What Makes a Good Ecommerce Business?
E-commerce now seems to be eating away in the retail world. We have long seen the closure or bankruptcy of traditional brands, which was not even expected to disappear ten years ago. On the other hand, the digital world is an exciting place for business owners to build their digital brands and compete in the digital marketplace.
Most brick stores are forced to open an online presence. But getting online is not always easy. If you want to get to the top, you need to know some of the trade secrets.
Here are seven of the essential factors that make a good ecommerce business:
1. Keep it simple
One of the essential memorable rules for developing e-commerce design is “KISS” – simple, stupid! It’s always better when designing a business website. The more elements you have on the page like colours, Ads, and popups through the WooCommerce popup cart. The more important is the whole idea of the website that is to sell.
You don’t need many bells and whistles on your online business website – they are just distracting. Keep your design clear, clean, and simple – and stay focused.
2. Don’t rush the launch
One of the biggest mistakes business owners makes forcing or speeding up the launch of a website. You only have one way to manage your site, and you can’t go wrong. While it’s okay to buy your domain name and go to a “Coming Soon” page, you’ll need to avoid a lot of publicity until you have some essential basics, for example, SEO, content marketing, social networking, paid advertising, and WooCommerce side cart etc.).
3. Find the right software for your business
As a business owner, you need visual depth to identify potential problems before they even occur. For many business owners, programs need constant review and evaluation as they are the foundation of any business. When looking for the right software you can trust, you need to consider security concerns, scalability, ease of use, marketing tools, and other factors.
The natural killer of growth is when a shopper who uses online stores doesn’t use the right e-commerce program for their business. Your e-commerce software must be scalable, secure, easy to use, with powerful conversion and marketing tools. The right tool depends a lot on your needs. Make sure you identify your issues and research to find the right tool for your needs.
4. Make branding a priority
When it comes to online shopping, people want to shop with established brands rather than ugly ecommerce websites that look like events that are stealing your credit card information.
If you want to build the trust you need for retail sales, you need to think seriously about your brand. Your brand is similar to the DNA of your web business; It talks about who you are as a company, what your company does and how you stand out from the competition – and it plays a significant role in connecting with your audience and increasing sales.
If you want to get the most out of your store’s design, take the time to define your brand and then add it to your design. If you’re not sure who the brand you are, no problem! They want to find a small company before getting a project and knowing who you can be used as a trademark on your store’s website. And this brand? This will help build your audience’s trust while increasing serious sales at the same time.
Your online business website must be a secure place to store and process online transactions. Retail giants like Amazon and eBay have won the trust of consumers through their proven security resources. According to a 2018 survey, the electronic communications industry faces 32% of all successful security threats each year. It is essential to implement a set of protocols to ensure the security of buyers online. For customers to shop on your site, they need to know they can trust you.
With visual confidence signals on your home page and across your entire website, you’ll soak up that vital trustworthiness without which your customers may even consider spending their hard-earned money elsewhere! A secure payment system is of the utmost importance and the key to hackers and malware.
6. Think like a website visitor
If you want your business website project to fit your audience, you need to think like your audience. After all, there are just a few things that your potential customers want from an e-commerce experience – a website that is easy to navigate, well-designed and easy to purchase, simple and hassle-free.
And if you want your business to do well, better give it to them. Put yourself in the visitor’s shoes while creating. What is the most accessible layout for you to navigate? How can you organize your products in such a way that they are understandable for the end-user? How can you simplify the checkout process?
If you think similarly to your customers, you can predict what they want from your online store and then design your website to meet those needs.
7. Remove friction from the checkout process
If you want to sell more items, you need to make sure that your visitors don’t get discouraged, abandon their shopping carts, and leave your website to find another store to buy a competitor’s product. Friction is one of the biggest problems for most extractors, especially as we enter the mobile age. It would be best if you found a way to make checkout so simple and easy for everyone.
Offer your customers various payment options for your order, including popular payment methods such as PayPal and Amazon. Ultimately, you can expand your business to anything you think is appropriate. It all depends on how ambitious you are and what you want from it. Remember to learn from the mistakes of others so that you do not have to learn from your own bitter experience.
Designing ecommerce websites can be a daunting task. Still, now that you know the essential tips for creating ecommerce websites, you have everything you need to know about building a website that doesn’t just do it looks fantastic but looks good too. So what are you waiting for? Use these tips to give your online store a decent look.
Top 5 Ecommerce Trends for 2020
The e-commerce industry is said to be on a substantial rise, seen through both the popularity and revenue produced. The Statista e-commerce research has suggested that there will be a projected $4.8 trillion made in online sales worldwide by 2021, an amount to which potential e-commerce owners should be jumping at, embracing this rapid growth that is expected to be experienced.
Since 2017, the e-commerce industry has been on the rise, but nothing like what is expected to be experienced within the next year. The once described 1.66 billion online buyers, will instead climb to great heights of 2.14 billion by the end of 2021.
As there has been much emphasis placed on the future developments predicted in the e-commerce industry, those involved can only await the trends that will be in place. In this article we will be discussing just this, what e-commerce trends should you expect in 2020, and how will they change the e-commerce industry for the better.
1. Artificial intelligence assistants
An issue experienced when it comes to online shopping, and that is the inability to see, try on and touch the product. This is usually the prime reason why people avoid online shopping as a whole, so they are not disappointed by order when it arrives.
Because of this, it makes it very difficult for e-commerce sites to be able to sell different types of product, from furniture, clothing and even technology, as there is this underlying lack of trust experienced throughout the buying journey.
2020 is hoping to solve this issue, through the use of artificial intelligence and virtual reality. Through these ever-growing technologies, customers can now have the opportunity to try the products on without needing to physically hold or buy them.
Technology is working perfectly to revolutionise the customer buying experience, through digital systems being able to offer a better quality try as you buy, home buying experience.
