In order to generate online sales, it is important to have a good e-commerce site. This is not just about a simple sales platform. This must be carefully thought out and thought through in order to optimise the sales process. Here are some tips to apply when creating your e-commerce.
1. Take care of the design as much as the brand image
Your brand image is precious. You spent time shaping it. You can be proud of it so show it off! As a merchant would take care of his shop window and his shop to attract all eyes, you too, devote the energy, budget and time necessary to create a superb e-commerce site design. This is the crucial step in selling, so it is essential to show your values and image through the design of your online store. Making a good webdesign can improve the customer experience and therefore increase the conversion rate as well as increase customer loyalty.
2. Turning a search into a purchase act
In order to convince the consumer to buy, it is necessary to think about the whole process behind it. It is therefore important to think in terms of structure, call to action, and other tools that will promote buying. You can have a “shopping cart” to trigger the act, recommend other products associated with the product consulted, or give the option to “liker” the product for example.
3. Create unique and quality product sheets
An effective product sheet of your merchant site is first and foremost the one that attracts the visitor’s attention. But for it to be perfect, it must also be unique and relevant to reference your product on search engines, here are some tips:
- Illustrate with beautiful photos. If photography is unavoidable, it is important that it is rewarding and professional. For that, pay attention to lighting, resolution (beware of blurred or pixelized images), environment, routing, etc..
- Write a complete, clear, neat and unique description. The product sheets that are almost empty make visitors flee. So take the time to create rich and structured content with benefits, features, etc. Don’t neglect spelling and grammar, these clumsiness will make you lose credibility.
- Choose words that your target understands. The simpler the sentences, the more impact they will have. The vocabulary you will use must match that of your potential client and his knowledge. Avoid overly technical language and prefer to highlight the product’s strengths.
4. Enhance certain products
In order to promote a particular product, you can write an article selling its virtues, for example, or run a contest to win this product: participants who have not won will want to buy it later. You can also set up discounts on certain items or services.
5. An impeccable presentation
Put all the chances on your side to seduce the visitor. The presentation that you propose must literally plunge the surfer into the universe of your product so that he discovers all its aspects and all its assets. In addition to a well refined description in which you could put in bold the strong points, for example. You can also enrich it with a small video, a photo gallery or a 360° view of the product. Use all your creativity!
6. A customizable search
There is nothing more annoying as a consumer than not easily finding the product you are looking for. This is why it is important to adapt your e-commerce platform to all possible searches. For example, by adding selection criteria during the search, you can direct the consumer towards what he needs and thus satisfy his request more easily. It is simply a matter here, for example, of adding a size selection option for shoes, colors,…
7. Collect data to know your customers
The more you know about your customers, the better you will be able to satisfy them. Satisfying customers also means anticipating their needs based on what we know about them: their profile, tastes, habits, the type of products that interest them, etc. Thanks to this valuable information, you will have all the cards in hand to keep them, present them with the offer that will meet their needs, in short, optimize your loyalty strategy.
8. Caring for loyal customers
You have already managed to conquer and retain this client, and that is now the next step.
- First, don’t hesitate to spoil him. This is quite classic, but customers generally appreciate the small privileges: loyalty card, discount, gift, private sale, etc..
- Then, share your news with him and consult his opinion. To contribute to the development or improvement of his favorite online store services, the Internet user is often up for it and feels valued by this gesture. For that, there is the email of the customer service, the survey, the quizz, etc..
- Finally, and this is essential. Show him that he counts for you with a service that meets his expectations, remarks taken into account, a quick response to requests.
The power of word of mouth in the digital age is extraordinary. If your loyal customers are pampered, you will earn more from them.
9. Pre-registration of the basket
For the moment not very widespread on the French-speaking online shops, this functionality deserves however all your attention.
What does it consist of? During his visit and when the user accesses his cart, he will have a button that will allow him to save the cart and send his current selection, securely to his email address.
What’s the point? If he hasn’t had time to validate the order or if he has to pick it up on another device, just click in the email, and the user finds everything.
Pre-registering the cart is both an advantage for the customer and a bonus for you, since even without confirmation of purchase, you already have his email address! You are then free to practice emailing, email marketing being a good strategy to increase your transformation rate.
10. Offering the best service
Above all, it means offering a complete service and an intuitive purchasing process. Internet users are the kings of the comparators and nothing escapes them: ultra fast and free delivery, free return, notices, notes, etc. Know that the slightest gap is an additional point for your competitors.
11. Optimizing the home page
In order for your online shop to have an impact, its shop window, i.e. the home page, must be particularly refined. From the very first seconds, the visitor is supposed to understand your specialty, your particularities and the spirit of your e-shop.
- Make it attractive and clear.
- By displaying a catchy sentence that highlights your best asset and arouses interest, a slogan for example.
