The average ecommerce customer visits more than one retail website when they’re looking for a specific product to buy, according to a new study reported in MediaPost. How can you get visitors to stay on your ecommerce website instead of clicking away to the competition?
- Maintain inventory. Twenty percent of shoppers in the survey say they leave a website because the product they want isn’t available. Use inventory management tools to keep tabs on products on your ecommerce website, and act quickly when popular items are starting to run low.
- Focus on shipping. Fast shipping is a major factor in where customers decide to buy, the survey reports. Offer competitive shipping prices (or free shipping, if possible) and a variety of shipping options so customers can get items as quickly as they want.
- Provide detailed product information. Twenty percent of respondents visit different ecommerce websites in an effort to get additional product information. If necessary, go beyond the vendor’s standard product description with additional details that might make the difference in whether customers buy or not. Think like a marketing copywriter (hire one, if necessary!) and create copy that has an emotional appeal to prospective buyers. Also be sure to include multiple photos of the product from different angles, the ability to enlarge photos or zoom in, and, if relevant, a video of the product being used or worn.
- Make sure your site loads quickly. If consumers have to wait ... and wait ... for your ecommerce website to load, they’re not going to stick around. It’s particularly important for your site to load quickly on mobile devices. Four in 10 online purchases by respondents in the study were made on a mobile device. This trend is only going to increase, so a mobile-friendly website is vital.
- Use online advertising to get customers’ attention. The report identified two kinds of purchases: considered purchases, which customers start researching one to three days before buying, and spontaneous purchases, when customers make the purchasing decision within a few hours. More expensive products, such as furniture or electronics, are considered purchases that customers might start researching weeks or even months before they actually buy. Content and pay-per-click advertising using relevant keywords can get the attention of both types of buyers, whether they’re doing heavy research for a new stove, or just searching for the best product selection on shampoo.
- Retarget to get them back. Inevitably, some visitors to your ecommerce site will click away to do further research or make comparisons. Retarget them with online ads reminding them of the products they viewed on your site. This will keep your business top-of-mind as they’re making their comparisons.
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Karen Axelton is Chief Content Officer of GrowBiz Media, a media company that helps entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses. Visit her company’s blog at SmallBizDaily.com.