The e-commerce industry is a challenging domain to successfully thrive in. With a huge inflow of new entrants and expansion of already existing e-commerce giants, it becomes increasingly difficult for businesses to generate more sales leads through their e-commerce store.
The new innovations in the e-commerce industry continually improve the customer experience making it more mobile and visual. This makes it harder for existing e-commerce stores to improve their performance.
Although there are no set guidelines guaranteed to make your store succeed, there are, however, some effective practices you can adopt to improve your performance. These practices will prove beneficial for you when you consider how to sell an e-commerce business which you run.
Use attractive and aesthetic images for your products and services
Although this may seem too obvious from the outset, this is a very important feature which many online stores do not do well in. When a customer is browsing through the products you have posted on your website, their decision to purchase a product or service will be highly dependent on how it is portrayed to them.
Your product photography should not be done casually. Hire a professional photographer if you can, use proper equipment, and put some thought into how you want your customers to view the products you are offering. On many occasions, the visual representation of the product or service may be more detrimental to the decision customers make compared to other factors such as customer reviews and ratings.
Reduce clutter from your website
When you have potential customers visiting your website, you obviously want them to purchase the products or services you are selling. In order to ensure that you covert possibilities into sales, you need to ensure that you remove any distractions that may prevent sales.
Your website page should be designed in a manner that the customer is quickly directed to a Call to Action (CTA) button or to the products/services that you are selling. The time it takes for the customer to view what you need them to should be minimized. This will also make the customers experience less confusing and easier.
Keep categories simple
When you are categorizing and grouping the different products or services you wish to sell, make sure that you organize them in a simple and easy to access manner. Neither should the category titles be too broad nor should they be too specific.
Group related items together and only make a number of categories that do not become overwhelming for the consumer. This will help customers find what they are looking for easily and will also reduce confusion.
Answer FAQs properly and make them accessible
When you are running an online ecommerce store, you will not be physically present to guide your customers and answer any queries that they have. For this reason, it is important that you figure out the most frequently asked questions, answer them properly and make them accessible for customers to read.
When the customers face any issue as they browse through the website, there should be an easily accessible source of information that they can refer to for help. This will ensure that customers do not get frustrated and leave the website for some alternate solution.
Include a search bar
Even if you make the customers browsing experience simple and easy to use, they still might face issues finding what they are looking for. There should be a search and navigation bar provided within your website which allows customers to directly access what they are looking for.
A search bar will make it easy for customers to quickly search for what they wish to view or purchase. Even if a customer is not already decided on what they wish to purchase, a search bar will allow them to quickly access what they wish to browse through.
The search bar should be made visible on the websites page and should also turn out search results quickly and in an organized manner.
Do not force customers to create an account or profile
Having customers make an account on your website which will keep a record of their purchases and also allow you to offer them benefits to increase customer loyalty. However, it should not be an obligatory part of visiting and purchasing from the website.
Making an account can be time-consuming and some customers may wish to make the purchase as quickly as possible. For this reason, you should not force them to make an account, however, you should encourage and incentivize them to make a customer account to encourage them to make future purchases.
Provide informative product descriptions
When making a decision to purchase a product or service, a customer will be considering many things. As the seller, you should provide an adequate description of the product, along with the images, to help the customer decide.
Be careful to add more relevant information related to the features of the product and its use. Do not add too much unnecessary information that becomes problematic for the customers to read or confuses them. Bullet points can also be used to make the information easy to read.
Offer free shipping
Shipping or delivery charges can be a deal breaker for a large proportion of potential customers. Many customers, after having browsed through products and decided on the right product and price, get discouraged and do not purchase it when they realize they have to pay shipping fees.
The solution to this problem is simple. Do not charge your customers for shipping costs. This will help you retain many potential customers who would otherwise not have purchased from your website and will improve your e-commerce stores sales.
Adopting these practices to run your e-commerce store will highly improve the experience of your customers. When the customers can easily browse through the website and make purchases, your sales will increase and the performance of your e-commerce store will improve drastically.
Regardless of whether you start an online business or have an existing brick and mortar store and wish to sell products online, these practices will help you improve your ecommerce store.
Have you tried any of these strategies or do you have suggestions of your own? Sound off in the comments below!