2. Shopping through social media
Social media has quickly become more than only likes, comments, shares and followers within the last year, and it is said to only adapt even more within the future. The way in which it has changed is through the development of social media shopping.
There are many channels and pages dedicating their posts to encouraging their followers to buy amazing products through e-commerce marketing, and it is working. There are now 55% of online shoppers buying directly through a social media brand post.
It has become rather easy for almost anyone to sell through social media, with sites allowing the use of their own, embedded click-through links. This allows the audience to click the link and be taken straight to the product page. This not only makes it much easier for a customer to find a product they will like, quickly but also increases the potential of impulse buying.
Proving that social media is a powerful tool and that its value within the ecommerce industry is working, influential and will only continue to grow in the future!
3. Flexible payment options
This is a great amendment for those e-commerce sites that tend to sell products that reach the more expensive, higher end of the shopping sphere or are looking to offer an affordable option to those currently without the means to splurge on your product. If this is the case, finding a solution and allowing customers to make that transaction that they otherwise could not have afforded is crucial in hitting sales targets.
However, through new app developments, 2020 is said to see the increase of e-commerce sites using available, flexible payment options. These are giving the customers the choice to order the product now and pay later, setting up a monthly direct debit payment process, or order the item on just a trying basis. Sites that are already offering this option to customers are ‘Clearpay’, ‘Klarna’ and ‘Afterpay’.
These services make larger payments more attractive and appealing to those who may not be able to purchase the product in full, and in fact, the process is working; with Afterpay seeing an increase of transaction conversions rates up by 30%, due to there being the more affordable, split payment option.
4. Environmental mindfulness
Caring about the environment has become less of a personality trait, and more of a worldwide trend in the past few years. Many consumers are much more conscious of the environment, and the way in which the products they would like to purchase will impact it.
This can actually be a reason many will deflect buying something they need, if in doing so they are only causing more harm, or contributing to climate change.
To ensure that products are still purchased, businesses are jumping on the e-commerce trend to ensure that they offer eco-friendly products. Research has found that 87% of consumers say that they will continue purchasing from a brand if they offered a social or environmental benefit.
Working as a trend, many businesses are now working to reduce product shipping waste by sending their products within biodegradable, recycled materials.
5. Shopping personalisation
According to Bazaarvoice, more than 50% of shoppers believe that a personalised shopping experience is very important, with 74% of agreeing marketers saying that personalisation has a strong impact on advancing customer relationships.
Online shopping can sometimes become a bit of a chore, with the time it takes to sift through thousands of pages to find a product to be rather extensive, something many just don’t have the time or effort to complete. This is where the personalised experience comes into play.
A personalised experience will avoid the occurrence of poor reviews, disappointing customer experience or the chance of potential customers avoiding the online store altogether.
The company can offer personalised messages, discounts and customer engagement to make the consumer feel included and that they are receiving personalised offers, instead of being a small part of their sales journey.
With the development of various digital advancements, the e-commerce industry is definitely benefitting and changing in a way that is making the industry a much more popular sector to be involved with.
With the potentials the e-commerce industry is said to reach within the next year, there is no reason why those involved within online sales, should not use the up and coming e-commerce trends to make these potential statistics a reality and be a part of expanding the businesses for the better.
From shopping personalisation, flexible payment schemes, the assistance of AI and environmental benefits, e-commerce shopping has never been more appealing to a wider stretch of people, and will likely continue to be so within 2020.
8 Most Effective Ecommerce Web Design Tips for 2020
From 1995 to 2020, E-commerce has definitely come a long way in terms of scale, volume and relevance. Cheap shoes, groceries, or a plane ticket to go see your loved ones. There is no end to what you can buy off the internet, just by spending a few minutes and clicking a few buttons.
An e-commerce site gives you the opportunity to build a brand that customers will love to shop from, time and again. It lets you connect with your customers and grow them while selling your products and services. For an E-commerce website to truly do its job, that is to get your more paying customers; it is important that it has the right website design.
With 2020, being a landmark year for E-commerce websites, it is essential for current and future E-commerce platforms to understand how design can affect sales on their websites.
To help you stay abreast of the latest web design trends for e-commerce websites in 2020, we have put together a few e-commerce website design tips that can help you design an e-commerce store with ease.
Web design trends for 2020:
1. E-commerce sites should be easy to navigate
Talk about getting lost on the way to the check-out cart. Many E-commerce websites are guilty of having way too much content on the site. A cluttered website leads to confusion in the minds of a visitor. Often when unclear, customers abandon the cart and leave for your competitor’s website.
The navigation on an e-commerce website and the path to check out should be extremely clear and should involve as few steps as possible.
2. E-commerce sites should establish a solid brand identity
One thing that can ultimately make or break your E-commerce store is branding. A brand is something people like to be associated with. It differentiates you from your competitors.
When designing a website, you should put equal thought in defining your brand. Infuse your brand into all the elements on your site.
There are thousands of counterfeit E-commerce sites on the internet and brands are the only element that helps to distinguish the credible sites. Branding helps build trust and drives sales on an E-commerce site.
Your site’s content, i.e. the images and text, should establish the brand’s identity. From Logos to web copy, everything on the website should look professional, with no room for errors.
3. E-commerce sites should be designed keeping in mind their visitors
From website design, look and feel to ultimate experience, your E-commerce site should aim to educate the customer and make a sale.
When designing websites for E-commerce platforms, it is important to make pages and elements that mirror the visitors buying journey. Make the whole process of shopping quick and hassle-free. Customers love to visit a site repeatedly if the checkout process is easy.
Think of it this way. You are a web surfer looking to buy cat food online. What do you first type in? The necessary keywords, right?
What else do you look for?
- A good picture of the product
- Its detailed description
- Additional information
- Check out and payment modes
- Confirmation of your order
Having proper product pages is also one of the critical factors to make an e-commerce website work.
