process is shopping cart abandonment. This is when the items are left for later, saves to a wishlist, or deleted altogether. Of course, some customers change their mind and there’s nothing you can do to stop them, but you can make the best choices for your ecommerce shopping cart solutions and narrow the odds in your favor. Make sure your checkout process is slick and easy, online customers have very short tolerance levels and will gladly abandon a process if it causes frustration.
Offer Product Descriptions
Product descriptions are highly effective for winning customers, retaining customers, and reducing your returns. The more accurately you can describe a product the more likely your customers will be satisfied and give you positive feedback. With clothing, for instance, give a size guide, and for technology remember to include the specifications and the pros and cons. It might seem like a little thing and it may take time and investment to write up the descriptions, however, the testimonials alone will be worth the effort.
Show Shipping Costs
One thing that is likely to put customers off and increase the likelihood of shopping cart abandonment is if you refuse to show the shipping costs upfront. Customers don’t like it when they input a lot of data to buy a product, only to find out it’s far more expensive than they first thought. You might think it’s off-putting to advertise the shipping upfront but it’s far more effective than concealing it. If you advertise the shipping you will notice more successful conversions and better testimonials.
Allow a Keep-Shopping Option
A keep shopping option is a button at the checkout that allows customers to save what they have in their basket and continue to browse the site, or even leave and come back at a later date. Of course, you want to make the sale and the conversion right away, but customers appreciate the option to shop around. If you give customers this option, they will regard your site and shop as a user-friendly experience, and since not all ecommerce stores offer this as an option you will have another effective USP.