Increase your conversion rates by understanding your customers and enhancing their shopping experience!
If you have ever worked on a shop floor, you may have heard the phrase ‘conversion rates’ and ‘customer conversion’ from your boss way more than you’d have cared to, after all, what does it even mean? Say a customer had come into that shop, had a browse and then looked at a product they liked, surely they are going to buy it, right? Wrong. Just because you may have a handsome face and the witty charm to help sell that product, it doesn’t mean that your customers are definitely going to go for it. Unfortunately, it doesn’t depend on you as a person or the product in question. Converting your customers into ‘buyers’ rather than ‘lookers’ is dependent on a whole host of things. Even though purchasing online and/or instore has its similarities, the process of conversion varies widely in terms of process. We look at how to boost your conversion rates to get the most out of your E-Commerce business.
The idea of increasing conversion for your online business is ultimately down to the shopping experience. For example, let’s look at our ‘real-life’ customers on the shop floor, imagine you’re walking into a store in search of a new pair of trainers and when you step into the shop it’s absolutely sweltering (the shoddy air-con has broken and it’s the middle of a blazing record summer!). Once you’ve sweated your way through the first few isles and finally reach the trainers, you find that all the sizes are completely muddled up. Eventually, you find the trainers you like, but lo and behold… they have a thick mark all along the bottom of the right trainer (you rub this mark off yourself as you realize it is the only pair in your size). You decide to go for the slightly-marked pair of trainers you’ve just about fixed up and reach the till, only to be greeted with a grumpy, snotty, unwelcoming retail assistant who refuses to release even a meek ‘hello’ as you approach. Now, if you have stuck around this far into your trainer purchasing experience, I commend your will (or question your sanity…), nonetheless, you’re are now part of the 1-2% of customer converts that exist online. All seems a little dramatic, doesn’t it? However, you get the picture. At each turn, your experience as a customer was tarnished by the environment that the shop have created. It is the experience that you create for your customer that will encourage them to stay longer and hopefully up your conversion rates.
What Women (and Men) Want
No, we’re not encouraging you to electrocute yourself in order to be able to read your customers minds (like the noughties Mel Gibson rom com) in order to up your conversion rate. We do, however, encourage you to understand the minds of your customers through smart technology. Something as simple as Google Analytics will help you to understand where your visitors are coming from, how long they visit each page, where they are clicking through from, if they are returning customers and what words they are searching in order to find your site. This will help you gage where the glitches lie and therefore how to improve them directly. You never know, but something like this could help you understand something about your website that could never have known, such as the language in which you are using to drive people to your site or through each page. Simply changing one or two words to help customers reach their destination could help increase your conversion rate massively.
Be Business Savvy
Once you’ve understood where, what and why your customers are clicking on to reach the end destination you can work on how to get them to take the plunge and click ‘buy’ with a few savvy tips and tricks. This is not to say that customers aren’t interested in the product, of course they are, and sometimes they just need a little nudge to get them onto that long-awaited confirmation page. Unlike the experience of a physical shop, the customer can’t touch, try-on or try-out the product in front of them. It is your job to make sure the product you are selling is as detailed as possible, whether this is putting as many images or different angles of the product as is possible, detailing the description with size, dimensions and types of textile or maybe even adding customer reviews (providing you have enough content and are confident in the quality!). If your customer feels as though they have all the necessary details in order to make an informed decision, they’ll be more likely to want to buy.
Straight to the Point
With online shopping giants such as Amazon making the purchasing process for customers that one step easier with features such as ‘One-Click’, we have no choice but to step-up our Shopping Cart game. Though it may not be suitable for your site to have such a thing as a ‘one-click’ button, it won’t hurt to make the whole process shorter with smarter features to help nudge the customer to the final purchasing page. There are a few simple ways you can do this;
Adjust your P&P
How many times have you looked at a product online and thought ‘what a steal!’ because of the low price of your purchase, only to find that the postage and packaging costs almost double the actual product? It therefore makes the product seem less ‘worth it’… you may as well go to the shop and get one for cheaper WITHOUT postage fees. The idea here is to adjust the price of your products slightly higher so that the postage seems as minimal as possible. People are more inclined to pay more if they feel as though the product is worth it and priced well, even it is a little higher than they’d like. Who wants to spend all their money on stamps anyway!
Upsell, upsell, upsell!
Flashbacks to those earlier staff meetings, back in the day of your shop floor retailing days, clutching a large coffee with the piercing sounds of your manager (once again) exclaiming that, today, you must ‘UPSELL!’. Easy on the shop floors, but how do you do this sat at your desk all day? Well, offering your customers the opportunity to purchase things in bundles. For example, game stores do this well. Selling consoles on their own at a high price or offering the customer to purchase the same console and for only a little extra they have the opportunity to receieve a selection of games. This type of upsell works a treat as the customer feels as though they’re getting the best deal. Offering smaller items on the way to the checkout page that could be of interest to them and the products they are currently purchasing are a good way to shift things that may not be able to sell by themselves.
A Penny for Your Thoughts
What a difference that little penny makes… Trust us when we say, making a sale at £99.99 will sell far better than the same product at £100.00. Customers want to believe that they’re not spending too much, so to take your product down to the next bracket of 10’s will most definitely contribute to your customers shopping experience.
If it is suitable for you and your business, moving into the world of apps or even online shopping is a sure-fire way to make this process easier for your shoppers on the go. However, make sure your viewing layout and action buttons are just as mobile friendly as they are desk top friendly. Follow the same processes as you would with your online version!
Safe, Clear and Easy
If customers are new to your sight, they may be dubious as to your credibility. Assuring your customers checking out are secure with their purchase, whether that’s giving them the option of money transfer services such as PayPal or working with secure money payment services will allow the customers to go through with that payment with their minds at ease. Finally, keeping your final stages extremely simple is crucial in reducing the dreaded ‘cart abandonment’. Clearly display actions such as ‘Go To Cart’, ‘Checkout’ and ‘Pay’ with areas marked in bold such as billing and delivery addresses. It seems obvious, but you’d be surprised in the amount of sites with uneasy and complicated paying processes and how easy it is to lose customers because of it. Going back to our beloved ‘real shop’ customer experience, if the shop is windy, muddled and complicated and every corner you turn you can’t seem to find that blasted paying desk, you’re probably more likely to dump the contents of your basket there and then and storm out (okay, maybe a little dramatic, but infuriating nonetheless…).
With this list threatening to never end, there are so many more ways in which you can increase and improve your conversion rate. As a wise Grasshopper once said ‘to understand the customer, one must check over its analytics, have smart layouts in place and BECOME the customer’. Well, maybe not all of that, but relevant all the same. If you would like more advice from some of our ‘wise grasshoppers’, please don’t hesitate to give us a call or drop us an email so we can help you to improve your conversion rates!