4. An E-commerce site should include colours that relate to its products/services
Buyer psychology says that customers, when making a buying decision, are influenced by the colours that they see. Be it in physical stores or on E-commerce platforms; colours play an important role. Positive affirmative colours that signify trust should be used on E-commerce websites in order to drive more sales.
As a general foot rule, most E-commerce websites lean towards the colour white, to highlight the products rather than the website. The colour blue is generally used on service-based websites to build trust. Food and other grocery websites, make use of the colour red, which signifies hunger.
Always differentiate the decider buttons, or the Call-to-action buttons, by having them in a different colour. For conversions (sales) to happen, these buttons must stand out from the rest of the web page elements.
5. E-commerce sites should have crisp content and High-Quality images
Images have a direct effect on sales. On E-commerce platforms, people cannot get the touch and feel of the product. The decision of whether to buy the product or not lies solely on its images/ video.
Not just the product images- headers, banners, footers and randomly scattered advertisements, should have high-quality imagery to convey credibility. When listing your products for sale, put up professional images, clicked from multiple angles, to help users decide easily.
Also, you can even make your social content shoppable by tagging products into your visual content using the visual commerce platform and embedding these shoppable galleries on your eCommerce website that will also increase your sales directly.
Apart from images, the web copy and other content on the site needs to be stellar as well. Most text content is generally not given a read, but there are certain keywords and modifiers that won’t go unnoticed.
Customers on an e-commerce site come for the images and not to read long copy. Therefore, the text should be able to convey the brand message in as few words as possible.
Also, don’t forget to use testimonials, they come in very handy, to increase both trust and conversions. Aim for having more 4 and 5-star ratings & reviews.
6. E-commerce sites should use responsive website design to render across all platforms
A Mobile and smartphone obsessed generation needs shopping websites, that function equally well on their cell phones just as they do on PCs.
Proper rendering on mobile devices, with quick responsive design and functional buttons, is key to making your e-commerce site work.
According to Bigcommerce, Mobile visitors account for 54% of total E-commerce sales. Responsive design is of paramount importance if you wish to do more business.
7. E-commerce sites should have a clear site architecture with categorization
An E-commerce website can have anywhere from 1-1000 products or more listed on it for sale. What is important on a big website, is proper product categorization.
By using appropriate filters, or categorising products in a pre-defined Menu, users find it easier to get to the product they came looking for, ultimately ending in a sale.
If product categories are not made, items are all scattered around, making it difficult for the customer to find his way to his desired product. It is just like a department store, as long as it’s neatly organised, the cash registers keep ringing.
8. E-commerce sites should be secure
When shopping online, customers trust only credible sites that are safe to make transactions. Having an SSL encrypted site with secure payment gateways is key to having an effective E-commerce web design.
Website design is easy, but when it comes to E-commerce portals, it is a challenge to make sites that can actually convert. With the above-mentioned E-Commerce website design tips and some help from a reputed design and development agency, designing an e-commerce website becomes simpler.
Shaista Mujeeb is a copywriter at Wolftain, an advertising agency in India. Having expertise in digital marketing and social media management, she is at par with writing both technical and non-technical content. She is also a foodie with an avid interest in the art of Makeup and Cosmetology.
Shipping Tools to Have for Fulfilling Customer Demands
When people search for anything online, they often expect comparatively lower prices and hassle-free delivery. Almost all online shoppers expect them. For a seamless delivery process, you must have all the right shipping tools to add that delight to your customers’ experience.
Every step after a customer places an order comes under ‘shipping’. And it is a major responsibility of yours to leave no scope for any flaw.
So, let’s understand what all areas come under ‘shipping’ and how to make each of them flawless.
5 steps in shipping and ways to make them flawless
A proper delivery strategy needs you to focus on the following 5 steps in ‘shipping’. Every single step helps you build your brand’s image among customers.
Immediately after a customer places an order, the first thing you have to take care of is ‘packaging’. No matter what the product is, its packaging is very important. A good packaging design serves two purposes: better protection of the product and better presentation.
So, try to design a very attractive packaging style. Take ideas from stylish designs of different leading brands. The more beautifully you present your product, the more it shows your brand in a good light.
Additionally, choose your packaging service provider keeping in mind various factors like cost, weight, customer service, and unique packaging ideas it provides.
Pro Tip: Minimalism in packaging is trending nowadays. So, the simpler you keep your packaging, the better it is.
RajaPack from the UK and Uline from Canada are some good options you can choose from. They give you all the items you need for packaging at the best prices possible.
When you have only a few orders to complete, writing addresses manually is not a problem. However, as your business expands, it becomes tedious to manage manual labelling. Further, chances of errors increase when writing so many addresses manually.
So, automating this labelling task becomes more important with business expansion. The automation of labelling saves time and prevents errors.
For instance, Australia Post Shipping extension is a great extension for Australian e-store owners. This extension can help store owners generate labels in a predefined format for their store. And thus, you can manage the labelling process easily.
Also, when you have the label formats ready with you for printing and attaching, the cost of printing labels every time goes down greatly. It also validates your customers’ addresses. And suggests correct city names or zip codes for you to replace wrong entries with.
3. Shipment and shipment tracking
Once you pack the product and label it, shipment follows next. As more and more orders pour in, the more challenging it becomes to manage their shipment. Further, delays in deliveries also become common with an overwhelming count of orders. And the situation worsens further when a shipment goes missing.
So, look for a tool that lets customers choose the delivery date and time as per their wish. This will avoid confusion and complaints.
Also, it is important to look for a tool that reminds you of pending orders. And saves you from delays in deliveries.
Magento 2 Delivery Date Scheduler is an example is one such tool. It lets customers choose the delivery date and time of their choice. And it reminds you of pending orders so your deliveries are never late.
Another tool is the Magento 2 Australia Post Shipping module for Magento e-stores. It lets you track your orders you have dispatched. And helps you keep abreast of the whereabouts of your product every time.
So, you can see that such tools help you streamline your shipment process. And make shopping experience for customers better.
