In the eCommerce space, sales mean everything. You can do everything right to drive traffic to your website through advertising, SEO efforts, or posting a funny cat video on social media that leads people to your site. None of that traffic matters if no one is buying your products.
Sales mean everything for eCommerce sites
This is where conversion rates come in. Converting general traffic into consumers is of the utmost importance. Tracking how many site visitors make a transaction and testing out changes to your website will help you build a store that becomes a money-making machine.
This guide provides you with the ten best tips that you can use to improve your online store’s conversion rate, which will lead to more money in your pockets. Let’s dive in.
Table of Contents:
- What is eCommerce Conversion Rate?
- How Do You Find Your Site’s Conversion Rate?
- What Is The Average Conversion Rate For eCommerce?
- What is a Good Conversion Rate?
- Tools For eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization
- 10 Tips To Increase Your Conversion Rate
- Final Notes
What is eCommerce Conversion Rate?
eCommerce conversion rate is the percentage of visitors to your website who have made a purchase from your online store within a set period of time. In short, it is the percentage of visitors that turn into a customer.
Here is a quick example: If your online store receives 10,000 visitors and 100 conversions over the same amount of time, that means your store’s conversion rate is 1%.
A conversion occurs when you get a visitor to take action on your site, which means conversions can be more than just sales.
An eCommerce conversion can be:
- A sale of a product
- Signups for newsletters or memberships
- Adding products to the cart or wishlist
- Social media shares from your site
Now that you know what eCommerce conversion rate means, let’s discuss how to find your shop’s rate. Tracking this information can help you find where you could improve your store to lead more site visitors to become consumers.
How Do You Find Your Site’s Conversion Rate?
To find your conversion rate manually, divide the number of conversions by the total number of visitors to your site during the same time.
You can also set up goals within Google Analytics to track your conversion rate.
- If you are using a Universal Analytics property, you can use this guide.
- If you are using a GA4 property, you can use this guide.
Once you have your goals set up, you can find the conversion rate for the specific action within Google Analytics and begin tracking your rate over time. Then, when you get a good conversion rate for your site, you can jump up from your desk and scream, “Booyah!” Or sit back and watch your revenue increase over time. The choice is yours.
What Is The Average Conversion Rate For eCommerce?
So, now that you’ve figured out your current conversion rate using the great information from the previous section, I bet you are asking yourself, “How does my conversion rate compare to other eCommerce conversion rates?”
The average conversion rate for eCommerce sites around the world was 2.86% in 2020. The average conversion rate for the U.S. was 2.63% during that same period.(1)
When discussing eCommerce data, I like to remind owners that no two stores are the same. You could use the average conversion percentage across all eCommerce sites as a general guide for what to aim for, but it would also benefit you to focus on your industry’s specific rate.
According to Growcode, the average conversion rate ranges from 0.99% to 3.79% for the most popular industries in the eCommerce industry.
This graph, based on data from IRP Commerce, shows recent conversion rates across a range of markets. Average conversion by industry: Sports and Recreation: 1.75%; Arts and Crafts: 3.79%; Baby and Child: 0.99%; Cars and Motorcycling: 1.55%; Electrical and Commercial Equipment: 2.23%; Fashion Clothing and Accessories: 2.44%; Food and Drink: 2.37%; Health and Wellbeing: 3.62%; Home Accessories and Giftware: 2.16%; Kitchen and Home Appliances: 2.48%; Pet Care: 3.28%; (2)
What is a Good Conversion Rate?
That is a great question, and the answer is: it varies. Some industries strive for conversion rates in the 30% range while others are pleased with 2%.
The key is to locate your industry’s average rate and benchmark your performance against it. Start by researching what your industry average is for conversion rates via a quick Google search. This will help you to understand what range you should set your target rate within. To have a good conversion rate, you want to set your target above the industry average, aiming for the upper 25 percent. Being par for the course is not considered good for an eCommerce conversion rate.
If you find that your site’s conversion rate is at or below the industry average, don’t fret. The ten tips in this article can help you improve your rate and land more sales.
