Between December 2012 and December 2017, online sales grew from 11.6% to 24.1% of the total retail market. More convenient and often more affordable than shopping on the high street, e-commerce sites are attracting customers in ever larger numbers.
If your e-commerce site is currently underperforming, or if you just want to see how much further you can push your online success, take a look at these five quick ways to turbo charge your digital strategy in retail.
1. Onsite search
Installing an online search feature into your ecommerce site can be a great way to boost sales and improve conversion rates. Although integrating an online search tool may not drive new customers to your site, it will help to engage those who are already interested in your content. If the feature is available on your site, you’ll find around 30% of visitors use it to find the product they’re looking for. People who perform an onsite search are twice as likely to convert and are more likely to return to your site with an intent to buy in the future.
2. Voice search
One thing that looks set to take off this year is voice search. Products like Alexa and Siri have got customers used to interacting with their devices using their voice, so it’s no surprise that more and more companies are looking at voice search options as a way to boost sales. At the moment, around 20% of Google searches made on mobile devices are voice searches. What’s more, 40% of millennials have made voice searches before making a purchase online. When you factor in the increasing popularity of mobile devices and the fact that millennials are driving the growth of online shopping, it’s easy to see why businesses are now so keen to incorporate voice search functions into their websites.
According to research from the Baymard Institute, 68% of all online shopping carts are abandoned before payment is made. Around 58% of these transactions are left incomplete because the shopper is only browsing. Of the remaining 42% of carts, around a third are abandoned because the checkout process is too long or too complicated. Simplifying the payment stage of your ecommerce site could therefore provide a significant boost in sales and encourage customers to return to your site again and again.
One thing that’s set to have a big impact on online payments is the fact that Amazon’s 1-click patent just expired. Since it was first patented in 1999, the technology has helped to propel Amazon to global dominance and encouraged increasing numbers of users to hand over their data to the retail giant. With companies of all sizes now able to take advantage of the technology, the online checkout process is set to get faster and easier across the board.
4. Product detail
If there’s one thing that customers want from an ecommerce site, it’s detail. If they can’t physically hold or inspect the product they’re purchasing, they need as much information as possible about its materials, its functionality and its design. If your ecommerce site is currently thin on product descriptions or images, if could be putting your potential customers off. According to recent research, up to 20% of abandoned purchases could be caused by a lack of product detail. Spend some time filling in the blanks on your ecommerce site so that your customers know exactly what they’re buying.
5. Customer service
According to research from Microsoft, around 60% of shoppers have not completed an intended purchase because of poor customer service, while 66% of customers are willing to spend money with a brand they believe delivers high levels of customer care.
You could consider installing a chatbot function on your ecommerce site to provide customers with live help and support. According to Hubspot, 48% of customers would rather interact with a company via live chat than through any other method of communication. What’s more, 95% of consumers believe that customer service is going to be the main beneficiary of chatbot technology.
Putting some time and energy into enhancing and improving your digital strategy for retail can significantly boost the success of your online store. Start turbo charging your digital strategy now to see how much of an impact your changes can have.