Simple Ways to Solve the Two Biggest eCommerce Problems
Fix these two problems and you’ll sell more from your online store
Do you currently own, or are you thinking about starting an online store?
Before you take the plunge, there are a few things you should know. Running an online store is not all rainbows and butterflies. In fact, it can be pretty tough.
There are a lot of moving parts and if you’re not careful, things can quickly start to unravel.
In this blog post, we’ll take a look at two of the biggest problems you might face when running an online store.
We’ll also explore some possible solutions so that you can avoid these pitfalls altogether.
So whether you’re already running an online store or just considering it, read on to find out more!
Main Problem #1: You don’t have enough website traffic
Website traffic is the lifeblood of any online store.
Without regular visitors viewing your products, there’s no way they can “add to cart” and purchase from you.
Unfortunately, just because you build it, doesn’t mean they’ll come!
You have to actively market your website at every opportunity to get eyeballs on your store.
Here are 6 ways to increase website traffic:
1. Make sure your website is search engine optimised
2. Publish high-quality content that is relevant to your target audience
3. Use social media to share your content and drive traffic back to your website
4. Promote your website on other websites and in online directories
5. Use paid advertising to reach a wider audience
6. Analyse your website traffic and use the data to improve your marketing strategy
Once you’ve solved this problem, it’s time to move on to the next…
Main Problem #2: You’ve got people visiting your site but VERY few of them are actually buying.
This one is incredibly frustrating!
You’ve put so much time, effort and money into getting traffic to your eCommerce store, but very few people are actually buying. The numbers don’t make sense and you wonder what could be wrong because your products are awesome.
Well, there are many reasons why visitors to your eCommerce store aren’t whipping out their credit card to buy from you.
Let’s explore some of the reasons in depth:
Your website is difficult to navigate and users can’t find what they’re looking for
One of the most common problems is that users can’t find what they’re looking for.
Your website may be difficult to navigate, or the products may not be properly categorised.
For example, let’s say you run an online baking store. If you haven’t tagged your products properly, it could cause haywire when people are searching for something.
For instance, they search for “icing sugar” but the search reveals “baking tins”. This type off thing is incredibly frustrating for the purpose-driven shopper and they’ll immediately exit your site if navigating it causes frustration for them.
Ensure your website is easy to use and that users can easily find what they’re looking for.
Use clear and descriptive product titles and descriptions, make sure your products are properly tagged and categorised and lastly, check that your menu options are logically structured and easy for anyone to use.
Bonus tip: make sure that your website loads fast and looks good on mobile.
The checkout process is too long and complicated
Too many steps in the checkout process can deter customers from completing a purchase.
Simplify the process by including only the necessary fields, and make sure that all of them are clearly labelled.
Also, make sure that the buttons for submitting and cancelling orders are easy to find and use.
You’re not offering a variety of payment methods for your online store
In addition to having a checkout process that is too complicated, consider how many payment gateways you have available.
Offering a variety of payment methods is essential for any eCommerce store.
This allows customers to use the method that they are most comfortable with, which can result in more sales.
Make sure to offer a variety of options, including both traditional and digital methods.
You’re not offering any discounts or incentives
Consumers are fickle.
They want discounts and incentives but more importantly, they want to feel like they’re getting a good deal. A lot of people will buy just because you have something on sale or an offer available.
If you don’t offer any discounts or incentives, your conversion rates will be lower than they could be.
We’re not saying you should always have something on sale, in fact, we wrote an entire blog about the challenges of offering discounts and what it means for how people perceive your products and services.
That being said, especially when it comes to selling physical products, a good special every now and then (maybe to move some old stock?) could play to your advantage.
You are uncontactable
Most eCommerce stores have one big problem: there is no customer service phone number and/or email address.
This can lead to a lot of frustration for customers, who may not be able to get the help they need when they need it.
If your online store provides no means for potential buyers to reach you, it also creates a LOT of doubt in their minds.
They are asking themselves if your business is actually legit and seriously worrying that if they spend money on your site, they might never receive what they ordered.
The simple solution is to ensure that you have some contact details.
We understand if you don’t want to provide your telephone number, but at the very least, provide an email address where people can reach you. It could be info@yourwebsite or hello@yourwebsite or shop@yourstorename.
In addition, you could insert a contact form onto your Contact page, which is very easy to set up in Shopify or WooCommerce.
Your return policy is unclear or restrictive
When it comes to returns, shoppers want clarity.
If your return policy is restrictive or unclear, they may not feel comfortable making a purchase from you. This can lead to lost sales and decreased customer loyalty.
Make sure your return policy is easy to understand and clearly communicated on your website.
Your online product descriptions are boring and don’t appeal to the reader
Many products have terrible descriptions that either don’t answer the searcher’s question or just read like a textbook.
This can lead to fewer conversions and less revenue for your business.
So, how can you avoid this common ecommerce problem? By writing product descriptions that are fun, informative, and appeal to the reader. Here are a few tips:
- Start by introducing the product and its key features.
- Use a friendly tone and write in a way that engages the reader.
- Use images, videos, and infographics to break up the text and add visual interest.
- Use customer testimonials, reviews, and social proof to show that others love your product.
- Offer a unique perspective on the product and highlight its benefits.
- Use strong calls to action to encourage the reader to buy the product.
By following these tips, you can create product descriptions that are sure to convert browsers into buyers!
Shipping rates are not aligned
Another two common eCommerce problems are shipping rates being too high and/or not offering free shipping on orders over a certain amount.
These can be detrimental to your business, and the only way to solve them is by lowering these prices/thresholds.
Your goal as an online store owner should never be to make money on shipping, but to break even on shipping so as to encourage people to shop regularly on your site.
You’ll make waaaayyyy more money having repeat customers spending again and again than insisting on making a profit on shipping.
Rather focus on getting higher average cart values than making a quick buck on shipping rates.
No customer reviews or ratings on your products
Social proof is one of the most important factors when selling anything online, whether you’re selling physical products, ebooks or online courses.
Simply put, we have a pack mentality and we trust in the opinions of others.
Think about the last time you were shopping on Takealot. Imagine you’re shopping for power banks, and you see two very similar options with identical specs and similar pricing.
What convinces you to purchase one over the other?
Most of the time it’s the difference in reviews.
If one option has a 4.8 rating while the other is at 3.5, and everything else is the same, we can guarantee that you’ll buy the one with higher rating.
Reviews count, so every month or so, email your list of buyers and ask them to leave a review. As an incentive, you could offer them a 10% discount voucher for their next purchase.
We’ve covered a lot in this blog, so you might have some work to do!
However, if you can work on these two main problems and the suggestions we’ve given for both, you are bound to see an uptick in your online sales.
Online shopping is becoming more and more popular, so fix what you can so that people buy from you more often.
Originally published at https://bigdomino.co.za on March 16, 2022.