Whether it is during the summer, the holiday season or the back-to-school period, your high season is a crucial period: obviously for your sales, but also in the acquisition of a new clientele that could become loyal to you.
This is also the time when it is more important than ever to distinguish yourself from your clientele by the quality of your offer so that consumers choose you, even in the midst of the frenzy of opportunities that are offered to them.
Make sure that you are doing everything in your power to optimize this high-potential period, but also that you are strong enough to meet the demand. In order to give you a hand, the Novatize team offers you 5 questions to ask yourself so that you can determine how to improve the performance of your eCommerce.
1. How do you identify the problems in your shopping path?
First, you need to understand the stages of the conversion funnel: attention, consideration, interest, desire, and action.
Your mission is to identify which of these stages of the funnel have the most abandonment and friction points in order to make relevant and targeted improvements.
Your site analytics can be a good way to observe your customer’s behavior and capture opportunities you may not have thought of. You could also use user testing to find out how your customers are accomplishing their goals on your website, what the irritants and pitfalls are, and then prioritize what to fix.
Once the point of abandonment is identified, here are the questions to ask yourself:
- Is it a problem related to a particular context (a change of season, an update of your website, a best-selling product out of stock, etc.) or is it a recurring problem?
- Are your pages well adapted to the screen formats, both mobile and desktop?
- Are your CTAs (call to action) clear and prominent?
- Do you have advertising campaigns that target cart abandonment?
- Do you have email flows that target cart abandonment?
Your answers to these questions will help you know what to look for. It will be considerably easier to solve a specific problem, such as adding cart abandonment flows, than to try to answer the overly broad question “how can I increase my conversion rate?”
If in doubt, lack of time or lack of data, start by optimizing the most popular products and categories: the most visited pages as well as the pages that bring in the most sales.
Regardless of the results, make sure that your entire site is optimized for mobile, since more than 80% of online shoppers conduct their transactions via their phone. Even if they placed the order on their computer, they may have started their search on their phone first.
2. Is your website's shopping experience optimal?
Your goal is to offer your consumers the shortest and most pleasant path possible from the moment they enter your site to the completion of their objective (i.e. the transaction, in most cases).
The attention span of a consumer is estimated to be around 8 seconds in 2022. So keep in mind that, after these 8 seconds, the chances of losing your customers if they don’t find what they are looking for become exponential.
Here are a few things to think about to ensure that your customers will find what they are looking for:
- Is your menu prominently displayed?
- Is the essential information easily accessible?
- Are your most interesting offers in the foreground or on the landing pages?
- Do you know how your customers search your site and have your navigation been designed accordingly?
- Are your products distributed in the right categories?
- Do you offer relevant and functional filters to refine the search?
Not all of your customers store through your menu, and your search tool must also be simple, effective and optimal.
At the very least, your search bar should be prominently displayed so that your customers don’t have to search for it. Then, consider offering your customers all those little extras that will facilitate their navigation, in addition to encouraging conversion:
- Suggestions for popular categories
- Keyword predictions
- Consideration of typos
- Consideration of synonyms
- Suggested alternatives when the product you are looking for is no longer available
- Suggestions of relevant products or categories when queries do not produce results
In addition, a good search tool and a clever analysis of its data and results could provide you with valuable information about your customers’ habits. You may find that some of your products are considerably more sought after at certain times of the year, and thus know when to put them forward. You might notice an unexpected craze for a highly sought-after product that you don’t have (or no longer have) in stock, and add it to your purchasing priorities.
Certain elements are essential to ensure that your product sheets are pleasant to consult and that they contribute to achieving your objectives. Photos, description, price, color or size variants, quantity selector and CTA (call to action) button to add to the cart must be present and well executed.
Depending on the complexity of your offer (or if the price of your products requires your customers to be more reassured), you could also add to your product sheets complements that will minimize your customers’ questions. Size guides, 360-degree views, videos, technical information, dimensions, demonstrations and other initiatives will set you apart from the competition.
The checkout stage is generally the one with the highest abandonment rate. While it is inevitable to lose some customers at this stage, try to minimize the sources of friction they might experience at this stage.
- Limit the amount of information to be entered (automatic address entry, user recognition, etc.)
- Remove unnecessary steps that lengthen the process
- Offer a variety of payment options (traditional methods, app-based payment, installment payments, subscriptions, etc.)
- Remove the requirement to create an account
- Avoid hidden fees
3. How to create attractive offers?
When it comes to creating promotions and offers for your customers, keep in mind that the goal is to present them with maximum value. Since you are competing with many other merchants, consider the needs, concerns and questions of your customers in order to differentiate yourself.
What are the promotions that will create the most value in their eyes: percentage discounts, dollar discounts, bundles, subscriptions?
Offer interesting and relevant upSells and cross-sells (on the product page as well as in the shopping cart). This will facilitate your customers’ shopping experience and anticipate their needs and desires.
When possible, add gamification through a questionnaire or personalization to guide your customers to the best choice, limit their risk of error, gather information about them and develop a relationship with them.
Incentives to buy
It’s your busiest time of year, create a sense of urgency and excitement! Highlight your best sellers and focus on products that are going fast, as well as remaining quantities. Add popularity signals (number of adds to favourites, number of users who put it in their cart, reviews, etc.) Sparingly, you can even add countdowns that announce the imminent end of a promotion, to try to provoke immediate action.
Also add proof of reliability, reviews and customer-generated content (UGC): seeing “real people” using one of your products will go a long way in making your customers feel confident. An application like Stamped.io could be a great help in this regard!
Other very convincing proofs of reliability are ecological certifications. Sustainability is at the heart of consumer research. Respect for the environment and ethical work practices are becoming requirements, not preferences.
Display your certifications visibly to increase your chances of being chosen by consumers, especially if you sell similar products to your competition.
4. Do you have a positive and lasting relationship with your customers?
In general, are your customers satisfied with your offering and your processes? If so, your peak period should not upset this balance.
Give your customers access to your main communication channels (newsletters, SMS), and continue to maintain a quality relationship with them, even after the purchase. Provide them with information on inventory returns, price reductions, complementary products, products of the same brand that interest them, etc.
Finally, in order to maintain close ties with your customers, consider offering a loyalty or referral program (or perfecting it, if you already have one in place). Make your customers feel that it pays to be loyal to you as well.
5. Capitalize on your peak season traffic for subsequent periods
Capture the increase in traffic to your website to build loyalty, collect data and grow your audience. Build your strategy for the following year or quarters on these recent opportunities and :
- Encourage customers to give feedback on your products
- Drive subscriptions to your newsletter
- Collect phone numbers for your SMS campaigns
- Set up remarketing audiences
- Invite your customers to join your loyalty program
- Promote referencing
Hunt for discount hunters! Create segments of “new BFCM shoppers”, or “new summer sale shoppers”, for example, and create content to introduce them to your brand’s other products, to promote subscriptions, to convert them into loyal customers, etc. Also, don’t overlook attractions that aren’t focused on sales and conversion: your peak season is the perfect time to harvest emails and customer data that will pay off in the future.
Do you have questions or would you like to be coached to ensure your eCommerce outreach during your peak season? Contact one of our eCommerce specialists today!