4 Ways to Improve your Conversion Rate Starting Today

We probably don't have to tell you that driving traffic to your online store is only half the battle, but did you know that conversion rates typically range from 1 to 3 percent? That means that around 97 percent of the visitors don't actually buy anything.

If you've been keeping up with Travis Phipps' Hitchhikers guide to Ecommerce PPC management, then you're already beginning to learn how optimizing your PPC (Pay Per Click) ads can have a serious impact on sales. But what other techniques can you put in place to improve conversion?

Take a look at these 4 actionable ways that you can start increasing your conversion rates today...

1. Build buyer trust

Fact: 63% of customers are more likely to make a purchase from a site that has product reviews

Getting someone to part with their money can be difficult, especially if they are a new customer to your Ecommerce store. Building buyer trust is crucial to making the sale, and there are quite a few techniques to put in place to action this.

The truth is, people trust people ahead of corporations and brands, so customer reviews are quite possibly the best sales tool you can have. According to Reevo, 50 or more product reviews can increase conversion rates by 4.6%, so aim high and get as many as you can.

Encourage previous customers to write reviews, offer them an incentive, or if you don't have enough budget to do that then you can always send them an email reminder after they've received your product.

Don't just stop at product reviews to help build up trust. A customer is more likely to buy if you provide them with a product guarantee, and you offer a credible returns and exchange policy. Ensure that all information regarding your payment terms and refund policy is clearly visible for your customers.

Ensuring that your site is verified is another good step to take as it provides added security and reassurance. You can buy an SSL security certificate and once verified, your address will change to show as https, and depending on what package you pay for, the address bar will turn green and feature a padlock.

We also recommend that you brush up on your service skills and respond to customers when they communicate with you. Build a help desk on your site so they can chat with you if they have any questions. We'd recommend using LiveChat as a platform to instantly talk to your customers. It provides seamless integration on your site and they even offer a free 30-day trial. Making sure you are quick to respond to any customer enquiry is an important step in building up trust.

Action Points:

  • Convince previous customers to leave product reviews and feature them next to the products.
  • Clearly outline your terms and conditions with guarantee, refund and exchange information.
  • Purchase an SSL certificate to ensure added security on your site.
  • Provide responsive customer service at all times – use an instant messaging platform such as LiveChat.

2. Optimize landing pages to target the right customer

Fact: 44% of clicks are directed to a home page, not a landing page

No matter what method you are using to drive traffic, whether it's from your social, an email promotion or a PPC ad, you need to make sure that landing page is fully optimized to meet their needs. After all, the last thing you want to do is increase your bounce rate and waste your marketing efforts.

Firstly, the keywords that you use need to be targeted to bring in the right traffic. Use specific keywords that your customers will be searching, as this means they are closer to the purchasing process. For example, 'Female Nike running jacket' is highly targeted, where-as 'running clothes' is too broad and this person is likely to continue shopping around.

In addition to featuring the product that they are shopping for, you also need to ensure that you're providing them with a seamless user experience. Don't clutter your landing page with distractions such as pop-ups, as this can be a huge turn off. Make sure you include attractive imagery to go alongside the product, and really show them the value, by using powerful headlines and outlining the benefits.

The final point to make when optimizing your landing page is that you need to make sure your CTA (Call to Action) buttons are prominent and above the fold. Remember that it's ok to ask for the sale and that you should make it easy and obvious for the customer to click it and lead them to the sale.

Action points:

  • Choose more specific keywords to target customers who are further down the sales funnel
  • Direct traffic to the right landing page for your promotion
  • Ensure your landing page is fully optimized, outline the benefits, use nice product photography and powerful headlines.
  • Make your CTA's prominent and above the fold

Related reading: If you're looking for tips on product photography then check out our cheat sheet.

3. Simplify your shopping cart process

Fact: 68.06% of online shopping carts are abandoned

Now that's a frightful statistic to read isn’t it? You spend so much effort getting people to add your products to their shopping cart, only to find that nearly 69% of people will just up and leave! What you need to do is look into the reasons why, in order to get them to convert...

We think that it's mainly due to a complex process that could be so easily simplified. People will abandon their cart if:

  1. You're asking them for too many details
  2. Your website crashed or ran slow during the process
  3. Extra costs were added
  4. The price was in a foreign currency
  5. There wasn’t enough payment methods

So to tackle these points you need to go through your shopping cart process step-by-step and find ways that you can change it for the better. Start by making sure that your online store is fully responsive and offers a quick load time. Don't overcomplicate the process by making it a requirement to register in order to buy, or by asking for too many details from the customer and if necessary, hire a solid digital ad agency to help.

Next, provide clear information at each point so that the customer isn’t alarmed by something they didn’t expect. For example, add thumbnail images of the product they are buying, with clear product information and its full price in the currency of their country. Try and use every payment method possible, including PayPal, so you are giving the customer a wide choice.

If your customer does get to the billing page and they realize that there is an unexpected item in their cart, make sure you provide them with the tools so that they can edit it. If you can afford it, offer free shipping as this will boost the chance of a sale. If however you still have customers abandoning their carts and you have their email address, send them a persuasive incentive so that they come back to your online store and make the sale.

Action points:

  • Ensure you are using a fast server and your site is responsive across every device.
  • Include product photos and price information at each stage, so there are no hidden surprises.
  • Give the customer plenty of choice by using as many payment methods as possible.
  • Offer free shipping or send an email incentive for people who have abandoned their cart.

4. Implement A/B testing

Fact: According to Steelhouse, A/B testing is the most common testing method for improving conversion rates

A/B testing is the best way to find out what is working for your site, and it can seriously help with your conversion rates. It's important to remember that A/B testing is not something that you should use only once. You need to be testing your entire website constantly, so that you're providing customers with their most favored option.

The great thing about A/B testing is that you can test anything you like. Whether it's your CTA buttons, the colors of your product pages, the placement of your products, or even your copy – A/B testing gives you clear insights into what customers respond best to.

Put a strategy in place so that you are finding out data that can you act upon. Testing out different promotions is ideal to get maximum sales. Say for example you are running two promotions: '10% off with purchases over $50', or 'free shipping with purchases over $50', by using A/B testing you can find out the best one and use similar promotions in future.

It can also help you pinpoint the right place to display your ads, discover how much copy you should be using underneath your products and which headline has the most impact. There's many A/B testing tools out there, so make sure you use the right one for your online store.

Action points:

  • Test promotions, copy and product pages for impactful results
  • Put a clear strategy in place so you know what you want to test
  • Learn from your data and make long-term changes
  • Continuously use A/B testing so you always know what your customers want
  • Shop around for the right tools to suit your store


So there you have it, 4 ways that can help you improve your conversion rate! Optimizing your store, providing a great user experience and testing your site are clear takeaways to help you on the road to success. But if you are looking for even more ways to boost conversion then check out our ebook that offers 10 ways to drive traffic that converts shoppers into buyers!

Do you have any additional conversion tips? Let us know in the comments below. And if you ever need help with ecommerce software or your retail storefront selling tools, let us know.