eCommerce is a booming industry; it opened the doors wide for retailers to reach a broader audience and embrace the digital era by selling online and offering products away from physical location limitations.
Successful eCommerce stores are the ones making profits, and despite the temptations of focusing on high traffic, the true elixir of revenue generation is conversion rates. It’s the critical metric for long-term, sustainable growth in online businesses.
Considering the average eCommerce conversion rate of 3%-5%, maximizing conversion pays off better than increasing traffic; therefore, this article will demonstrate 12 eCommerce Conversion Optimization practical tactics to boost sales.
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What is e-commerce conversion rate optimization (eCRO)?
eCommerce conversion rate optimization is the process of improving the website’s performance to increase the conversion rate, which is the percentage of customers who complete an activity on the website, like subscribing to a newsletter or placing an order.
It can be estimated using the following formula:
For example, if a website gets 10,000 visitors and 400 conversions in one month, the conversion rate for that specific month would be 4%:
What is a good eCommerce conversion rate?
A reasonable eCommerce conversion rate, on average, is about 2.35%. So, if an eCommerce website is converting above the average, it’s doing good but not great. However, the conversion process is complicated and embodies many strategies to outperform competitors and get it done successfully. Following are some tactics to improve it:
- The first impression is critical in website design; therefore, an attractive, well-designed UX/UI increases engagement and might result in higher conversion.
- Affordable pricing combined with special offers and seasonal discounts can drive fruitful traffic and turn website visitors into buyers.
- Relevant, targeted, and explicit content plays a significant role in affecting buying decisions at any point of the customer’s journey on the website.
- Improving brand credibility eliminates anxiety while shopping online and leads to a better converting website experience.
- Removing distracting visual elements for online visitors increases conversion over time.
eCommerce conversion optimization is essential for having an upward trend in leads, traffic, and revenue. Moreover, it has many advantages:
- Boosts SEO efforts along with other optimization strategies
- Gradually lowers the customer’s cost per acquisition
- Increases the online customer lifetime value
- Leads to an in-depth understanding of customers’ behavior
Tips to optimize your e-commerce conversion rate
Sometimes having everything in place is not enough. Online shoppers still don’t convert despite the well-designed website, attractive visuals, high traffic, etc. However, there are many reasons why the eCommerce conversion rate doesn’t increase:
Lack of credibility
Online shoppers won’t place an order or even subscribe unless they trust the website. Credibility is earned and requires taking serious actions to develop over time.
Lack of customer experience
When online visitors can’t find what they’re looking for or are being asked for too much information at check out, they’ll lose interest in an eCommerce store. Furthermore, a poor product description or an irrelevant poster design might push them away.
Lack of options
Online customers have different preferences, and at some point, an eCommerce website must offer all available options to create a smooth shopping experience, like payment gateways or return policies.
To overcome those issues and others, here are some tips on how to increase conversion rate eCommerce.
Reduce Website Load Time
According to Google, 53% of online visitors would leave a mobile website if it takes more than 3 seconds to load. Moreover, The potential bounce goes up by 32% as page load time increases from 1 to 3 seconds. It’s only a matter of seconds that would determine prospects’ future behavior on your website.
To improve eCommerce conversion rate, you have to reduce your website loading time, and here are some quick tips for that:
- Perform regular website testing on desktop and mobile browsers.
- Adjust website photos and videos to reduce size while maintaining quality.
- Maximize taking advantage of browser caching.
- Minimize page redirects as much as possible.
- Reduce HTTP requests.
Optimize the Website for Mobile Devices
While 54% of web traffic comes from mobile devices, Google analytics found that 61% of online customers would leave a website for not being mobile-friendly. In that regard, optimizing sites to become mobile-friendly is a foolproof strategy to improve eCommerce conversion rate.
Provide a flawless shopping experience for mobile users not to lose potential customers to competitors. You can start by following these steps:
- Utilize Google’s mobile-friendly tool to test the website.
- Redesign pop-ups for mobile users and reduce them if possible.
- Use Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP).
- Improve website loading time on mobile phones.
Leverage Browsing History for Personalized Recommendations
“personalization is when you go into a bar and sit down and the bartender puts a whiskey in front of you without having to ask what you want.” Jeff Bezos
Another tactic you must include in your eCommerce conversion optimization strategy is creating a personalized customer experience. 90% of customers like having personalized recommendations, and 45% tend to take action and purchase from a website offering it.
Tracking and analyzing your customer’s purchasing history, browsing data, traffic location, etc., allows for personalized recommendations, increasing the eCommerce conversion rate.
Mention Shipping Conditions Upfront
Customers often don’t pay attention that shipping fees are not included in the product price. When reaching the checkout point, they get surprised by the added shipping cost and abandon their cart, looking for another eCommerce store.
It’s not because they don’t want to pay the shipping expenses, but because they feel tricked into something they didn’t know, which reduces the eCommerce website’s credibility and trustworthiness.
