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Marketing 13 min read January 24, 2019

11 Terrible eCommerce Mistakes To Avoid

11 Terrible eCommerce Mistakes To Avoid

Andi Croft
Freelance writer
The eCommerce industry has a very competitive atmosphere, so it is important to avoid mistakes when starting, or else, you'll be flat easily left behind by your competitors. Mistakes are always treated as points for improvement for anyone.

However, it is better to foresee all of those potential mistakes and dodge from it as early as possible. In this post, we'll show you 11 common mistakes done by eCommerce business owners.

#1: Poor product presentation

Having an online shop means that you need to mimic the experience given when visiting in a physical store. You can do this by presenting the product in the best way remotely possible, through well-written descriptions and high-quality photos.
Product images are helping in presenting the product online. You need to make the product look better and appeal more to the customers. Besides from producing a high-quality image of the product, you should also be able to show a view of the product from different angles to give more details to the user. Give photos of the product in variations, such as in different colors or sizes. Lastly, images should be with context, for example, selling a body bag needs a representation of it by having a person wearing it.
      Product descriptions, on the other hand, should give enough information and details about your product. It should cover all potential queries of the customer, which makes you not only to be persuasive but also to help your audience. Also, angle it in the sense that it'll give them enough details to make an informed decision to purchase the product or not. Lastly, keep it simple and concise.

          #2: The absence of social proofs

          Social proofs have two different forms that you can include in your site. These are public feedback and engagement volume.

          Never neglect to put user reviews on your business site. According to research by Spiegel Research Center in 2017, almost 95% of online shoppers read first the customer reviews before knowing if they'll buy the product or not. Public feedback can undoubtedly reinforce the credibility of a brand. Showing out your positive reviews can be converted to more sales in your business.
              Engagement volume is comprising of different analytics such as follower count, impressions, engagements, reach, and other metrics on social media that can positively affect the perception of your customer to your brand. Higher numbers of engagement volumes can also give a higher reputation for your business.

                    #3: Producing generic content

                    Generic content is a big no-no for e-commerce sites. As we said earlier, the industry has a competitive atmosphere, so it is important for you to think of fresh and creative ideas for content. Separate yourself from the competitors, offer something new in your site.
                          You can start by having the mindset of helping and informing your site visitors to your site. Focus on the features and benefits of your brand and products to their everyday lives. Also, inject some emotional appeal to your content since many people are driven by these kinds of content to do a certain action. Lastly, give importance to your loyal customers.

                                #4: Insufficiency in promotion or marketing

                                You can produce a lot of content in your site, but no one goes to your site to read it. Here enters the importance of promotion and marketing of your site. The best platform you can go for promoting your site is through social media.

                                Social media is the easiest and most effective way to get more traffic to your site. Also, more and more people are going through social media instead of search engines if they need something. You can start promoting by creating an account for different platforms so you can cater to different people in your promotion. The different platform will let you make different content for each social media. You should optimize it according to the social media platform you are promoting your site. After that, a social media strategy is important to plan everything out on your approaches and plans in marketing your site in different social media sites. Lastly, execution should be done according to the plan for an easy success in boosting your website traffic.

                                      #5: Overlooking the importance of security

                                      Before launching an e-commerce site, you should ensure the safety of your site from different security threats. It may be a phishing activity or a credit card fraud that may attack your site.

                                      You can avoid all of these by making sure that you have multi-layered security to avoid any fraudulent activity in your site. You can also require stronger passwords from your users to avoid hackers getting in on different accounts. Lastly, install SSL certificates in your site for a sure secure data connection of your users.

                                            #6: Not knowing how to reach your target audience

                                            In order to be set apart from your competition, you should have a unique and strong connection with your target audience. You should have a complete and specific audience persona that can help you in knowing who to target with your contents and products.

                                            You should know their socio-demographic data, psychographic characteristics, all of their interests, different subcultures, most common places to be, values and advocacies, common problems, and other data. From here, you can create different insights on where your brand and products can enter to create a connection with them. The better the analysis and insight production, the better the connection you'll have with your audiences.

