Successful e-commerce depends upon customers making it all the way through your sales funnel. Any difficulties or delays shoppers encounter after entering your website may prompt them to exit without making a purchase. A single moment of confusion can kill a sale. This is why it’s important to prioritize a seamless browsing and buying process.
Getting customers to visit your website is only half the battle; whether they stay long enough to make a purchase boils down to design, navigation and content. In that spirit, here’s how to avoid putting these five e-commerce barriers in front of customers.
Slow Load Times on Your Site
The first major drop-off point actually occurs before online users even make it to your website. In this day and age, shoppers expect speedy load times. Over half (57 percent) of consumers will abandon a site if it takes more than three seconds to load—and most will not return. You can make sure your store is optimized for quick loading by compressing photographs, checking for broken links and utilizing browser caching when possible.
Burying Important Brand Information
Whenever shoppers visit a website for the first time, they tend to assess trustworthiness by seeking out brand information and social proof from previous customers. What story is your brand currently telling consumers?
Shoppers want to know the names and faces behind the brand, as well as what it represents, before buying. After all, handing over personal and payment information to a random company is risky. Make sure your store has an appealing, findable “About Us” page to build rapport with visitors, plus a section for honest customer reviews and testimonials. Both of these features will help your store avoid the stumbling block of alienating customers with anonymity.
Convoluted Site Navigation
If you expect shoppers to find what they’re looking for, you have to hand them a map. The better your site navigation, the higher your conversion rates. In general, you’ll want your hierarchy to go from general to specific—so an adolescent shopper searching for a pair of jeans might first click the “Juniors” dropdown on your navigation bar, then find “Jeans.” By sorting products into intuitive categories, you’ll help shoppers find what they’re seeking much faster.
Site navigation capabilities are built into the very nature of your website design, which is why a cloud ecommerce platform comparison can help you settle on the right look, feel and functionality for your brand.
Required Registration to Check Out
Requiring customers to register before they can check outputs a major barrier to conversion in their path. Remember: Many of your customers are using mobile devices, and it’s safe to assume all of them are in a hurry. A better solution is allowing customers to check out with only the most necessary personal and financial information up front, but reaching out with the option to conveniently create an account after the transaction has gone through.
Lack of Payment Options
Even when customers have made it all the way to the checkout, they can still exit your site if they encounter a lack of payment options. In addition to accepting a healthy variety of credit cards, modern e-commerce operations should stay up-to-date on the latest electronic payment methods. The rising popularity of digital wallets means stores can meet customers halfway by offering them the modern payment options they prefer or risk lost sales.
If your store can avoid putting these five ecommerce barriers in front of customers, you’ll see an uptick in conversions and return visitors. Streamlining navigation, site design and checkout will maximize the chances of a shopper making it all the way through your purchase process.