Conversion Rate Optimization for eCommerce Websites

cro on an ecommerce desktop website

eCommerce sites live and die by conversions. Whether that’s a sale or a freebie download, a conversion can make or break your eCommerce marketing efforts. Hopefully, you’ve been tracking and obsessing over your eCommerce conversion rate for months. 

But, despite their best efforts, many eCommerce sites just aren’t seeing the lift in conversions they need to get profitable. 

Conversion rate optimization, or CRO, is the science of boosting your conversions. While many companies are focusing on SEO and other aspects of digital marketing, they often overlook CRO. When you focus on CRO, though, you can bring more people to your site, get them to actually purchase your products, and return for repeat business. 

But first, you need to know your conversion rate. Make sure you’ve set up Goals and conversion tracking in Google Analytics (or your analytics platform of choice). This helps you collect the essential data you need to calculate your conversion rate. 

Once you know your conversion rate, start setting goals. Ideally, you want a 2% conversion rate on an eCommerce site. Anything below 2% means you’ve got work to do; anything above 2% is a bonus to your bottom line. 

The CRO Pro’s 5 Tips To Boosting Conversions

You know you want to boost conversion optimization for your eCommerce website, but how do you make it happen? Follow these 5 CRO tips to revamp your conversion rate. 

  • Always offer free shipping

If you have a lot of users adding items to their shopping cart, but very few of them pull the trigger on a purchase, you could have a shopping cart problem. For one, are you offering free shipping? 

61% of shoppers abandon their carts once they realize they have to pay for shipping. Your shoppers are calculating their total purchase based on the cost of goods; they aren’t thinking about shipping. If you suddenly increase the price by $10 for shipping, it’s a turn-off. 

Instead, build shipping costs into your pricing. At the end of the day, it costs the consumer the same amount of money, but it pulls more people through to purchase. If you can’t adjust pricing for free shipping, offer free shipping on orders over a certain value. 

  • Create scarcity

Scarcity is a great way to boost conversions. Online shoppers are distracted by so many things; if they don’t feel a sense of urgency to buy your product, they’ll likely meander away from their shopping cart. 

But if you add scarcity to the mix, things change. Humans fear losing something they want. Countdown clocks, 24-hour deals, time-sensitive coupons, and limited quantities drive up the scarcity and persuade people to check out. 

If you’re having a hard time with cart abandonment, make the transaction feel urgent to your shoppers. 

  • Simplify checkout

Customers love browsing and choosing products. But checking out? Not so much. The more effort customers have to expend checking out, the less likely it is that they’re going to convert. 

Use CRO to overhaul your checkout experience. Consider changes like:

    • A progress bar: 20% of shoppers will leave their basket if the checkout process is too tedious. Shoppers are impatient. A progress bar shows how quickly they can expect to get through checking out. It manages expectations and encourages them to stick with it. 
    • Guest checkout: 14% of customers leave a site that requires a login. Always enable guest checkout. 
    • Minimal fields: You want a lot of data on your customers, but they’re less than thrilled to fill out 30+ fields to buy something. Distill this to just the essentials, even at the expense of your customer data. 
    • Payment integrations: Try a PayPal, Amazon, or Venmo integration that lets customers buy with a few taps. The easier it is to buy, the more they’ll convert. 
  • Share reviews and testimonials

Online shoppers are very wary. If they don’t trust you, they won’t convert. You need to earn their trust quickly, which is no easy feat. But you can use easy CRO upgrades, like reviews and testimonials, to boost conversions. 

84% of customers trust reviews just as much as recommendations from friends and family. Reviews and testimonials offer an unbiased opinion about the quality of your product. In other words, it’s proof that your company is trustworthy and that the product works. 

Instead of talking about how great your products are, let your customers do the talking on your behalf. This will pull more leads through to conversion and help you build trust quickly. Here are some tips on encouraging customers to leave reviews. 

  • Embrace multimedia content

Users will drop off if they don’t understand a product. It’s your job as an eCommerce seller to showcase exactly how a product will work in your customers’ lives. But because your customers can’t pick up and hold your product before buying, you have to communicate that in a highly visual, clear way. 

The best way to do this is with multimedia content. Make sure all of the images on your product listing pages are clear, crisp, and high quality. Don’t just upload one photo—that’s not enough. Include shots that show:

  • The size of the product. 
  • The product in use in everyday life. 
  • The product by itself, from multiple angles. 
  • Closeups of the product.

After optimizing your images, add video to your site. This is especially important if you struggle with consumer education. Instead of explaining in 1,000 words how your product works, share a 15-second video. This explains faster than text and builds immediate understanding, which is essential for conversions. Add demo or explainer videos to your home page, product pages, and anywhere else they’ll deepen consumer understanding. 

The bottom line

CRO is the science of improving the conversion rate for your eCommerce website. Over time, this makes your site more effective at delivering on user expectations. That translates into real-world results like higher traffic, a bigger brand, and more sales. Remember, put the customer first: address their pain points to optimize your site. Treat CRO like an experiment, using quantitative data to continue growing. 

The thing is, CRO isn’t a one-time process. Like your other marketing efforts, it’s ongoing. But most businesses don’t have the resources to do CRO regularly. Don’t try to DIY—outsource your CRO to a trusted professional. Get in touch with Logical Media Group now to brainstorm a better eCommerce website.