- Too much content can confuse the user. Excess text, imposing or useless animations are banned.
- Highlighting a selection of items with a carousel, for example, is always highly appreciated: news, best sellers, promotions, etc.
- Remember to integrate the essential elements in a clear way :
- A search bar
- The main menu
- The basket
- Be sure to :
- Do not display your entire catalog. So be reasonable on the length of the home page (maximum 3 times the height of the screen).
- Use your graphic charter to highlight the essential parts of the home page and the “pluses” of your online store.
12. Reassure the client
Internet users are always wary of fraud sites. In order for them to trust you, be sincere
- A credible e-commerce site is first and foremost professionals who do not hide. You have the choice to present your company: the section “About us” or “Who are we? Then, it is important that you are reachable: contact form, phone number, e-mail address, etc..
- Be transparent in your pricing on shipping costs, taxes, options and other additional charges, etc. Similarly, clearly indicate the guarantees you offer and the terms of product return.
- You can opt for one or more reliability certifications to display them in order to reassure the most reluctant. Among the best known, there are Fia-net, Webcert (Afaq /Afnor) or Google Trusted Stores, the latter is free.
13. Optimize SEO
From an SEO (natural referencing) point of view, an essential discipline of web marketing, your goal is simple: to be indexed by search engines and attract audience. To achieve this, you must act on URLs, the choice and integration of keywords, create links, use HTML tags and of course, add quality content. You will have understood it, this part must not be neglected, it is an essential investment if you want your e-commerce site to be successful.
Also, think about the benefits of paid SEO with Google Adwords. It’s an interesting tool, part of most marketing strategies. Real digital marketing tool (emarketing), it will allow you to acquire more traffic and/or more prospects on your e-commerce site.
14. Optimize the purchasing tunnel
The tunnel of purchase, it is the way traveled by the Net surfer since the basket until the confirmation of the payment. These steps are crucial. Although it is close to the goal (yours, at least), the user risks at any time to give up the purchase if he meets an obstacle. By spending a little time optimizing the shopping tunnel, you will considerably reduce the shopping cart abandonment rate.
- Create a compact and clear basket
- Give your customer points of reference by opting for a tunnel organised in several stages. Here is a classic but effective model: your cart > your identity > your delivery information > payment > order confirmation.
- At each step, recall the summary of the order (total amount, items, quantity, etc.).
- Offer several delivery options: pickup points, express, in-store
- Diversify the accepted means of payment: card, PayPal, check…
15. Communicate well online
Being present, in the strict sense of the term, on social networks or simply publishing your news is not enough to attract traffic to your e-commerce site and create interest in your products. Your Facebook, Google+, Twitter account and other pages need to live. And, depending on the size of your business or your budget, hiring a community manager could be a solution.
Create interaction with your fans and followers, answer their questions, consult their opinions, post or share articles or tips several times a week that they might be interested in and likely to comment on.
Newsletters and RSS feeds are also serious avenues to explore.
16. Design product sheets in responsive design
These are not just rumours, more and more users are logging in from their smartphones or tablets to shop online. You therefore have every interest in creating product sheets whose design adapts to these screen formats. This is important for the comfort of Internet users, but also for SEO. Indeed, search engines like Google favour sites that are responsive, that are compatible with any type of connected devices.
17. Indicate product availability
A disappointed customer is one who will leave your site and never return. One of the most effective ways is to offer an item that is not available. To avoid this fatal error, think of displaying in an obvious way the availability or better, the stock level of your products. Like waiting or delivery times, this information can affect a visitor’s decision making. When he sees that there are only 2 or 3 items left in stock, he will hurry to add it to the basket. And it’s perfectly natural!
18. Use cross-selling and up-selling
A little definition to start.
- The cross-selling consists in suggesting to the surfer an article which could complete his current purchase.
- Up-selling is a move upmarket. You offer him the same type of product, but better, and therefore more expensive.
In cross-selling, you recommend a set of spatulas in addition to a conventional non-stick frying pan, and in up-selling, you encourage them to opt directly for a ceramic frying pan. The interest of these two techniques is to increase the value of its basket. Trying the customer by showing him other possibilities and the richness of the catalogue, this can only be beneficial.
19. Comply with the mandatory information
Every e-merchant is required to indicate certain information on a product sheet or to give access to it, namely :
- The General Terms and Conditions or General Conditions of Sale previously validated by a legal department.
- Characteristics: weight, dimensions, colours, materials, capacities, etc.
- Any manuals or PDF documentation from the manufacturer
20. Betting on video
Ready-to-wear, connected objects, food products, no category escapes it. It is the trick in vogue in the world of e-commerce, and it is it thanks to its effectiveness. With a short video clip about the presentation, you break the virtual side and bring your product to life. The Internet user will feel almost like in a physical store. In any case, the video, despite its cost, makes the difference!