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Do you own an online store? Then you probably know that ecommerce is a booming business. Just look at the numbers: according to retail forecasts by eMarketer, sales are expected to exceed $5 trillion in 2022. But what if sales aren’t as booming for your business? 

First of all, don’t worry! There are many aspects to running a successful online store, such as offering a secure payment process and excellent customer service. Chances are, you need to work on one or two points. To help you out, we compiled five checklists to help you identify what needs improvement. Good luck!

1) Provide an excellent user experience

When you walk into a store, multiple things will influence if you liked your visit: gentle background music, pleasing scents, friendly and attentive sales associates, well-arranged displays.

Today’s ecommerce sites must find a way to foster a similar emotional reaction. You don’t want to be a means of fulfilling orders. You want customers to have a great experience browsing your site. By making sure they are, you will increase the chances of customers returning. Which is a win-win, if you ask us.

Checklist to create a better user experience:
  Clutter-free interface that states clearly what your business does
  Easy-to-navigate menus
  Well-organized products with clear descriptions, photos, and prices
  Effortless way to contact customer service—who also respond quickly
  Obvious social media “like” or “share” buttons
  Minimal pop-ups and fast page loads

2) Make it mobile friendly

Today’s customers are likely going to come to your site from their phones or tablets. So be sure to check if your website works well on these devices. Better yet: build a mobile version of your website, or get a responsive theme. Why? Because 88 percent of users say they won’t return to a website after having a negative experience the first time. 

That’s why we recommend making your website design responsive for every possible device. Seeing as there are many nowadays! 

Checklist to make your site mobile friendly:
  Keep your website design simple
  Use large fonts
  Place important information above the fold
  Design buttons that are easy to use with your finger
  Install or create a responsive design that automatically adjusts the display to adapt to all screen sizes

3) Make checkout easy

Let’s focus on another part of the customer journey: the checkout process. Because there’s a fine line between confirming an order, and turning a purchase into an obstacle course. Do your customers require ten screens to complete their purchase? Then that might be a deal breaker. 

Another reason why 68 percent of people abandon their shopping carts could be unexpected extra charges, a long checkout process, and too much effort. Your shoppers want the checkout process to be quick and easy.

Checklist for easy checkout:
  Include a progress indicator of the buying process
  Provide several payment options, including various credit cards, PayPal, and gift certificates
  Offer free shipping for purchases over a certain amount
  Indicate shipping and handling costs before checkout
  Include the option to sign in for a simpler purchasing transaction—which doesn’t require a lot of personal information
  Allow purchases without having to sign up
  Provide a direct link to customer service in case the transaction goes wrong

4) Include high-quality product photos

You probably know the phrase “a picture is worth a thousand words”. But have you focused on the quality of the photos on your website? If not, you should! Because studies show that people remember 80 percent of visually-based information compared to only 20 percent of text-based information. In other words: Images are powerful, and the better the quality of your product pictures, the better the chance you will make a sale.

Checklist for great product photos:
  Choose 1-3 photos for every product, so customers have as detailed a visual overview as possible. Don’t forget: Keep the number of pictures consistent for all products
  Showcase the product’s benefits. For example, include close-up pictures of a luxury blanket, photos of people wearing it, or shots of a slim laptop next to a magazine to illustrate how thin it is
  Show all colors or styles, rather than just one with a written mention of the others


5) Optimize for search engines

You can have the best ecommerce site in the world, but if nobody knows about it, you won’t make a sale. That’s why you need to focus on search engine optimization (SEO) if you own an online store. SEO is the practice of optimizing your web pages to organically increase (so without paying for it) your website’s visibility in the search engine result pages. In a nutshell, SEO means you’re telling search engines what you do and how to find you, so they can direct potential customers to your site.

Checklist for optimizing your site:
  Create quality content. Keep your product images, descriptions and web copy up to date and relevant
  Include relevant keywords. If you’re selling luxury baby blankets, you’ll want to create posts and pages that are optimized for relevant keywords. This also includes using the keyword in the URLs of a page or post, and in the alt text and file name of your images
  Link to or from other authoritative sites
  Ensure that all your pages have fast load times

In conclusion

If you can check off all of these features as part of your site, you will be set up to attract more visitors, provide them The bottom line: you need to reach your target audience, engage them on your site, and provide them with a pleasant shopping experience. If you can check off all of these lists, you’re well on your way. Good luck!

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