“We see our customers as invited guests to a party and we are hosts” – Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon
With new technologies such as easy to use ecommerce platform, drop shipping, payment gateway etc. the entry barrier for starting an ecommerce business has reduced, but the competition has also increased immensely.
One of the question often raised by many eCommerce store owners or regularly raised in social media forums is:
How to improve Conversion rate or do CRO for the eCommerce stores?
We are a Shopify partner and serving many small businesses; few things that we suggest to do for improving the CRO are –
1. Product Optimization – According to smart insight in ecommerce retail , the organic contribute to more than 20% of sales, if it is combined with direct source both contribute to nearly 42% of the eCommerce sales in the US (Source: http://www.smartinsights.com/ecommerce/ecommerce-analytics/important-e-commerce-traffic-sources/)
There are many reasons for it, the organic customer has need for the product; Social media, email, display, and affiliate campaign is push marketing the customer doesn’t have an immediate need.
If you run efficient campaign on social media you can generate interest and increase traffic, but getting a high conversion from paid social channel is a tough task. The conversion rate for Facebook and other social media is quite lower than organic.
If you improve the SEO, the overall conversion rate will naturally improve.
- Conduct a detailed keyword research; the wire-framing of the store, creation of various category/collection should be as per the keyword research.
- All tags, page URLs, images name, title, description should be as per keyword research.
- Selection of keyword is crucial if you are a start-up then opt for less competition low search keywords. The keyword also depends on products. If you are selling glamorous trousers then you cannot choose “trouser”, the targeted keyword should be “fashionable trouser” or “stylish trouser” based on the SV in you targeted geography.
- The image is the main selling point for eCommerce store, the design and dimension should be uniform, and visually appealing.
- For Product pages, it is possible that many keywords don’t give expected result. Regularly update the product page and test new keywords, track the result and improve accordingly.
2. User Experience and Visitor journey – If you want to improve conversion, it is a must to understand the user behaviour and the visitor journey across all the pages.
- How they are interacting with the store, which all pages they are going to
- Which pages they are dropping
- What make them to behave so
- What elements are driving the user behaviour
- Above are the basic questions, if you think from user perspective you will get questions which can give better insight about the customers.
If you can find the user behaviour in your site and take the required action you will observe an uptake in traffic, conversion and revenue.
What is the key metric and parameter for user experience?
Bounce rate – The metrics gives picture on which pages the customer is dropping just after entering the store.
Exit pages – Which pages the user is dropping after coming to the store.
Time spend of the form – If the user is spending too much time the form, there is something annoying on the form or the form is not easy to fill which may prompt the user to drop or abandon the payment.
Website loading time – According to research done by US Net habits, if the website takes longer than a second to load, many citizens prefer to click somewhere else. Amazon revealed that a one second slowdown in speed could cost $1.6 billion in sales each year. (Source – https://www.fastcompany.com/1825005/how-one-second-could-cost-amazon-16-billion-sales)
Research shows that 3 seconds is the maximum amount of time you can expect people to wait for your site to load.
How to improve the user experience
User’s navigation tools – There are many tools like Crazy eggs and Hotjar which give insight about user behaviour in form of head map with which you can find where they are clicking, scrolling and engaging. These tools also provide user recording, which can help you see the user journey.
You can create sales funnel from the category/collection page to the payment page and analyse the drop off
Customer feedback – Customer feedback gives the clear ground picture of the store and why the customer is dropping, regularly take customer feedback on all aspect of the store. Detailed feedback and interview will unwind many things about the store.
You can also take feedback from the customer service department, as they are regularly interacting and are in contact with the customers.
Google Page Speed – It’s a very handy tool, if you want to know the standard loading speed of your store, it also recommends the required changes.
3. Google Shopping & Google AdWords Optimization – If you are running the Google paid search campaign, you should track the CTR and Conversion rate and ensure that it is above the industry average.
How to improve
- Proper Targeting – Ensure you are tracking the right geographical region
- Scheduling – Schedule the campaign that gives you high conversion, 9 am – 11 pm, is the best time for conversion. It is also dependent on the geographical location and targeted customers.
- Keep a threshold on all metrics – Based on revenue margin, Cost customer acquisition (CAC) keep a threshold on all key metric: CTR, Quality Score, Conversion rate, Max CPC. If any parameter crosses the limit take the required steps to bring them under a limit. For example, if the threshold conversion rate is 2.2% and if any page conversion rate goes below that, then modify or change the landing page.
The conversion rate optimization is not a one-time activity, you must continuously monitor all the parameter and keep on improving.