Business technology

5 ways to better convert e-commerce site visitors to sales

- June 18, 2015 3 MIN READ

Driving visitor traffic to your e-commerce website isn’t the difficult part. The BIG challenge is whether or not you can convert e-commerce site visitors to sales.

Did you know two-thirds of all online start-up businesses disappear or fail within the first 12 to 18 months. Why is there such a huge failure rate?

Well there are a few reasons, but a big one is that these aspiring entrepreneurs spend so much time and money driving people to their website that they forget to optimise the actual website so that all the traffic is translating to actual sales.

What can you do to ensure you’re not one of these people? Try these five simple tweaks to convert e-commerce site visitors to sales:

1. Make sure to cross-sell/up-sell the products or services you are offering

It goes without saying that cross-selling and up-selling are vital to the success of any online business. By increasing the number of complimentary products that you promote, and ensuring there is a ‘people who bought this product also bought …’ function on your site, you will give yourself greater opportunity to sell additional related items.

2. Make your product descriptions and images more enticing

Be as engaging and original as you can be when writing your product descriptions. Don’t just tell the visitor something they can see in the product picture. Ask yourself about the things they might want to know about the product that they can’t see. Have a think about the concerns might they have? Then make sure these things are addressed in the description

Also make sure you have clear photos of your products that show the customer both the functionality and appearance. Show the product from different angles, and on both a white background and in the setting it might appear. Quite often, the simple act of showing the potential of a product (ie how a wall hanging might look in an actual room, or how a print looks framed) might be the difference between a sale … and not.

3. Establish trust and social proof

There are so many dodgy websites out there selling products, how do you ensure people visiting your site feel comfortable that if they order something from you they will actually get it? Trust and social proof is the answer.

Your About page is a good place to start. Share the story of your business and put a photo of yourself on there so people can see there is a real person behind the online shop.

Another way to establish trust is to have customer testimonials or product reviews on your website. This is social proof that your business is both real and that you have happy customers willing to post their opinions on your products.

Finally, the contact us page is another overlooked page for establishing trust. Simply ensuring you have a contact number, address and email address on there shows it is easy to contact you should your customers have any concerns or questions.

4. Offer an incentive

Are you getting a lot of people visiting your site and looking at products … but they’re not making it to the ‘checkout’ phase? You should be able to set your website to detect that a first time visitor is about to click away and you can offer them an incentive (say $5 or 10% off their first order) via a popup to stick around and make a purchase.

5. Make the checkout process easy

Too many steps to go through at checkout is a big reason for shopping cart abandonment – the number has been quoted as high as 67%! A one step checkout works best and can reduce the shopping cart abandonment rate. According to PayPal having PayPal express (one page) checkout can reduce this rate by 50%!

Remember, when you have an e-commerce website, getting people to the site is just the first part of the equation. Getting them to hand over their money is much harder! But hopefully the above will help you to get them to do so more quickly next time!

Do you have any tips on how to convert e-commerce site visitors to sales to add to the list above?