CRO methodologies to create a eCommerce website that converts
Estimated reading time: 5 minutes
In the landscape of Conversion Rate Optimization or CRO for eCommerce, there should be no room for guesstimates and hunches.
Every decision you make must utilize sufficient data from your customers, website, and marketing campaigns.
It’s an unfortunate reality that many digital marketers and eCommerce business owners rely on generic best practices believed to increase conversions on an eCommerce platform. These might include a specific product page layout, catchy product descriptions, or compelling CTAs with “power words.”
This isn’t to say that such strategies won’t have an effect whatsoever on your conversion rates. But if you want reliable results, you need to implement a system that’s tailored to your brand’s specific needs.
In this post, we will delve into the three methodologies that will help you design an eCommerce CRO strategy devoid of any guesswork.
Without further ado, let’s jump into it.
1. Measure and Monitor
Your CRO campaign must be aimed at tangible, measurable goals.
If you execute CRO strategies without well-defined objectives, it’s pretty much impossible to tell if your approach is working or not.
That’s why the first phase of your CRO system should be to identify the core metrics or Key Performance Indicators you’ll track as well as configure the tools you’ll use to monitor them.
Identifying Your KPIs
One common pitfall many marketers encounter is chasing vanity metrics that don’t contribute to their eCommerce platform’s profitability. Instead of spending resources to boost metrics that won’t improve your profit, you should use a tool like Google Analytics to identify KPIs associated with user actions.
Understanding Other Key Metrics
Apart from custom goals, Google Analytics can provide you with key metrics that can be valuable in your eCommerce CRO strategy:
- Conversion Rate by Product or Category: Unlike websites, eCommerce platforms should focus on conversions per product or product category to identify which products are performing well or poorly.
- Shopping Cart Abandonment Rate: It measures the percentage of shoppers who add items to their shopping cart but then exit your site before completing the purchase.
- Average Order Value (AOV): This metric tells you how much each completed order is worth to your business on average.
2. Analyze On-Page Elements that Underperform
Once you’ve learned how to measure and monitor crucial KPIs on your eCommerce platform, you need to focus on the elements that are negatively impacting them.
Online Surveys and Feedback Forms
With a tool like Google Forms, you can launch full-on surveys that ask customers what they like and dislike on your website. It’s free to use and easy to set up — you just need a few minutes to create the questions and promote your survey via email, link, or an embed code.
These tools can show you how users interact with different elements of your product pages. This helps you identify “hot” zones that garner the most clicks and “cold” zones that are often ignored.
In addition to heatmaps, Crazy Egg and Hotjar also feature a session recording tool.
Session recordings can give you more in-depth insights on how customers behave on your pages and respond to specific elements. As the name suggests, it captures a video of your users’ sessions so you can identify usage patterns and improvement opportunities.
One way to detect bottlenecks in your website’s conversion funnel is to identify key pages where your visitors tend to abandon the purchase process.
Again, a tool like Hotjar can help you track these events and identify the pages that need improvement. You can also use the “Behavior Flow” view on Google Analytics to detect high drop-off pages that could use some tweaking.
3. A/B Testing
Understanding how users respond to your page elements should help you formulate hypotheses on how to get more conversions.
This is where all the “best practices” you’ve learned from other guides may come into play. You can use a new CTA, change your headline, replace your images, and so on.
What ensues, however, is the most tedious part of CRO: trial and error.
Take note, even veteran marketers depend on rigorous testing to determine whether or not their hypotheses work. Unfortunately, the trial and error process usually takes a long time before it yields conclusive data.
With A/B testing or split testing, you can cut the time it takes to test your hypotheses by testing multiple versions of your pages at the same time.
Optimization platforms like Crazy Egg often have this feature built-in. Alternatively, you can use Google Optimize to split test multiple pages from websites that you already track via Google Analytics.
Remember that there’s no one-size-fits-all solution in eCommerce CRO. Your strategies must be rooted in measurable data to achieve reliable results from your CRO efforts. With the three methodologies outlined above, you are now equipped to establish a clear direction for your eCommerce CRO campaign. The next step is to continue expanding your array of strategies to enhance key conversion elements on your eCommerce platform. For more tips to enhance your online success, we recommend visiting the official Verbolia blog. Best of luck!