By Moosa Hemani
If you are in the eCommerce industry, then you probably work on different campaigns throughout the year in order to engage your current customers and potential customers. The real goal of all these campaigns at the end of the day is to get more targeted traffic to your website that converts into sales for your business.
Campaigns are great, but they are not the only things that offer more conversions. There are multiple extensions, tools and plugins that you can use within your website in order to make better business decisions and convert more potential visitors into paying customers, both while you’re running campaigns and just with your everyday organic traffic.
In this post today I am going to discuss a handful of tools that you can use on your website and improve conversions accordingly. They all offer proven ways to increase sales and conversions, so what are you waiting for?
1. SEO Extension/Plugin
No matter what CMS you are using for your ecommerce website, there are a ton of different SEO extensions available. If you are using WordPress or Woocomemrce, I would personally recommend trying Yoast SEO over any other plugin available. If you are using any other CMS like Joomla or Magento just look into their extension directory and you will find some tools that can help you with that. Remember to read reviews from other ecommerce site owners, not just any reviews.
SEO extensions/plugins will help you with your organic visibility and make sure that you have right Titles and Meta Descriptions set for each page available on the website. They can also help you make your URL structure more user-friendly, which can actually have a positive effect on conversions as well.
Once your basic SEO is set, you will have more chances to get better visibility from your industry related key phrases. Once you will rank better in search engine from the targeted key phrases, you will receive more targeted traffic which leads to more conversions for your website.
Note: Title, Meta descriptions and URL structure are important but this is not all what SEO is all about. You still have to take care of duplicate content, links pointing to your website, internal linking, blog optimization and more.
2. Product Review Plugin
Plugins for product reviews are another extension/plugin that most ecommerce websites don’t use or at least don’t pay much attention to. Product review plugins–if used properly–can do real wonders when it comes to sales and conversions.
If you are using Woocommerce, Product Review Pro is a good product review plugin. On the other hand if you are using Magneto, I personally will recommend using Ahead Work’s Advanced Reviews.
How do product reviews increase conversions? This is the number one question that some people might ask and the answer is hidden in Robert Cialdini’s principle called Social Proof. It says that we’re assuming that if lots of other people are doing something, then it must be OK.
When a potential customer is on the product page and is in the decision making process. Positive product reviews allow them to make a decision in your favor and they tend to convert instead of bouncing from one product to other. This is because they feel OK with it because other people are fine with it.
Note: The idea is not only to include the product review plugin on the website but encourage people to add product reviews. You can do this by sending them follow up emails after purchases, or offering them discounts in exchange for leaving product reviews on your website.
3. Live Chat Plugin
This is another great idea that many smart ecommerce websites are using. The idea is very simple. When a potential customer is on the website, he is looking for answers to all of the questions that pop up in his mind.
What can be better than communicating with the potential customers in real time and helping them convert in your favor? There are tons of live chat software available but if you ask for my personal recommendation, I vote for ClickDesk and this is because they are smart, cost-effective and have almost every feature that you need to chat with clients without irritating them. They even include video chat that works directly in the browser.
Note: It is very important for you to communicate politely and your ultimate goal when chatting with potential customers is to help them make better decision instead of pushing them towards buying a product from your website.
[Tweet “Don’t Sell, Help Customers Buy!”]
4. Heat Maps
There are tons of good heat maps available out there. The basic job of a website heat map is to track user behavior when they are on your website and give an overview of this behavior. Heat maps tell website owners how the people are reacting with the website and what are the areas on the website where people focus the most.
I personally recommend Crazy Egg over others and this is because their heat maps are accurate and explain exactly how users are acting when they are on your website.
All you have to do is to look into the data that this tool provides and make changes on your website accordingly. The changes can be in design, color or text. Once done, test the results and I am sure the results will definitely help you increase your conversion rate. Heat maps help you give users more of what they’ve already shown they want!
5. Marketing CRMs
Who doesn’t want to sell like the Fortune 500? But this is easier said than done. To really sell like the big stores, you need to have contact-level data and use this data for automatically personalized marketing and retention campaigns.
Many ecommerce businesses think that you need to incorporate lot of different tools in order to create effective marketing automation. But instead of adding lot of different tools in your pocket and increasing your marketing budget like crazy, try using one of the new “all-in-one” sales and marketing CRMs on the market today. Some of the best, like Hubspot and Agile CRM, are actually affordable for small businesses.
A combined sales-and-marketing CRM will allow your sales and marketing data to stay in one place so you can make better business decisions. You can set up automated email campaigns, web engagement, social media and more at one place and get a better grip on your existing and potential customers.
Once you will have a better grip you will send them better and more personalized messages that encourage them to convert and get you more sales for your business.
I hope those 5 tools help you get bigger sales and more customers this holiday shopping season! Of course, there are other tools to consider too. I avoided talking about the obvious ones like Google Analytics and Moz.com. Have a tool that has helped you dramatically increase your ecommerce conversions? Share it here in the comments section.
Moosa Hemani is a search marketing consultant. He shares his thoughts and experiences on his blog setalks.com. Follow him on Twitter (@mmhemani) to get in touch with him.