Category

Conversion

Fewer than 5% of visitors to an ecommerce site typically convert to customers. In this Conversion category, we offer insights to increase that percentage. Our expert contributors address ratings and reviews, social proof, site search, product page enhancements, product descriptions, checkout options, live chat, and much more — anything to help close online sales.

Analytics & Data | Checkout Tactics | Customer Retention | Customer Service | Photography & Video | Product Pages
  • Product Pages

    Showcase Products Via Podcasts

    July 1, 2006 •

    I’m addicted to the They Might Be Giants podcasts. I'm convinced they helped sell tickets for their latest tour by offering up free music, coupled with tour advertisements, in their weekly podcasts. I'll bet podcasting some of the tours' live performances also helped. But, can podcasti...

  • Conversion

    Measuring Conversion Success

    July 1, 2006 •

    An ecommerce site with 6 to 9 percent of its visitors making purchases can be considered a success, according to conversion experts. With an industry standard hovering around 1 to 2 percent, most sites are failing to capture all the business they can have. Once a company makes a commit...

  • Conversion

    Attracting The Right Traffic

    July 1, 2006 •

    Gaining just one percent more sales or leads from your visitors can significantly impact your bottom line, yet the common practice of improving website conversion often focuses exclusively on redesigning and optimizing your website. Website conversion — the process of turning website v...

  • Conversion

    Personalization Lures Customers

    June 11, 2006 •

    Everyone likes the personal touch, and these sites offer their customers the ability to personalize unique gifts for friends and loved ones. Creative, personalized gifts and speedy service will lure their customers back. PhotoWow.com Ordinary snaps can be turned into treasures with th...

  • Conversion

    Itching to Expand Your Product Niche?

    June 1, 2006 •

    After years of tinkering in his woodshop making bird houses, Bob said to himself, “I ought to be selling these bird houses on the web.” After construting a quick website, Bob is open for business, and, before long, Bob could be itching to expand his online inventory. It’s no secret tha...

  • Conversion

    Are You an Ego Marketer?

    June 1, 2006 •

    Ego or Effective? Good marketing communicates your unique value to your target market. It builds recognition and credibility for your products and services and creates a steady flow of interested prospects and new customers. Ego marketing makes you feel good at the expense of effective...

  • Product Pages

    Show Off Your Products

    June 1, 2006 •

    I just got my email alert on the latest kitchen styles from IKEA. The site’s not the easiest to shop – mostly because you really have to know what you’re looking for – but it boasts a vast amount of interactive tools. People like me (I do an enormous amount of shopping online) love seei...

  • Conversion

    Grow Profits by Split-Testing Ads

    June 1, 2006 •

    Successful business owners and marketing professionals know that great results from advertising are rarely owed to luck and guessing. Whether they specialize in online or offline promotion, they have known for years that the secret to achieving high return of investment is through split...

  • Conversion

    Consider a Catalog to Enhance Your eCommerce Business

    May 30, 2006 •

    A print catalog and an ecommerce store work extremely well together. The strengths in each channel complement the other’s weaknesses, and consumers frequently browse the catalog first and then go online to purchase the products. The tangible nature of a print catalog makes it great for...

  • Conversion

    2nd Tier Search Engines – Are They Worth It?

    May 1, 2006 •

    As far as most advertisers are concerned, there are only two pay-per-click search engines that deserve their attention - Google AdWords and Yahoo! Search Marketing. After all, these are the most popular search engines that dominate the industry in terms of traffic, technology, and popu...

  • Conversion

    Website Conversion – Revisited

    May 1, 2006 •

    For those of you new to the concept of web conversion, I thought that it might be useful to address some of the key ideas around this strategy. What is Conversion? A website is a corporate resource, and like any other resource, it should provide a return on investment. That return sho...

  • Checkout Tactics

    Giving Them What They Want

    May 1, 2006 •

    Listen to your customers. Part of my job is to rip online stores apart and present solutions, all focused on existing and potential customers. It still shocks me to see so many online businesses implement bad ideas because the head honcho thinks something is “good”, without ever asking...

  • Conversion

    Effective Landing Pages, Part 2

    April 1, 2006 •

    Last month we introduced the concept of website landing pages, and discussed a few key ideas on how they can be used. This month, we’ll look at some ways to develop effective landing pages. I mentioned last month that landing pages are typically used when you have an understanding of wh...

  • Conversion

    Finding Loyal Customers in Cyberspace

    April 1, 2006 •

    This year, one of the most popular topics at online industry conferences such as eTail and Shop.org’s FirstLook has been the development of customer loyalty in the fickle medium of the world wide web. While returning visitors are the norm for sites like Amazon and eBay, for the most par...