                                                  #7: Your website is not fully optimized

                                                  SEO errors are more prone to eCommerce sites. If everything is done and implemented in the right way, your search engine results page rankings will go up, thus, give you higher website traffic, and possibly, higher conversion rates and sales.

                                                  Make sure that your site loads fast to avoid people leaving your site. Check also for broken links. It can cause a bad user experience, and it can mess up your link hierarchy.

                                                  Create a responsive design of your site for mobile. More and more people are purchasing through mobile phones, so it makes perfect sense to produce a responsive web design to any kind of mobile phone. Also, all features should be mobile-friendly.
                                                        Let's take Bliss as an example. Their website is responsive to the user's environment based on screen size, platform, and orientation. Make sure your eCommerce website is designed to render well on a variety of devices and screen sizes.

                                                              #8: Your website's too hard to navigate

                                                              Most sites have very complex navigation, which should not be exhibited by sites. You need to make your navigation as simple as possible to ease the hassle of your customers.
                                                                    You should always put top-level categories in the menu bar or the top bar of your site to easily navigate through your site. Under these top-level categories should be subcategories that are easy to understand and not cause confusion to your users.

                                                                    Never forget to include the search function at the top of your page. This is to help the customers if they need to find a specific page on your site or if they are having a hard time in the subcategories.

                                                                          #9: Your pages load so slowly

                                                                          When in a physical store, no one wants to left unattended or wait in a long line just for purchase. Same with online shops, everything should be done quickly. Ensure that you have a fast page loading speed for your website.

                                                                          Most online shoppers abandon the site if it loads too slow and finds another store that offers the same product as yours. What's important is that you can offer a great experience just by boosting up your page speed.

                                                                          Another insight is that when people are leaving your site because of poor speed, you are also losing sales and conversions from your audience. You do not want to happen that again because of poor speed.

                                                                          Lastly, fast page loading speed can give you incentives in ranking higher in the search engine results pages. Google gives significant importance to page speed in search engine rankings, which can translate to higher organic website traffic and increase your eCommerce conversion rates.

                                                                                #10: Having a poor customer service

                                                                                Communication with your customer is an important event in your business which needs you to give a great experience to them. Giving them a great customer service can ensure you that they will be coming back to your online store. It will also boost your relationship with them, making you a reliable and trustworthy brand for them.

                                                                                Customer service is most likely to happen when your audience is experiencing issues with their product. You need to be always available for their queries and not ignore their questions. Set up an online hotline or phone hotline for an easier connection with them.
                                                                                      Glossier, a beauty brand in the US has a customer service department, also known as the "gTEAM". The team is responsible for collecting and answering to customer feedback and messages on social media. This way, they are creating individualized experiences with each of their consumers.

                                                                                      The image above is an example of how they communicate with their consumers. This simple act of thoughtful outreach would be notable for the customer and this also establishes that Glossier would solve problems with regards to their consumers' purchases.

                                                                                            #11: Your checkout process is too complicated

                                                                                            You need to create a seamless process of shopping for your customers. The first thing you should do to avoid a complicated checkout process, capture their email addresses as early as possible in the most discreet way. In that way, you can easily contact them if they abandon their carts.

                                                                                            Next, keep your whole process easy and quick. You do not need a lengthy process for this. Create a summary of the total price to pay, including all other fees, while your user is still scrolling through your site. In that way, they would not be shocked by the total price of their cart.

                                                                                            Lastly, you can offer different payment methods for your customers. Some people do not want to share their credit card information, so you should be ready for other payment methods to compensate that. The main aim for all of this is to give the best online shopping experience to your audience.
                                                                                                  Nordstrom is a great example of having a smooth process of checking out. Their checkout is only one page which makes the process even more simple, quicker, and convenient for consumers. They don't have a long list of information to fill-up, unlike other checkouts. Nordstrom has concise forms, the summary of your items, and easy steps to complete their form.

                                                                                                        To sum it all up

                                                                                                        These different practices above can help you to minimize mistakes in operating your eCommerce site. Whether you are new to the eCommerce industry or you have been in the industry for so long, do not wait for you to experience the mistake. Learn from the mistake of others and do your best not to do it. Best of luck in your eCommerce business!

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