Driving traffic to your e-commerce site is expensive. Whether it’s through advertising, content development, or search engine optimization, visitors cost money. Much of this expense is completely wasted if your site doesn’t convert enough browsers into customers, so anything you can do to push up your conversion rates represents a sound investment. Here are five questions to ask to see if your e-commerce site’s performance can be improved.
Are You Attracting the Right Visitors?
Even the most polished of sites will struggle to convert if its visitor profile doesn’t match up to its niche. If your traffic is healthy but conversions are poor, it may be that you’re simply attracting visitors who are looking for something you don’t offer. Does your advertising spell out what a visitor can expect, or is it designed to simply maximize clicks? Do your page titles accurately describe the products or services on offer? Huge traffic is great for the website owner’s ego, but highly targeted traffic is much better for the bottom line.
Does the Site Message Hit Home Immediately?
So you’re happy that your traffic is a good fit to your site’s purpose, but do your visitors realize this quickly enough? When a potential customer lands on your site, do they instantly feel that they’ve found an answer to their question, or do they need to delve deeper to see what’s on offer? Internet users have notoriously short attention spans, so if your page doesn’t make it immediately clear what it’s about then a large proportion of your visitors will be lost within seconds.
Is Your Site Widely Viewable?
The days when most internet surfers browsed using their desktop computers are gone. Today, people will view a website using all manner of devices, from smartphones to smart TVs. If your site falls apart when seen on anything but a traditional PC, then you’re turning away up to half of your potential customers right out of the gate.
Are You Asking Too Much?
It’s always best practice to minimize the information you require to close a sale – don’t make it difficult for a visitor to buy. This is especially relevant when combined with the previous point about mobile device compatibility: tiny touchscreens can make filling in online forms a real chore. If a visitor needs to provide a potted life history in order to place an order, then you’re actively turning people away, right at the point they’ve just decided to become a customer.
Finally, Does Your Site Instill Confidence?
Nowadays, most people are extremely aware of the dangers of online scams and cybercrime. If you want visitors to hand over their personal details and become customers, you need to make them trust your organisation. This means providing a fully secure site, offering clear indications of your shipping costs and return policies, providing full contact details including a toll-free telephone number, and all the other touches that go towards demonstrating that you’re a legitimate operation. Skimp on these details and your conversions will be decimated.
It’s a competitive online marketplace these days, and acquiring a share of valuable traffic is a difficult and costly business. If your website isn’t set up to squeeze every last drop of conversion out of the traffic it receives, then your online marketing budget is only working half as hard as it should be.