Lower prices and convenience are two items that make online shopping more and more popular. In the next four years it will grow by over 10%. You can always improve your eCommerce site and make adjustments to gain better footing in the ever expanding eCommerce market. Opportunities to better your e-commerce site and the way you do business are readily available but there are some immediate issues you can address for a more traceable return.
Attract Attention to your Ecommerce Site
Help customers find you. Set a marketing budget for search engine optimization, social media, pay-per-click campaigns, banners, and sponsored placement on blogs that have authority and speak to your types of clients. Use online advertising venues that are suited to your products in order to reach the most customers who have a need for your products and services. Pitching to the right consumer niche will have a better return value over broadcasting to a mass audience.
Expand Into the Mobile Market
The mobile market continues to grow annually. Now many consumers shop for and purchase goods over mobile devices like smart phones and tablets. If your website isn’t mobile responsive then you could be losing a good chunk of sales due to this valuable and lucrative consumer niche being unable to navigate, search and check out on your website over their mobile devices. Check your website and its functionality and abilities across multiple devices to know where your site stands. This consumer level has money to spend but they won’t wait to if your site doesn’t load and they won’t buy if they can’t use your check out system on their devices. While in the past you had about 15 seconds to capture and retain a visitor via desktop browsers, this level of consumer is fast and they want near immediate results. Give your website a full mobile responsive makeover to capture this large segment of revenue that you could be missing.
Make Costs Low
Every dime you save on the costs of running your eCommerce site and on the purchase of the products and services you offer, the better your overall return will be. Constantly networking in your industry will put you in touch with new vendors who may offer you better prices. Wholesale vendors and manufacturers will be able to offer you some of the best prices. The #1 factor in ecommerce website popularity is price. If you can keep your purchase price low then your mark up will keep making a better return for you and customers will be happier with lower prices.
Use a High Performance Web Hosting Plan
If your website isn’t online then consumers can’t checkout. Trying to shoestring your hosting budget could end up costing you big if your site goes down or if you run out of resources and your account is suspended. If you have a large sales event or your traffic is growing, you need to make sure your server can handle the volume. Many hosts now offer business web hosting plans that are resource laden and have the additional security features you need to protect the sensitive financial and personal information of your clients. Cloud hosting is also a good option for your hosting as it is secure and scalable. So, if you have a high traffic sales event planned you can adjust your resource usage up for the event and back down once it is over. This is a cost effective way to ensure uptime, superior security and the overall reliability of your ecommerce website.
Simplify the Checkout Process
Customers wont generally wait around to check out and finalize their orders if the site is slow or if you are trying to require them to register in order to get to the check out area. Accept as many forms of payment that you can. Bitcoin is accepted by and used by many. Consider adding it to show you are on the cutting edge and to add options in order to process as many payments as possible. Speedy shipping along with shipping options will endear your customers to your eCommerce website. Try to make shipping rates as low as possible and shipping times as quick as possible to ensure happy and returning visitors.
Increase Sales and Site Popularity
If you are a computer store make sure you offer all the cables and accessories a consumer might want or need. If you are a clothing store add belts and jewelry along with other accessories to your site. This keeps your visitors from having to move to another place to shop for that “needed” item. Keep customers on your site and they will be happier not to have to shop around and your overall checkout returns will be higher. Take every opportunity to keep that visitor on your website. Use a widget to direct the customers to what might compliment their original purchase. You would be surprised how this simple tactic encourages the consumer to produce higher checkout totals per visit.
Customer Service Comes First
You can succeed or shut down shop almost solely based on the level of customer service you offer. In the age of eBay and Amazon people want to be able to make contact on the order status, order contents and shipping time frames as well as returns almost immediately. When your eCommerce stores offers more than one system enabled for your customers to interact with you, you will be more successful. Live chat is very popular and many customers still want to speak to a live representative as well. Check your customers feedback to make sure you are meeting their expectations. One bad customer service event can send a client away forever. Disgruntled and dissatisfied, once happy customers, can turn into your worst enemy by way of public channels and reviews. Cut off problems at the head and your happy clients will make recommendations and referrals to their networks more frequently.
Google Reviews Boost Exposure
Few items are worth more to your SEO value and your consumer appeal than Google reviews. Positive reviews will paint you in the best light for customers that have not used you yet and they can give your site better ranking. An astounding 70% of consumers trust reviews from people they don’t know but that post positive reviews. 88% of consumers now check reviews and ratings before they make a purchase. That same percentage level also makes recommendations to friends, family members and other business and personal networks when they have a positive experience. Don’t be shy, ask for reviews. The practice of gaining positive online reviews has exponential value which will drive more traffic and thus sales to your e-commerce site.
There are always a number of technical improvements you can make to your eCommerce website. But, the best way to expand your sales and client base is to provide what the consumer demands. Your visitors might not notice the new features on your shopping cart or really care about your new images but they will notice lower prices, better shipping rates and improved customer service right away. Make changes that mean a higher level of satisfaction for your clients and watch your bottom line results improve.