The main challenge in eCommerce since the dawn of eCommerce (aka the late 1990’s) has been how to improve conversion rates. Simply put. How can you get more visitors on your website to purchase your products.
As with any problem, it sometimes is easier to break a problem into different parts and address each part one at a time. To improve conversion rates on your eCommerce store (or with any offering) it is essential to consider the Results Triangle (shown below).
The Results Triangle is broken down into 3 components: Prospect, Process and Proposition. We will discuss each of the three sides in how they relate to an eCommerce website and how each of them can lead to improvements in conversion rates.
I start with Prospect because that is the easiest to define at least with an eCommerce business. Prospect are those visitors to your website, you know, the ones who aren’t buying as much as we think they should?
The easiest way to determine if your Prospects “are right” is to analyze your paid traffic results. For Google Ads, you can review your Search Terms report from Google Ads or your User Query report in Google Analytics. For more information on this process, review Chapter 11 of Make Each Click Count Using Google Shopping.
Are those search terms driving traffic for the relevant search terms?
There is no mystery in Google traffic, that is why I like it. You can view what is driving the traffic, which will help you determine if you are targeting the right prospect.
Then, look at your conversion rates from your Google paid ads’ visitors. Is the conversion rate higher, lower, or approximately even with conversion rate from other paid and non-paid traffic sources?
Other traffic sources, whether they are also paid traffic sources like FB ads or organic or referral partners is more challenging to determine the Prospect.
However, by reviewing conversion rates by each specific traffic channel you can determine if there are any outliers to your overall conversion rate.
If there are?
If there is a conversion rate that is substantially lower than other channels, chances are that channel is not targeting the right (or at least) the same Prospect as other channels.
This is where most eCommerce websites spend most of their time optimizing. This is your checkout process, this is how your pages look, this is how fast your webpages load, etc.
Although it is important to have a website that removes barriers to conversion, it is not the most important aspect of improving conversion. Rather, it is just one side of the triangle.
I have seen websites that to be blunt, absolutely horrible, still have very good conversion rates.
How you ask?
By having the proper traffic (PROSPECT) and having what they want that others may not (PROPOSITION).
Remember, the Results Triangle is a triangle. A triangle has 3 sides. To fully optimize conversion, you need to focus on each of those sides.
Proposition is looking at your offer. Not necessarily your offer for just one item on your website, but you offer as a complete microcosm.
Think of it with the question, ‘why should a visitor buy from your website?’
Now look at your website.
Now look at your website as if you were a visitor who just landed on a page for the first time.
Can you answer that question?
Be honest, if there are competitors in your space, why should a website visitor purchase from your website instead of those competitors?
Hopefully, it is not just because you have the lowest price. Because, if you are competing on just price that makes you a commodity. And unless you have a way to offer the item lower than anyone else can (say you are Walmart or Amazon), eventually competing on just price will put you in trouble.
Instead think of your USP (unique selling proposition). What makes your website better than your competitors AND are you effective communicating that to your visitors?
Are you effectively communicating that USP on those pages where you are driving both new and returning traffic or just on your home page?
Beyond communicating your USP are you offering social proof? Do you have reviews where they are easy to find?
It is funny, shoppers don’t want to be first. I guess it is part our caveman DNA that it is difficult to be the first to wander outside the cave. Having reviews, shows you are trusted, and it shows that others have put their trust in you, and you have delivered.
The last thing you want to be is just another. Just another t-shirt company…. Just another coffee machine selling company… Just another whatever widget you are selling company…
Change your Proposition to change your results.
The Results Triangle hopefully gives you a fresh look at how to look at your conversion and more importantly what you can do to increase your conversion.
When it comes to conversion, it is important to measure and test. Make sure you understand the importance of both, or you will face difficulties in making improvements.
Once you understand how the Results Triangle works, then tweaking your Prospects, your Process or your Proposition can actually be fun. Even more than fun it can be the way you’ve been looking for to improve your conversion rates and start generating more sales online!
Still need help or looking for someone to bounce ideas off? I am currently offering free marketing discovery sessions to those interested. Call True Online Presence at 1-888-456-6943 or schedule online.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Andy Splichal is the founder and managing partner of True Online Presence, author of the Make Each Click Count book series, host of the Make Each Click Count podcast, founder of Make Each Click Count University and certified online marketing strategist with twenty plus years of experience helping companies increase their online presence and profitable revenues.
He has been called the foremost expert in eCommerce Marketing Growth Strategies. He was named to Best of Los Angeles Awards’ Most Fascinating 100 List in both 2020 and 2021. To find more information on Andy Splichal, visit www.trueonlinepresence.com or read The Full Story on his website or his blog, blog.trueonlinepresence.com.