If you sell products or services on your website, there’s probably one question that’s always at the forefront of your mind: “How can I get more people to buy my products?”
The answer to this question lies in improving your conversion rate. As you hopefully already know, “conversion rate” is defined as the percentage of website visitors who take the desired action of the site. So, in the case of e-commerce, conversion rate refers to the percentage of people who visit your website and make a purchase.
In general, an e-commerce conversion rate of at least 2 percent is considered optimal, but even just 1 percent would be considered satisfactory. If you’re not at 1 percent yet, you’ll want to make that your goal, and there are a number of proven and effective tactics to help you get there.
Write Compelling Product Descriptions
First and foremost, you need to focus on providing high-quality descriptions for your products. Descriptions are extremely important because they serve as your opportunity to sway customers who are on the fence about buying your product.
Effective product descriptions display several attributes:
- Outline the features of the product
- Explain how those features will benefit the customer and improve their lives
- Are concise and to the point
- Keep hype to a minimum
- Contain shorter paragraphs for faster and easier reading
- Avoid spelling and grammar errors
One of the best places to go for examples of quality product descriptions is Amazon.
Optimize Your CTA
Improving your CTA, or call-to-action, is one of the best measures you can employ to quickly improve your e-commerce conversion rate.
For example, just using the word “buy” as an alternative to “view,” “shop” or even “add to cart” will have a significant psychological impact on your customers. This phrase does a better job of convincing customers to buy from you.
Because “buy” is a more urgent word than “view,” “shop” or “add to cart.” The customer reads this CTA and feels more inspired to complete the requested action. You’ll also want the color of the “buy” button to stand out on your site. If you have enough website traffic, you can make use of tools like Optimizely to conduct A/B testing and further optimize your CTA copy and button color.
Include High-Quality Photos
Having strong descriptions and CTAs that stand out is a great start, but if you really want to improve your conversion rates, you’re going to need high-quality product images.
You see, people don’t just want to hear or read about how a product can help them: They want to see it too. In fact, it’s easier to sell a product with photos alone and no description than vice versa.
You’ll also want to take multiple photos from many angles, preferably while showing the product in action or in the proper context. For example, if you’re trying to sell a vacuum cleaner, don’t just show photos of the vacuum cleaner. Also include photos — or better yet, a video —of the vacuum cleaner in use, cleaning a messy floor. Such images will help create firm visuals in the minds of your customers, making it easier for them to visualize themselves using the product as well.
Reduce Shopping Cart Abandonment
Shopping cart abandonment refers to when customers place items in their shopping carts only to cancel or click away before making the purchase.
There are a variety of reasons why your customers may abandon their shopping carts: They may decide that the price of the product is too high, your website may be too slow, the checkout process may be too unintuitive, or they may be turned off when they see they have to pay for shipping.
Having to pay for shipping is perhaps the single biggest reason for shopping cart abandonment; 65 percent of online customers say that they won’t buy anything online if they have to pay for shipping.
Even though shopping cart abandonment is inevitable with some customers, you can reduce it as much as possible by paying for shipping yourself, offering better prices than your competitors, having a fast website, and asking for as little personal and financial data from customers as possible to ensure a speedier checkout. Using an established shopping cart provider can also help reduce abandonment by optimizing this process for your customers. We recommend 3dcart, JotForm, Ecwid and CS-Cart.
Each of the tactics covered above will help improve the e-commerce conversion rates for your online store. Remember, you don’t have to have an extremely high conversion rate: If you can maintain an e-commerce conversion rate of even 1 to 2 percent, you’ll perform just as well as, if not better than, many of your competitors.
Have additional tips you’d share with your fellow readers? Note them in the comments section below!
About the Author
Sam Bocetta is a former defense contractor for the U.S. Navy and current freelance journalist specializing in writing about technology, cybersecurity, and cryptography.