How to keep sales up during your store redesign?
Managing an online store is not an easy thing to do. While more customers are moving to online shopping, their demands grow as well. Today’s customers expect quick service and high quality of user experience – otherwise they take their business to your competition.
Ecommerce companies and entrepreneurs have to adjust and keep up with the changes. Online store redesign is one of the strategies that can elevate your business and significantly increase your earnings.
Redesign is needed when your website does not perform well enough and you see low conversions and low traffic. There can be numerous reasons for it: poor UI, long load time, weak CTA buttons, etc. Therefore, normally redesign is aimed at fixing these issues and boosting both customer experience and sales.
What may be tricky during redesign is to keep the sales up and running, since some features of your store may not function properly - something may simply crash down. To prevent that you should thoroughly understand the processes involved in redesign and know the strategies that should be applied for each of them.
One of the biggest yet non-obvious reasons for lower traffic and conversions is poor design and user interface.
Think of an online store as of any brick-and-mortar store where the goods come in physical packages that either catch your eye immediately or make you pass by without looking at them at all. Thus, your primary task is to help the user navigate your website and encourage them to buy with the help of attractive design.
Keep the store mobile-friendly
Mobile users expect immediate service, excellent quality, and responsive design – so the primary goal of your online store is to fit within these requirements. Transform the design into mobile-friendly and you will be amazed by results. There is a real-life example from the Boss Bearing company back in 2015, when the design was made responsive and resulted in 921.95% increase in conversions.
Users want to shop in just a couple of taps – so give them a chance to do so. Optimize your checkout and purchase process and help the users buy faster and with less effort.
Consider cutting-edge solutions like Payflic. Payflic allows your customers to buy goods by just taking screenshots of them from their social media feeds. Screenshot, share, pay! Simple.
Improve your navigation and checkout
Modern users do not have enough patience to roam through the website and, after 100 clicks, finally get to the checkout. They value speed of service – so your online store should have everything in sight.
If you have many product categories, for example, incorporate a “search’ bar to facilitate the product search process. Do not feature too many products in your catalogs – this will negatively affect buying behavior and will decrease the chance that the user will choose anything.
The fewer steps the user takes to achieve the desired goal, the better the experience will be. Keep that in mind before implementing any changes to the store.
Upgrade the design
One more reason for poor UI may sound obvious but is actually widespread among many online stores. It is the outdated design that looks like it was incorporated in the late 1990ies – the early 2000s and never changed since then.
Same as other business trends, the design never stands in one place and every year there are new trends popping out, in terms of visuals, colors, content, etc. You are not obliged to follow all extensive design guidelines but you should at least follow the design standards that the users expect.
If in doubt, do some research and see what your competitors do. Be sure to consult designers or marketers about the latest trends in design and ask what can be improved about your own site. If you are running your online store on Magento consider custom theme design services.
Smart techniques to retain the customers
One of the most popular strategies used to access the design attractiveness is A/B (split) testing. This testing implies two versions (A and B, correspondingly) that are almost identical and differ in one variable only: i.e. the color of the CTA button. By presenting the two versions to groups of users, the marketer can easily identify which one is more attractive and has more responses, thus, gaining valuable insights about user behavior and preferences.
In order to engage the customers and make them take part in testing, you can ask them for participation in exchange for some incentives or a discount. This will add up to customer loyalty as well, helping them feel that they belong to the store and the team behind it.
Load time takes too long
Almost half of the users expect the website to load in 2 seconds or less – otherwise, they will abandon it. As well, 79% of the users will probably not buy from the site again if they are not satisfied with its performance. These numbers clearly indicate the importance of the website load time and the dependence of buying behavior on the loading speed.
Website optimization is another key component of the store redesign and always positively affects sales and conversions.
What can be optimized
Here are some of the most common optimization steps:
- Server optimization
- Extensions optimization
- Images optimization
- Code improvement
- Required updates
All these (and other) factors may influence the store performance heavily. In order to identify the pain point and successfully eliminate it, you can address and experienced development company that will assist you in improving your store’s performance.
Smart techniques to retain the customers
Normally the website optimization is done one page at a time. Such an approach helps to keep the whole website functioning while a separate page is undergoing changes.
As well, since everything is done in the back-end, the user will normally not see any “crashed” pages or malfunctions. While optimization is in the process, the user will experience the same load speed but once the page is done, it will load faster and smoother.
Pop-ups/Emails with incentives
It may happen so that the page is not available for the user – and this can be a blow to your sales. However, there are some things you can do to transform the negative experience into a positive one.
If your page is under the maintenance but is still visible to the user, you can incorporate pop-ups that would offer an email or a discount to the user. For example, if the user tries to open a page with a certain product category and it’s not available, they may see a pop-up, offering a discount for the whole product category once the page is available again.
The most important thing about online store redesign is identifying the pain points that impact the site performance. As the experienced developers say: you can implement changes endlessly, but there eventually will be a point when they won’t affect anything. That means, that after you hit this point, any change will not have an impact on your sales or conversions.
Therefore, you should pay the most attention to the urgent issues that require immediate actions but, at the same time, you can ignore the minor ones that would not have a significant effect. And remember: evaluate the website from the customer’s point of view. Even if certain things seem wrong to you (like the colour of the buttons or product arrangement), it may be exactly what the customers desire. And their satisfaction is what you want in order to keep your business atop the competition.