Tools For eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization
Before we go any further, I wanted to give you a list of tools to help you with your Conversion Rate Optimization. There are several programs and websites that you can use to help you locate some of your current conversion pain points. The following analysis tools should be on your radar while working on conversion rate optimization.
Compared to the regular version of Google Analytics, the 360 Suite gives you greater details for you to track every step of your conversion process through event measurements, such as clicks on your CTA buttons.
When using the 360 suite, you are no longer limited to tracking conversions based on URLs. You can measure the difference between CTA button clicks and completed conversions. Your data is also updated every 10 minutes instead of every 24 hours with regular Google Analytics. Further, you can create custom funnels to analyze your customer’s journeys more accurately.
hotjar is a fast and visual way to understand your users more and make any changes necessary based on what is important to the user. This web-based software provides instant visual feedback, and you can see how people are using your site to make changes accordingly. There is a big difference between how you expect people to use your website and how they actually use it based on their needs. To help you understand these differences, hotjar uses heat maps to show you what your customers want, care about, and do on your site based on their visit patterns.
Shoppimon is a secret shopper tool for eCommerce conversion optimization that monitors, tests, and analyzes issues relating to your eCommerce website that can hinder the user experience and negatively impact your conversions.
These issues can include but are not limited to responsiveness, visuals not loading, broken links, server issues, site crashes, payment gateway issues, and much more.
VWO is a platform for eCommerce conversion optimization that provides solutions for visitors to research, design optimization roadmap, run A/B testing and experimentation with their eCommerce platform.
10 Tips To Increase Your Conversion Rate
1. Give Customers Confidence In Your Site
“Look good, feel good, do good.”
That is my personal motto that I have used for over a decade when approaching big presentations. I usually get dressed up for presentations and have a hearty breakfast, so I tell myself that I look good and I feel good; therefore, I will do good!
You can also use this motto for your website. If your eCommerce site looks good and feels good to the customer, then it will do good things for your business.
How to make sure your website looks good:
- Use a small number of fonts that are easy to read.
- High-quality images are a must.
- Your website should load quickly.
- Use colors that are easy to read and ADA compliant.
- Clean is usually better than clutter.
When a website looks mediocre or has a poor user experience, the customer is not likely to stick around, which is why many eCommerce websites struggle with their conversion rate.
This leads me to my next tip.
2. Product Authenticity Helps Build Customer Loyalty
Returning visitors are far more likely to purchase your product. You need to build trust with your customers when they come to your website to encourage them to view your product or service.
Social media is a great way to boost your eCommerce presence, but it can also be incredibly harmful. If your products or services you deliver to the consumer are not the same as what you have listed on your website, you will lose trust and brand loyalty.
As an eCommerce business, it becomes your responsibility to ensure that authentic products are delivered to the customers. Authenticity will build your eCommerce reliability and trustworthiness, a significant aspect that consumers consider while shopping online.
If previous consumers are happy with what they received, they are likely to tell others via word-of-mouth or social media.
Helpful Hint: You can use their posts to showcase your product on your website.
Letting others provide authentic positive feedback is a sure way to increase your conversion rate.
3. Use descriptive Call-To-Actions (CTAs)
“Click Here” does not give a customer any reason why they should follow your call to action.
Why should I click there? What purpose is there to click there? What happens when I click there?
Your call to action should be informative and conversational. You should read the call to action without any other context and know what will happen when you click the button.
Take the following CTAs for example:
- “Check Out Our Fall Collection”
- “Enjoy Our Monthly Newsletter”
- “Let’s Go To Checkout”
Without any other information, you can understand where each of these CTAs will take you. They also sound like a friend that is talking with you instead of a robot spitting out commands. Users want to feel like they are being guided on a journey and not simply told what to do.
If you clicked on the link at the beginning of this tip, I just have to ask, why did you click there? Feel free to answer that question in the comments below.
4. Make it simple to check out
Simplicity can make a big difference for eCommerce sites. If you want visitors to purchase your products, you need to have a simple and obvious check-out process.
