When developing an e-commerce site there is no doubt that there is a lot to consider. You will need to outline your plan, and specify your objectives. E-commerce involves proper coding, marketing, and ONGOING search engine optimization (SEO).
How to Find Your Site
It’s true, many people will consider how the site functions and looks, however if they can’t find the site it doesn’t matter if your site is top shelf or has hit rock bottom. So where do live? When people are looking for what you’re selling how will they find you? It’s important to do internet marketing first, then e-commerce and design second. Having ongoing search engine optimization or SEO will make sure that you are reaching as many people as possible by being in the top spots of the search engines such as Google and Bing.
Create a Great First Impression
Customers have such a wide variety of options online. It is important that your site looks professional and projects a reputable image. Regardless of the number of customers that make purchases online, many are leery about using their credit cards online. SO take the time to have your web design done by a professional, and it will go a long way in making that very important first impression,and instilling confidence.
Develop Your Upfront Value Proposition
An effective and easy way to sell products online is to tell people why they should. Make it obvious why consumers should purchase from your website. Do you have hard to find product in stock? Do you offer the lowest prices in your industry? Do you have the largest selection of product? Do you have testimonials or reviews from past customers? Make it clear why people should purchase from you.
Strong Search Functionality
Basic navigation through your site is key! If people can’tfigure out how to find what they are looking for they are going to move on. Give the customer options to search in different ways and make it flexible. Add such features as; search suggestions, did you mean? spelling corrections. Filters for price, availability, stock, brandetc. VERY IMPORTANT- make sure your search functionality returns relevant results for keywords in the title. You now have someone on your site looking for product, don’t lose them because they can’t find it.
Make the Purchase Process PAINLESS
Don’t make the customer abandon you for the competition because you made their task too difficult. Many people cite complicated navigation or too many pages as reasons why they abandon their carts or sale. Provide an easy, clear way to add multiple items to a shopping cart. Provide a one page checkout system. Do NOT require people to register to make purchase, allow a guest checkout. Display pricing and shipping clearly.
Offer Any and All Payment Options
Another part of making the check-out process painless is to offer a number of payment options. Customers are all different and have special needs or preferences. Accept major credit cards, Pay-Pal, Google Checkout, even allowing checks to be sent to your address. The more options you have for payment, the less chance you will lose potential customers.
Make Products Easy to See and Review
People don’t read on the web, 28% of people only scan information and pictures. With that being said, I have 3 words for you- Pictures, pictures, pictures. Customers want to see exactly what they are going to get. Don’t make the mistake of not having photos of every product you supply. Having multiple views, photo zooming etc.If you are using small, low quality, fuzzy pictures it’stime for a change.
Focus on photos and keep text to a minimum. Along with product pictures, you want to have well-craftedproduct descriptions. Headlines should be 8 words or less. Keep sentences short and to the point. Another important aspect is to give the products unique product description. Again, people don’t read, they only scan information, so help customers scan information and digest whether or not they want to purchase.
Make Your Customers Feel Secure
Give Customers More Than They Bargained for.
So we now have people on your site, they can easily find what they are looking for, and feel sure of what they are getting, why not sell them even more? Let’s take it to the next level. It may be easier than you think. Simply making recommendations, accessories for what they are already buying, and people who liked this product X also like product Y, most popular products, buy one get one free / half off options. Give people free shipping if they spend over a certain amount of money. Let them know everything that you offer and what might be a nice little addition.
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