Get Started with eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization

Written by Alex Harris

This post is from the series “Boost eCommerce Sales and Leads”.

In celebration of my new book, I am releasing these audio blogs to help you increase your eCommerce conversion rates…

Introduction to Boost eCommerce Sales and Leads

Let’s get started with some general advice. This book covers some specific and actionable tips for your e-commerce store. This advice is based on more than thirteen years of e-commerce testing and marketing. The general advice in this section is are more like general rules I follow to make decisions based on experience and data, instead of guessing. After executing many of these ideas, you will see there is no room to just guess. We must think like scientists and create a hypothesis for each of the changes we make to our sites. This is because there may be things that do not work. Not everything you try is going to be a success. You just want to be sure that you learn from each change you make. Then, when you find what works, you can find ways to incorporate those aspects into other areas of your website or marketing campaigns.

  1. Test and optimize at least two or three months in advance of the holiday season. You do not want to rush at the last minute. You want to ensure that your plan is ready for the upcoming holiday season so that the user experience on your e-commerce site is the best it can possibly be.
  2. You do not want to redesign your website without testing first. The majority of the time, if you rush into a redesign of your website, your conversion rate will actually go down.
  3. Do not make people think. When people stop and think, that creates friction, and that will increase the bounce rates for your web pages.
  4. Do not make assumptions. Don’t just guess at what changes to make to your site. You want to create customer profiles that are data driven and make changes based on tests that you have run in the past.
  5. Create a customer-centric design. Put yourself in the customer’s shoes so you can build a customer experience that’s specifically designed to solve their problems. This is because people do not buy from websites; people buy from people.
  6. Understand the keywords and the languages your customers speak. Avoid jargon. Use those keywords and that language in your marketing material so you can ensure you’re speaking to them directly to understand their problems. Then solve those problems on your e-commerce pages.
  7. Optimize your 404 pages. More than likely, if you have a lot of inventory, eventually some of that inventory is going to go out of stock. Remove the out-of-stock items from your website, and send those old pages to custom 404 pages so you can capitalize on that traffic as well.
  8. Test quickly so you can get better results. Implement A/B testing and ensure that you iterate quickly. That way, you can get quicker results in a shorter period of time.
  9. Install a code freeze during the holiday season. During your busy months, you should not be making major changes to your website. If you do, it can affect your revenue and your conversions. Ensuring that your site is optimized before the holiday season for the best conversion rates possible is essential.
  10. Hire a professional copywriter. Having great content and copy is essential to any website. You website should have a personality and specific voice that is friendly and engaging. One of the top copywriters I use is CowgirlCopywriter.com.
  11. Consider Multi-store ecommerce. If you have specific vertical, you may want to consider taking your inventory and creating small boutique websites for specific product lines. Software like Netsuite.com can create multiple e-commerce stores from one admin dashboard.
  12. Expand Using Multi-channel ecommerce. I strongly recommend distributing your inventory to other sites like Amazon, eBay, and other shopping websites. This will help you reach a larger audience and sell more products. You may need to discount your inventory on these shopping websites, but it is worth the effort.

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