We work with a lot of E-Commerce businesses and while many have a standard checkout funnel, many businesses have a very custom conversion funnel based on the goals of the business. Nonetheless, the basic concepts of a conversion funnel are pretty standard and straightforward.
Obviously, at first, the goal is to generate customers into the top of the funnel, this means you need to generate visibility and awareness. Once you have gotten them to the site, you need to make it really simple to find the products they are interested in, which can be through category pages or a specific product you offer. As customers make their way through the site, it’s always a great idea to find ways to capture email addresses. Once you get people into the checkout process, it’s important to make the purchase process clear and concise, without forgetting to get key information, and convert these people into paying customers.
And of course, after someone purchases, that shouldn’t be the last touch point. The focus now moves from getting them to make a single purchase, to now keeping them engaged and coming back and becoming a repeat purchaser.
Know Your Audience and Assess Their On-site Experience
One of the first steps of conversion funnel optimization should be learning about your audience and their behavior on your website. You can get direct insight and answers by using surveys and direct chat. It will give them a chance to evaluate their experience, and you the chance to discover which are your customer experience weak points. And, you can use analytics data to identify the types of keywords are driving traffic to your site (mostly via SEM since most SEO data is “(not provided)”).
Also, You can take a look at funnel and conversion data to find where the drop off points are within your checkout flow and identify the pages with high exit rates. Understanding this and the stop points on the site will give you a sense of where to start to increase conversion rates and get more people through funnels. Improving your customer experience through data is a big way to increase sales.
Make Your Home Page and Landing Pages Convert
Since the goal of the Home page is to make the visitors want to stay and explore, it is very important to design it according to the newest design trends and offer customers a top-notch user experience. Along with that, finding out popular products and top sellers can help you increase throughput of your products. When you have a real understanding of your customer and what they are looking for on these pages, you can really nail down product marketing and increase conversion rates, or better yet, your Average Order Value (AOV).
Similarly, your landing pages and category pages should address a specific problem or type of product. Obviously this is where customer experience is critically important, because making these pages simple to find out more details about products or make it easy to add-to-cart will increase conversion rates.
Make Product Selection Easy
When visitors come to your site, you have a very small window of opportunity to convert them into customers. If they can’t find what they are looking for, or anything else interesting for that matter, they will most likely leave, and they will do so very quickly. This is why you need to make your navigation through the site very clean and simple. From things like menus being clean and having the right organization, structure and sorting to category and product pages being very conversion focused.
When customers get to the product pages, showing them high quality product images and having detailed descriptions will keep them on the site. The last thing you want is a visitor perusing other sites for more details, or worse, to buy elsewhere. Pretty sure that will kill your conversion rates. Also, making sure you’re following best practices to increase conversion rates like making “add to cart” buttons obvious and the focal point of the page. Making their primary focus the action you want them to take – “add to cart” — pushes them into the buying process and checkout flow.
Improve the Buying Process: Checkout, Payment, Shipping and Returns
Checkout flows and pages are the easiest place to lose a customer to various distractions if you don’t slim this down to just moving them through the funnel. Many visitors don’t become customers because they leave on the page where they should actually convert. Eliminating unnecessary navigation at this point on the site will make sure they don’t lose focus and gives them only one direction to move forward through, purchasing. As they make their way through the checkout process, only gather the data you really need and clearly mark the optional fields you’d like to have. Forms are very boring and unsexy, but, optimizing your form fields will increase conversion rates and make sure people aren’t exiting the checkout funnel.
Make sure you have payment methods clearly stated, your shipping policies and offers communicated, and seals of approval so the buyer feels safe throughout the journey. Showing the buyer you care by protecting them will go a long way, believe it or not. And, last but not least, thank them and offer them an opportunity to share with their friends, family, or to come back for more with offers and discounts. Entice them to recommend your products to friends using referral programs, remind them of their excellent experience with your product
Keeping Existing Customers Engaged and Repurchasing
We mentioned it’s key to get existing customers purchasing again, and it’s definitely easier and cheaper than acquiring new customers. There is a trust already established, now you need to engage them and stay top of mind. One way to do this is through remarketing campaigns targeting them through a variety of creative and special offers. This can be anything from new products, seasonal selections, or even discounts.
Email is another great way to keep customers engaged and get them to repurchase. You can do this through a welcome series, talking about the brand, the products, the history, etc. This goes a long way because it builds a relationship with your customer and they really feel like a part of the brand. And, just like remarketing creative where you highlight new products and seasonal items, you can always do this via email as well. And, you can do this more frequently, to again, stay top of mind and get them to come back if they see something they like. You can also recommend products that are similar and would work well with the product they purchased previously. Along with that, offers like new sales or existing customer offers can get them right back into the purchase funnel work really well. At the end, use personalized emails to simply show appreciation and thank them for being a loyal customer. Gratitude goes a long way, trust us, we’ve seen it first hand.
Increasing E-commerce conversion rates is a process and it isn’t something that happens overnight. It takes time, dedication to detail, data analysis and testing to find what works best for your business. Learn from your own data, listen to your own customers and let your conversion methods evolve together with your business. Only then, can you increase conversion rates, AOV, and revenue.
And remember, more traffic is not always the answer to a higher conversion rate. It’s the effort you put in attracting, engaging, and educating your prospects that converts them.
Want to learn more about converting more e-commerce customers? we would love to chat about how we can help your company sell more products and increase revenue.
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