In nowadays, it is possible to set up an eCommerce website in just a matter of minutes and start to make profit right away. However, as eCommerce industry being fast developing at a dizzying pace, many eCommerce owners are left behind the game with some mistakes that they may not recognize. Here I list some major eCommerce mistakes that surely will have negative impact on your sales.
This is not just a book. It’s a license to print money.
A bad eCommerce website that drives consumers away
A troublesome navigation could drive customers crazy in an eCommerce site. Mobile friendly is also a MUST for eStores to prosper. It is a big “No” when the payment options are limited and foreign to most customers. To shorten the process from searching to checking-out with less clicks is also highly recommended. How about improve the descriptions of products that are not precise or boring to read, and the images that are low-quality or difficult to load..all these drawbacks of a website will definitely hinder its growth into a major eCommerce player.
Excessive spending on customer acquisition
It is not cheap to run a successful eCommerce site, among all the necessary expenses, customer acquisition is one of the most costly expenses. How to avoid excessive spending on customer acquisition and still effectively target the right group of audience? The answer is to collect the right customers’ information. To target the specific small group of customers with less spending, including targeting the existing customers is the cost-effective route to follow.
Combat the lower margin
Pricing strategy is crucial for an eCommerce to be successful. After all, customers can find all different prices for a same product in a matter of a few clicks. Offer incentives can attract those budget-minded customers, providing deals, contests, as well as giveaways can help quickly build your customer database and expand your brand’s awareness.
Lower prices mean lower margins though. So margins is always a challenge for eCommerce owners. How low can you go so that you can gain more sales and still be profitable? Walk this line carefully!
Another way to improve margins is to focus on operational efficiency. These may include to reduce additional overhead costs such as for shipping and handling returns. To negotiate with vendors for better prices is also a solution to consider.
Price is important, but it’s not the only factor that determines where a consumer buys. It is the value proposition of the eCommerce that attracts loyal customers to have repeating purchases. So eCommerce owners need to sincerely demonstrate their enhanced value of shopping experience on their sites.
Combat broken links
It is disappointing to reach a dead end through a broken link. Sometimes when a popular product is sold-out, customers will see a 404 page or a sold-out page. The better solution to these problems is to use software such as broken-link-checker, or Curalate, to identify these broken or dead links. Then, you should redirect customers to a relevant product page, or an email capture page to notify them when the searched product is in stock again.
eCommerce marketing not effective
Analytics data plays an important role in just about every aspect of an eCommerce website. What products to sell, what demographics to target, where and how to advertise…The list could go on and on… All these decisions are made by the influence of the “big-data” collected. Consumers, when they shop on sites, leave behind an ever-growing behavioral traces for the savvy marketers to analyze, and these data are what they base on to determine a lot of functions and features of their eCommerce websites. For example, dynamic pricing vs. VIP pricing for a small group of loyal customers.
To fully optimize an eCommerce site and maximize profits, the owners need to learn to fully understand the on-site analytics as well as the data that it captures through social media, search engines and various marketing channels.
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Lose Customers Trust
One of the biggest eCommerce pet peeves is the hidden costs at the end of a check-out. If you ask for a delivery charges, spell it clearly upfront. Great quality of the products plus secure payment gateways are foundation for trust-worthy shopping on your site, but these are not enough, a good eCommerce site should clearly state the return policies if there are any, the physical address and contact information. Many eCommerce websites now require forced registration before checking out, this should be offered as an option instead of an condition for shopping.
Troublesome checkout procedure
We’ve already mentioned no-no to forced registrations at the checkout page. Also important to know is that, the beauty of an e-commerce checkout page is not measured by how good it is at making upsells, but by how easy and smooth a customer can place an order. In order to reduce the cart abandonment rate, eCommerce sites need to make their checkout pages simple and efficient. A customer should only need to put in a few very basic information to simply finish the purchase, including the name, address, payment option and delivery option, and that’s it. No more upsells before the deal is sealed.
Too many pop-ups
Pop-up ads has been around on the web for ages, it is one of the biggest offenders on the list for customers. I believe most of customers will feel the same disruptions as I do by those irrelevant pop-up windows, no matter it’s an email box or a new promotion, it just annoys you during browsing experience. It is especially counter-intuitive on a eCommerce site to interrupt the purchasing process that a customer is engaged in. So stop pop-ups, put your necessary ads, promotions or email subscriptions somewhere on the webpage and let customers focus on buying experience.
There must be more eCommerce mistakes you have encountered during your online shopping experience, please comment your thoughts below.
**Disclosure of Material Connection:
Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally or believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials.”