Having a fruitful online store is a top aim for practically every eCommerce business. Allured by t he idea of making the most of the input efforts and investments, many store owners are in the constant hunt of ways to improve their online retail store. On this page, we’ll introduce you to those tactics that can assist you in boosting your revenues.
1. Mind the Speed & Performance of the Store
Among the first things to be noted regards how well the eCommerce website is performing. Ideally, it should be fast and glitch-free, have great navigation, a simple search, as well as be equally great to shop on no matter which device is used for browsing the store. Mentioning the latter point, because more and more purchases are being made from mobile devices, many eCommerce business owners are currently building progressive web applications that are an impeccable alternative for native apps. With that mentioned, the first way to achieve eCommerce store growth is to optimize the site. This means that you take UX and UI seriously, make only the smartest and most suitable navigation decisions, and make sure that the site is quick (since no customer likes to wait). Moreover, you should pay special attention to how well your product categories, page hierarchy, and top menu are laid out as, by all means, you wouldn’t want to confuse your clients. At the end of the day, the eCommerce store should be easy to shop on. If that’s not true, this is where you must start as un optimized sites are among the main reasons for cart abandonment and poor
2. Implement User-Generated Content
One of the easiest online retail store “recipes” revolves around user-generated content, specifically, various photos and posts that people make on their socials. By simply adding a widget to the eCommerce website that’ll display a collection of posts that customers made with the product or mentioned a brand can serve as social proof. In turn, this builds credibility and even inspires people to obtain something too. Not to mention that those who contribute posts become motivated to do so when they understand that their post can get exposure on the brand’s website and socials. For instance, here’s such a user-generated content gallery shown on the official Swarovski website. People are encouraged to tag the official Swarovski Instagram account or to upload their picture to this user gallery using the “Add a Photo botton.
3. Add Gift-Hunting Sections
Many people would agree that searching for a gift for others is usually tricky. In light of this, having a section devoted to presents is a valuable “move” that many website users will find handy. A simple example of what that looks like is the “Gift Ideas” menu block, depicted on the screenshot below from the official Fendi website. Split by recipient and categories, the suggestions of things that one can give as a present make the process of hunting for a gift much easier. What is more, many store owners resort to a cunning yet handy means: they add buttons such as “Send this item as a gift hint” to product pages. Such a feature allows shoppers to encourage others to make a purchase, suggesting a gift they’d like to receive.
4. Give Customer Feedback Needed Attention
It’s well-known that people are for the most part dependent on the opinions of others. For the eCommerce world, this simply means that the shopping behaviour and decisions of potential buyers are often based on the feedback that’s given by others, to a large extent at least. In reference to the data collected by Podium: “93% of consumers say online reviews impact their purchasing decisions”. In view of this, it is crucial to add product-specific feedback to product pages and general testimonials to the website too. Even if there’s only one review per product page, this is already better than having no rating or comment. Reviews increase trust.
There are many ways that store owners can convince their clients to give feedback. Some include placing rating requests on final steps of the checkout or within delivery confirmation mailers. These messages are much more effective if they’re coupled with a freebie of some sort that’ll serve as a reward for finding the time to post a product review.
What is more, replying to reviews is to not be overlooked either. No matter if the review is bad or great, dropping a line in reply shows that you care and value the time of your buyers. This helps to build stronger relationships and to reinforce your brand. Did you notice how large the customer reviews section is on the product page of the official Herbal Essences website? Taking up almost half of the page, it’s very helpful for shoppers.
5. Cross-Selling & Personal Shopping Experiences
Assisting people as they shop in a non-irritating way can surely raise the average check sizes. We’re talking about upselling and personalization blocks. Both of them collect selections of items that’ll be a good match to the currently browsed product as well as suggest other similar items that this user is likely to enjoy. Such website sections are also often seen among the current eCommerce web design trends.
Let’s take a glimpse at a part of the product page on the official Reebok website. The “Complete the Look” cross-selling section pitches other items that can go well with the shoes, whereas the “You May Also Like” personalization section offers similar shoe models.
6. Allow Product Customization
People love to stand out, this is why many of them don’t like to buy “off the rack”. In essence, this is a great chance to allow customers to be creative if the product lines can come in variations. Provided that an eCommerce store has the opportunity to offer changeable item elements that users can take advantage of, adding customization functionality can result in sales growth. Below is a screenshot of the “Design Your Own” custom shoe section on the official Timberland website. The feature helps a site user to put together the shoe design, to select colors, the stitching, monogram etc.
