So, you’ve got an online store. In this digital age, it’s essential to sell online, otherwise, your store may as well not even exist. Since an online presence is so important, it’s vital to ensure your online store is user-friendly, otherwise, potential customers may exit right out of your site and never look back. We’ve got some tips to improve your online store, to make sure shoppers have a positive experience with your store and want to return for more.
Make it look good
Perhaps the biggest selling point of your online store is the appearance. Science tells us that if a site doesn’t look good, customers will leave it. Most eCommerce platforms have pre-designed themes that do most of the work for you, or you can hire a web designer to create a beautiful page for you, or you can even teach yourself to do it if you have an eye for design. Here’s a couple of things to improve the look of your store:
- Keep it simple and neat.
- Keep a consistent, neutral color palette. Softer colors are easier on the eyes, and consistency will make it seem more coherent and clean.
- Use high-resolution images. Nothing makes your site look worse than a low quality, grainy picture.
- Use strong, straightforward fonts to make sure everyone can easily read your text.
- Keep the menu and navigation simple. If your menu is cluttered with a ton of different categories, it will stress your shoppers out.
Have great customer support
One of the most important steps to improve your online store is customer support. Customers want to feel appreciated, and with the right support, customers will still have a positive experience and return to your online store even if something goes wrong. Get back to customer complaints as soon as possible, it might even be a good idea to have a service representative online at all times for immediate support. The quicker you get back to your customers, and the more you offer them in return for their troubles, the happier they’ll be and the more likely they’ll be to leave a good review.
Make it easy to purchase
Having a beautiful site and great customer service is sure to make customers want to purchase from you. But just as importantly, you want their journey to the end of the checkout to be as simple and painless as possible.
- Categorized your products intuitively so customers find products with ease.
- Have a simple checkout. The checkout should have as few forms as possible–if there’s too much to fill out or too many steps, shoppers may decide not to bother.
- Free Shipping and a great return policy will give customers more incentive to purchase. If customers are unable to return products, they will be more hesitant to risk the purchase.
- A small discount is always a great way to make shoppers want to purchase from your online store. Especially if you create a sense of urgency by announcing the sale ends very soon, shoppers won’t want to miss out on the deal.
Make your store trustworthy
To improve your online store, you need shoppers to trust you. Customers are more likely to purchase from a site they feel is legitimate and secure. They want to feel safe!
- Display reviews. Either site reviews or product reviews will make your site look more trustworthy. Ask customers to leave you a review after every purchase, or in a follow-up e-mail after the fact. Many may not unless they have a negative experience, so to create more incentive, offering some kind of discount in return for leaving a review.
- Use popular payment methods. When shoppers see trusted payment methods like PayPal or Stripe, they’re more likely to trust your site.
- Partner up with other brands. If shoppers see that you have business partners, even if they’re not instantly recognizable, it makes your business seem more legitimate.
- Have a social media presence. Whatever social media suits your company best, whether it’s Instagram. Twitter, Youtube, or anything else, having an active presence where your business interacts with others will earn you major points. This also makes it easier for your customers to communicate with you, which is a bonus.
Expand your reach
You want your site to reach as many people as possible. There are multiple ways to do this.
- Search Engine Optimization. If you have an online store, you’re probably already using SEO to get more traffic on your site. Having effective keywords is essential to be discovered organically on search engines, so don’t overlook it! Do your research to find what keywords are popular and relevant to your shop.
- Make sure your site is mobile friendly. More and more people are shopping on their smartphones, and if your site isn’t accessible or if it looks terrible on mobile, shoppers will leave. There are tools that help you with this, for example, if you’re using WordPress, design tools like Elementor can display what your page looks like on mobile. If you want to keep it simple, just test it out by visiting your online store on your own phone. If its hard to use, you’re missing out on a lot of potential shoppers!
- Translate your site. If you want a more international reach, it may be a good idea to translate your site into other languages so it’s not just accessible to English-speakers. Create the second language pages separately from the English pages, and use keywords in that language to reach your desired audience.