Presentation objective: to help companies who are trying to generate either orders or leads from their website Provide some pointers and tips from our experience in web development. ‘ Golden nuggets’: simple actions that can be put in place quickly with immediate impact
Two extremes! I have seen both…and still can’t figure out which is the best method! People new to ecommerce often cannot see the wood from the trees, but it is always best to set your expectations as a minimum
It does help to set yourself some realistic ambitions and properly plan out an online strategy. Web marketing is very demanding. It requires prescription and a focus to be cost-effective. For instance a company selling pet food cannot simply setup a website and instantly expect results. Nor can cost-effective demand be stimulated through, say, PPC advertising. If you are bidding on ‘pet food’ and carrying a huge range, the likelihood is that you will be out of business within months. It is better to FOCUS. For example, carry a smaller range of specialist pet food and optimise your acquisition and conversion strategy on narrower terms e.g. client who re-focussed on pedigree breeders cat food. It was cheaper service and attracted higher converting visitors to the site. Less is more! The marketing mix of 4 P’s is equally applicable to online business.
It is easy to get lost in the process of growing your online business. Accept that the costs, complexity and expectations will only increase as you grow. ‘ Cut your cloth’ and take advantage of inexpensive solutions in your startup phase with a view to migrating in future Solutions generally fall into pigeonholes, but rarely transcend all stages of growth. Importantly, keep control of your data, don’t lock into long contracts and acquire expertise from vendors
Can you sell baked beans through a website? May be so, if you think laterally and globally. The Vegemite story – commodity Australian product sold through a website to customers around the world at a premium. Clicks & Mortar is all about your credentials – there is still a lot of mistrust. Show your customers that you are real people with proper resources. Think about what happens once you get an order or enquiry….then think about what happens when you get 50 orders. Sink or swim? Clicks - put yourself in your customers shoes. Does the site respond to their needs? Where are the sources of frustration and friction in the purchase/enquiry process? If you are selling internationally, have you considered local issues. The US State code story – 2 digits is the difference between delivery and loss. Resources – web operations need people!
So much to think about…it almost puts one off going online! The most important factor of all is customer expectations – 28 days to 28 hours story. Large retailers like Amazon and Asos are setting the standard and, somehow, smaller niche players have to compete.
TLAs sell software and services - IT companies are bred to overcomplicate things! But software is complicated and much works goes on sub-surface to create the ease of use to which we are familiar Don’t be impressed with acronyms, be wary of them and their meaning. Some are actually very important. Use Wiki! Web 2.0 means many different things but I believe it marks the progression of the web from an information resource to a participatory environment, driven by familiar sites like Twitter and Facebook. Harness Web 2.0 – its depth will become far more apparent in the coming years.
The beauty of the web, there are loads of free tools, applications and services to choose from. YSlow analyzes web pages and suggests ways to improve their performance based on a set of rules for high performance web pages . YSlow is a Firefox add-on integrated with the Firebug web development tool. Smush.it for image optimisation Firebug for code analysis – i.e. how efficient is the programming behind your site?
Google Analytics is the start of your journey – if you haven’t got it, you are probably flying blind. Comparing your stats week on week will not give you the full picture. It is inevitable that people will bounce out of your site. Your perceptions of site performance may be far removed from reality. Unfortunately there is not much assistance available from vendors or industry bodies – they like to closely guard their stats.
One of the keys to improving web profitability is analytics There are many companies making big money out of this alone. By tracking the key performance indicators of your site, you can make quick decisions and often cheap actions to improve.
Unfortunately there is not much assistance available from vendors or industry bodies – they like to closely guard their stats. WE DO SHARE INTELLIGENCE because we think it is for the greater good.
Over and above developing your site and proposition, there are two main levers to improve online profitability – acquisition and conversion. Acquisition is all about driving visitors to your site, BUT there is a distinction between visitors and customers! Many companies make the mistake of putting the all their energies into attracting visitors to their site. This is folly! Consider the figures… The cost of acquisition can be substantial, particularly if you are paying for traffic, affiliate referrals or incentives. Double the traffic = double the sales, but at what cost?
By enhancing your site to convert more visitors into buyers, you can reduce your acquisition costs substantially whilst still doubling your sales.
For a nation of ‘queuers’, our patience does not extend to the web. If your site is slow, visitors walk away…in seconds! Consider ‘Form vs Function’ Consider the assets on your site – high res images, movies etc are good, but they eat up bandwidth Also bad code and poor hosting are factors
The reason we have a LH nav is primarily down to this research – the ‘F’ shape eyemap. Clients trying to re-invent navigation will fail because humans are programmed to interact with websites in defined way. Does your site conform?
