Boost your e-commerce conversion rate - 10 Tips to success

As a website owner or internet marketer, you'll probably know the profitability of a website and what it sells is based on conversion rates. Increasing this by just 1% in some cases can mean millions extra income, for others a 50% increase will mean a larger profitability such that the company can survive - obviously this is at the top of the agenda as the UK faces a double-dip recession. But why increase conversion rates and not work on advertising or improving rankings? The answer is conversion rates hit the bottom line, increasing traffic through PPC or advertising can cost a lot, where as small improvements to websites to increase conversions costs little and increases profitability off the bat! So here are my 10 Top Tips to e-commerce conversion success

<h4><span style="color: #3366ff;"><strong>Guarantees</strong></span>

Offering a meaningful guarantee, which is easy to understand will help form a trusting relation ship with users. If it is a physical product the user will expect the same rights and guarantees they would receive from the high street. But remember don't include 25 exclusions means that actually no one could ever figure out how to use it, let alone actually make use of it. Keep It Simple Stupid!

"Trusted" Logos Whether you are selling clothes or cd's one of the most important things to do is to inspire trust. It sound's odd but it's easy to do and really effective. Take for example SafeBuy or the ISIS scheme or verified by visa, such schemes all have logos that are easy to get hold off when you sign up. If you are rated well buy these guys you'll inspire trust. But go further, add a review box to your website from an independant source, show that your customers trust you (take a peek at the cheap tents, trustpilot, review box below their sidebar).

Vouchers and Coupons Offering regular voucher codes to buyers is a sure way to get them to come back looking for more, as well as showing you are a company that cares about it's customers back pockets. If you are going to put these offers into the public domain, such as 10% off using this code, maybe you could get them to sign up to a mailing list to get the code ... it sounds cheeky but this way you can send them even more savings and your latest news - it's a win win situation.

Promotions I know of very few people that ever want to, or are even happy to, pay full price for an item. Most markets are saturated with special offers, and whilst you can't always beat the offer you should at least give some kind of offer - even if its say 10% off your next purchase or something along these lines. One fact often over looked is that promoting things in public will drive people to your site / landing page, but more often than not they will buy something else from the same range instead of the promoted product.

Perks of Membership Creating a newsletter is a fantastic way of getting into the homes and offices of possible customers. In essence they sign up to receive your special offers and latest news, then maybe once or twice a month you send them a newsletter containing just that, and an exclusive gift sometimes ... maybe they get a free pump with every 2 bike tires purchased. Something else overlooked about membership lists is that people usually sign up because they are interested in buying from you, but maybe not right now. So giving them something such as a 10% off code to sign up is a great idea and may help get that sale a little quicker.

Payment Options Different types of sites call for different types of payment method. You should try to keep everything neat and tidy and not offer too many methods. Maybe by default you use PayPal but also offer an ability to pay by another gateway ... why this way around? well PayPal is a "trusted" system, people know how to use it and almost everyone will have heard of it. In addition to this maybe you could offer to take order over the phone, because some people are sceptical of security on the web. Or for more elderly based website offer payment on delivery, this is what Wiltshire Farm Foods do.

Personality Adding a touch of personality, that human touch, to a website can be hugely effective in increasing conversions. Everyone knows most website use manufacturers descriptions - they are all the same - but why not add a little humanity to it by maybe saying "this waterproof jacket is perfect for keeping you warm and dry this winter" it's not much hard work and it's enough to beat your competitors in most cases.

Clear Terms There is nothing like a page full of jargonised crap text to make me cringe and decide not to read it. Think about it, with any software you install you "agree" to the terms and conditions but have you ever read them? No, at least not until it's too late! So why make your customers go through the same thing, keep everything simple and categorised, there is no need for 15 pages of terms ... ever!

Present Benefits, Not Features Most websites will sell based on features of a product. But again it's a little boring and none engaging, so again add some personality and say something like "this waterproof jacket has a gore-tex outershell designed to keep you warm and protect you from the rain" - it tells you the feature but also about the benefit and how it can help the customer. Engaging the customers mind is often the key to conversion.

Plenty of Photos Imagery is an often over looked part of the web, each website has its own image and theme ... thats great. But so does each product and it's you job to bring that image out and to show the world. So for example with a waterproof jacket you may show a full view, zip view, vent views and views of other features of interest. The better the image the more engaging and the more likely someone will click "add to cart".