8 Ecommerce Conversion Rate Strategies to Grow Your Business

8 Ecommerce Conversion Rate Strategies to Grow Your Business

The average conversion rate for all websites is somewhere around 4.3% but for ecommerce stores, it’s only around 2.6%. That means, to get your first 10 sales, you need almost 400 people to come to your website!

It’s no wonder why only 22% of store owners are satisfied with their conversions.

Making sure that visitors buy something, or simply put, convert will make you a part of that 22%. If you’re feeling ambitious, you can aim for a 5% conversion rate. Seems impossible? Not as impossible as you think. With a few asset tweaks, you can achieve an enviable conversion rate. 

In this article, we’re going to teach you how to do just that. Here’s what we’ll talk about:

  • Why conversions are so important in ecommerce 
  • What is considered good and what is considered bad rate
  • How can you improve assets and in turn conversion rates 

What is an ecommerce conversion rate?

Whether you’ve never owned an ecommerce store before or you’ve worked in the industry for quite some time, you’ve probably heard the term “conversion rate.” But do you know what it means? Furthermore, do you know how to measure it?

Your website’s real conversion rate can be calculated by doing the following:

Take the number of visitors who converted to customers, divide it by the overall number of store visitors you had during a certain period, and finally, multiply that number by 100. That way, you’ll get a clear conversion rate. 

Image Source: Disruptive Advertising

So let’s say you had 550 conversions during the past week. Over the same period, you had 12,000 visitors. Therefore, take those conversions, divide them by the number of visitors, and you’ll get 0.0458. Multiply that by 100 and you’ll find out that your rate for that week is 4.58%.

The good news is that just about every analytics platform will tell you this, and it’s included with Shopify, Magento BI, and BigCommerce, Google Analytics, etc.

We even show you the conversion rate of your support team in Gorgias

Why is this rate so important for your online store? Because you don’t know if your marketing is working if you’re not tracking it, and even worse if something is hurting your conversion rate, you’re hemorrhaging money.

What does it mean if you have a low conversion rate?

As mentioned, different industries and niches have different conversion rates. The number we mentioned in the opening paragraph is calculated by taking rates from stores across all niches and sub-industries. 

You can’t expect to know what you need to do to improve conversions without knowing the industry standard in your niche. Therefore, make sure to check your competitors. 

Next, you shouldn’t settle for average. While there’s nothing wrong with a rate of 3%, you should try to increase it. Your conversion rate depends on a number of factors:

  • Target consumers
  • The location of your consumers
  • Number of consumers in the market
  • Your company’s market penetration

Amazon boasts a 13% conversion rate. While you can’t expect to compete with an industry giant such as Amazon, the point here is that you shouldn’t aim low. 

No matter what rate you aim for, you’d probably agree that there’s always room for some improvement. Even though your website will never be perfect, you can still try to make it as close to perfect as possible. To do that, you need to know what can hinder your progress. 

There are more than a few reasons your website could have a low conversion rate, including: 

  • The search bar isn’t functioning properly: Shoppers who use the search bar on your website are 200% more likely to convert. If your search bar isn’t programmed properly or if your products aren’t tagged, the search option won’t help your shoppers at all. 
  • Your offers aren’t easily accessible: Around 4 out of 10 people like purchasing from discount retailers. While some stores offer great deals, their conversion rate is low because their discounts are not clearly visible. 
  • The checkout is too complicated: You naturally want to keep your cart abandonment rate as low as possible. But if your checkout takes too long, people will start bouncing. More than a quarter of shoppers will abandon a purchase if the checkout process has too many steps. 


How to improve your conversion rates with marketing assets

Here we are. Now we’ll see what you need to do to ensure visitors buy something from you, instead of usual virtual window shopping. You’ll be glad to hear that you don’t need to do a complete rehaul of your website. You just need to make use of the tools and assets available to you.

1. Offer limited coupon codes

Not only do your customers want discounts (who’d object to that, really?) they fully expect them. Just five years ago, more than 560 million people around the globe used discount coupons. Since then, the number has grown to over 1 billion. 

What types of coupons can you offer? There are plenty of coupon types in ecommerce:

  • Free shipping coupons, which lessen the overall costs
  • Fixed-amount coupons, which only last for a certain amount of time
  • Total cart value coupons, which can help you improve the average cart size

For conversions, the best ones are time-limited coupons. Offering time-limited coupons might be the perfect way to engage your customers and improve conversions. By giving them a deadline, you’ll be able to persuade them to finish the purchase process instead of abandoning a full cart

2. Use effective pop-ups on your site

Admittedly, pop-up ads sound a bit dated. They’ve been around for more than a quarter of a century at this point. The phrase conjures up images of pop-up-filled screens for more seasoned users. But you’d be wrong thinking like that.

When used right, pop-ups can be effective in 2020. According to Sumo, certain pop-ups can improve your conversions by more than 9%. That’s something worth investing in. 

Here’s how you can use pop-ups:

  • Make your customers an offer they can’t refuse
  • Create a 30-sec delay timer not to annoy people
  • Make the “X” button clearly visible to the user

Also, you should try not to annoy your visitors too much. So make sure that your popups appear once per customer. Also, make the “close” button visible on both desktop and mobile screens. Nothing frustrates a person more than a pop-up that won’t go away. 

