Building a complete e-commerce website from the ground up is HARD. It takes a lot of time, effort, and resources. Often, many business owners find that after all the work they put into building their website, the response from their customers is underwhelming. You feel like you’ve spent all that time and got crickets.
To avoid this sad outcome, or course-correct when you’re already at that stage, you need to pinpoint what went wrong and what mistakes were made when creating the website. The good news is that websites are not set in stone, they’re more like gardens that you tend and cultivate rather than buildings made of steel and concrete.
1. The target audience is incorrectly defined
What if your site is simply selling to the wrong people? This can happen if you misidentified your target audience, did not collect or analyze data to understand what your target audience wants, or incorrectly analyzed the data, which led you to make erroneous judgments.
This is the most basic point, because if it is incorrectly defined, you risk developing a non-working marketing strategy, incorrectly setting up the website, and so on. Each point of development is based on the definition of the target audience.
The following simple steps will help you improve your site and understand in which direction you should move:
- Outline in great detail your main buyer;
- Find out what your customers value, and also what they fear;
- Create a unique but productive sales script;
- Track all behavioral factors.
2. No site visits
Maybe you’re not selling because people can’t find your website. Each visit should be recorded and after analyzing the data, you can understand what needs to be done to attract traffic to your site.
How to ensure traffic flow:
- Use of SEO services, which include keyword research, determining ranking factors, analyzing behavioral conditions, and maintaining statistics on traffic and changes in effective working methods. After productive work on optimization, your website will rise in the SERPs, leading to your target audience. Ahrefs will suit best for keyword generation.
- Targeted advertising. This type of advertising will be displayed to users who belong to your target audience and will offer them a personalized offer. It will additionally allow you to generate leads.*
- Content creation. Content handling is pivotal. When you create content that will meet the needs of your consumers and solve their problems, you will get long-lasting results.
- Improving reputation. Tracking reviews and working with objections will be great at increasing your reputation. By responding to the needs of your customers, improving customer service, and organizing sales emails, you will increase your brand awareness.
- Consistent presence in social networks. Posts about new products and changes will allow you to establish contact with your customers and engage them directly.
*What is Lead Generation?
Lead generation, often known as lead gen, is the act of locating and fostering new clients for your company. It is gathering a potential customer’s name and contact information and getting them ready to speak with a salesperson about your good or service. Creating interest at various points in the customer journey is the definition of effective lead generation.
3. Low quality and non-unique content
Content is what allows you to engage your customers. When users see unprocessed content or what they have already seen, this will reduce the likelihood of placing an order.
In addition to selling quality goods and products, you must capture the attention of both potential and regular customers. Video is a good tool. Use video editing software to transform original product promo videos and expert interviews into high-quality, engaging content. Moreover, use a powerful Mac screen capturing program or the best Windows 11 screen recorders to generate unique tutorials and shopping guides.
Constantly create new content and notify your customers about new information. This approach will allow buyers to understand that work is in full swing and the company does not stop in its development.
4. The site is difficult to use
For a brick and mortar store to work, it is important to create a convenient arrangement of departments, so that customers understand where they should go to buy the goods they need. Then they know that they need to go to the checkout to pay for purchases and go home.
Take a look at your website’s usability and see if it is so easy to find the product you want, put it in your shopping cart and place an order.
The usability of your site is how quickly each user can figure out how your store works and how easily they can buy everything they need. You should understand that everyone should be able to make a purchase in your online store, regardless of whether they are advanced users or beginners.
Ensure the operation of your store in such a way that every customer can find the desired product without racking their brains and viewing all the information they need to make a purchase.
Check Userpeek or UserZoom for web testing for improving usability and navigation.
5. Lack of incentive to perform the targeted action
One of the most useful sales hacks is a call to perform a targeted action. Let’s say the client is ready to place an order. The following elements will bring users closer to making a purchase:
- Encouragement to place an order in a text form;
- Show all possible purchase options;
- Pop-up advertising offers;
- Having a connection with the company, if a customer has any questions;
- Forms for the correct checkout.
