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50 E-Commerce Tips

Lily O'Halloran

50 E-Commerce Tips

Don't spend hours searching the web for e-commerce tips one at a time. Use this collection of 50 tips to enhance and increase your website conversions, sales, and usability.

  1. Include at least one call-to-action on each and every page of your website.

  2. Don’t use more than five calls-to-action on one page, or assume that the action must be a sale. (Opt-in email lists are a productive use of a call-to-action.)

  3. Use easy to read font. Bold or increase the size of product names. Save larger fonts specifically for headlines.

  4. Make your website accessible to all users including those with disabilities.

  5. Answer emails within 24 hours. The faster, the better.

  6. Don’t neglect to answer e-mails. Users give up after 48 hours or so.

  7. Include a contact link on every page.

  8. Provide a toll-free customer service number.

  9. Have a person, rather than a recording answer your customer service calls.

  10. Integrate a search tool into your website.

  11. Make your search feature searches for more than just product names -- add sku, color, sizes, and model number searched, if applicable.

  12. Check all content for typos and misspellings.

  13. Use standard names for form textboxes, so customers can use auto-fill.

  14. Let customers view shipping costs without adding products to the shopping cart.

  15. Alphabetize state drop-down lists. (And country drop-down lists, if applicable.)

  16. If you accept international orders, design your checkout forms to accommodate foreign addresses and phone numbers.

  17. Create a logical navigation system. Implement a navigation bar on the top of the page and/or the left-hand side.

  18. Use the same navigation bar on each page. Keep it consistent.

  19. Add your company logo to the top-left corner of each web page. Link your logo to your home page.

  20. Ensure that every product can be found within three clicks of the home page.

  21. Include a privacy statement. Honor customer’s personal details by not sharing them with other companies.

  22. List return and exchange policies where customers can easily find them. Provide a shipping policy.

  23. Provide tracking information for customer orders.

  24. If you only ship to the U.S. make that obvious, so customers don’t waste their time or become frustrated during the checkout process.

  25. Allow shipping to APO/FPO addresses.

  26. Provide a quick checkout option that lets customers bypass site registration.

  27. Collect email addresses with an opt-in email newsletter.

  28. Clearly state all product prices.

  29. Place your toll-free customer service number in a highly visible place on each page of the checkout process.

  30. Link thumbnail pics to larger photos.

  31. Add a best-seller list of your most popular products in real time (constantly updates).

  32. Analyze statistics about each step of the checkout process to determine why customers abandon their shopping carts.

  33. Use thumbnail images alongside products in the shopping cart.

  34. Run various promotions on a regular basis.

  35. Create a customer loyalty program, such as frequent buyer discounts.

  36. Create a refer-a-friend program to reward customers that bring you more business.

  37. Keep the most important details of each page above the fold.

  38. Process orders quickly. Ship as soon as possible.

  39. Exceed customer expectations.

  40. Submit your website to all major search engines and as many minor ones as possible.

  41. Create an xml site map to submit to Google. This ensures that the search engine will crawl every page of your site including deep links.

  42. If you remove a web page that has previously been crawled by Google, update Google using their webmaster resources.

  43. Add customer testimonials to your website.

  44. Use customer surveys to gather feedback.

  45. Take advantage of customer email addresses you collect. Inform customers of upcoming promotions and special offers.

  46. If you sell a product in multiple colors, provide a picture of the product in each color.

  47. If you provide an option to enlarge product photos, then use it to display an enlarged photo – not a new window with the same size picture.

  48. Establish credibility by creating associations with HackerSafe, VeriSign, etc. and display their logo on your website.

  49. Spend extra time with difficult customers. (Many become loyal customers, because they are set in their ways.) Know when to let go of truly irate customers.

  50. Offer a money-back guarantee on products, or risk-free trial on services.

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