Instinctively we look to the top Right for instant information like checkout, basket and info links Use positive colours such as red and green in buttons Don’t hide you light under a bushel – be bold – site visitors need a shove to buy!
Strong copy and calls to action! Get them to do something. AIDA formula Attention Interest Desire Action Make them do something – sign up, buy, download, open, click etc. Use positive colours on buttons such as greens and reds Always start an action button with a verb like ‘get a quote’ rather than ‘more information’ Use terms the customer instinctively understands – ‘basket’ rather than ‘cart’ is a good example.
Personal shopper Needs driven navigation Proven to increase site conversion by between 1-3% Does your site respond to the needs of your visitors?
Most internet shoppers are nervous, especially readers of the Daily Mail! Make sure that you go out of your way to re-assure your visitors of site security, testimonials, delivery charges etc.
How many clicks to checkout on your site? Up to 87% of baskets are abandoned. 75% return but don’t necessarily complete their order. Abandonment is therefore a HUGE challenge. It can never be eradicated – people are twitchy. BUT we can tilt the odds in our favour Telephone support to complete baskets – good for technical or fashion products One page checkout – long-winded registrations put people off!
All processes structured around the customer and customer care. If you let down your customer once, there is seldom another opportunity to redeem yourself. Think about how you: Process orders Handle returns Ship goods and provide documentation Manage stock and purchasing Are you geared up to handle orders and enquiries? Does everyone in your business understand their role? Make data flow Remove ‘silos’ of information
We are always happy to help and are proactive in the local business community.
Making the Grade in eCommerce A Suppliers [honest] Opinion
Get Planning <ul><li>The 5-Pager helps! </li></ul><ul><li>Manage your own expectations </li></ul><ul><li>Measure suppliers </li></ul><ul><li>It is not essential! </li></ul><ul><li>… but you only get out what you put in </li></ul>
It aint a cakewalk! Localisation The Virtues of ‘Clicks and Mortar’ Resource the operation properly How many clicks? Integrate the shopping experience Select the right platform Market your site Security Payment processing
… and the rest The Economy The State and Regulation Technology People Culture Customer Expectations!
Sorry, I haven’t a clue… <ul><li>Understand and intepret your website analytics </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t take the numbers in isolation – track and action </li></ul><ul><li>Stick to the common denominators: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Bounce rate and page views (#) – how ‘sticky’? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Conversion rate (%) – how usable? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Site visits (#) – how attractive? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Average order value (#) – how clever? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Basket Abandonment (%) – how persuasive? </li></ul></ul>
A bit of a steer… <ul><li>Exact Abacus ACE Index </li></ul><ul><li>Bounce Rate – 30% </li></ul><ul><li>Conversion Rate – 3.4% (range was 1.1% - 7.4%) </li></ul><ul><li>Average Order Value - £46.00 </li></ul><ul><li>*6 months up to 1 st July 10 </li></ul><ul><li>Catex Index </li></ul><ul><li>Page Views Per Visit – 11 </li></ul><ul><li>Conversion Rate – 4.4% </li></ul><ul><li>*July 10 </li></ul>
Acquisition vs Conversion Getting people to your website is important… Conversion Rate Number of Uniques Orders Monthly Revenue 0.50% 20,000 100 £10,000 0.50% 25,000 125 £12,500 0.50% 30,000 150 £15,000 0.50% 35,000 175 £17,500 0.50% 40,000 200 £20,000
Acquisition vs Conversion … but the smart money goes on ‘conversion’ Conversion Rate Number of Uniques Orders Monthly Revenue 0.50% 20,000 100 £10,000 1.00% 20,000 200 £20,000 1.50% 20,000 300 £30,000 2.00% 20,000 400 £40,000 2.50% 20,000 500 £50,000 3.00% 20,000 600 £60,000
Homepage Load <ul><li>www.amazon.co.uk – 1.73secs, Grade C </li></ul><ul><li> www.asos.com – 2.65secs Grade E </li></ul><ul><li> www.marksandspencer.com – 2.15secs Grade D </li></ul><ul><li> www.outdoorlook.co.uk – 1.34secs Grade C </li></ul><ul><li>www.exactabacus.com – 0.95secs Grade A! </li></ul><ul><li>Over 50% of site visitors bounce out if homepage takes over 3 seconds to load! </li></ul>
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All those questions I meant to ask… … but didn’t Contact Lee Thompson, Stephen Ross or Ashley Preston for further advice [email_address] Or 01772 455 052