Many websites offer free shipping. If you can’t afford that, provide a clear shipping policy on the homepage or product description. Giving customers a head up will improve the conversion rate.
Describe Product Benefits, Not Features
The advertising tycoon David Ogilvy once said, “Consumers do not buy products. They buy product benefits.” What matters to customers is not the product itself but the added value they’ll get when they buy it. In fact, this is why people pay money to purchase products and services; it’s the benefits they’ll get.
Product descriptions sometimes drift away from their original purpose and only provide a detailed specification of the items. Especially that 85% of online shoppers consider product information a decision-making factor when choosing an eCommerce retailer. However, online users need more than just details, as they want to find out how it can be used, what benefits it offers, and what sets it apart from similar products.
Despite having many items on eCommerce websites, highlighting product advantages and practical uses will increase the eCommerce conversion rate and positively impact the website’s overall performance.
Invest in High-Quality Product Photos and Videos
When shopping online, customers can’t physically examine products, and instead, they rely on photos and videos. Providing high-quality visuals helps online consumers better understand what they’re buying.
It’s also a competitive factor since many eCommerce stores sell similar products, and standing out from the crowd requires a unique approach. Multi-media is an investment that pays off and can be the perfect approach to outperform competitors and increase the eCommerce conversion rate.
Place Trust Signals on Your e-commerce store
In a recent study, 92% of American online consumers said they have concerns about sharing information with new eCommerce websites. So, unless you’re Jeff Bezos himself, you need to worry about the trust signals of your eCommerce store.
Feeling safe is a driving force when it comes to eCommerce conversion optimization. Customers require privacy and security to provide sensitive information like credit card details, and they will watch for trust signals to make sure the website is legitimate.
Use Reviews on Product Pages to Gain Trust
Nine out of ten online customers read reviews before purchasing and 79% trust those reviews as personal recommendations. Therefore, good reviews are a powerful tool to gain customers’ trust and improve conversion rates.
A comfortable customer experience will be rewarded by positive feedback and good reviews. Utilize those reviews and ensure customers will find them by choosing premium positions on the website and sharing them on social media platforms to drive traffic to the eCommerce store.
Simplify the Checkout Process
Your customers have been long enough on your website to search your products, read reviews, and add products to their cart. Now, they want a fast, simple checkout process. 21% of online customers have abandoned their carts because of tedious and complicated checkouts.
Retrieving those abandoned carts and ensuring deal closure will increase eCommerce conversion rate. Simplify the process with these tips:
- Regularly test the checkout process and ensure all functionalities, like discount codes and tax calculators, are working correctly.
- Don’t use long forms that seem complicated and replace those with easy-to-understand and short ones that would do the job.
- Only request necessary information and avoid adding too many fields for the customer to fill at the checkout.
- Enable the auto-complete feature or drop-down lists to help online shoppers fill the information faster.
Diving deep into optimizing the checkout process is totally worth it despite the technical complications that might require hiring professionals. The checkout optimization leads to a 35.62% conversion rate increase.
Offer Discounts and Sales
Although it sounds outdated, 88% of US consumers use discount coupons when shopping online, which says a lot about online shopping behavior. No matter how loyal customers are to an eCommerce store, they will always look for a good deal elsewhere. Offering discounts and seasonal sales is an excellent incentive for customers and a clever tactic of eCommerce conversion optimization. Entice customers with special offers and motivate them to take action.
Create Urgency and Scarcity of Products
FOMO Marketing is a concept that stands for “fear of missing out.” This strategy is a powerful tool for eCommerce conversion optimization. Creating a sense of scarcity for products makes customers feel they will lose the chance of getting the offer, which drives them to purchase. There are two common methods for creating scarcity:
- Creating a supply shortage by limiting the product quantity available as an offer.
- Creating deadlines by limiting the offer time.
Enable Guest Checkout
Creating an account before checking out may make sense for you. However, about 24% of online consumers don’t like that and prefer to leave the website and abandon their shopping cart instead. A guest checkout enables website visitors to shop and checkout without creating an account. It offers them a smooth, effortless online shopping experience and can result in a higher conversion rate.
In the end, if you can’t trust what digital marketing specialists are saying, you may believe the Greek philosopher Plato, ”conversion is not implanting eyes, for they exist already; but giving them a right direction, which they have not.” Similarly, eCommerce conversion optimization is all about directing the current traffic in the right direction to benefit online businesses.
eCommerce conversion optimization is the foundation of your eCommerce website growth and revenue. Although it might be time-consuming, it’s worth it. Implementing an eCRO strategy utilizes existing traffic and converts website visitors into buyers or subscribers.
Despite having a perfect-looking website, you must do something about conversion optimization if it’s not converting above the average. Even if the conversion rate is reasonable, you should consider eCommerce conversion optimization to maximize the benefit of your website’s traffic.