7. Use Virtual Try-Ons
An outstanding technique for growing the sales of an eCommerce store is getting a hold of modern features such as real-time product “try-on”. The thing is that certain product categories cause a lot of doubt when shopping online since people aren’t sure if the product will look good on them or not. A couple of examples of that can be selecting a suitable shade of makeup foundation or hair dye. By exploiting the camera of the device, the user can try on an accessory or put on cosmetics. An alternative to the live camera use is uploading a photograph. In any case, by making it possible to visualize what a product or item looks like, doubts are removed, and orders go up. Below you can take a look at a product page of the official Ray-Ban website. The lens colors of sunglasses and the rims of eyeglasses are a delicate matter. This is exactly why when pressing the “Try it on” button, people can see if they look good in this model of glasses or not without having physical access to the item.Did you know that the checkout is among the major steps of the ordering process? According to the statistics by Sleeknote: “Checkout optimization can increase conversions by 35.6%”. The fact of the matter is that users often abandon their shopping carts if the checkout process is too lengthy, if it contains too many unnecessary fields, or is extended into one too many steps. Such checkouts irritate people who don’t wish to waste their time, so they run off without completing the purchase. The same applies if the shopper doesn’t find a preferred payment or shipping method. From this it follows that giving your checkout enough thought can help to grow an eCommerce store. As long as the fields are limited to those that are really required, the layout is clear, there are convenient payment options, and the process doesn’t take a bunch of time, you’re on the right track. To provide an example, here’s how the checkout of the official Converse website is like.
8. Optimize the Product Checkout
Did you know that the checkout is among the major steps of the ordering process? According to the statistics by Sleeknote:
“Checkout optimization can increase conversions by 35.6%”.
The fact of the matter is that users often abandon their shopping carts if the checkout process is too lengthy, if it contains too many unnecessary fields, or is extended into one too many steps. Such checkouts irritate people who don’t wish to waste their time, so they run off without completing the purchase.
The same applies if the shopper doesn’t find a preferred payment or shipping method. From this it follows that giving your checkout enough thought can help to grow an eCommerce store. As long as the fields are limited to those that are really required, the layout is clear, there are convenient payment options, and the process doesn’t take a bunch of time, you’re on the right track. To provide an example, here’s how the checkout of the official Converse website is like.
9. Run Loyalty Programs
Retaining customers is yet one more store-growth method. The main thing to note here is that it’s harder to sell something to a client who’s new and who you’re only trying to acquire than to one who has made previous purchases. It’s much cheaper to sell things to existing customers than to the ones who you’re trying to convert too. Thus, among the ways to get returning clients is by launching reward programs. There are many ways this is beneficial, for instance, you get users to sign up to the website and provide them with reasons to buy something. This can be a discount, gift coupon, complimentary order shipping, access to some unique product. On a similar line, holding giveaways is another common tactic. To illustrate the above, here’s a sign-up discount offer to a loyalty program on the official Maybelline New York website.
10. Make Use of Shops on Socials
There are many SEO techniques out there for bringing organic traffic to the eCommerce store. But did you know that the one that’s overlooked most often is actually social shops? Giving a marvelous opportunity to stand the gain in several ways at the same time, putting up social media shops can be a huge win for many eCommerce business spheres. By connecting the product catalog of a store to the official business accounts of the company, you can begin selling a lot more right from the social media accounts. Such functionality is, for instance, available on Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram. Not only do your social accounts get enriched by tagged shoppable products, you ultimately make it easier for customers to shop directly from the socials that they spend so much time on. Case in point, below is a screenshot of a post on the official Chloe Instagram account. The “View Products” tag reveals the tagged bag that’s on sale. When clicked on, the link to the store’s product page appears together with some minimal details and It’s price.
To conclude all the ideas mentioned in this article, optimizing what you have and trying something new can already be a step in the right direction of business growth. Be it the optimization of your website’s speed or the checkout process, changes in UX/UI, or the implementation of new features, this may all bring you rewarding result.
About the Author
Alex Husar, CTO at Onilab with 8+ years of experience in Magento development and Salesforce consulting services. He graduated from the Czech Technical University and obtained a bachelor’s degree in Computer Software Engineering. Alex’s expertise includes both full-stack dev skills and a strong ability to provide project-critical guidance to the whole team.