A good reporting tool is a must for a proper analysis of expenses in the delivery process. If you can’t keep track of the overall shipping expenses, you can’t calculate profit margins. A tool must be there that not only gives the information about the shipping and payment methods a customer has chosen. Rather, it should give insight into:
- The most frequent shipment and payment methods customers use and their most frequent combination
- Reasons for cancellation of an order
- Average order processing time
- Counts of successful orders by shipment types, etc.
These insights help you plan an effective delivery strategy. As it eliminates the need for speculation about customers’ needs. Rather, you get to know exactly what customers need.
So, always look for such a tool to integrate into the backend of your e-store.
After the successful completion of an order, the last area to focus on is reviews. Reading reviews is like standing in front of a mirror. Having a tool that allows customers to review your products is useful. As 90% of consumers read around 5-10 reviews before trusting a brand, review collection becomes the last but a crucial step.
Also, request them to take snaps of products they receive and share them online. This won’t only make them feel happy but also help expand your digital reach.
So, look out for a tool that not only helps you collect feedback but does more! The tool should also:
- Let customers write comments to point out problems with the product.
- Let customers shop straight from your Instagram or FB page through your feed.
For instance, Yotpo is a good survey tool you can use to collect product reviews. And incorporate them into your content strategy to think of a better future delivery strategy.
So, you see that the shipping tools are crucial for an online store. They assist you in making every step of shipment flawless. Further, they help you plan the most efficient delivery strategies for the future. These strategies help you earn more returns with less investment and effort. Thus, it is imperative for you to choose shipping tools discreetly. And make the best out of them.
Maulik Shah is the founder and CEO of AppJetty, a fast-growing app and extension store for various technologies. He writes about multiple aspects of eCommerce technology and is enthusiastic about making online business management easy.
10 Reasons Behind Ecommerce Site Failure You Must Be Aware of in 2019
In today’s digital landscape, having an online store has become a necessity to acquire a wide customer base, simplify business operation and maximize revenue. As consumers can easily buy anytime without stepping out of their home they no longer go shopping at a physical store, but they make all their purchases online.
Though advanced technology has created a global platform for e-commerce business, the history of the e-business world is still littered with failed startups where they were unable to sustain their business model after their initial appeal wore off.
One research conducted by a USA based e-commerce development firm shows that 90% of new e-commerce businesses fail as quickly as the first 120 days! But don’t let these statistics affect you when you are planning for the long term, sustainable vision for your e-business model.
In spite of experiencing immense growth in online shopping, a staggering number of e-commerce businesses struggle to survive let alone generate desirable profit.
What are those hurdles that come in a way to your success? Why do eCommerce websites fail? Most importantly how these failures can be avoided?
1. The complicated procedure of checkout
The checkout process is the most critical part of your website since it’s a finish line where shoppers turn into paying customers. Unfortunately, most retailers don’t pay much attention to it.
A small bump in that process can cost you loyal customers as well as revenue. A complex checkout process can be a very frustrating experience for the buyers which would most likely make them leave your site.
Following some tips on simplifying the check-out process will help you a lot to ease the frustration felt by customers.
- Streamline your checkout process
- Visually show the checkout process
- Clear your checkout page from any unnecessary distractions
- Placing trusted logos strategically in your checkout process
2. Low quality of product’s images
Product images serve as a medium of communication for the customers. Since customers can’t touch, feel or see the product practically, images are the only way of interaction with the products.
If your website is having poor quality images or offer limited descriptions, you’ll most certainly lose sales. And optimizing your e-commerce website with premium quality images will help you build confidence in your customers to purchase the products.
Try using the below-mentioned optimization tips to make your product images stand out.
- Maintain technicality e.g adding features like Zoom / magnify, Full-screen images, Photo galleries
- Consider-image format, optimize images, use of CSS and dimensions of the images.
- Multiple perspectives of your product e.g add multiple product images
3. Not displaying full contact information
Detailed contact information makes customers feel that you’re there, you’re listening, and you care about their need and experiences.
Not displaying full contact information will create a major barrier between you and your customer. They will certainly try to find out contact details before purchasing the product to ensure they are in safe hands, and if something goes wrong with their purchase they know how to contact you.
Giving proper contact information always makes you get counted on the list of genuine companies which customers can trust.
That is why you should always add this important information on your page such as
- Company Name
- Website URL
- Email ID
- Phone Number
- Social Media Account
4. Missing quality content
The content of the website has become an important factor in consumer’s shopping behaviour; not only the quality and accuracy but also how it’s delivered to them.
A website with poor content brings disastrous results to the business as the customer will hardly spend any time on the site.
Here are few tips to work with content to help it stand out, both on-page and in the search results.
- Detailed, unique descriptions in legible size and fonts
- Encourage customer reviews
- Avoid duplicate content
- Combine with well-captured photos and related images in natural and eye-catching colours
5. Hidden fees or shipping charges
Transparency and honesty are what customers expect from you while making the purchase.
Shipping charges should be shared upfront, at product selection. You should be well prepared to face their wrath in the end if you are keeping them in dark by hiding fees or shipping charges.
Additionally, providing a shipping calculator based on the items they’re interested in and their postal code will help you reduce cart abandonment. The more you maintain clarity in front of your customers, the more benefits you will have.
6. Targeting the wrong potential customers
You are needed to target the customers for your eCommerce website and business. For this, research is needed in order to select the right approach to get the right customer and generate sales.
Before starting, make sure that you are going with the right and potential customers.
7. No Promotions/Marketing
Customers will only reach your website if you are giving them a reason to do so. Lack of proper marketing/promotions of the website can also sometimes cause the failure of the site.
E-commerce store does not drive traffic by its online presence like a physical store do by its mere presence on the street. Finding marketing/promotional tools as well as online marketing agencies that perform these services is absolutely essential.
