In a world where everything is online, your shop, product or showroom must be online too. But with thousands of sites, products, and services vying for the attention of every precious visitor, you need to stand out from the crowd in order to make it.
A huge differentiator you can implement that will bring a marked improvement in your sales is to focus on CRO for your eCommerce platform. CRO, or Conversion Rate Optimization, is the technique of tweaking your e-commerce platform in such a way as to boost your conversion rate.
Recently, on one of our sites, we focused specifically on CRO and saw a boost in revenue of more than 5X – without adding any additional traffic to the site.
Let’s see a few relatively easy eCommerce optimization tips to take your conversions (and revenue) to the next level.
1. One page, one goal: Convert
The Paradox of Choice and similar concepts argue that the more choice a user has, the harder (and more miserable) it becomes for them to make a decision.- Instead of acting, your customer will agonize about making the ‘right’ choice, and will have difficulty making ANY choice at all!
In the case of your eCommerce site, this means that presenting the user with several (similar) product choices is more likely to confuse them than help them.
It is recommended that for any page or product, focus all of the user’s attention on a single product: one page, one goal → convert to that product.
Remove any distractions, such as irrelevant sidebars, links, or displays of other “Stuff you may like” options, or share buttons. Just present them with all the right reasons to convert (including benefits, discounts or special offers and social proof), and guide them to click your “Buy Now” button.
2. Discover any user experience stumbling blocks (and fix them)
Whichever eCommerce platform you use, you need to identify any stumbling blocks users face when browsing or purchasing on your site.
You’ll find that tools such as Hotjar can help you visualize the actions of your users. From this insight, you can pinpoint any issues with your website’s usability. Maybe you have a problem with the checkout process, or you have given users too much choice at a certain phase, or perhaps there is something else confusing your users.
You also need to make sure there is no friction in the checkout process. Whether it’s shipping costs (have you considered free shipping?), or some other thing causing users to abandon the cart, you need to discover the issue and fix it.
Whatever you discover, you are then in a position to take corrective action.
The leading eCommerce platforms have really taken this to the next level, by integrating with virtual wallet services to remove friction from the checkout experience. BigCommerce, for example, offers a single-page checkout screen which increases conversions by 12%, according to their data, Bohemian Traders, a clothing, and accessories site, has been seeing annual revenue growth of 166% since adopting this feature. “It’s clean and non-distracting for the customers. Plus, we can brand it or include up-sells or cross-sells as needed,” CEO David Berlach recently shared in a case study. “That’s been working very well.”
3. Manufacture scarcity effectively to boost sales
One of the most effective conversion tactics that have been proven to work time and time again is FOMO, or Fear of Missing Out – otherwise known as creating scarcity.
By making your product or current price limited or “scarce”, your client is much more likely to click the Buy Now button, just to make sure they don’t miss out.
You can do this by putting a time-limited discount in place (TODAY only!), or creating a limited number of “products” available for sale (ONLY 3 of these items left!). By using words such as “only” and “5 people have looked at this item in the last hour”, you are actually triggering scarcity fears, and pushing the client towards your Buy Now button.
4. Use Social Proof to allay fears
Have you ever had the urge to buy, and then at the very moment of purchase, you start doubting whether this is the right product for you?
This happens to everybody, so as a shop owner, you need to preempt this fear. You can do this using social proof.
Social proof is testimonials, reviews or other statements from past or existing customers who are happy with their purchase.
When (potential) customers see this “proof” of your clients who are satisfied with their purchase, it helps to resolve any nagging doubts they may have, and make them much more likely to click“Buy Now”.
Amazon uses this technique very effectively, by featuring ratings and reviews on the actual product page; as does Basecamp, which displays the huge number of companies who have used it successfully to manage their projects.
5. Focus on abandoned carts (and boost your revenue)
Even after implementing the above tips, something may happen to cause your user to abandon their purchase during checkout.
An abandoned cart is when a user adds a product (or a number of products) to their shopping basket, but does not complete the checkout process.
Looking at statistics from our own customers, we can see that easily 10 to 30% of revenue comes from focusing on abandoned shopping carts. If you’re not already doing anything about this, you can easily achieve a significant boost in your revenue, just by putting a process in place to manage abandoned carts.
If you’re considering such popular eCommerce platforms as WooCommerce vs Shopify, or other platforms for your online shop, confirm that they offer an abandoned cart solution. Then, make sure you activate this functionality ASAP.
Conclusion: Combine these tips for an effective conversion boost
Performing rigorous CRO on all your product pages can make a dramatic improvement to your bottom line. Even if the above techniques may demand a bit of process reorganization, we strongly suggest you implement all of these eCommerce optimization tips.
You’ll surely see a nice uptick in your revenue without putting any additional effort into your marketing – this is literally squeezing every last drop of potential from your existing website visitors.