Here is our list from landing page to the back-of-house of tasks you need to be checking off for your eCommerce business.
Your website needs to be trusted and verified. These website safety standards are the golden checkmark or "tick" beside your business name.
- HTTPS is more secure for users and website owners and is the standard today. Its means data is being transferred and encrypted both ways securely. If you have not moved your site over to HTTPS, Google will be penalising your website site in Search rankings as its deemed unsafe or suspicious, preventing your website from being easily viewed.
- W3C validation. Checking your website’s code to determine if it follows formatting standards. If you fail to validate the pages of your website based on W3C standards, your website will most likely suffer from errors or poor traffic owing to poor formatting and readability. This also means Search penalties.
- Captcha. Protecting websites against bots is a neverending process. Captcha is a grading process that humans can see and pass but robots cannot see and process, virtually eliminating spamming from your website enquiry forms.
- 2FA - 2-factor verification/identification process simply means that your ID is checked 2 times in different steps. Multiple layers make it more difficult for security attacks on both sides and ensure that your data is as safe as possible.
- WCAG 2.0 - Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG 2.0) defines how to make Web content more accessible to people with all disabilities with perceivable, operable, understandable, and robust compliance - a must for sites catering for those users with disabilities, like vision impairment.
Know your audience, buyer personas and customers
Knowing your user demographics is just one part of this big puzzle. Other considerations include intent (where users are in their customer lifecycle), where they are located geographically, when they shop, their language patterns (SEO phrases) and behaviour (how they compare and choose products). You can derive an abundance of data from Google Analytics but using additional tools such as surveys, social media listening, and public conversations like Quora, Reddit, and other niche forums can provide rich detailed information about what people are saying about your products and services.
See more about the inbound digital marketing tools we recommend for 2020.
Home/Landing Page Optimisation
Optimising your homepage is obvious but where to begin? The old cliche of “first impressions” leads us down many paths to look, feel, and functionality but what should you start with your eCommerce site?
- UX - User experience is the best summed up as how we provide a useful and relevant experience to a customer on our website. This is obviously not limited to the home page but it will give a good indication of expected experience throughout your site based on this first experience. You need to provide the experience they have been promised in an easy, delightful way.
- Products - Featuring your top products or categories is the most effective way to capture their attention. Accurate and relevant images, videos, explanations and information that either drives them to another site or further down your sales funnel.
- On-page optimisation - Your page should be optimised for keywords, and organic search metadata descriptions.
- Content - Google values highly relevant content and the more relevant, the longer they will spend on the page. Providing relevant content and descriptions will definitely better SERPs (Search Engine Results Page).
- Design - An eye-catching modern design always helps from a visual perspective. This backs up your brand and commitment and can help the audience experience the ‘feeling’ of your brand and products. Think very carefully about how you implement your design elements so they help draw the audience in and move on to their next step more intuitively.
Your top page navigation should provide everything within one step. Navigation menus that are complex, have lots of pop-outs, symbols and levels mean a potential bounce. Make it as easy and simple to find what they want. Complicated navigation is hazardous to your ranking as much as it is to your bottom line.
- Permalinks should be easy to understand and as simple as possible. This will help with metadata and search results.
- Keep the clutter to a minimum. One to Two words at most for any menu item.
- Judicious use of Junction or CTA (Call-To-Action) boxes at relevant points will help assist traffic to flow and take next steps.
Product Search Optimisation
- Search Option Bar - This should be prominently displayed if users need to search for products.
- Categories - Keep them as simple as possible. Categories should be broad and break down further into next level pages and then products specifically.
- Tags will help you get very specific with product groups and use identifications. While Categories are broad, tags are specific descriptions and use.
- Metadata. Make sure to use relevant keywords and descriptions. This will help not only with a quick identifier in an on-page search query but in search engines as well. Images should have accurate, relevant metadata as well for Google Shop and search engines.