8. Not mobile responsive
With the increasing number of mobile phone users, traffic through mobile now accounts for 50% of the visits. But in spite of this growing traffic, only 40% make a purchase through mobile. This shows that maybe the ordering, checkout and other features are not properly optimized for mobile users.
So in order to turn your e-commerce store into a successful venture, it’s very crucial to optimize your website for mobile users.
9. Not engaging the customers
Whenever possible, try to engage your customers through social media discussions or some giveaways. In addition to this, you can also keep your services and products in front of potential customers through social media platforms. You must consider this reason whenever you are building an eCommerce store for your business to avoid any kind of failure.
There are so many ways to get engaged with the customers. You just need to make sure that you are going with the right platform to fetch more attention towards your website.
10. Use of poor technology
Technology is one of the key factors for a successful eCommerce business. Many eCommerce websites fail due to the wrong choice of technology in their back-end operations. The back-end platform technologies include the operating system, server type, eCommerce software platform, and others.
The eCommerce software platform (a primary factor) – if properly chosen – can lead to huge success of your eCommerce business. A poor choice of the operating system, server type, CMS platform, and eCommerce software can lead to many problems related to the speed, security, and performance.
So, what are you waiting for? It is time to go ahead and address any of the above-mentioned issues. Never underestimate any point since you can grab more business by correcting them.
Jane Hart is a technical writer at Selected Firms, a pre-eminent source for finding the supreme e-commerce, mobile, web, and marketing companies on the web. She has 5 Years of experience in developing content and new ideas of presentation for company websites, blogs, white papers, business collateral, and case studies. Besides her passion for content writing, she is an avid fan of football and love to dance.
Ecommerce SEO Tips You Need to Master in 2019
SEO, or search engine optimisation, is one of the most crucial skills to master to run a successful eCommerce business along with conversion rate optimisation and social media. When using SEO correctly, any site can rank higher on search engines like Google and pull in more organic visitors.
We have some insightful expert tips on what e-commerce sites need to know about SEO.
Why SEO mastery is important in 2019
The importance of mastering e-commerce SEO tips has been growing over time and is especially important in 2019. Rather than winding down, it’s just getting started. SEO mastery has a direct impact on the success of any e-commerce firm. By mastering SEO, online stores can rank higher on search engines and drive more traffic their way.
More traffic means more customers, and that’s what all e-commerce sites are competing for. Competition is fierce, so stay ahead with these tips on achieving SEO mastery in 2019.
The body content isn’t the only place for SEO keywords
Keywords should be optimized at every opportunity, and that means they should be used on images and image names. Both the image names and the alt-tags should be optimized for SEO in mind and laced with keywords.
We’ve seen a lot of e-commerce sites that don’t take advantage of this, and it shows. Websites with default image names like, “b27agf38.jpg” are wasteful. There is no excuse not to be utilizing image names and alt-tags to benefit an e-commerce website. Using these naming conventions will help a site rank higher in web searches and drive more traffic to an online store.
Why it’s important to have a sitemap
One relatively easy way to use SEO tactic, that we recommend, is to ensure that an e-commerce website ranks higher in searches is to develop a sitemap. Sitemaps help search engine spiders like those used by Google to find content on any website easier. This will automatically increase traffic as having a sitemap makes it easier for search engines to find the site.
A dedicated IP address can be an SEO advantage
Dedicated IP addresses are the way to go for achieving optimal SEO performance. Some e-commerce firms opt for shared IP addresses to save money. We all love saving money of course, but this method can be damaging to SEO and search engine rankings. This damage is done when other websites that share the IP address, implement poor practices that cause search engines to penalize the entire IP address including all of the sites attached to it.
Having a dedicated IP address also helps legitimize eCommerce stores. This is part of SEO, and it should be thought of from the very beginning. It is a strategic tool and should never be carelessly thrown together. E-commerce firms who try to save money by sharing IP addresses unknowingly hurt their SEO and their sales.
Research the competition, to beat the competition
This is an important strategy that can incorporate SEO and drive more traffic to an e-commerce website. Take a detailed look at any competitor’s website and evaluate its strengths and weaknesses compared.
Next, we recommend using this information to plan the use of SEO keywords strategically, to outperform and outrank competitors. This strategy goes beyond SEO however and will also revolve around the generation of superior content.
Don’t use redundant variations of the same keywords
One of the biggest SEO mistakes an online business can make is to generate too many redundant versions of the same basic keywords. Each set of keywords should be optimized to be unique and individually effective. Marketing teams that avoid that kind of repetition in keyword derivations will enjoy more web traffic.
Take advantage of mobile platforms
It is incredibly important that e-commerce firms do not overlook the presence of mobile shoppers which is considerable. The high number of people shopping and browsing from their mobile devices has increased to the point that SEO strategies are shifting towards a focus on mobile users.
Stay consistent to stand out on Google’s search engine
Google favours brands whose content matches what online shoppers are actually looking for in their searches. This is a matter of professionalism as much as it is a good SEO practice. Customers expect to see what was advertised on the site when they click on the advertisement and search engines enforce this expectation.
Use backlinks sparingly
Search engines used to reward high quantities of backlinks, but today things are much different. Google rewards quality backlinks in favour of high quantities and has learned to differentiate and sort links by their quality.
Maintain a strict code of ethics to earn higher rankings on Google
Google and SEO isn’t the Wild West environment that it was in previous years. Because of this and sophisticated AI like RankBrain, we strongly recommend ethical implementations of SEO. Exercising good ethics in SEO in 2019 is not only the right thing to do, but it’s also a requirement. This is especially true for e-commerce businesses looking to rank well on Google searches.
SEO is and has always been an important aspect of the growth of an online business. Knowing how to do it properly is vital. Try to implement the above-mentioned tips to see if they help your business.
Do you know more such tips? Share with us in the comment section below.
How to generate sales for E-commerce store on Instagram?
Instagram is one of the most popular social networking websites used by 1 billion people all over the world. This photo sharing website was created as a space for sharing and viewing photos and videos.
