Many aspects can determine the buying decision of a customer when visiting your online store. In this guide, we’ll go over 20 effective conversion rate strategies from top Shopify stores to help you improve your conversion rate. Plus, we will talk about how to create a CRO (Conversion Rate Optimization) plan to improve the buyer experience of your users and the performance of your ecommerce site.
Shopify has been the go-to choice for eCommerce marketers for a long time, thanks to the convenience and freedom it provides. Having an eCommerce store requires just the same amount of throughput as you would give to a brick & mortar store. Whether you are on Shopify or Shopify Plus, the conversion rate metric is a common ground your ecommerce marketing expert team needs to keep an eye on.
Keep reading to learn how you can optimize your online store for success, what conversion rate is, and find out 20 effective conversion rate strategies from top Shopify stores. Read on!
Topics covered on this blog:
- What Is the Conversion Rate?
- Homepage Optimization Ideas
- Product Discovery Improvements
- Product Page Improvements
- Checkout Experience Improvements
- Shipping and Returns Policies
- Website Page Optimization
- Testing your Conversion Rate Optimization Plan
What Is the Conversion Rate?
Before we get there, it is crucial to address what a conversion is on Shopify or Shopify Plus. A conversion is a visitor on your website who becomes a buyer. Your visitor can arrive from anywhere – search engines, social media, paid ads, online referrals, email marketing campaigns and everything else. After customers land on your page(s), they will have the option to “covert” and become loyal customers after a sale.
Calculating your conversion rate can tell you how successful your website is in convincing visitors to buy your products. A calculation of the conversion rate is to divide the number of buyers by the number of visitors. Shopify pros will tell you that the optimal conversion rate is at around 2%. If you’re under this figure, you’ve got work to do!
Building Your Conversion Rate Optimization Plan
While it’s easy to simply calculate the total conversion rate and work solely based on improving that metric – it’s better if you look at conversion as a step-by-step process. You can also calculate product-wise conversion rates. You put out an ad for a particular product. X number of people visited your website through the ad. Y number of people bought the product.
So your product conversion rate is (Y/X x 100). You can also calculate conversion rates for actions, i.e. the percentage of visitors who subscribe to your newsletter, percentage of landing page visitors who check out the product page, number of abandoned cart users etc. But no matter what metric you are concentrating on, this checklist on the Shopify store owner checklist is a must-do to ensure the best results.
Homepage Optimization Ideas
Your homepage is most often used as the landing page on your PPC ads. It is also the page that is likely to be visited first through SEO. The homepage sets the way the user understands the ethos of your brand. This means an excellent concierge at the lobby makes all the difference in establishing a warm welcome.
1. Always improve customer experience
An effective homepage is designed to help customers find what they want in a signal glance. Minimalism is vital on the homepage. A customer surfing your website should be able to navigate without much hindrance, too much information in one place, excessive image changes all count for wrong first impressions.
Keep things simple; anybody who walks into a store, online or offline just wants to know – does the store offer what they require or where is the men’s/women’s section? Use a hero image with a single CTA and let the navigation menu at the top do the rest for you.
Optimize for engagement and customer experience
2. Offers Placement On the Homepage
A very significant experience in the homepage section is to find the right time to offer something to a potential customer. You can use plugins to check if your customer is about to leave your site and create an engaging pop-up that says “Don’t leave just yet! We have something special for you”.
You can also be straightforward and have it on the Welcome Header Bar or the Quick Announcement Bar. But no matter where you think you might place it, remember that the price you’re paying in the form of a discount will give you multifold returns in the form of a mail ID. Lead generation is an integral part of Shopify conversion rate optimization.
3. Include Social Proofs
For any customer looking to purchase or sell on your website needs a certain degree of trust. It helps clear doubts and serves as social proof. Celebrity endorsed advertisements are a standing proof of how testimonials run. Therefore, adding it to your page will surely act as an effective strategy to persuade a customer, whether that is through reviews or the guarantees your site offers to a customer.
4. Invest in eCommerce Personalization – Especially Headless Commerce
eCommerce personalization is all about providing customized user experience based on user analytics including behaviour, type of device used, purchase history, demographics and psychographics. As of today, eCommerce personalisation is largely based on context and how well you have segmented your customer base – and largely limited to desktop or mobile.
However, with IoT being the next big thing, it is important to have multi-device strategies. Statistics show that product view rate increases to 88% from 55% with single device personalization. In this context, to prepare for the future, investing in headless commerce is highly recommended.
Headless commerce separates the front-end which is the visual layer of your online store, from the checkout and back-office business functions. This enables marketing teams to make design and content updates very quickly without requiring IT support.
Check out VL OMNI‘s complete integration guide to Headless Commerce here.
Product Discovery Improvements
So you’ve nailed the landing page, and your potential customer is all set to surf through the aisles. In a brick & mortar store, a salesperson always at least offers to guide you. But online commerce entails that the customer opts for products on their own. How do you make this process simpler for him or her?
5. Make use of AI-based Search
Say you own a home décor store. You put up an ad that had blue candles. Your customer is looking for those exact blue candles and lands on your page in search for them. If there is no search bar, the customer has to filter and search for candles that are likely to appear in the (interior décor – home section, or in the arts and crafts section, or the gifting ideas section. Where could it be?)
