When you improve the conversion rate on your site, you raise the percentage of visitors to your site who become customers, purchasing your product or subscribing to your service. Raising conversion rates is, or should be, the goal of every ecommerce marketer or business owner.
The average conversion rate for ecommerce and subscription based sites is widely debated. Most say that it falls anywhere between 2% and 8%. Not very high, is it? Even the sites with the most targeted traffic can claim only 15% to 20%. And those numbers are great! So how do you go about turning your little .5% into a number with double digits?
You can try a hundred different gimmicks touted by marketing gurus and business experts to drive traffic to your site, but if you don’t invest in some serious web analytics, you’ll never know what’s working and what isn’t. So the first step to improving your conversion rate is to use web analytics to track your traffic. How many visit your site daily? How many leave immediately? Where did these visitors come from? How many are return visitors? With web analytics, you can track all of this information and upgrade your site, making changes in advertising and content to improve your rate of conversion.
Tracking information isn’t a one time thing. Consistently measuring the effectiveness of your site is essential to keeping up with changes in the marketplace and consumer interest.
For example, one thing you can consistently do to improve your conversion rate is to include your business contact information and a link for emailed questions on every page of your site. This way, your customers don’t have to waste time surfing through your site when they have a question. They can ask it immediately, before they forget or get bored looking and move onto the next site.
Another way to improve your conversion rate is to make sure that your site is easy to navigate. Are there any pages that have a much lower visitor count than others on your site? Is it because the links that are bringing them there are inappropriately placed? Is the content as compelling as it could be? Or is it that your visitors simply can’t find it very easily?
Improving your conversion rate may be as simple as making sure that your site is accessible to everyone, even those who don’t reach your site through Windows XP or an Internet Explorer browser. Upgrading your technology so that it works for anyone who would like to visit could help your conversion rate immensely.
Those who work in a popular field or industry, providing a service or industry that is offered by many businesses, will also have a problem with their conversion rate. Why should customers choose you over your competition? Just like in the world of brick and mortar shops, this too applies to online ecommerce. You have to make yourself stand out. How is what you offer different from everyone else? What is your niche in the industry? Offering lower prices isn’t enough. There must be something special that you have that no one else does. This will not only bring new visitors to your site but help convert the ones you have into customers.
Next, what do your customers need (besides your product or service)? The knowledge to make the right decisions about their purchase. If you offer them that knowledge in the form of informative articles and content on your site, then you become a valued resource as well as an e-tailer. Bookmarking your site for the information you have to offer is one way to make a one time visitor into a next time customer and therefore make your conversion rate percentage rise.