Finally, you get one pop up. Maybe it’s a contest, maybe it’s Facebook Messenger, maybe it’s push notifications, either way, you only get one.

3. Create detailed product descriptions

Product images are a big selling point for many consumers. However, product descriptions also play a large role in the purchase process. They give the shopper important information about the product itself and contain keywords that improve your Search Engine Optimization efforts and serve as proactive customer support.

That’s why you can’t afford to have lazily-written product descriptions. Sloppy writing and spelling mistakes will turn a lot of people away. Furthermore, if you’re selling products manufactured by a third party, never use their descriptions. Try to be unique and descriptive as possible at all costs.

Looking for inspiration? Use Gorgias to create a macro asking your customers how they use your products.

4. Add reviews and testimonials  

Nobody wants to be a guinea pig. If there’s a product with 3 reviews or a product with 375 reviews which one are you going to choose? Probably not the one with 3 reviews, and you don’t even know the price. 

That’s where product reviews and testimonials can help you. You simply need to gather feedback from previous customers, compile it, and put it in a prominent spot on the website. 

Product reviews not only create more social proof, but they also help bust specific objections and sell to different ICPs. If you’re buying a BBQ are you looking for hamburgers and hot dogs, or competition brisket? The same product will be reviewed differently.

Tactically placed testimonials and reviews on product pages can improve your sales immensely. Just ask Angie Schottmuller of Conversion XL. According to her, testimonials can make conversions go up by 400% in some cases. 

With purchases going up, so are the review requests. When better to ask a customer for a review than after a great interaction with your support team?

5. Remove unnecessary form fields 

Let’s talk about cart abandonment. You may know that 9 out of 10 people abandoned their shopping carts before completing their purchase. You have to do everything in your power to prevent this from happening.

One thing that drives many shoppers away is the number of fields in delivery forms. 

Your sales team doesn’t need to know every single detail about your customer’s life before processing purchases and sending products out. Keep the form fields to a minimum and ask the customer only for essential information that concerns payment and shipment.

Don’t sell to businesses? Remove the business name. Don’t need a phone number for delivery? Remove it. You get the idea.

6. Consider offering free shipping

No one likes to be attracted by a seemingly low-priced item, only to discover that the shipping costs are astronomical. Consumers hate hidden costs. They make them feel bamboozled and as an online merchant, that’s the last thing you want. 

More often than not, people abandon their shopping carts due to hidden costs. According to research, 28% of consumers do so because of hidden shipping costs specifically. 

For all of the reasons mentioned above, you should consider having free shipping. It could potentially double your revenue in a short amount of time. Just look at the NuFace case study. By introducing free shipping, the organization managed to increase orders by 90%. 

Between Amazon, Wayfair, and all the other big players, customers expect free shipping. It can also be a great upsell mechanism if you have a low average order value.

7. Add a live chat option to your pages

Live chat is great for customer support, but it doesn't end there. Most online store visitors want to buy something but many of them are on the fence. Since there’s nothing on a web page to persuade them to finalize the purchase, they often leave the store without buying anything. 

That’s where your sales agents can help. By placing a live chat option on every single page, you can encourage the shoppers to finish what they started. Research shows that people who use live chat are 3X more likely to complete their purchase before leaving a website. 

Learn more about how Gorgias' live chat can improve support and boost sales.

8. Increase urgency with a countdown timer

When time’s running out, most people become anxious. They start making decisions without overthinking them. Overthinking is your enemy. One of the most dangerous ones you have. If you limit the thinking time for your visitors, you might remove overthinking. 

How can you do this? By adding a countdown timer to your pages. 

This simple addition to your site will give the visitors a sense of urgency and motivate them to purchase before it’s too late. One brand even managed to increase sales by more than 330% with a limited-offer timer.

This doesn’t mean lying to your customers. Here are some easy ways to naturally create urgency:

  • Countdown to a holiday, e.g. only 4 days left to order to guarantee your order arrives before Festivus
  • Order by 3 PM to get same-day shipping
  • This item will be held in your cart for 5:00
  • Remaining inventory counts

You can also create social proof using count ups.

  • Backed by 383 investors on Kickstarter
  • Shipped to 83 countries
  • Over 10,000 shipped and 983 positive reviews

Start boosting your conversion rates

Improving conversions may seem complicated, especially if you’re still new to ecommerce. However, if you just remember to put the customer first by providing the necessary customer support, then you’ll soon see your conversions skyrocket. 

Let’s go over everything one last time, here’s what you need to remember:

  • Monitoring how many visitors convert is essential to your website success 
  • You need to look at your competitors, see their rates, and ensure your rate is higher
  • Don’t waste time on large changes, make minor modifications to ensure a high rate

Everything begins and ends with your customers. And if you want to keep customers satisfied, you need the right tools. 


Frequently asked questions

How do you calculate conversion rate?
What is a good conversion rate for ecommerce?
How do you simplify the checkout process?
What are the benefits of offering limited time coupons?
When should you offer discounts?
Frederik Nielsen
The customer service platform built for ecommerce brands

Join the 14,547+ brands that use Gorgias every day

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter!

Get the latest ecommerce tips for growing your business and invites to industry-leading events, right to your inbox.
Thank you! You should have received an email 🎉
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.