- Images - Your images should be simple and feature the product by itself or at the very least as the main feature. Relevant location images are great as a hero image but isolated, background removed help with identification, angles, and any other information the customer may need to make a decision.
- Descriptions - Should include important Specs, technical information, product details, options, should be included. Keep it well organised in tabs if required.
Product Page Optimisation
- Descriptions - Specs, technical information, product details, options, should be included. Keep it well organised in tabs if required.
- Add ons, upgrades, recommendations - If your page allows, you should always be giving the customer recommendations for other complimentary products, upgrades upsells and packaged products. Once they have committed to a single purchase they are 90% likely to purchase again or more.
Store Checkout Optimisation
This is one of the easiest things to get wrong. 70% of sales are lost at this point. Whether its buyer remorse or a long drawn out checkout procedure, it needs to completely painless.
- Checkouts should be fast. If they are previous clients then a quick login makes it a much faster by retaining customer information. If they are new, make sure to offer them a login option and payment process with as few steps as possible.
- A one-step payment solution is the key. There are so many payment gateway options nowadays that you can find as complex or simple a process as necessary. Eliminate any extra steps you can to completion.
- Streamline your shipping module to use one method. More options mean more confusion.
- Chatbot - having an instant answer to your questions will minimise abandonment in the checkout phase. You can offer a conversational pop-up for certain pages, and a click-to-open option to open should someone need a quick answer. A rules-based response will answer 90% of the questions you get with additional options for next stage contact or support if required.
- Downloads or gated content - Making sure access is instantaneous. There nothing worse than waiting a day for content, whether is a lead magnet or access to videos and required material. If you offer digital content it needs to be available immediately.
Your potential customers may visit you 5 times before they purchase a product from you. Trust is not easily gained these days and savvy shoppers do their due diligence when it comes to research before they make any kind of contact.
- Attract, Engage, Delight from the beginning to the end through the customer journey. We want your customer to become great spokespersons for your product. That means and end to end consistent customer experience.
- Chatbots - An easy way to help to answer questions at critical points in the customer journey. You can program different content for each page or section of your website. If that’s impossible then make sure there is a way to access your support team easily.
- Keep on-site, and on-page. Offer resources but keep them on the site with internal page links. If for some reason you do need to provide an outside resource then make sure that the link opens a new tab, instead of driving the traffic offsite.
Yes, page speed is an issue. Only 15% of websites load at an acceptable speed. Google recommends under 6 seconds of load time. 37% of visitors bounce when you take 5 or more seconds to leads. A one-second delay results in a 7% drop in conversions. 3 of the 4 top SEO signals are speed-related. You get the point here. Speed is really important.
By adding a global site tag and event snippet to your website you can retarget your visitors across the web.
- Create Google retargeting list and audience sources to start collecting data for your retargeting ads, dynamic display ads, cross-platform ads.
- Create retargeting lists from your social media accounts like Facebook and Instagram.
- Use special limited time and returning customer offers to help draw back customers or get them over the line.
- Create marketing funnels through your drip/EDM platform. At Click Creative we use Hubspot CRM Inbound Marketing to seamlessly build trust and make offers.
Data Tracking (Google Conversions)
The ultimate goal is to be able to measure your marketing efforts. Being able to record conversion from your benchmarks will help you define accurately what tools are working and how to further tweak your UX (User Experience).
- Hotjar - allows you to records actions and movements on your website. It's a visual picture of which elements are being acted upon.
- Google Tag Manager - measure significant events and actions on your pages by setting up GTM.
- Google Analytics - Behaviour Flow Report helps you visually the drop off rate and how traffic flows between your pages.
- Abandoned cart reports - whether via plugin or SaaS platform, knowing what your abandonment rate is a key clue to making to taking the necessary actions in changing your processes.
Start with just a small CRO task today from the many actions above. Even the most incremental changes can help move lost customers along. And if you need help along the way we would love to hear from you.
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