It is no secret that due to COVID we have witnessed unprecedented ecommerce growth in 2020. By mfour’s account, US ecommerce penetration as percent of retail sales has seen a 41% lift since March. This is the equivalent of 10 years of growth in six months!
This is a silver lining for Shopify store owners as you are in the right place at the right time. However, given ever growing competition for online shoppers having an online store and driving traffic to it is simply not enough. Building engaging brand experiences and helping your shoppers find, understand and purchase the products they want is more paramount than ever. Especially during this holiday season when in-store traffic will be quite limited leaving ecommerce as the only channel to fulfil shopping needs.
While ultimately your brand experience is your core business, there is data from Digital Commerce 360 indicating what online shoppers are looking for from ecommerce sites as we enter a “new normal”.
Put plainly, online shoppers want to quickly find and understand your products through a simple user experience. If they don’t, they will move to the next online store which is a mouse click or screen tap away.
So how do you make sure that all the hard earned marketing money you put into driving traffic to your site is not wasted? Here are three ways to achieve greater onsite engagement and grow sales.
1. Simplify navigation by using an information architecture your customer understands.
One of the best exercises you can do as a shop owner is to place yourself in the shoes of your customer. For example, how do they describe your products? Or, what questions do they need answered? The reason this is important is that you, as the merchandiser, most likely speak about your business and products in terms that don’t translate directly to your customers vernacular. You may identify products by industry terms that are familiar to you and your peers but not to end customers. Clear, easy to understand categorization and taxonomy will help you your customers find the products they want. Another plus to a good information architecture is to develop a concise layout for product descriptions, specircations, sizes and so on. Reducing friction for customers will not only make it a delightful experience but also will help close more sales.
2. Add reviews because social proof will help seal the deal.
It is proven that your customers will use reviews of your products as a major factor in their final purchasing decision making process. According to research from Spiegel Research Center, “the purchase likelihood for a product with five reviews is 270% greater than the purchase likelihood of a product with no reviews”. Given the number of great review apps in the Shopify marketplace, there is no excuse to not be embracing this tactic in your shop today.
3. Enable dialogue with AI-driven interactive guided shopping and get ahead of the curve
It turns out that simply asking your customers if they like or dislike products is working for Amazon and the recently funded (to the tune of $30 million dollars!) The Yes App actually drives sales by allowing shoppers to quickly explore and find products in your catalog through product assortments and recommendations based on shopper interactions and feedback in real-time. While this technology was traditionally in the realm of only the well-funded high tech direct to consumer companies, it is about to become mainstream and available to everyone by companies like Skafos.ai. You too can join the giants and differentiate your brand.
If you feel this is helpful or even if you feel we missed the mart, we would be delighted to hear from you. We are always looking to learn and share our findings with our e-commerce partners.