Key Reasons Why Your Online Sales aren’t up to Par

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30 Nov Key Reasons Why Your Online Sales aren’t up to Par

It’s 2018 and eCommerce is changing at head-spinning speeds. Artificial intelligence. Chatbots. Augmented reality. iBeacons. With all the buzz and catchy headlines, it’s hard not to get caught up in the hype and think the newest “bright shiny object” will swoop in and save the day and boost your eCommerce sales beyond your wildest expectations. But, before you get distracted by the newest technology or latest “must have,” let’s take a step back and ensure that you have the basics in place to maximize your eCommerce sales. No, this stuff isn’t novel. But, a lot of it is becoming table stakes, and if you don’t get your house in order now, you’re going to have a hard time ever catching up with the companies that do.

As we all know, increasing eCommerce sales is about conversions (and retention of course). But the most frustrating of all eCommerce issues: the dreaded shopping cart abandonment!

Quit Abandoning Me!

Depending on which data you read, shopping cart abandonment rates are somewhere between 60-80%. This is not a stat that anyone should think is acceptable. In case you’re thinking “But a lot of people are just browsing and have no intention of making a purchase, so what’s the real number?” According to Baymard Institute, “…the average large-sized e-commerce site can gain a 35.26% increase in conversion rate through better checkout design.”

So, let’s use that 35% statistic for the fictional Power Transactional Company (PTC) to get you thinking about real dollars and the real impact you can make on improving your eCommerce sales:

PTC details:

  • Website revenue: $100 million
  • Average order value: $225
  • Total cart abandonment rate: 70%
  • # of visitors who put something in the shopping cart: 1.48 million
  • # of visitors who put something in the shopping cart but don’t purchase: 1.04 million (70%)
  • # of visitors who make a purchase: 444,444 (30%)

Small Changes Equal Big Dollars

According to Baymard Institute, you can increase conversions by 35% with a better checkout process. But, let’s be conservative and use a quarter of that number – 8.75%.

A Better Checkout Process for PTC Results In a $29.2 Million Increase In Revenue

  • 129,500 new shoppers (1.49 million visitors x 8.75%) x ave order of $225

$29.2 million potential additional revenue with JUST focusing on improving the checkout process. But, how? Easy. OK, maybe not easy, but definitely doable.

Surely, a percentage of shoppers are:

  • Not ready to buy or just casually browsing through the product line.
  • Just comparing prices.
  • Planning to complete the purchase in-store.

There are some things that are so basic, we just have to assume you have them in place already:

  • Making it crystal clear where someone is in the checkout process, indicating to the shopper that they are progressing through completing the journey, a sense of achievement!
  • Offer the right types of payment methods. If going to a new site – you would want to have a third-party system like PayPal, Visa Checkout, or Amazon Pay. Make sure it’s the right kind of visa checkout. Not just CC or bank account. It’s the trust factor!
  • Allow repeat shoppers the ability to select shipping and billing information from their account.
  • Display prices for all shipping types.
  • Offer shipping promotions and display qualifier messaging when they are close to qualifying for a free shipping discount. The shopping bag is the best place to show the messaging. Shoppers always looking for free shipping promotion over $X order value.
  • Easy checkout. Hide distractions during checkout that allows the shopper to focus on completing their purchase.
  1. Enclosed checkout is good. You don’t want a bunch of CTA’s… only a logo and progress bar and trimmed footer.
  2. Ever heard “women are gatherers and men are hunters?” It’s true. Women see the bigger picture and are more easily distracted. Since women do XX of the shopping, keep it simple. And focused.
  3. Be cautious of when to display a promo code – as a best practice – show it on the cart page and leave it there. Unless your business model is to always have promotions. Shoppers always want the feeling that they are getting the best deal.
  4. Remove unnecessary steps. Don’t require a shopper to register to make a purchase. Use one step registration by capturing password information towards the end of the purchase flow.
  • No product recommendations during the checkout process and absolutely no 3rd party ads.
  • Inventory messaging is very important to mitigate a false impression in shopper’s mind that the merchandize may not be delivered in-time.
  • Run email campaigns on your site especially when a shopper has not returned to the site within a certain time frame. Offer a personalized promotion code at the start of checkout.
  • Gifting site? Sometimes people want to give the same gift to different people. You should support multi-shipments and multi-payments – and different payment types within one transaction.
  • Privacy and security statement on the site to build trust and credibility.

Business stakeholders need to ultimately focus on the things that they really need to put into place, but probably haven’t gotten to many of them yet, for various reasons. Lack of dollars. Lack of resources. Lack of time. But as you saw in the PTC example, with some focus on making changes to your checkout process, you can increase your conversion rates, and thus your eCommerce sales – in a big way!

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