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Starting your eCommerce journey is an exhilarating experience. Seeing your online store come together, with all your products ready to be sold to people all around the world, is truly exciting.  

However, chances are that this excitement might quickly transform into disappointment, as you face issues such as low website traffic, minimal sales, and hosting issues. These problems (and many more) are extremely common for eCommerce-newcomers and are often the pitfalls that cause their great ideas to fail.  

The climb to eCommerce success is a treacherous expedition, but with these tips and tricks, you will reach the top in no time. 

1. Impress visitors with a stunning homepage 

In eCommerce, the first few seconds visitors experience on your website, are crucial. In these few seconds, you have to capture the user’s attention, convince them that your store is the best solution for their requirements, and have them wanting to explore your store further.

Since first impressions are so important, having an impressive homepage is a no-brainer. Here are a few strategies for designing your homepage that will go a long way: 

  • Consistent colour combinations 

Your website’s colour combination, including your logo, and your font size and colour all have a massive impact on your users’ experience. You should aim to keep your pallet consistent through these elements, as to not overwhelm users with a rainbow of contradicting colours. The colours you use should also reflect who you are as a company, showcasing your identity and what makes you unique. 

  • Keep your homepage optimized 

Nothing chases prospects away as quickly as slow website. Keep this in mind while designing your homepage, as big elements such as photos and sliders might slow down your site to a halt. When adding images, keep an eye on the size of the images, as high-resolution images are often the culprits. 

  • Keep it simple 

Keeping it simple is key, as you don’t want customers to be confused at first sight of your store. If a client feels it’s too much effort figuring out where to click to get to their desired product, they will just move on to the next best site. Your design focus should be readability, allowing customers to engage in a seamless shopping experience. 

3. Improve your product pages 

Your website’s product page is one of the most crucial elements that you have to perfect. This is your sales pitch, the crucial moment your customer decides if he’s buying your product or not.  

One historically successful strategy is making it possible for shoppers to locate new products wherever they are in your store. One technique for achieving this, is using breadcrumbs showing where the current product fits within a range. Take a look at how Amazon utilizes breadcrumbs: 

To help your products show up first in search engines, ensure that your product’s titles are SEO-optimized. This is achieved by naming products using keywords. But keep in mind, prioritize naming the products so humans can easily read them, instead of filling titles with keywords for robots and algorithms. 

Your product descriptions should be interesting. Generic descriptions should be avoided at all costs, the description should be able to identify the customer’s problem, and address how it can solve it. 

Product images are an easy way to quickly boost client conversion, and often the deciding factor for customers, as it shows exactly what they’re getting.  Make sure your images are good quality, and that they display your product from all angles to give your customers 100% certainty. 

4. Fight cart abandonment 

Cart abandonment is eCommerce’s silent killer. Unknown to you, you might be bleeding up to 60% of your sales from people abandoning their carts, choosing not to check out. The cause of these high abandonment rates is usually an unnecessarily tedious checkout processes.  

This is an easy fix, as simply lowering the number of required fields to purchase a product will usually do the job. If you want customers to move through the payment process even quicker – you can even implement a PayPal payment system in your store, saving customers the time of filling in their bank details. 

5. Give customers the option to leave reviews. 

Most customers will take a look at reviews from previous customers before deciding to purchase the product in question, thus you having reviews on display makes it easy for customers to see. Again, Amazon is an example of an excellent implementation of this, their product review section is easy to find and browse. 

Another feature you can add, is showing the average star rating on your product, to give prospects an idea of the consensus of customer impressions. 

6. Optimize your site for mobile 

This is a tip you cannot afford to overlook. The importance of mobile optimization cannot be overstated, as a large part of your customers will be browsing your website on their cellular devices. In fact, in modern times even more visitors will be on mobile than desktops. 

If your site is not optimized for mobile use, customers will get easily frustrated and disregard your website completely. 

7. Add blogs to your website 

Attracting customers is but the starting goal for eCommerce, the important part is making sure they come back. Online stores that don’t generate new content (for example blogs), will lose most of their audience because they are unable to reel back previous customers. Top eCommerce stores create their own blogs where they pick apart the latest trends, answer customer queries and even make announcements about upcoming projects or news.  

These posts are then shared between customers, resulting in growth and the accumulation of a community. With the eCommerce market becoming more saturated as time goes on, it’s becoming almost crucial to have a blog growing your website if you plan on keeping up with your competitors. 

Adding blogs will also greatly improve your search engine rankings, as Google currently favors long-form and in-depth content. 

8. Make information easy to find 

If you plan on achieving eCommerce success, you should make sure your site’s layout functions well. This isn’t just about making product information easily visible, but also about delivery times, return policies, and related product recommendations.  

If this information is easily visible, customers will stick around longer; resulting in customer loyalty, improved conversion, and more sales. 

9. Use videos 

Videos are an amazing way to show people what they are getting out of their products, as well as how to use them. Customers have limited attention spans, so woo-ing them with an interesting video might just be what you need to make them stick around. 

A promotional products company in the UK found that after adding product videos to their store, that conversions from those who watched the videos doubled. This resulted in a whopping 7.5% growth simply from adding product videos. 

10. Analyze your weak points 

The best way to learn, is from your own mistakes. Luckily, most major eCommerce platforms give you access to comprehensive, in-depth graphs and analytics about your performance. Taking a look at these will open up a whole new world, as you now know exactly what you’re doing wrong.  

Let’s learn from others’ mistakes too, here are a few common problems: 

  • High bounce rates 

Your bounce rate is determined by the amount of people leaving your store after looking at just one page. Of course, you don’t want this; visitors sticking around for longer will greatly increase your sales.  

A high bounce rate could be evident of a lot of things, especially a weak landing / home page.  

Examples of other common eCommerce issues that can be assessed using Shopify analytics, includes customer acquisition rates, conversion rates, and even loading times.

11. Use automated email marketing 

The use of email marketing has proven to be a cornerstone of eCommerce. Over the years this marketing strategy has proven to be an effective way of promoting your website, without breaking the bank. 

There tons of options available to start your email marketing journey – but we recommend AWeber. 

Using AWeber’s automatic email sequencing, you can combat other eCommerce issues, for example, the aforementioned cart abandonment issue. An easy fix to this would be sending out an email to customers who left their cart hanging for more than 24 hours, checking in and even offering them a discount if they checkout now. 

These automated emails can also be used to greet new customers, providing customers with an introduction, any of course the incentive you offered them for signing up. 

12. Use upselling 

If you are looking to increase your eCommerce revenue, upselling is a time-tested tactic that has proven to be very successful. The best way to generate more revenue is by selling more to those currently buying from you. 

Upselling can be used to keep customers hooked, by recommending new related products on the product page, and during or even after checkout.  

An example of an upsell would be when a customer adds a pair of shorts to their cart, you could sell them a new shirt too on their way to the check-out page. 

On Shopify, upselling can be achieved by using apps – such as Grow Cart: Upsell & Cross Sell

To make the most out of upselling, ensure the customer knows why the upsell is valuable. 

That’s it! Now you know how to handle eCommerce optimization, step by step, to really boost sales and revenue. 

That’s it! Now that you’ve got the know-how, nothing can stop you. Using eCommerce optimization, you can boost your sales and revenue, taking you to the top in no time.