Now, a good number of E-commerce brands use it to advertise products and services & generate sales. So, how to create an effective marketing strategy to sell products on Instagram?
Let’s find out:
Create your company’s account on Instagram
A steadily developing Instagram profile is tantamount to sell products online, expand the audience base and increase revenues. Nevertheless, many aspiring entrepreneurs don’t know how to create a proper business account on Instagram.
Just signup on Instagram by filling some details. Add your company’s logo, picture, full address, contact number, main business message, etc, to the account. Make sure your account looks authentic and professional.
Take care of the visual appearance of your page and make improvements if necessary. You can also use your personal Instagram account for business promotion and sales by making some necessary edits.
Determine user’s need in advance
It is very important for you to clarify customer needs in advance. Individuals available on Instagram will not pay attention to your offer if they don’t find it useful. Therefore, conduct marketing research & determine the future needs of customers in advance.
You can analyze the data collected in the CRM software, Google Analytics, and past transactions. Carefully examine the data and make predictions about the potential items that are likely to be purchased by customers. This will help you to personalize business marketing campaigns and sell more products on Instagram.
High-quality image content
Always keep in mind that Instagram is an image sharing website. Here, images work wonders than text content. So, you need to click HD images of your products, choose the right image format, trim its shape and size as per individual needs, add the main business messages, and upload the posts on your account.
High-quality posts can easily attract the attention of the targeted audience and will help you to sell more products/services.
Use short videos
Did you even consider using placing video posts on your social media page as a marketing tool? If not, then you must know that modern Internet users prefer watching informative videos to make transactions.
So, be active and create different types of videos for your brand such as, how to do, informative, user-guides, problem-solving videos, etc. Share these videos on your Instagram profile. Interested visitors will view those videos and take the desired actions as per their needs.
Use hashtags for campaigns
According to a report, 70% of all hashtags on Instagram are used by brands. The post engagement rate becomes 12.6% higher. But it doesn’t mean you should litter your publications with random words.
Always keep in mind that Hashtags can be an excellent tool to attract subscribers, promote a brand, and classify users. But you need to use them wisely.
Instagram live streaming
Instagram Live streaming allows you to quickly deliver the right information to potential customers and generate leads/sales. It has become one of the main marketing channels for many marketing companies. Always keep in mind that live videos have the magical ability to conquer the hearts of potential customers.
Go live on Instagram to communicate with the audience in real time and answer their questions in real time. By 2020, this new advertising method is likely to bring 13% traffic to websites and help business organizations to sell more products and services.
Instagram is a popular image sharing websites used by a large number of tech-savvy people across the globe. Use the above-mentioned tips to market your products on this innovative platform and sell products online. Happy Selling!
Mary Scott is the Sr Php Programmer cum technical writer of Stellen Infotech, an India based Web Development & Digital Marketing Company offering most comprehensive web applications and solutions for different industry verticals.
How to Use Filters to Reduce Choice Overload and Increase Conversions
Back in the early days of ecommerce, giving a customer an endless array of choices might have been a good thing. But today, surprisingly enough, too many choices are leading to a phenomenon called choice overload. When presented with too many options to choose from, buyers cannot decide which product to buy. They feel overwhelmed and end up abandoning the purchase.
They think they’ll come back to it when they’ve made up their mind, but as a seller, you can’t always be sure they’ll come back to you. You need to cinch the deal right when you have the customer’s attention. This requires that you help your customers navigate through the sea of options and find their perfect product faster.
To truly succeed, online stores need to give customers efficient ways to communicate with your website or app and tell it exactly what they want to buy. Now, almost every site out there has some sort of ‘sort and filter’ system that allows customers to narrow down their search criteria, but you’d be surprised how many of this fall short of really helping the customers.
The Baymard Institute, an independent web and mobile usability research institute performed extensive usability tests on 19 leading ecommerce websites across the world. Findings indicated that 84% of the sites had mediocre to poor filtering experience. Moreover, they also found that on such sites, abandonment rates went as high as 67 to 90%.
Using filters and sorting effectively can mitigate this problem and help users find just the right product they need. Facets are a newer, more sophisticated way of filtering products and providing users a great shopping experience. Facets take into account not only the attributes of a product but also the way a customer would use the product and extract value from it.
Here’s a look at some of the best practices to use a combination of filters and facets to help enhance your UX and help customers shop and convert, without feeling overwhelmed.
1. Provide important filters above the fold
Image source: ebay
No, it’s not a myth. The fact that content above the fold still holds the major part of a viewer’s attention is the truth and isn’t likely to change anytime soon.
E-commerce app pages are full of the information above the fold. There are featured products, advertisements, promotional content and so much more. Your user is already beginning feel a little overwhelmed. Filters could give them some much-needed relief right now, but if you pushed them under the fold, they are easy to miss. To prevent your users from overlooking the filter option and scrolling forever, make your important filters prominent and clearly visible above the fold.
In fact, not all customers think of filters themselves. They just like to jump right into the products list, which can often end up in endless scrolling and eventual abandoning. Avoid this by making your filters prominent, graphics and attention-grabbing right at the top, so that customers notice them and start telling you more about what they want, giving you an opportunity to serve them better an ensure a better experience.
2. Provide option to eliminate
Sometimes, it’s easier to say ‘show me all the colours except red’ than to say ‘show me blue, pink, green, white, beige, black and maroon’.
This happens a lot when something too popular seems to be all over the search results. Say, for instance, you are looking for an apartment in a very specific part of the city. The biggest housing project in that area is also the most popular one. So more than half of the apartments you see in the search results come from this project. But you’ve already ruled this out and want to see all the other options but this one.
It would be downright impossible to select all the other builders, independent resale homes and new developments in this area. What would be easier then? To just exclude this one project and allow all others to show up in search results.
Design filters to not just include specified attributes but also exclude a few.
