10 E-Commerce Conversion Rate Optimization Tactics to Boost Sales
What good is website traffic if it doesn’t lead to an increase in sales and lifetime customers? More website traffic without a subsequent boost in sales is just a vanity metric. eCommerce conversion rate optimization tactics can take your website traffic and turn it into greater cash flow, profits, and customers who keep returning to purchase again.
The key to unlocking your eCommerce conversion rates
At the heart of eCommerce conversion rate optimization is the customer. For greater conversion rates and profits, you have to make it easier for your customer to navigate your store and click buy.
No matter what, designing your online storefront to make shopping and buying easier and more enjoyable is paramount. As you go through these tips, you’ll notice that all the tactics center around making the shopping experience streamlined and the ability to purchase from your store easier.
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What is conversion rate optimization?
Conversion rate optimization, or CRO, is a sales and marketing strategy geared toward boosting a percentage of your website visitors into sales. The best CRO tactics turn those sales into repeat customers.
At the core of a CRO tactic is consumer psychology — namely, tactics that persuade a website visitor to seriously consider an offering and ultimately buy it. To get the most out of a conversion rate optimization strategy, you’ll want to use different testing methods:
- Split testing — When you take an equal percentage of website traffic and split it against two variables to see which is most effective
- Multivariate testing — Testing different variables to see which one works best
- A/B testing — Taking two website pages or two variations of an entire website to see which one is better at converting traffic
We can also take conversion rate optimization and whittle it down into macro and micro CRO. Overall, CRO happens when a website visitor finally buys something and becomes a customer. But on a smaller scale, CRO is happening all over the website and leading up to the big moment when the purchase occurs.
For example, a micro conversion happens when someone decides to visit your website homepage from an ad they saw on Facebook. Another small conversion occurs when they go from your homepage to a product page. Then, they click add to cart. Finally, they complete the purchase, which is the ultimate CRO.
Common CROs for eCommerce
The most common conversions for eCommerce websites include the following:
- Online sales
- Adding to a cart
- Turning abandoned carts into completed purchases
- Adding an item to a wish list
- Signing up for emails or SMS
Although these are the most common CROs, you aren’t limited to these tactics. You can optimize conversions for many things specific to your brand.
Conversions are pretty much a broad topic that can impact a multitude of variables and aspects of your online storefront and supporting marketing channels. But regardless, you need to track and measure the tactics to see which brings home the most bacon.
How do you calculate conversion rates for eCommerce?
So, how do you know which CRO strategy brings home the most bacon? With math. Hope you’re good at it! Just kidding. It’s a pretty simple formula:
CRO = total number of conversions ÷ number of visitors ✕ 100
For example, your store had 100 sales and 2000 new visitors last month. So, your conversion rate would be 100 divided by 2000, multiplied by 100. You end up with the number five, so you’ve had a five percent conversion rate.
Once you calculate the conversion rate, how do you know if it’s a good one or not? First, you’ll want to measure it against the average conversion rates for similar brands.
The latest studies show that the average eCommerce store has a conversion rate of 2.86 percent. So anything above that is pretty good, especially for new brands. And for new brands specifically, a conversion rate between one and two percent is nothing to sneeze at.
Top eCommerce conversion rate strategies
Now that you know what CRO is and how to calculate it let’s get into the strategies. Picking the best tactic for your brand comes down to your goals and what you think customers will want.
#1. Make sure your site is mobile-friendly
We can’t emphasize enough how vital this particular CRO strategy is. In fact, it’s less of a strategy and more of a must-have for eCommerce merchants today.
For one thing, Google is prioritizing mobile-friendly sites in search. So, you’ll get more traffic if your site has a mobile-responsive design. Second, consumers demand mobile responsiveness from online stores.
More than half of website traffic comes from a mobile device, so you want to ensure that over half of your potential customers can even shop easily on your site. The good news is some of the biggest eCommerce hosting platforms automatically make your site mobile-responsive.
But to be sure, you can drop your site’s URL into Google’s mobile-friendly test tool to check.
#2. Ensure faster page loading times
People don’t want to wait even three seconds for pages to load. Slow page loading times will cause people to bounce from your site and head over to a competitor’s with faster loading times.
Fixing your page load times to be lightning fast is good for ensuring that people stay on your site. But Google also prioritizes quick sites. So having too high of bounce rate signals to the search engines that people don’t like hanging out there, so it shouldn’t send traffic to the page.
So, how do you know if your pages are loading quickly enough for consumers and the algorithms? Google has another free tool that lets you check. Drop your URL in there, and PageSpeed Insights will give you a detailed report on how fast your site loads and what you can do to make it faster.
Some of those tactics may be a little complicated. But there are a few simple rules of thumb you can follow to make your store quick to navigate:
- Compress your images with a tool like ImageOptim to get a smaller file size without compromising the image’s quality.
- Uninstall unnecessary apps that could be putting too much load strain on your website.
Even if the apps are disabled, that’s not enough to boost page load times. You’ll need to uninstall the apps to eliminate the deadweight and lighten the load on your website.
#3. Send abandoned cart emails
Abandoned carts are extremely common, but they create a massive drag on your conversion rates. On the other hand, adding things to a cart means these people are already interested in your offerings. So that’s an excellent indicator that these people will convert into paying customers with just a reminder and a little nudge.
Most hosting platforms allow you to create abandoned cart reminders within the dashboard. For example, you can set the timeline for when someone receives a reminder for just a few hours to an entire day. You can also test these parameters to see which time frame works best for reminding people to return to their lonely carts.
Be sure to customize the email message to your brand. It won’t help your conversion rate if someone receives an impersonal boilerplate notice.
#4. Offer free shipping
Let’s face it. You’re competing with some major players in the eCommerce sphere, mainly Amazon. Offering free shipping makes your brand more attractive to consumers spoiled with free shipping options and who've come to expect it.
If your shipping is expensive, this creates a significant pain point for customers and prevents them from converting. Statistics back this up — 73 percent of customers report that free shipping directly impacted their decision to buy.
#5. Streamline the checkout process for repeat customers
Prefilling the customer’s information out during the checkout process is an excellent CRO strategy for increasing your repeat sales and recurring revenue.
It makes things much easier on the customer and reduces friction that could have them rethinking their decision to buy. You don't want that. You want to get that sale fast, and prefilling enables you to do that.
There are various checkout solutions for eCommerce merchants that you can install on your website for this purpose. These encrypted tools keep your repeat customer’s sensitive financial and contact information safe while they breeze through checkout.
Conversion rate optimization for eCommerce merchants: Key takeaways
This list isn’t exhaustive, and there are so many different CRO strategies you can deploy for greater cash flows and profits.
No matter what tactic you use, always ensure that the customer’s convenience is at the heart of it, ensuring that it works to both of your advantages. Then, run experiments and track your metrics to get the most out of the strategy and ensure that you’re investing in CROs that actually work for your business.
Get in touch with us today for CROs that will boost your profits and generate recurring revenue for your eCommerce brand.