In the world of e-commerce who doesn’t want to increase their conversion rate? Well, maybe someone who is snowed under with orders, but that’s by the by.
So, here’s a list of 20 ways you can look to improve your website to better aid those precious conversions.
1 – Reduce the Load
The very first thing someone will realise when visiting your site is how fast it loads. If you’re sat waiting even 5 seconds, it could be the difference to holding onto someone or them clicking back to Google.
Combat this by keeping things like image file sizes and plugins to a minimum.
2 – Above the Fold
Now they’re on your site, what can they see? Is everything important for entering the buying process in their view as soon as possible?
Make sure key elements like navigation, main CTA’s, and even contact links are in plain sight as it ensures the user can easily navigate your site.
3 – Use Your Real Estate
The old way of the web was to cram as much as you could in a small a space as possible, and unfortunately, some sites still use this formula. You will often find they are quite thin with big expanses either side due to modern-day monitors being widescreen.
Make use of this space by giving elements room to breathe and focus a user’s attention with stand-out CTA’s and clear messages.
4 – Use High-Quality Images
Not only do the images need to be relevant, they need to be pleasing to the eye. Researchers at Carleton University in Ottowa found that people can judge websites as being easy-on-the-eye or notably-jarring within 50 milliseconds.
Keep images and layout clean, and your Google searchers are much more likely to stay on your page. We previously talked about how imagery affects your company branding, so it’s really important to make sure you get this part of your website right.
5 – Lose Hype-Type
Most consumers are looking for useful information about the product they’re buying. Don’t overcomplicate things and give a garden table a back story worthy of a Man Booker Prize.
6 – Captivate Your Audience
While you don’t want to go overboard with content, you want to make sure you’re writing engaging copy for your target audience. Having captivating content will help build a deeper connection with your customers, instead of just being about the sales, leading to them coming back for more.
7 – Display Customer Reviews/Testimonials
Depending on the kind of product you are selling, customer reviews are a great way to give new customers the confidence to buy your product.
Also, if you’re supplying a service, testimonials from your clients will help to build trust by showing you are doing a good job.
8 – Mr Relevant
When asking for data from people, make sure it’s relevant and absolutely necessary for the task in hand. Don’t be asking for someone’s favourite ice cream flavour when they’re buying a pair of shoes.
9 – Let’s Get Chatty
We’ve all been there, looking at something at work (maybe when you shouldn’t be) and you want an answer fast, calling isn’t an option with the boss nearby and an email would take too long.
The answer, live chat. It gives people the freedom to open a conversation with you for a quick response that a phone call or email would be too long a process for.
10 – They Clicked That Button!?
You know your site inside out – it is your vision after all. But that does not mean everyone else gets it. Using a service like Usertesting.com allows you to give unbiased people a task to complete and you can watch them doing it, highlighting any potential pitfalls in your buying cycle.
11 – Where’d They Go?
Often the most overlooked aspect of improving a website is to look at historical data. Delve into how users are using your site whether it be Google Analytics or one provided with your website platform.
You might find people are dropping out on a particular page or step, but you won’t know for sure until you look.
12 – That’s Optional
In addition to making form fields relevant, make sure only the very necessary fields are required. If a user doesn’t want to share any additional information you’re asking for – a birthday for example – then they shouldn’t have to. At least give them a reason why you are asking for this data, it will help them make an informed decision.
13 – PPC Landing Pages
So, you’ve got multiple campaigns running on AdWords, but are they all linking to the homepage? Make sure you have pages to link through to that are relevant for your ads and match the ad copy with the landing page.
14 – Return to Sender
Having an easy, no-quibble, and possibly free returns policy could make or break a purchase, especially when it comes to fashion. It gives customers the freedom to try things on knowing they can easily send it back if it’s not right, which could just result in an exchange.
15 – Allow Guests
You find the product you love, add it to the basket and go to checkout only to be presented with a login/register screen. What, I can’t just buy this and go like a normal shop?
Adding a ‘guest’ checkout option can see conversions increase dramatically as it allows customers to just buy, no registering, no signing up, just pure and simple buying. It cuts down on time too, so users are less likely to drop out.
In the early days of guest checkouts, one company reported additional sales of $300,000,000 just by adding this functionality, read more here.
16 – Contact Us On…
If you don’t have the resource for a live chat, it’s a good idea to clearly display contact information so users can get in touch if they have a problem.
Hiding this information could put users off, as it may appear that you’re trying to hide something.
17 – Dirty Cash
Allow customers to pay with as many methods as possible such as PayPal, Apple Pay, and Android Pay. Restricting customers can be off-putting.
18 – Come Back for More, for Less
Offering post-transaction incentives, such as discounts or money off, can get customers coming back for more. Other methods can involve sharing the purchase with friends so they get a discount too, potentially doubling your customer base.
19 – Mobile Friendly
Website visitation is shifting more and more towards tablets and mobile devices. This means if your website isn’t mobile optimised, you will lose out on valuable customers.
But it’s not just about making your desktop version responsive, you need to consider screen real-estate. Text may need to be smaller, buttons bigger, and proportions of elements changing.
Get your phone out and check your website, is it something you would use?
20 – A/B Testing
The most important point about making any changes to your website is to test, test, test.
Make small incremental changes and see how they perform, that way you can see what changes have made an effect. If you change everything at once you won’t know what be helping or hindering your conversion rate.