  • Conversion

    Seals Help Boost Customer Confidence

    April 1, 2006 •

    Have you ever been shopping on a website and noticed a seal at the bottom that proudly boasts their security level, or maybe how customer service friendly they are? Did you feel better about buying from that site once you saw that? Perhaps you did, and you would be one of many people th...

  • Customer Service

    Is Live Chat Worth It?

    April 1, 2006 •

    It was a phase, until it started costing money and taking time away from already busy schedules. Too many business owners had the wrong expectations, so links to the tool are seen less these days. I’m talking about live chat between online stores and visitors. If used properly, though,...

  • Conversion

    Respond to Your Customer. Now.

    March 1, 2006 •

    One of the most frequent complaints from ecommerce customers is the inability to receive timely answers from a website. I’m always shocked at the number of websites that provide only a “contact us” form, with no phone number or other contact information. In my view, those sites deserve ...

  • Customer Retention

    Seek Quality Visitors

    March 1, 2006 •

    I’m no Search Engine Optimization expert. Never have been, and most likely never will be. I’ve found that SEO is such a niche market that anyone offering these services shouldn’t have time to do anything but. I do, however, work with store owners everyday and am often asked what can be...

  • Conversion

    Paid Search Advertising

    March 1, 2006 •

    How big is paid search advertising? For 2005, Google, whose business is based on paid search advertising, reported total sales of $6.1 billion and operating cash flow of $2.624 billion. That’s for a company that didn’t exist ten years ago. “Paid search is a great advertising method tha...

  • Conversion

    Attracting Local Customers Using Pay-Per-Click

    March 1, 2006 •

    Many business owners have a perception that just because they cater to a local market, they can’t use the power of online advertising to attract new customers. The reality is quite different. Recent developments in the pay-per-click industry allow even the localized business to get in ...

  • Conversion

    Helpful Websites That Sell

    March 1, 2006 •

    It’s easy to publish an inventory of merchandise on a web page, but we’ve discovered a few sites that get a leg up on the competition by adding relevant content to aid in their sales. After all, when you’re operating in a medium that’s always been associated with the free distribution o...

  • Conversion

    Effective Landing Pages

    March 1, 2006 •

    This month we discuss landing pages, what they are, and how they can be used to increase your conversion rate. What are Landing Pages Your site has landing pages whether or not you think it does. Even if you didn’t specifically design landing pages – you have them, because the definit...

  • Conversion

    Affiliate Marketing

    February 1, 2006 •

    Andy Newlin works for Sierratradingpost.com, in Cheyenne, Wyoming. Sierra Trading Post is an ecommerce merchant that sells outdoor gear and clothing, and Newlin is its Online Marketing Manager. He oversees the affiliate marketing efforts of the site. “Most any online merchant can utili...

  • Conversion

    Seeing Stars on the Web

    February 1, 2006 •

    As awards show season gets under way, celebrity fashion will be receiving a tremendous amount of global press, even more so than your typical Hollywood-obsessed news day. Outside of Los Angeles and New York, capitalizing on this high product visibility has never really been an option fo...

  • Conversion

    Minimize Customer Complaints

    February 1, 2006 •

    Step Two: Send a follow-up email within a week of the customer receiving their product or service. Keep the email short, and encourage the customer to click on a link to take them to the form you created. Be sure to explain in your email that the form is very brief and will only take a ...

  • Conversion

    The Home Page: Putting Your Best Foot Forward

    February 1, 2006 •

    You never get a second chance at a first impression. Or so the saying goes. Perhaps that’s the reason that website home pages are the most focused on by designers and marketers. In this case, I’m quite happy to agree with conventional wisdom. Having an effective home page is critical to...

  • Customer Service

    Email Etiquette is Good Customer Service

    February 1, 2006 •

    I had an interesting e-conversation a few weeks ago. It turned into a one-sided blast fest, with me at the brunt of it. The source? A business professional looking for work. I let it all roll off my shoulder, but something about it seemed all too familiar. I searched back through thousa...

  • Conversion

    Customer Service Focus – January 2006

    January 1, 2006 •

    As I have mentioned many times before, communication is the key to excellent customer service. One of the primary ways that merchants communicate with customers is via email. Steve Walker, owner of Rescuepetstore.com said, “If I don't receive proper notification and follow-up from an e...

  • Analytics & Data

    Web Analytics: Understanding Visitor Behavior

    January 1, 2006 •

    In the beginning, there were “hit counters”. Occasionally you will still see one at the bottom of a website, prominently displaying the number of hits over a given time frame. There was a time when the success of a website was gauged solely on this number, with a site that received many...

  • Conversion

    Use Web Analytics to Improve Profits for New Year

    January 1, 2006 •

    I love this quote by Albert Einstein: “Insanity is doing the same thing repeatedly and expecting a different result.” It’s a great concept to bear in mind as the New Year begins. I expect many of you are looking for better results from your marketing, and Einstein reminds us that sticki...

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