So you’ve finally set up your business, you have your stock ready to roll, you know your product from back to front and you may even have a great website getting plenty of traffic. Now you’re ready to take that big next step – setting up an e-commerce platform so you can finally see the fruits of your marketing efforts and start shifting that stock. It’s quite an easy process, provided you follow a few simple guidelines. Here are the main tips you should bear in mind before you invite customers to fill their shopping carts:
• Keep It Simple
This is one we tell everybody, all the time, in connection with all aspects of online business. Customers want simplicity and ease of use. Whatever platform you’re using to develop your e-commerce site, always make sure your focus is on the simplest possible accessibility and usability. That means simple processes, which include clear navigation and easy-to-follow prompts.
• Be Upfront About Costs
Imagine being a customer and placing your order for an item you’ve just found and which is exactly what you wanted, at an unexpectedly reasonable price. You follow the checkout process all the way to the end, only to find that the shipping is going to multiply the purchase total by three. What would you do?
Never allow hidden costs at any point of your customer interface. Be upfront about additional fees from the get-go. It’s advisable to state shipping costs on the product page, so the customer knows exactly what they’re spending before they click the check-out button.
• Fuel Demand Through Scarcity
CLEARANCE SALE! ONE-TIME-ONLY OFFER! ONLY ONE LEFT IN STOCK! Don’t underestimate the power of phrases like this. They draw attention to specific products and create a sense of urgency in the client to complete the transaction. The perception of scarcity can turn a casual browser into an instant buyer.
• Provide Wide-Ranging, Specific Filters
You must enable your customers to browse for exactly what they want. They are not going to browse through thousands of items to find what they’re after; they’ll simply look elsewhere. Create dropdown filters with categories and subcategories that will allow customers to narrow down their search in seconds. This can make or break numerous sales.
• Make Good Use of Testimonials and Social Media
Potential buyers who are uncertain of a purchase will always find good testimonials useful. They read reviews at the tipping point of their shopping experience. It’s that moment when they could just walk away or pull out their credit cards. Provide space for reviews and encourage customers who have already bought certain items to write testimonials. You should also encourage links to social media, allowing customers to share product pages with their friends and followers.