A Basic Guide to Boosting E-Commerce Conversion Rates

By QuickBooks Canada Team

2 min read

Every e-commerce store owner has been there; your impressions are up and your clicks are in good shape, but your sales are down. Conversions are the most finicky part of running an online store, and the most crucial to get right. Turn your conversion rate around by making changes to your website’s shopping experience, and then run conversion rate testing to learn which changes are working and which ones still need tweaked.

Optimize Product Discovery

Commonly, customers leave a website prematurely because they can’t find the product they want or need. Make it easier for your customers to discover the right products. Besides tipping your conversion rate higher, this helps build the basket by encouraging more additions to the cart. Here is how:

  • Be basic. Your customers want browsing to be intuitive and easy, so use an aesthetically pleasing, but easy-to-parse website layout. The “Shop” button should be front and center.
  • Allow filtering. Let customers sort and filter their search results by factors such as price, type, category, color, and size. Narrowing the search results makes it quicker to find the right product.
  • Make your search intuitive. Your search box should be easy to find and your products appropriately tagged so they show up for the keywords your customers are likely to search.
  • Use smart technology. Have your website suggest similar items to ones that your customer has recently looked at, or similar to ones that your customer purchased before if it is a repeat customer.
  • Include an Instagram plug-in. This can display recent or suggested posts based on popular products that you posted recently.

Facilitate Checkout Experiences

Customers tend to abandon their carts easily if the checkout process is difficult or takes too much time. Make sure that checkout is as simple as possible to keep your customers on board throughout the transaction. Some tips include:

  • Allow guest checkout. Creating an account should be optional because it is one extra step that your customer may not want to take.
  • Have shipping options prominent and clear, with estimated delivery dates and prices visible.
  • Use a reliable payment processing system to avoid downtime or long waits between pages.
  • Have the entire order process on one page, if possible. Being able to complete billing, shipping, and confirmation in one step expedites the process considerably.

Testing Conversion Rates

Once you make changes to your e-commerce website, it is time to see if they are effective. Use A/B testing to analyze any changes to your conversion rate. This is where you display your original website (A) for a certain period of time, and then switch to the new website (B) for the same amount of time and compare the conversion rate for each one. You can test one page at a time if you’re changing small elements such as the checkout page or the entire website at once. Testing a single page at a time lets you narrow down specific changes and their effects, while testing multiple pages at once makes the process quicker.

References & Resources

Information may be abridged and therefore incomplete. This document/information does not constitute, and should not be considered a substitute for, legal or financial advice. Each financial situation is different, the advice provided is intended to be general. Please contact your financial or legal advisors for information specific to your situation.

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