Restaurants aren’t the only businesses that run a high risk of failing. Ecommerce websites run just as high a risk as any other business of going under, sinking faster than the Titanic. Like any business, there are as many recipes for success as there are ingredients for utter disaster. With such a high competition factor in starting an ecommerce web store, there are many things to consider that may increase your chances of blowing out the competition, and avoiding the “icebergs” that so many have run into head-on. Here, we will discuss three reasons your ecommerce site could be losing money.
Reason #1: “Your Ecommerce Site is More Complicated Than a Rubik’s Cube!”
Options are great. In fact, they are one of the main factors of maintaining a successful web store. But, it could also be warped into a complex array of chaos if not done properly. Simplicity is what you want to go for in this scenario. An overly complex mechanism for choosing and narrowing down your options can lead to frustration, making that customer run away faster than an Olympic sprinter. Navigation is another factor. Navigating a web store should be easy, if not fun. This process should be as simple as flipping pages in a book (is that still considered easy?). Every product page should be laid out in the most simplistic, comprehensive manner possible, and getting to that page should be just as uncomplicated.
Reason #2: “That’s Great but, Where Can I Find Them?”
This cannot be said enough: Make yourself visible! Unless you are going for the whole “Harry Potter cloak of invisibility” approach (I’ve tried it, it doesn’t work), your ecommerce web store should be in plain sight! SEO is an important factor when making sure your store is found by search engines. This goes for individual products, as well. Search Engine Optimization are key words you use when describing your website, as well as each product, and should be linked to each product description. Link building is another important part of search engine ranking. Search engines show results based on relevance. This includes factors other than key words. It also bases these results on “votes”. This is the foundation of link building. The simple explanation is, search engines view links as votes and count them toward the relevance of your website. There many ways to go about this, but the general idea is to create links to your business on other sites that are in some way related to your product line. This is not the “end-all be-all” of ranking on search engines, but it is an important factor to consider. You can also take the approach of creating social media business pages, and remaining engaged with your audience. Posting regularly and uploading fresh content is another way to get noticed by not only search engines, but your target audience, as well.
Reason #3: “Can you use Plain English, Doc?”
This is where the technical aspect should be, well…less technical. The age old adage of, if you can’t dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with…(I think you know the rest) should not be a factor in your product descriptions. In other words, leave the techno-details on the side. No, literally. The main body of your product descriptions should be plain English, and written so that the reader can understand whether or not this is what they want. This should incorporate the element of persuasive writing, and not sales writing. Detail the benefits of the product. Describe how it works and what it does, but don’t over sell it. They were already looking for it, remember? The technical details should be a side note. On the side of every product description, there should be a specific area devoted completely to the products technical aspects; specifications, material, where it was manufactured, etc., but the main body of the description should be written in plain English (or whatever the primary language is that your site uses!).
There could be many different reasons as to why your ecommerce site could be missing out on the dollars floating around on the internet. Here is a net you can use for catching some of those elusive currency notes as they flutter by: Remember to have fun with your descriptions! Give them personality and make them unique. Keeping the customer interested and engaged will always give you an advantage over your competition, and may avoid being one of the reasons your ecommerce site could be losing money.
Special Note: Mat Mcneil, SEO Director of e-Business Express, a full service eCommerce agency, lent his expertise and knowledge for the production of this article.