Nowadays, you don’t distribute your business card to expand your business. Website has taken that spot and people now search online to find a business or ask for quotes. It provides them an easy way to contact you and a convenient method to go through your different product-details. In this blog, you will find some easy steps to improve your online business.
Although a majority of businesses-owners today have taken their business online, there are many who haven’t got the kind of success they were anticipating. The reason behind this is: customers are increasingly losing trust from cheap-looking and homemade websites.
For a business, its website is a way to showcase its credibility. It should be seen as your storefront and must be given an equal weight. Your ecommerce website design is the first thing that a customer sees and within a few seconds, they determine whether they will make a purchase or not. An ecommerce store development needs a myriad of considerations to optimize it in a way that it provides a good user experience.
The ecommerce platform you work on makes a lot of difference to the overall performance of your online store. These platforms provide an all-in-one solution for online store management. There are many ecommerce platforms available to choose from, the most popular of which are Magento, Shopify, osCommerce and BigCommerce. You can read our complete ecommerce platforms guide to get help with the selection of the ecommerce platforms.
Here is a compilation of a few useful tips to improve online business:
1. Customer Experience
Online businesses are evolving rapidly, and providing a good overall customer experience should be a priority for any ecommerce company. For those who are wondering on how to improve online business, a good customer experience is a place you should start from. Let us see how this can be achieved:
Customers will get frustrated if they are unable to find what they need easily. Your ecommerce website must be developed in a way that customers can easily browse through the products, and must provide sufficient filters so that it doesn’t take them a long time to get to the product that meets their requirements.
Easy checkout process:
This is one thing that can make a lot of a difference if done right. 69% of the shopping carts are abandoned during the checkout process. It is important that you make the customer details form simple. Make sure that the customer is not asked to fill in their details twice.
Delay in order processing:
This can happen due to various reasons, the most common of which are miscommunication with the third-party vendor and delays by couriers. Both needs a strong and well-carved service level agreement (SLA) and contracts. According to a survey, 59% customers said that they won’t shop with a retailer again if their delivery isn’t on time.
Return and refund policy:
Returns on online stores are more than three times of the returns in brick-and-mortar stores. It is important to have a free clear and fast return and refund policy. Close to 67% of the online shoppers check the returns page before buying an item.
2. Mobile Shopping
With more and more users shifting to smartphones for buying a product, providing a better shopping experience is imperative for any ecommerce store. A quarter of the ecommerce purchases are done on a mobile phone. Here are a few things that will help you enhance your customers’ mobile shopping experience:
Get a dedicated mobile website:
If you have a dedicated mobile website, you can design it in a way that it will give a complete look of an app. Also, you can cover basic functionalities too. This will reduce your dedicated app development cost.
A responsive web design uses HTML and CSS and adapts the content of the website to make it fit perfectly on smaller devices. It does so by resizing, hiding or moving the content to make it look good on any device.
Go Mobile First:
Mobile first approach has become a must for an ecommerce company. You must inculcate mobile first ecommerce strategy to your business. A mobile first business strategy means that the website design is made first for the mobile and then for larger screens (such as a desktop).
Optimize for voice search:
Although voice search does not amount a significant pie in the overall searches, it is growing and may take up a large chunk in the future. The search keywords for voice search must be studied and targeted.
You can use AdWords or purchase ads from popular apps such as Twitter and Facebook. These are very helpful since the traditional ad-block software doesn’t block the in-app ads.
Create your own App:
A custom ecommerce app development is always a great idea for an ecommerce business. This will eliminate the need to log in and enter customer details every time a user wants to make a purchase. Also, having an app will further increase the credibility of your business.
On an average, a person spends 3 hours and 40 minutes looking at a mobile screen. Hence, a well-designed mobile ecommerce strategy can greatly increase your sales figures.
3. Speed Optimization:
According to data published by Google, as page load time increases from 1 sec to 7 sec, the probability of a visitor bouncing back increases to 113%. It is thus important for a website to optimize its page loading speed. This has many undesirable repercussions for an ecommerce website. Slow websites won’t only drive away the visiting customer; it will also increase the bounce rate and decrease your website’s rank consequently.
Mobile users expect a website to load faster than 3 seconds, while the average load time is 22 seconds. To provide a better browsing experience, Google has said this on record that soon page speed will be a determining factor mobile search results. Today, a majority of internet surfing is done on a smartphone which underlines the importance of having a responsive ecommerce site.
Ecommerce site speed optimization will require a host of measures to be taken. Here are a few measures that you can take:
Minification of codes:
To increase ecommerce site speed, it is recommended that you optimize codes by removing white spaces, commas and other characters from the codes which are used for the sole purpose of instilling readability to the script.
When you redirect a user to another page, it takes a full HTTP request response-cycle. Make sure the numbers of redirects are as few as possible.
Utilize browser caching:
Look for response time bottlenecks:
The factors that can hamper the performance of your server response time are slow database queries, slow routing or lack of adequate memory. You must identify which of these are responsible for poor performance and ensure that you get the optimal server response time under 200ms.
Content delivery network is a network of interconnected servers which is used to distribute the content delivery task to various servers depending on the geographical location of the servers.
If your images are a simple graphics made from 16 colors, it is recommended to use PNG format for it. If the image is a photograph, it will be better if you use a JPEG format. Compress these images whenever necessary. You should use CSS sprite and combine a number of small images into one large image. This will reduce the number of individual requests needed to load these images.
Thus, in order to reduce your website’s bounce rate, it is important to optimize its page speed.
4. Marketing strategy
An ecommerce store needs to have a well-designed and all-inclusive marketing strategy. Also, the strategy must be result oriented. There’s no point of having a good product and customer-friendly policies if you don’t get enough customers. Here are a few tips for ecommerce marketing:
For this, you need to continuously stay updated with the kind of content that is in trend. You should research on the trending keywords and generate top quality content such that it answers the queries of the readers. The content should point at your website and must have a clear “call to action”.
Customer loyalty programs:
A loyalty program should be seen as an opportunity to establish a good customer relationship and keep them coming back to your store. It is found that a repeat customer spends 67% more than a new customer. You must always run different loyalty programs to increase your ecommerce conversion rates such as the ones that give out points and discount coupons.
It is an important tool to make sure your customer loyalty program works fine. You can share good articles or can introduce your customers via an email. It is one of the most powerful tools used by marketers today.
Social Media Marketing:
Social media such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat has become very important platforms for marketing. People spend more time on these apps than on any other. These platforms have the power to make your product go viral. You must never ignore this marketing technique.
PPC / Google AdWords:
This can be time-consuming and a difficult process, and losing money is very much probable if you don’t know how to do it. It is advised that you do a proper research on the keywords.
This technique relies on the ability to track a particular inbound link. For this, you provide the link of a product that you need to sell and the affiliate marketer use this to advertise your product.
There are several marketing tools available to help an ecommerce website in managing its marketing techniques. These can save a lot of your time and automate repetitive processes.
By following the above steps can bring drastic changes to your sales figures. Implementing these should be a priority for an ecommerce website since their competitors are big tech-giants.
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