If a search bar was available, all the customer would have to do is type “blue candles”. Now you can understand why the salesperson asking if you need help is extremely important. Use apps like Findify and InstantSearch+ to power up the search bar with predictive analytics results. A search bar is also a crucial tool for those who want to run analytics and find out how their customers think.
6. Categorize your products and collections
Having too many product categories can be confusing and intimidating. A lot of the principles of brick & mortar store organization also applies to eCommerce. Try to mimic the same as much as possible to get the best results. Have 4-6 main categories and get specific with subcategories.
7. Design your 404 pages
Although not common, 404 pages can occur due to glitches. Your SEO rank may go down if your customers start to leave because of 404. Try to reduce this by renavigating your customer to other pages that he may find interesting.
8. Share shoppable Instagram stories & feeds
A shoppable Instagram feed addresses the same problem as the search bar. Although a new feature, 130 million users tap on shopping posts every month. Providing convenience to the customer is the only way to grow an eCommerce platform. Instagram is now coming out with features that allow users to complete the buying process without ever having to leave the platform. Use apps like Foursixty, Like2Have.it and SocialPhotos to promote your best products on Instagram.
Product Page Improvements
Product pages are your last chance to impress customers before they either hit the buy button or leave. While the homepage was minimalist, the product page aims to be informative and attractive.
9. Importance of High-res Product images
A vital aspect of the trust-building factor is to show that you have everything in the place. Neat and organized – no faffing. Showing your product in use, with demo videos or photographs is key to ensuring a click on the buy button. Over 60% of consumers say that high-quality product images are an essential aspect of the purchasing process.
10. Show All Necessary Product Details
A key aspect of eCommerce marketing is that you can’t have hidden charges. A lot of abandoned cart issues are due to broken trust. The customer came here for the sale ad that said “hurry! Get yours now!” and the delivery time is too long because the orders are backed up.
These situations will only turn off the customer. Be upfront about all your pricing options, including shipping. If the product is run out of stock, use redirection and add them to your subscriber list. Ask their permission to send them an email when the product is back in stock.
11. Power of Product Reviews
What a testimonial does on the homepage for your brand, specific product reviews on your product page does for your product. Having product reviews that provide information like “I bought X item in Y colour and Z size.
I am delighted with the stitching and material quality. It looks like the products will last long” are the biggest hits. As mentioned before, a product page aims to be informative.
12. Make Use of Social Selling
A lot of customers are now showing disbelief with on-site product reviews. This phenomenon is likely due to the presence of scamsters and unethical affiliate marketers in the eCommerce feed. Along with reviews, having small notifications that pop-up on the screen from your Instagram feed, adds an element of social proof. You can use apps like Foursixty and Like2have.it for the same.
Product Checkout Experience
Once they click on the buy button is complete, there’s one of two things that can happen – an abandoned cart or a purchase. It’s tough to pinpoint precisely why someone came so close to the finish line and bailed. But here are few ways to improve the online checkout experience
13. Auto-Populate Necessary User Details
A shopping experience is most likely happening when people are relaxed and happy—having to add an extra step for filling customer information glitches the mood of the customer.
No wonder that conversions increase by 200% when businesses allow customers to autofill information on social media! Just as much as guest accounts are necessary, the option to login through social media must be present.
14. Automate abandoned cart recovery sequences
Every eCommerce store owner is oh-so-familiar with this phenomenon. While sometimes it is unpredictable and the reasons are intangible, it’s your duty as a store owner to send out reminders a week or two later. You never know, they might or might not change their mind, but it is well worth a shot. You can automate abandoned cart emails in the Notifications section of your Admin account.
15. Thank your customers with effective email marketing
A sincere thank you goes a long way in bringing back the customer in for more. It is essential that you make the customer feel like they’re part of your brand family and that they are welcome back anytime. You can also send out coupon codes for first-time shoppers, and suggest other products they may like on your site.
Shipping and Returns Policies
Once the marathon is finished, you would have to go incredibly wrong if they’re taking back your trophy.
16. Frame your free shipping rules
Most first customers feel wary of purchase if they aren’t offered free shipping. On the other hand, they may be willing to pay more for the product itself. Find the sweet spot that is a balance of both, rather than having surmounting charges apart from tax at the end of the purchase.
17. List down Refund Policies
Crucial to items that come in various sizing and other options, you must have a definite refund policy on the product page and checkout page. Allowing customers to find all the information they need, increases transparency, and builds trust. If not, they may go public with a bad review which can lead to worse consequences for your sales funnel.
Website Page Optimization
18. Effective About Page Ideas
An about page can do so many things that a homepage cannot. Make use of this space to allow customers to feel more connected to you. In an online, all-things-digital world, adding a human touch can go a long way in building a pleasing brand persona.
19. Mobile responsive Web pages
A lot of website traffic comes from social media ads that are viewed on mobile devices. If the site is not mobile-friendly, 40% of users report leaving the site.
20. Make sure your site loads faster
You only have 3 seconds to make a good impression in the eCommerce world. If your pages are taking more than 3 seconds to load, consider compressing your images using tools like ImageOptim.
Testing your Conversion Rate Optimization Plan
Adhering to this essential checklist will help you optimize your Shopify store for the future. While this doesn’t cover all that is possible, anything else you do in terms of digital marketing is likely not to provide good results if you haven’t covered these 20 key aspects to enhance your conversion rate.
- The Average Website Conversion Rate by Industry
- Cost-Per-Conversion: What is it? And how to optimize it?
- How to do Conversion Rate Optimization to your Shopify store?
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