It is necessary to think of a powerful call to action. To do this, you need to create simple and understandable stages and not overload the client with information. Without such actions, a potential customer can get stuck at the thinking stage and close the tab with your online store.
6. Poor design
The visual website design of your online store isn’t just about how it looks, it’s also how it works. Your website should have a unique visual identity that would be associated with your brand, but it needs to be designed to attract your target customer, and make it easy to use.
Bad design decisions aren’t just about non-unique images, poorly chosen colours, or low-quality graphics. Your website optimization may not be designed to open on a smartphone or tablet.
At the moment, most users make purchases using mobile devices, so it’s important that your website is also mobile-responsive.
Get involved in clearly understanding how your site should look and function. After you draw up a wireframe, and your list of requirements, a professional designer will offer highly effective solutions that will allow you to stand out from the crowd.
7. Myriads of pop-ups
You have surely experienced entering a company’s website, and immediately come across a million pop-up windows offering to fill out an application, accept cookies, wait for a call from a specialist, and advertising. On the first visit, many of these icons will start to annoy users and, moreover, they will overlap the content.
Imagine that you have opened the site, have not yet figured out the navigation, and widgets are popping up from everywhere that already call you to do something. Before you can even get to the section of interest, you’ll have to spend so much time closing windows and boxes.
It is important to set the time when such windows will be activated and set it up for different stages of the site’s operation. If a person has been looking for the necessary product for a long time, then you can offer advice from a specialist who will help in the shortest possible time to make a choice, as well as provide products for comparison and tell them about the best option. For those who prefer to sort out all the nuances using a call, you need to set up a system where people can leave their phone number and in a few minutes will receive a call back from a specialist.
8. Wrong contact information
The reason for a lack of sales may be that your customers simply do not know how to contact you. It is necessary to pay special attention to the section “about the company” and your contact information. Make sure that all information in this section is up to date and correct. If a potential customer calls on non-existent numbers, it will lead to a decline in sales.
9. Unclear website navigation
Shop operations can slow down significantly if you need to scan the entire site to find the desired product. As in an offline store, your online store should have a structured site divided into sections and subsections. In order to organize website navigation, you need to work out how and in which category the user can find the product of interest.
There is no need to cheat and come up with a unique concept. As in any store, entering the site, the user should see the departments that will be understandable to everyone. This is not a competition for quick wits. They will not pat you on the head for creating a quest and are unlikely to recommend you to their friends and acquaintances.
10. Slow website speed
People choose to shop online because they don’t have to stand in huge queues and waste their precious time. Don’t make them wait. If your online store loads slowly, then you are likely to miss out on a potential customer.
The speed of loading pages should be checked on a regular basis and if there are problems, then it is necessary to immediately make the appropriate adjustments.
If you have many competitors in your niche, the client will go to your competitor’s website if they have to wait for your site to load, because for the consumer it makes no difference where he can buy the product.
When filling the site with content, you need to monitor how pictures and videos are loaded. It is important to find quality hosting that will speed up your website. (I recommend Siteground.)
11. No demand for products
Consider the possibility that you are selling a bad product that is not in demand in the market. Either there may be no demand for it, or you have made an unattractive offer.
It is worth analyzing the market for goods. If you see similar products being sold in huge quantities from your competitors, it means that your offer is unattractive. In this case, reconsider your product advertising concept. Study the approach of your competitors and based on this, create your unique offer.
Questions to answer:
- What is this product used for?
- How many people buy this product?
- How often do people search for it on search engines?
- Is it worth spending money on promoting it?
If the point is not in the offer, but in the fact that the product simply does not satisfy the needs, then it makes sense to refuse such, or change its functionality.
Successful website operation and increased sales depend on many factors. Your site should be easy to use, the sections and navigation on the site should be simple and convenient, the content should be interesting and informative, the pages of the site should load quickly and display information correctly, and the site should provide only relevant information. Such small details play a huge role in the number of sales, attracting new customers, as well as keeping the attention of regular customers.
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