3. Provide thematic filters
Image source: Amazon
So while you try to make it easier for the customers to find what they want, there’s another aspect at play here. You can’t just leave the customer alone to decide what they want to buy today. They might not always know.
Customers like to explore and find new products but in a certain circle of preference. Essentially this means that they’d like you to show them products they don’t already know about, but include products of a particular kind, and leave out the rest. This can be done using thematic filters like ‘top selling this week’, ‘value for money’, ‘holiday special’ or ‘season specials’. Such filters allow customers to see what’s new and popular, within their choice perimeters. It’s akin to having a special shopping experience designed just for them, and who doesn’t like that?
4. Allow multiple filter values
You’d be surprised how often this happens. You want to see TVs from at least 4 top brands but leave out the others. So you try to click those 4 brand names in the filters list, but the moment you click the first name, the page begins to refresh and shows you all TVs from that one brand. Now you click the second one and the page refreshes again. You have to do this 4 times if you wish to see all the results you want. In fact, in a worse scenario, you may not even be allowed to select multiple values and the first one might uncheck when you check the second one.
This can be an absolute hassle for the customer who wants a combined view of all his preferred brands in one screen. So be sure to allow multiple filter values in the category. Allow them to check as many as they like and only then refresh at the end.
5. Display applied filters and allow easy changing
Don’t just let the filters disappear once the customer begins viewing the results. Keep a list (collapsible if you wish) within easy reach so that customers can change their selections anytime they like. Also, display clearly the filters you have applied to the current page. Don’t make the customers work hard to remember what they chose. Allowing an easy reset button would win you extra points in the user experience department.
With the number of ecommerce businesses out there today, the customers are really being spoilt for choice and businesses need to work that much harder to make a sale. Discounts and sales will only get you so far. What you really need is to become that one site that makes the customers’ life easy.
They wouldn’t be easily distracted by a competitor offering a discount, if they are sure that you will help them find their perfect product faster, offer a smooth shopping experience and save them precious time and their sanity. That is just what you can do if you can offer a perfectly streamlined filtering experience, giving the customers only what they want and giving it to them faster.
Hiral Atha is the Founder and CEO of MoveoApps, a mobile apps development agency. She has over 13 Years of experience in the IT industry. During that time she managed and lead many app initiatives from inception to implementation. Atha holds a bachelor’s degree in information technology.
How to Use Your Copywriting Skills to Drive Ecommerce Sales
If you are running an eCommerce store, then you know that there is a need in the market for specific products. Since your competitors are not fulfilling the needs and questions of your customers, you can use excellent copywriting tips to get found online and boost conversions.
Having a great looking online store is only the first step to reach success with your online store. Your site not only has to look great and engage with your audience, but you will also need to get found through search engines while also educating, informing, and building a brand for your store.
This is not easy, but if you focus on writing great content for your product pages and category pages then you will be able to drive more qualified traffic to your site today!
1. Write for your target audience
Since your customers are looking for products that you sell on your online store, you should do everything you can to personalise your content to speak to your audience as much as possible. The thing that most online store owners don’t understand is that the majority of eCommerce stores use the same descriptions, product images, and have the same lame content across their site.
Not only does this give you an excellent opportunity to get found in search engines by creating unique content, but it also allows you to stand out and engage your audience in new and exciting ways. You will need to modify your approach and tone based on your industry, products, and target audience, but you can engage your customers by following a simple set of points when writing content.
- Who is your product for?
What is the demographic (age, location, income, gender, etc.) of your target audience? This is essential information that you need to know if you want to craft content to engage and connect with your audience.
- What are some product details that set you apart?
Think about your product specifications and how your product offerings set you apart for your competition.
- Where do your customers use your products?
You should think about how and where they use your product. The form and function of your products will look much different if products are used outdoors compared to indoors.
- When do customers need your product?
Think about the time of year or event-based activities when your customers will need your product. You can tap into this information to build out a content calendar and create customized content across your site based on when people will be looking for your products.
ModCloth does a great job explaining the core functionality and purpose of their products in an engaging manner. You can see a pretty good product description under each product, and their target audience will love this information so they can make a more educated purchase!
2. Focus on the benefits
Your customers are looking for answers and solutions to their problems, and you can use your online store as the go-to solution for your target audience. Most online store owners want to focus on the products, but in reality, the things that your customers care about are the benefits that your products will have for them.
Instead of listing out a long list of specifications, you should always pair a benefit with each feature. For example, if you are selling bedding sheet, then you should list the thread count of 400, and as a result, your customers will be able to sleep better.
A great tip to help you write more compelling product and category pages are create a simple spreadsheet. On this spreadsheet, you can list out the problems your customers experience in one column, the features of your products that will help address that problem, and the benefits of your products in another column.
Using this approach to plan what you want to write will help you create a more persuasive copy and even help reduce the amount of time it takes you to write your eCommerce content!
Screwfix does a great job highlighting the benefits of each product. While they have a heavy focus on their product features, they do a great job showcasing why those features are important to their target audience.
3. Eliminate buyer’s guilt
Consumers are worried that they will make the wrong purchase, and many times after consumers buy something they will second guess their decision. Your customers may think they could have purchased the product for less somewhere else or they don’t think they need it, and this can result in the buyer’s guilt.
You can tap into psychology to reduce the impact of these thoughts in your customers once they purchase a product from your store. To help overcome buyer’s guilt you will want to do everything you can to reassure them that they made the best decision and you can use these tactics in your product descriptions:
- Showcase that your products or sales are only good for a one-time offer.
- Reassure your customers that they are saving money or time with the purchase.
- Describe your products as essential.
- Give lots of compliments that your customers found such a fantastic deal.
- Do not use words that trigger thoughts of money like “expensive” or “treat.”
- Highlight multiple features for each product because this will help your customers rationalize the purchase in the long run.
Patagonia creates some great products, and their target audience pays a premium for the quality and care of their products. To help reduce buyer’s guilt Patagonia uses great copywriting to build value and reduce guilt after each purchase!
