“I’ve spent a lot of time, energy, and all my family savings on my business. Is it all for nothing?“
There is no saddest thing for a business as an abandoned website that isn't bringing in customers. Don’t blame yourself: even the best players face such problems because of fast-growing competition on the market. Either you sell luxury jewelry or craft voodoo dolls, you mustn’t forget that your website is the face of your business, your online reason to exist.
If your website is converting 5% this month, without any changes, it will remain the same the next month and who knows how many months after. You have to improve your project, and you have to do it today. There can be a lot of reasons why your website isn’t making money and how to get more online sales. So, take a deep breath and focus on finding your tricky mistakes and getting tips to improve your conversion rate and start to sell.
So, let’s head down the main reasons’ rabbit hole and find the way out.
The conversion increases online sales
It takes about 0.05 seconds for users to form an opinion about your page that determines whether they keep looking or leave for good. Thus, be careful: the tiniest thing can make the audience bounce off your site. All the reasons: long-loaded pages, not clear and concise brand messages, the background that overpowers the content, the font is too hard to read are producing the mess. Maybe, in our lives we don’t agree with saying “don’t judge a book by its cover”, but in the online business, it’s a complete truth. Websites are in an extreme zone of snap judgments that influence on loyalty at once, and it doesn’t help to increase website sales.
As you know, “demand determines supply.” It means that most people can’t stand to waste their free time or energy on shopping. So, they use the online shops to choose the desired item, pay for it, and order delivery whatever they having rest on a couch or running on a treadmill.
And it’s pretty crucial: over 57% of the Internet users say they won’t recommend a website which is poorly designed on the mobile or tablet. Not to mention not having this version of your platform at all. Your website can look like a masterpiece on a desktop, but if it doesn’t work or functions poorly on mobile, you can say goodbye to a growing segment of the online audience.
Shopify, a leading online shop, checked at data from more than 100,000 websites that use its platform and found that slightly more than 50% of shopping is being done via mobile. It leads us to one more important question: have you ever heard about Google Mobile-First Indexing? It means that the search will mainly use the mobile version of the content for indexing and ranking. Previously, Google used two indexes: for desktops and mobile. After the update, it doesn’t matter which device you use to make a request, Google will show the results from the mobile index.
Update from PHP5 to PHP7
For plenty of reasons, PHP is one of the best scripting languages for building scalable platforms. Studies have shown that almost 85% of the sites are written on it. This language was used to create such platforms as Rewe, ADAC, Commerzbank, and Facebook.
And nowadays your online business needs to go with the times: websites that are still built in the PHP5 language are already outdated in terms of technical requirements. It is poorly perceived by Google search engine. This type of sites don’t always open from mobile devices, so the optimization and promotion of a product or service are decreased several times.
PHP language has improved all over the years. With time it has become more advanced yet managed to stay simple. The latest edition of this scripting language is PHP7 that includes new features, important performance improvements, and enhanced security tools. Thus, raising from PHP5 to PHP7, you can appreciate the engine’s speed that increases incredibility using the minimum amount of memory. Also, be sure that PHP7 is a secure choice for database interaction with PDO, prepared statements, scalar data validation, and more.
Make the content great again
As you already know, people don’t spend much time focusing on the website’s content or don’t give second chances too often. This means if you don’t have the secret power to hypnotize your customer, thus increase online sales, make sure that you write good and current information.
You might have seen outdated copyright on the bottom of the website, or not a recent description or a price of the item. Here’s a tip from Small Business Trends: a website that looks out of date is an absolute disappointment to customers. And that makes sense: clients want to feel all the efforts the company puts to stay up and running, here and now, not years ago. It implies regularly adding new info and refreshing the existing content.
One more tricky thing about outdated content: it affects SEO optimization in the wrong way. Noticing something suspicious, Google can crack down your website and you’re no longer relevant to its search engine. Problems such as irrelevant links to the website’s theme, keyword stuffing, cloaking, and linking to unrelated websites are the most common in the hard ride to be on the top.
Another disturbing factor that may cause low sales on your website is the visual identity. Test yourself: check your website with your eyes wide open and ask friends with the third degree to get the answers. Does your website looks awesome and is it worth using it? If you’re not sure, remember: any design or usability snag a user hits on your platform can cost you no chance to turn that user into a lead.
A lot of research has been done about it. Most likely, many businesses already understand the consequences of bad branding. A strong brand stands out among its competitors and makes the business instantly recognizable to the customers. But it may lose the trust of the audience if the visual scheme of the site is unattractive or doesn’t match the whole strategy.
Think like a customer: if the visual identity of your beloved product looks like it was made in the early computers’ era, then don’t get upset if people associate the poor quality with your product or service.
We don’t want that. So, it is definitely worth spending an extra on making sure that the pictures/videos/fonts and else of your branding are strong. When you fix your website problems, you get a result: the higher conversion rate and income from gained sales. If you don’t, then it might be not your main problem, or it’s time to rethink your overall strategy and order an audit.
User journey as a strange quest
Slide left, then slide right and you got to the point. From the moment of entering your website and until the moment of making a purchase, the ideal way of the customer is like a trip along an empty highway. In case you’ve read the previous paragraph about branding: it is the trip with a beautiful landscape. In this case, the potential client seamlessly and simply moves from an acquaintance with your product or service to checkout.
The customer should receive all the necessary information on your site without additional downloads, switching to other resources and with minimum clicks. If he’s not, then your website has bad navigation design and one reason you’re not getting sales is that it’s too hard for people to actually — buy.
Even if you are a social media guru who brings thousands of visitors to your platform, you won’t succeed unless you create a seamless buying experience which doesn’t make people pretend to be a Sherlock Holmes.
For an ecommerce especially, it is important to showcase your products side-by-side with the user reviews, shipping options, and sizes. Make it easy to add products to cart and finally get an item.
No reviews, no opinions from customers
Adding social proof is always a good idea. The newcomers love to see other people buying or using your product. If your website doesn’t have any testimonials, your business is missing out a simple and effective marketing tool. The customers have become very selective, and descriptions of the pros of your product or service alone are no longer enough. The real-life reviews will help to build trust and encourage the client to purchase without being disturbed.
Please, close the online window
There is one more thing that annoys the users more then long-loaded pictures or videos. Imagine the excited customer who just got to your website. He didn’t spend 5 seconds on it, but he has already been attacked with suggestions. For example, “we will call you back in 15 seconds,” “leave the number and our consultant will contact you,” or “check our new collection” and else. Pop-ups that constantly hit you out of the blue are pretty disturbing even for the most patient person.
Feedback forms, pop-ups, banners, and online consultation chats are all good when they actually help to solve one’s problem. Not cool when they get on your nerves and make you want to close the site as soon as possible.
Did you forget your password?
All of us have been there. So, here’s a tip: you should not restrict access to your website to unregistered users. This creates a barrier between the customer and the product or service of your company. Too aggressive registration requirement causes users to doubt and unwill to share personal info because of fear of receiving spam. In many cases, consumers conclude that the information received is not worth sharing an email address. Let every visit be valuable on your site, do not force users to do what they do not want. Save it for the last: when the customers are ready to fill the form for an order.
Here’s one more idea
For some companies, it might not be obvious, but many purchasing decisions are made based on emotion, not based on price. Thus, every website is a field for judgments which could cause of the way the audience perceive your business as a whole.
Online marketing is a continual process of researching, testing, optimizing, and developing. When managed properly, your website will rise and shine, and afterwards — increase online sales.