Whether you want to convert a curious visitor to a devoted customer or a potential client into a subscribing reader, there are a number of steps you can take that will make all the difference to your online sales.
Start by finding out what your current conversion rate is. You might be surprised to know that just 2-3% is common for e-commerce sites. That’s just two or more sales for every 100 visitors.
Using a tool like Google Analytics, you can start to understand who your visitors are and how they interact with your site. For example you might want to know:
This helps you understand how visitors engage with your site and what you might need to change to increase that engagement. You can also use that data to set measurable goals as you start to grow.
Poor-loading speed is a real problem for website visitors and can lead to negative reviews deterring other potential customers. So ensure that when people visit your site they can load it quickly and in a format applicable to their device.
With over 44 million people in the UK using smartphones a mobile friendly website is crucial. For example, nearly half of all visitors will leave a mobile site if the pages don’t load within 3 seconds.Find out more
The use of large or multiple images is familiar to most websites but the load time for these images can be frustrating for visitors. So it’s vital to ensure that your website images are optimised for the device they’re being loaded on.Find out more
A clear customer journey is crucial for increasing online conversion. You want to ensure that the steps you’d like the visitor to take are as clear as possible. So that the visitor finds what they are looking for - with as much or as little additional information as they need - and signs up or buys it.
Analytics will show you what the visitor’s site behaviour is. By improving your visitor’s journey around the site, you can alter that behaviour. For example:
A call to action is an image or text that prompts the visitor to do something in response. For example, download an e-book, sign-up to a newsletter, buy something or visit your store.
Everything we’ve highlighted so far will influence how effective your call to action is. It’s only one part of the process. However without a call to action, your visitors will have nothing to respond to.
You can have multiple opportunities for a call to action but each time it should be:
Good reviews have a huge influence on purchasing decisions. By the time a visitor starts looking at the reviews they have probably already decided whether they want what you’re selling. A good review reinforces that decision. A bad review (or no review) introduces doubt or destroys credibility. .
Recent research shows that a positive review influences the buying decision of 90% of customers. So for a small business this can make a big difference to your conversion rate.
Unfortunately, after all that hard work, most website visitors leave at the point of sale. The average ‘abandonment rate’ is 68%. This is the ratio of abandoned shopping carts to the number of initiated transactions. The reasons for this are varied:
Streamlining any of these processes significantly increases the chances of converting your sales. However, even when a visitor leaves at this stage, all is not lost!
If you have contact details for an existing customer who abandons their basket before completing their purchase, use this as an opportunity to get feedback on their visit, as well as offering them a friendly reminder to return at another time.
And, you can make use of ‘exit intent popups’. These kick in once a visitor’s cursor starts to leave your website offering them something before they leave. So even if they’re not a convert this time, give them a reason to keep coming back for more.
Your unique selling proposition, your USP, is what makes your business stand out from your competitors. You need to decide what is unique, different or special about your business which will encourage customers to buy from you. Here we give you practical tips to develop your USP.Read more
Nearly 90% of people in this country use the internet, and of these nearly 50% use social media. Find out the key things you need to know about promoting your business through social media using Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.Read more
Register or Login to add this article to your reading list.