4. Use questions to offer answers
Each time someone types something into Google they are asking a question. Since you already know your target audience, you should integrate common questions that people ask when looking for your product.
This approach will help you format content on your site in a way that Google and your customers can read quickly, and you can use this approach to rank in search engines. Since you always want to start with the needs of your customers first, using common questions in H2 tags and other areas on your category and product pages can really help your site rank.
DogSupplies4Me does a great job including common questions in their category and product pages. The above example is from their best chew proof dog bed buyer’s guide, and this approach helps their page rank and provides valuable information for their customers.
Grow your ecommerce store with great copywriting
If you want to stand out online and drive more qualified traffic to your site then you should look at the above online store copywriting tips today. You should think about what your customers are looking for, and what makes your products stand out from the crowd. If you use the tactics and strategies listed above then you will be able to boost conversions and reach your eCommerce goals!
Chris is a Digital Media Strategy Consultant with 13 years of experience helping small business owners make more money. He focuses on client needs to be balanced using SEO marketing, freelance copywriting, PPC management services.
Do’s and Don’ts of UX Design Techniques for Ecommerce
The massive challenge ecommerce websites are facing these days is the conversion of visitors into buyers and then loyal customers. When the firms create their websites, customer’s ease and comforts remain their top priorities, which is why the concept of user experience (UX) has been on top of users’ heads when they judge ecommerce websites and decide whether or not to buy from them.
The websites on which UX has not been emphasized during the designing phase have suffered in the last few years. It can hurt your ecommerce business on several levels: Firstly, customers may turn away from your site to the one that is easier and simpler to use. Secondly, it can hamper your search rankings as Google now prioritizes the most authentic and easy to navigate sites.
Do’s of UX design techniques for Ecommerce:
Clear brand positioning
If you want to be an effective ecommerce site, you need to grab the user’s attention by crisp and clear brand positioning, as the estimated time visitors take to form their first impression of your website is just 50 milliseconds.
The display of brand varies from industry to industry.
For example, a luxury wearable technology retailer’s website is likely to look different from a budget conscious site for general household items and goods. Bang & Olufsen, for example, convey the message of their brand using elegant fonts, a sophisticated colour, and sleek product images.
CTA (Call to Action)
When a user visits your site, make sure to greet them with timely content and relevant calls to action (CTAs). As customer navigates through your website, it is highly advisable that your CTAs should be easily visible, engaging and specific. It is imperative that you don’t use generic words for CTA.
Polaroid was quite successful in creating an effective CTA during the holiday season by helping the users who were shopping for presents. They make sure they don’t use common words, but rather they used a phrase word like Shop Gifts, making it crystal clear that user would be navigated to the area on the website with different suggestions for gift items.
Integrate social media into your UX
While ecommerce user experience is more focused on convenience and motivation, social media centres around influence. If you think about it, you cannot motivate your customer to buy from you until and unless they feel that you are influential, and vice versa. The reality is that they are both different sides of the same coin, which is why integrating social media into your ecommerce design is a great way to enhance user experience.
Sophie and Trey, for example, are one of the US fashion brands that do this well through the Shop the Gram section on their website. The way they make use of user-generated content to encourage visitors to buy helps the customers to understand the way the brand is used, get access to feedback, connect on a more personal level with the brand; hence a win-win scenario is created.
Don’ts of UX design techniques for Ecommerce:
The mistakes committed in the designing phase of the website can really hurt your UX and eventually hamper your company’s profits. These errors in judgment can have a severe impact in the long run for the company. Following are some of the strict don’ts for your ecommerce UX:
Don’t provide ambiguous product descriptions
When people shop online, they are looking for comfort as well as the description of the product or services they are looking for. It increases the frustration levels of customers when they find inadequate information about the product they are looking to buy.
Ideally, your website should provide as much information as possible regarding products they are offering. This clarity of the features facilitates customers in selecting the right product, and it also saves their time. This not only is helpful for the customers but for the business as well, as the chances of after sales complaints go severely down.
Don’t create a difficult checkout process
In the modern world of ecommerce, ease is the name of the game. When customers finally decide to choose your brand and product, you don’t want to make things complex for them in the checking out phase.
Often ecommerce websites will overstuff their descriptions and other content with the keywords they think will help their product page rank well on search engines; practices like these need to be done very smartly, if not done correctly, they can land you in serious google penalties that you should avoid at all costs.
Remember, this is the stage where you wanted the customer to take; to lose a customer from this point is a mere pity. Some online businesses make a horrible mistake of formulating a highly technical and less user-friendly mode of payment. The more steps you put between the item adding to the cart and final checkout, the more opportunity your customer has to abandon the cart and never return to the site.
Don’t make users wait long for content
The online marketing world is quite delicate, and your content marketing strategy should not just centre around quality content but also around the experience it will offer. You don’t want your customers to switch to your competitors upon the occurrence of any mistake at your end. When they visit your site, they want things to move fast and smooth.
A blank screen, shown when the content is loading, can give a bad impression of your site like your site is frozen. This can trigger the annoyance and frustration levels of your valued customers. The ecommerce sites should strive to give the impression that their respective website is swift and responsive.
The field of ecommerce has come a long way since its inception. Its growth is tremendously fast and depends greatly on UX. It is estimated to grow to more than 4.48 trillion dollars, which is almost more than double the numbers from the previous year of 2017.
If you want to be one of the ecommerce brands that stand out from the rest, avoid the mistakes mentioned above. Not just that, but keep doing your research to make sure you and your website stay updated on the latest ecommerce ux best practices.
Jenny Harrison is a passionate marketing and business blogger. She loves to engage with readers who are seeking B2B and B2C marketing related information on the internet. She is a featured blogger at various high authority blogs and magazines in which she shared her research and experience with the vast online community. Currently, she is associated with www.PNCDigital.com, an Orlando based Ecommerce Development Company specializes in OpenCart, Magento, Shopify Web Development.