How your online store design could determine the number of visitors who ultimately buy from you.
Learn the Top 10 website design mistakes you need to know!
You may think that merchandising an online store is pointless right? I mean, its a website, upload some photos and add some description and you’re all set. Well, not exactly. How your online store is designed will determine the number of visitors who ultimately buy from you. Here are some proven steps to help turn more visitors into buyers.
Merchandising a brick and mortar retail store is key to pulling in passerby’ s as well as getting them to buy. But how do you “merchandise” an online store? The answer is simple. The same way you would set up your physical store. When an online visitor reaches your website the first thing they’ll notice is your home page (think of this as a front door of a brick and mortar). First impressions mean everything. We’ve all been taken back by a store (online or off) that is poorly merchandised and cluttered from one end to the other. Too many racks, merchandise on the floor and the whole place looking like it was hit by a tornado. Your online store could also be poorly merchandised and turning away potential sales.
Here are some key steps to cleaning up your retail internet business to help boost revenue and return customers.
1. Remove all the clutter from all web pages that only take away from your own products. This could be from having too many links (and broken links), too many affiliate ads and banners and finally – remove the multitude of photos that have nothing to do with your site.
2. If you are running a business- look like one. Don’t use backgrounds that are only really meant for social site profiles. The blinking stars background is not how you want to represent your business. Use a solid color background along with your business logo on top. Of course you’ll want to make it look great – but lets keep the social site backgrounds where they belong – on social sites.
3. Make sure your price points are clearly visible and are reflected correctly through-out your entire site.
4. Never use your home page as your entire “About Us” platform if you are a retailer. There should be another page dedicated for this. Simply inserting a paragraph about how you started the business and using the largest font possible and then placing that on your main page will only turn potential buyers away.
5. Use flash effects/animation sparingly – there is no need to use every flash animation you have come across and placing it all over your website. Its distracting – you want your potential customers to focus on your merchandise.
6. Organize your site and make it easy to navigate. Make it easy for visitors to find your contact information, shipping/returns and privacy policies, email newsletter sign-up and so forth.
7. View your store from a customer’s perspective, and step into their shoes and shop your own store.
8. Offer discounts in your virtual store, and make sure they are visible to the shopper.
9. Customers make an additional purchase when they are inspired to buy cross merchandise items.
10. Be seasonal and integrate current holidays such as Valentine graphics to sell merchandise for February 14th, etc.
By following these easy to apply merchandising tips to your virtual retail business, you will start converting more visits into actual sales.
About the Author:
Nic Soto is an internet PR marketing specialist, and co-founder, of Public Relations Depot, a Digital PR Marketing company. Nic has been an online entrepreneur for over twelve years, and business owner for over 20 years. Her areas of expertise is Public Relations (Digital PR), Branding, Reputation Management and Organic Search Engine Optimization.
Follow Me on Twitter: @MamaPR