For as much as the eCommerce industry relies on well made products which meets the needs of the customer, an equal reliance on personal connection also exists. Even though the internet has unequivocally removed many personal elements, the natural desire for these still resides within people. This has been proven on a variety of levels – if people do not feel connected to a company they could potentially purchase from, they are far less likely to follow through on that purchase. Obviously, no company wants to lose a sale. In fact, they would far prefer the opposite. Therefore, it stands to reason, making a concerted effort to connect with people through strategies geared for them is wise. Computer scientist and entrepreneur Paul Graham presented additional support for this approach, “You can’t wait for customers to come to you. You have to figure out where they are, go there and bring them back to your store”
The sheer number of unique types of people across the world may cause hesitation to rise within anyone attempting to improve their conversion rates through personalized eCommerce strategies. To alleviate this feeling, we have spoken to six different business experts for their opinions on this topic.
Make it Simple
Bradley Hall is the CEO of SONU Sleep, a brand offering mattresses designed for side sleepers. He believes keeping every aspect of a company’s online presence as basic as possible to invite more people in.
“Everyone has had the experience of preparing to go through an online checkout or registration page and skimming the amount of effort it will take to get through it all. You may not want to admit it, but I’m sure you’ve had a time where the amount of information being asked of you resulted in you closing the page and doing something else with your time entirely. As the person in charge of creating these online experiences, it’s important to realize how vital it is to make them as simple as possible.”
Social Proof is Your Best Friend
Tumble specializes in washable and spill proof rugs. Their Co-Founder, Justin Soleimani, suggests utilizing the preexisting relationships as building blocks for the future.
“The flashy advertisements and widespread marketing attempts will only get you so far, at least in my opinion. The world has shifted because of technology, but human behavior has really changed that much. For whatever reason, we’re wired to be much more trusting of another human being over anything else that can present an opinion. Companies have taken notice of this as evidenced by the unique uses of social proof, or the practice of using the thoughts and opinions of existing customers in your next marketing plan.”
Recognize the Give and Take
The nature of the interactions between customer and company can sometimes get lost in the proverbial shuffle. Kinoo is a business providing a video communication app and controller that uses augmented reality and virtual activities. Their CEO, Jim Marggraff, considers it necessary to pay attention to these relationship dynamics.
“In some magical vacuum, the world might be a more enjoyable place for business owners if they could sell or give nothing in return for a customer’s money. But that’s just not the world we live in. Customers give their money to companies because they are receiving something in return. That’s not to say companies should sit around and wait for this to happen. Doing that could spell your doom. Instead, to incentivize customer engagement, companies should make the first move by offering something first such as a discount or exclusive access.”
Do Not Overwhelm the User
Eric Elggren is the Co-Founder of Andar, a brand offering full grain leather wallets and leather goods. He advises others to think about how the customer will navigate a company’s website or social media page.
“First impressions are just as important online as they are face-to-face. When people open up a web page, what they see could be enough to influence their decision making one way or another. This may be a bit of an extreme example but the idea behind it still stands. One of the quickest ways to alienate a user is to overwhelm them. If people are overwhelmed or confused by the shopping or ordering process, they are more than happy to take their business elsewhere.”
Dive into Analytics
Arka specializes in eco-friendly custom packaging and sustainable boxes. Their CEO, Phillip Akhzar, believes there are nearly endless possibilities when it comes to the statistics involving online interaction.
“Online tracking software has brought us to a point where, provided you have the requisite system in place, you can see second by second information related to what people are doing on your website. The insights you can gain here should prompt massive change across the site. Why? Well, it should be apparent what is working for people and what isn’t. If this isn’t the case, you can consult some experts in the field. Either way, don’t sell yourself short by leaving your website design to guesswork.”
Keep your Theme
Internet literacy is very real, and most people have a solid grasp on it nowadays. OLIPOP provides canned soda made with alternative plant-based ingredients. Their E-commerce Manager, Melanie Bedwell, proposes taking this into account.
“I think each one of us has clicked an advertisement only to end up on a site that doesn’t resemble the company behind the ad. Or the product that was being marketed to you doesn’t appear the same on the site. Even if you haven’t had this happen to you, if it did happen to you, I’m sure you would recognize it right away. This is due to how well we know the internet at this point, it’s just second nature. So, to keep your potential customers from going through the same thing, make certain you keep your themes and images consistent.”
At the end of the day, it is critical to remember that each person is unique and different methods for improving conversion rates will be necessary. Furthermore, one must build relationships with these people. Bryan Eisenberg, the Co-Founder of BuyerLegends, put it best, “For you to achieve your goals, visitors must first achieve theirs.”