Here are a few things to consider when simplifying your check out process:
- Remove surveys from the checkout flow. Surveys are a great way to gain insight from your visitors, but it derails them from making a purchase. Save surveys for the thank you email or the purchase confirmation page.
- Make sure you can always view your cart from anywhere on your website.
- Remove as many clicks as possible from your checkout process. The fewer clicks it takes to purchase an item, the more likely a customer will finish the purchase.
5. Run A/B Tests often
A/B testing (also known as split testing) is a method of comparing two different versions of a webpage against each other to determine which one performs better. This allows you to continuously test different versions of your website to see which drives more visitors to your chosen destination.
Major online retailers are constantly running A/B tests on their websites, whether you realize it or not. These tests can be significant design configurations like changing the homepage structure (which would be very noticeable). It can be a minor change like switching the color of the checkout icon from white to light grey.
There are several tools that you can use to manage A/B testing and view the results. Before diving into A/B testing, you may want to learn more about when you should run an A/B test and how to set up an A/B test.
6. Free Shipping is mandatory in present-day eCommerce
Gone are the days of including a fee for shipping. You will see cart abandonment decrease sharply by having free shipping as an option (whether for all purchases or limited to purchases above a specific value). eCommerce sites that still have consumers paying for shipping see higher numbers of cart abandonment because it raises the total price higher than they were expecting.
Look for ways to include the price of shipping in your product pricing. You can also offer deals for visitors to obtain free shipping by signing up for your newsletter or sharing your site on social media, etc.
7. Be Transparent, Not Scammy
The fastest way to lose a potential consumer is to make them feel uneasy on your site. Creating an air of transparency where they feel comfortable can help increase your conversion rate.
Here are a few ways to be transparent with the consumer:
- Include important shipping information on the product page. If there is a long lead time, tell the consumer why the lead time is that long.
- Use product images that depict the actual product you are selling.
- Include a thorough description of the product on the product page.
- Include an “About Us” page on your website that lets visitors know your business on a more personal level. You do not need to include personal information, but understanding how the company got started and why it is in business helps consumers feel more comfortable.
- Offering deals or price reductions on products can be useful, but avoid reducing every price on your website. This makes the consumer feel like your product is sub-par.
8. Payment Security Is A Top Priority
Have you ever gone to checkout on a website and not feel secure in the process they used? Did you provide your credit card information or leave the site?
Most consumers will leave a cart full if they don’t feel safe providing their banking information.
9. Offer Incentives to Increase Time on Your Site
Consumers always appreciate a good deal and can be persuaded to stay on your site if they receive one. Providing a coupon or a special offer to your visitors has been proven to influence their purchase intention. Including seasonal discounts or one-time deals encourages the consumer to continue browsing your site. The longer a visitor remains on your site, the more likely they are to purchase an item.
You can also create contests that require user participation in buying a minimum amount of products to stand a chance of winning a unique product.
10. Optimize for Organic Traffic from Keywords with High User Intent
Not all traffic to your site is equal. Optimizing your search results to target keywords that have shown a high intent to purchase your product will increase your conversion rate.
Targeting specific traffic to your site ensures that you have visitors that want to see your products. If they want to see your product or service, then they are likely to purchase them.
If you are looking to optimize your eCommerce website for search engines, here are some guides you can follow:
- SEO guide for BigCommerce: https://support.bigcommerce.com/s/article/Getting-Started-with-SEO
- SEO guide for Magento: https://www.contentkingapp.com/academy/magento-seo/
- SEO guide for WooCommerce: https://www.wpbeginner.com/beginners-guide/ultimate-woocommerce-seo-guide/
- SEO guide for Shopify: https://moz.com/blog/shopify-seo
After using these ten tips and running numerous tests on your site, you should begin to see your eCommerce conversion rate increase and purchases start flooding in. Large corporations are constantly testing out changes to their site to improve their rates continuously. This is a telling sign that it takes time and effort to improve your website’s conversions, even by a little bit.
At Go Fish Digital, we offer Conversion Rate Optimization as a service to our clients who want to increase conversion rates. If you would like to have a good conversion rate, you can contact us to learn more about how we can help.