What’s the quickest way to grow an online store?
I bet your first answer is this – increase web traffic.
After all, the more visitors you attract, the more conversions you get, right?
But is it really the best way?
Well, as it turns out, no. You can dramatically increase your online sales without having to attract a single new visitor to the site.
How? By making your store more usable.
And in this post, I’ll show you 5 tricks that will help you get more sales from the traffic you already have.
Intrigued? Then let’s do it.
#1. Shorten and Simplify Your Funnel
This is, by far, the simplest way to increase website conversions.
To get more people to go through your funnel, you just need to eliminate any unnecessary steps.
As Lars Lofgren from Kissmetrics states:
“The only way to move 100% of your visitors to the next step is to get rid of the step.”
For example, if you require customers to register an account before buying, offer an option to checkout as a guest.
After all, 37.4% of abandonment occurs at the checkout login or registration.
And over 25% of customers openly admit to abandoning purchases if they have to register an account.
But mandatory registration isn’t the only roadblock your customers encounter.
Your checkout form might also be too long making users abandon impulse purchases, for example. Why, because by making them fill a too long form, you’re giving your customers time to stop, and think about what they’re doing.
Just take a look at what effect adding additional fields to the form has on conversions (via Dan Zanzarella)
Or you might be displaying too many calls to action too. And as a result, cause your visitors to abandon the purchase due to too much choice.
So, as the first step in improving conversions, ruthlessly eliminate everything but the most crucial elements in your funnel.
#2. Identify Bottlenecks in Your Funnel
Every sales funnel contains steps that not only aren’t necessary but actually prevent people from buying.
Mandatory registration is one of them.
Forcing visitors to read your T&Cs before proceeding further is another.
Requiring customers to surrender personal information (like asking for location on the product page) too early in the process could also deter many from completing the purchase.
So, analyze your sales funnel for potential bottlenecks. Go through each step of your checkout in Google Analytics to see where people drop off. Interview your customers about how they’d like those steps to work. Use exit popups to run surveys on those pages to understand WHY your visitors are dropping off there.
And then, find ways to improve them.
#3. Improve Your Value Proposition
Peep Laja from ConversionXL makes it clear when speaking about conversions (note, the emphasis is mine):
“The potential of your conversion rate is determined by the value proposition, making it the most important conversion factor.”
And this pretty much means that even a simple tweak to your value proposition could result in an immediate boost in conversions.
But how do you improve the value proposition?
First of all, make it different from your competitors.
It’s a common mistake to use a similar value proposition as the main competitor. After all, if it works for them, it should also work for you, right?
But here’s the catch:
Your value proposition should tell your visitors why they should buy from you rather your competitor.
And so, by using a similar proposition to theirs, you’re actually convincing potential clients to go back to your competition and purchase products there.
It’s never a good sign if your visitors have to read your value proposition a few times before they “get it.”
Because you see, most of the time, they won’t do it. They’ll just skim it and move on confused, unaware of what is it that makes your store better than others.
Finally, make sure that it clearly communicates the results a visitor will get from purchasing your products.
Here are a couple of stores with fantastic value propositions:
HINT: To learn more about improving value propositions, check out this excellent guide by Conversion XL.
#4. Overcome Customer Objections and Increase Their Trust in Your Store
Imagine how your first-time visitor must feel.
They know nothing about your brand and most likely have never even seen your logo before.
You can safely assume that they’ll be wary about purchasing from you.
After all, as Zig Ziglar once said, only 4 reasons prevent people from buying from you:
- No need for your products,
- No money to pay you,
- No hurry to get your products,
- No trust in you.
Another sales guru, Jeffrey Gitomer, once said – “If they like you, and they believe you, and they have confidence in you, and they trust you – then they may buy from you.”
And so, it goes without saying, doesn’t it? If you make people trust you, they’ll be more likely to buy.
The catch – how do you increase their trust, exactly?
Well, luckily, there are some simple ways to do that. Here are the most effective ones:
- Start by making sure that your customers can reach you, if they needed to. Include contact information where visitors can easily find it. If possible, include your physical address there too. After all, nothing confirms that you are a real company than your address.
- Feature trust marks to denote how safe it is to buy from you. At a minimum, include them on the checkout page. Although I’d recommend, you have them on every page.
- Highlight your expertise through the content. Many online retailers see their blogs as just a lead generation tool. But it also plays a different role – the content you publish highlights your expertise, and in turn, increases the trust in you.
- Show social proof (reviews and testimonials) to communicate that others trust you already.
#5. Expand Product Information
You know, the more information on a product your visitors get, the greater the chance they’ll recognize its value.
So, if you’re providing only basic information about your products – for example, a list of features or technical specifications – then consider expanding it with additional data:
- Extend the product description.
- Add videos showing it in use.
- Add more images to the product gallery.
- Get rid of any clutter to allow a person focus only on what matters.
- And add the ability for customers to review the product.
As I wrote in my earlier post:
The longer someone stays on a product page, the greater the chance they’ll buy the product.
And the more information they have, the better chances that they’ll convince themselves to buy the product.
Sure, most people won’t read all this information. In fact, the exact number of people who’ll skip it is 79%.
But 16% of your visitors will go through it all. And that’s the 16% who will most likely buy your product then.
You can dramatically increase your online sales without having to attract a single new visitor to the site.
And all you need to do for it to happen is make your store more usable.
Luckily, after reading this post, you should have a pretty good idea where to start with that.