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Sep 14, 2012

How Your Website Design can Affect Your Sales (CRO)

Website sales are often referred to in terms Conversion Rate Optimisation (CRO), which looks into the amount of visitors your website gains and the percentage of these that actually make a purchase through your website.

Your site's success in convincing your visitors to part with their money depends upon a variety of factors. If you are looking to make money online, it is vital to assess your site and make improvements where ever necessary, as it can be inhibiting the true potential of your business.

Photography...

Considering the fact that quality photographs and a product description is all it takes for someone to decide whether they want to make a purchase or not, it is surprising to see how little attention is often devoted to this aspect of website design.  It is important to ensure that your photographs are of a high quality, showing the items at different angles, and if possible and applicable, in use. For example if you sell jewellery, an image of the item being worn by a model can help a visitors visualize as to how the piece would look like when worn. Converting visitors to customers is all about removing doubts and making it an great experience for them.

An smooth checkout system...

The checkout process is where many eCommerce websites end up loosing customers. This could be due to many reasons. It could be that your visitors were simply window shopping and went about adding items to their basket without any intention to purchase, or it could be something that your site lacks which is preventing a sale.

Your checkout must be secured. It is also important to inform customers that your checkout process is secured so they feel assured that their personal information is in safe hands. Display secure checkout logos so that your customers are reassured.

You can also use videos to guide your customers through the checkout process. It is good to know as a customer how far through the process you actually are.

For example some sites have a checkout process which involves four steps, so that step one is when users update the basket with the desired products, step two is where they enter their personal details, step three is where they confirm all the details are correct, and then step four consists of the actual payment. If this is how your checkout is laid out and if your customer is in a rush and having reached step three of four, they know they are almost done with their purchase.

Make sure that your entire checkout process is smooth with customers being able to change product quantities, size etc easily. Also make sure that the delivery time and other information is clearly laid out.

A strong homepage design...

Your homepage must engage customers and introduce them to your brand, your company ethos, and show what you offer, and generally entice them to go beyond the homepage. Show product images with links to your online shop so that your visitors are lured into the purchasing environment. Make sure you accommodate all this without making your homepage appear too busy and confusing.

Clear menus...

Menus must be clearly laid out and your website easy to navigate. An intuitive website navigation coupled with clearly labelled website sections ensures that your visitors can find their way around your site with ease - without have to guess where things might be. Remember, people will not hang around for too long if it is too difficult, they will simply go elsewhere.

Clear terms and conditions...

Set the terms and conditions out clearly on your website. This not only protects you and your business from unnecessary litigations, but also informs your customers where they stand with delivery times, returns, exchanges, and repairs etc. This will help answer such questions or remove such doubts as a visitor might have, and thus help convert them into a paying customer.

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