As competition increases in the online market space, more companies vie for Top 10 placement on the search engines, driving up costs per click. In such an environment it is imperative for companies bidding on top positions to convert as many visitor clicks into customers as possible. This article discusses a few measures all companies can take to improve conversion rates on their e-commerce sites.
1. Keyword Research
- Ensure that your keyword research is thorough. If you only select the most obvious keywords, you will pay more, since all your competitors will also be bidding on them.
- If you select only generic keywords, you will suffer low conversion rates since visitors typing such words in are often not yet ready to buy.
- If you miss out the unique keywords which no one else is bidding on, you will miss the opportunity to sell to visitors that search on these keywords.
- Use negative keywords to discourage irrelevant searches from displaying your advertisement.
2. Effective Ad Copy
- Ensure that your ads describe your product or service precisely.
- Do not lie in your ads to attract visitors. If visitors don’t find what your ad promised on your site, they will leave, making your conversion rates fall.
- Use your ad to discourage the wrong sort of people from clicking. E.g. if you sell a premium product, don’t use words like “cheap” or “bargain”.
- Deliver what your ad promises. Always.
- Make sure that your offline and online advertising image is consistent.
- Most importantly, for e-commerce sites, ensure that the price quoted is consistent throughout your site and through the entire checkout process.
4. No Hidden Costs
- Make customers aware of any extra costs at the very start of the checkout process.
- VAT and postage should be clearly mentioned as extras.
- If the amount quoted at the start is unexpectedly different from the final total, customers will abandon the checkout process and shop elsewhere. This will make your conversion rate suffer greatly.
5. Comprehensive Search Engine Marketing
- Customers often browse and return for products. If they can’t find you when they return, you will loose the conversion.
- Top 10 placement in the natural and paid listings often reinforces customer trust in your brand, making them more likely to buy from your site.
- Ensure that your search engine marketing campaign also builds a brand in the minds of browsers, so that when they are ready to buy, they will come to your site since it is the only one they recognize.
When you increase conversion rates on your e-commerce site, you can automatically afford to bid more per click without suffering a loss. If you find CPC’s rising and profitably diminishing rapidly, the first step you should take is to review your site to ensure that you are converting as many visitors as possible. The maths is very simple:
If you currently pay £1.00 per click on Google, convert only 1% of these clicks, and the profit you make on each conversion is just £100, your total cost = total profit, meaning you just break even.
If you have to raise your CPC to £1.10 per click in order to maintain your top 10 position, you will suffer a loss.
However, if you just raised your conversion rate by 1%, you would actually find yourself making a profit, since your cost would now be £110 for 100 clicks but the profit made from 2% conversion, i.e. 2 sales would be £200!