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13 May 2015
The rise of e-commerce in recent years has been phenomenal. Amazon is now one of the top ten retailers in the US with sales of $44 billion last year and many of its happy customers made their purchases via mobile devices. Research data indicates that mobile is bagging an increasing share of the online e-commerce marketplace. The main reason for this is because it is easy. If you are out and about – at a coffee shop, on the train or even strolling along a beach – and you get a sudden urge to invest in a new pair of shoes or a laptop, it is easy to connect to an e-commerce store and click ‘buy it now’.
E-commerce is great for consumers, but the rise of mobile has created a whole new set of problems for some webmasters. They need to be optimised to function properly on the smaller screen of a smartphone or tablet. After all, if your website doesn’t perform well on a mobile device you will lose sales. So how can you increase your mobile revenue?
One of the biggest problems with viewing websites on mobile devices is that they can take ages to load. The longer a website page hangs before loading, the more likely you are to lose a customer to a rival. The best way to avoid this from becoming an issue is to use good quality website hosting and compress large files.
Images are very important on any website, but on an e-commerce site they are even more important. People want to be able to see what they are buying clearly so make sure images are good quality and the right size. That way visitors don’t need to zoom right in to view them.
Pages need to be formatted correctly on mobile devices. When there are links embedded in the page, this is even more essential. Make sure you leave enough space between links so visitors don’t accidentally click on the wrong link – it’s annoying when this happens and it can be enough to cause them to back click. In Google’s eye’s this is one of main criteria which will determine whether a website is mobile friendly. If you’re unsure you can test your website using the Google Mobile Friendly Test.
Mobile e-commerce stores should be easy to navigate. Customers don’t want to spend time messing around trying to find products. Provide a simple, easy to use filter and search tool on the front page to reduce the number of clicks it takes to find something.
Flash players don’t load on mobile devices so it’s best practice to address this in the design of your website.
Make sure customers can see when they have added products to their shopping cart. Checkout needs to be quick and easy. The more complicated it is, the less likely customers are to complete the process. Give customers the option to buy as a guest and use a simple payment system so they don’t need to input lots of cumbersome information and card details.
Do you sell the types of products customers might want to buy on a regular basis such as pet food, light bulbs, and protein supplements? If so, set up email reminders to help customers re-order their favourite items with the minimum of hassle.
Coupon codes are a great way of encouraging customers to leave glowing testimonials after buying products from your e-commerce store.
Loyalty schemes ensure happy customers keep on coming back. Set up a loyalty programme and start building positive relationships with your customers. The more valued a customer feels, the more likely they are to make repeat purchases.
It doesn’t matter how wonderful your mobile e-commerce store is – if your prices are a lot higher than your competitors’, customers will go elsewhere for their products.
Implementing ‘click to call’ means customers can call you direct from the site if they have a query.
Optimising your e-commerce site for mobile users will certainly help to boost your sales potential. Research in 2104 indicated that 23% of all mobile sales in the UK come from mobile, so mobile optimisation is not something you can afford to ignore.
If you need any help or advice regarding your E-Commerce website give us a call today.