E-commerce is becoming mainstream, and more stores are launched on daily basis. Nowadays, there are many powerful platforms and supported services that allow creating a successful online business as well as comprehensive resources that can offer you tips and guides on how to do it. But even so, there are such online stores that look like they don’t want to have customers and don’t care about sales.
In this article, we look at common mistakes due to which customers don’t make a purchase and, moreover, quickly leave your online store.
1. Attract users to visit an online store “for love or money”
Some merchants think that the more visitors in the online store, the more products can be sold. If we consider only the number of visitors, it is not so difficult to drive the traffic. The only question is whether or not the potential clients among these visitors.
For example, the user finds an online music store using the search request “mp3 music download free.” Such requests are popular and can generate the traffic. But such people aren’t going to buy something; they want to have music for free, and so they will probably leave the store in a few seconds.
The same situation is with the relevance of information to the user’s request. If the text on the page does not meet or only partially meets the user’s requests, the result will be the same.
Take into account that the bounce rate affects the Google rankings. If it is high, that means users didn’t find what they need on this page and so the page can be decreased in the ranking.
2. Attempts to hide full costs and inform about them on the last step of checkout
It is the direct way to lose customers. Checkout is the most important process in e-commerce. If the user is on checkout stage that means that he or she spent time to search the product. Maybe the user visited different stores, compares prices, delivery condition and finally decided where and what he or she wanted to buy.
To make the right choice is not such an easy task, especially when we deal with expensive products. And if on the last step another price is provided, the user will definitely leave the store and buy nothing.
3. Limits for unregistered users
It is a huge mistake to ask users to register and do not give them access to certain services. Between registered and unregistered users should not be any differences. The registration may be mandatory only during checkout when the user is going to place the order.
4. A poor product searches functionality
To allow users to find the right product is also very important online store functionality. All people have their search criteria. For example, women can search by colors and men can use technical parameters to find what they need.
A good navigation that allows users to use the product filters is must be in any online store. It is not so easy technical task, but before this all possible search criteria for all products and categories should be identified correctly and only this fact can guarantee the successful implementation of the navigation in the online store.
5. Give too much information on a product page
Any long text on the product page looks difficult to read. A picture costs 1,000 words – so, appropriate images should be provided here. That said, not only images, you should also focus on text content, particularly considering that search engines “read” text better than image.
Don’t forget to well-organize your text; it’s easier to read, and it can actually help you “sell” your products. If there are different types of information, such as general and technical characteristics, tips for using and so on, it is better to place this information in different tabs.
6. Pop-up ads
Think about your feelings and emotions when pop-up advertising appears on the page. This type of ads is very annoying. It obscures the text and blocks any activity until it is closed. Despite this, many websites use it. It is because the pop-up ads guarantee that the visitor will definitely see the message. That said, it should be used very carefully. You need to have a very good reason for imposing your message and show it as a pop-up ad.
Don’t forget; it is also important to analyze the bounce rate before and after the implementation of the advertising on the website. If your ads are negatively impacting your user experience, you’d better take them off.
7. A large number of annoying elements
As it was mentioned above, the pop-up ads are obviously categorized as an annoying element. But it is not the only one: Animated banners can also spoil the impression about the website.
The best way to measure the effectiveness of such elements is to test the site for usability and ask real users what they like/don’t like. Pay attention to the element such as Captcha. It is implemented for security to identify bots and other “evil” visitors, but it can also annoy regular visitors. Be careful, in an attempt to be more secure, you could lose the real buyers.
8. Fail to update seasonal content in time
If the user read old information on the product pages, it also influences your store negatively because it seems that the owner doesn’t care about the readers of the outdated information a.k.a. potential buyers. To avoid this situation you need to delete outdated information and replace it with a fresh one. For example, after the end of Christmas season sales don’t forget to delete all banners, New Year’s design elements, and discounts information from the pages.
9. Publish low-quality content
Users, who are going to buy something, analyze the information carefully to be sure that they make the right choice not only for the product, but also concerning the online store. So grammar and spelling mistakes, poorly articulated text, and other content-related factors influence on the image of the online store in a big way.
Not only text content, images should be high in quality, too. Typical stock images and images with poor resolutions will repel prospects.
10. Fail to fix technical problems
If something doesn’t work in the online store, the user experience will suffer. Bugs, non-existent pages, unreliable servers, and – the worst kind of problem of all, hacked pages with phishing script/viruses will hurt your reputation. However, various bugs have different effects on users. I strongly recommend you to fix them immediately.
At the end, it should be noted that there are many possible causes why users leave the online store. E-commerce has a lot of specific features, and the synergistic effect of bugs and issues will increase the number of lost customers. So it is very useful to test your website for usability, analyze the data in Google Analytics and use other tools which allow identifying all real problems.