Wondering why your conversion rates are dropping?
Website owners spend a lot of money to draw traffic to their sites but even though spend a lot of money on marketing they don't get desired sales and revenues. Are stuck in the same situation where you can't meet your revenue targets and not sure where your targeted audiences is vanishing? Well the reason is simple they are not converting or in other words they are abandoning the website even after they found what they were looking for. Hence, your conversion rate is dropping, because while you were concentrating on increasing your traffic you didn't pay much attention to converting the traffic into buyers. And surprisingly, there are very simple changes that you can make to alter this situation at minimal expense.
Here are 5 UI changes you can make to increase your ecommerce conversion rates:
1. Display Beautifully
Pictures speak a thousand words - and well it is true. The one thing that boosts ecommerce sales is the display of products. Better the quality of product images higher is the conversion rate. People will go into the product information only if they like the image. A bad quality image or one that is poorly shot will not attract any sales and hence there won't be any conversion. Show different angles of the product and give more zoomed in shots. Remember the customer should have an experience equivalent to physical shopping.
Net-a-porter uses their product images fantastically.
Photos have their limitations though, so you can enhance the effectiveness by videos as well. Short product videos or even product reviews will help in increasing your conversion rates.
2. Rule out the unnecessary and go with the important
Asking to fill up a registration form to check out a website is one of the major conversion killers. People when they buy online are usually sitting at their office or are on the run, so don't waste their time by asking them for too much of information right at the beginning. Once they move to the shopping cart it is then that you should ask for their contact details. Don't ask for details you don't require, because most of the users are not willing to divulge their personal information online. Also, asking for the same information more than once irritates a potential buyer. Have clear progress indicators once a customer hits the shopping cart. Have a smooth payment system and you have a happy customer who might come back again to shop.
3. Make the website user-friendly
Once a user likes a product he will immediately want details and specifications for it. Have a great product copy supported by reviews from previous buyers. Every website has its own individuality when it comes to product descriptions; add your own personal touch and recommendations. An online chat option offering assistance to the buyer is an added bonus, but make sure you have the bandwidth to carry it out successfully. Last thing you need is the potential buyer to get frustrated by buzzing you online with no response.
Once the user is satisfied with an item what does he do? He will want to add it to the shopping cart - but unfortunately he doesn't because your button to add it to the shopping cart is hidden at the bottom of the page and the customer is too wary to scroll down. Sometimes page owners create buttons that are very subtle that take a lot of time to spot or don't say the right thing - this too is a conversion killer. Having a clear call to action on the button is very important. A simple A/B testing can help you figure out what kind of text on the button works best for your website. Just simply using ADD or BUY doesn't really work well for your conversion. You can easily use split testing to find out if you should use ADD TO CART, BUY NOW or SHOP NOW.
We like how PotteryBarn clearly uses SHOP THIS LOOK and ADD TO CART clearly.
4. Be Clear, Open and Honest
It is strongly recommended to provide the correct information on your website like - OUT OF STOCK or SOLD OUT or FREE SHIPPING. Nothing annoys a potential buyer more than when he reaches the shopping card to find out that he has to pay extra for shipping. Clearly mention your shipping charges if any - though it is strongly advised that with competition being huge do away with shipping charges, people don't like that. Similarly, don't make your users wait until they reach the check out process to find out that the particular item that he liked is out of stock. Mentioning something is SOLD OUT also, gives the impression that the particular product was the best seller; you can also mention that you are in the process of getting more stock for the product.
5. Offer Different Payment Options
One of the most obvious ways of increasing your conversion rates is offering reasonable selection methods of payment. I have never used a credit card, so if some website offers only payment through credit cards they will definitely lose one potential customer in me and I am very sure many like me. Many people don't always use credit cards. Several users are not comfortable using even debit cards online - they are apprehensive of sharing their bank details online, especially if it is a relatively new website. Most of us want to pay only when we have the product in our hands, so cash on delivery is a must have on every ecommerce website. Make the user's life easy and give them what they want - remember they are the ones who can make you or break you, so keep them happy and satisfied!
About Author: Pooja Roy works at Visual Website Optimizer, the world's easiest A/B testing software. She's been involved with web content development, UI design and ecommerce marketing for about 5 years. She vigorously helps online businesses around the world to market their products and services effectively by discovering the value of Conversion Rate Optimization, split testing, and multivariate testing.
Images were provided by author.