Why conversion optimization is so important for your eCommerce business
According to Wikipedia, conversion optimization, or conversion rate optimization (CRO) “is a system for increasing the percentage of visitors to a website that convert into customers, or more generally, take any desired action on a webpage”. If you have an eCommerce business then this is pretty much your life's blood. The issue becomes, not so much that you need it but rather how do you achieve it.
As you probably know, eCommerce websites have a bunch of moving parts. There are product pages, category pages, shopping carts and checkout pages just to name a few. Then there are the conversions (a sale) and micro conversions (signing up for a newsletter). This process, called a sales funnel, leads the visitor to a conversion. At any point while travelling through that funnel, the visitor can bail on you.
A visitor interacts with a site at many different levels. For example, there are clicks and mouse movements but there are also emotional interactions as well such as, happiness or frustration. These types of interactions are hard to evaluate with raw numbers. This is where conversion optimization starts.
There can be many reasons why a visitor abandons your sales funnel. Many of those abandonments can be explained. They look around and don’t see anything they like or perhaps they are not ready to buy. Those aren’t the ones that you need to worry about, at least initially. The ones that you need to worry about are the ones that go deeper into the funnel. Perhaps they put something in the cart but never checked out or perhaps they started the checkout process but for some reason abandoned it. Those are real issues that need to be addressed because they made the decision to start down the “funnel” but stopped for some reason along the way.
Part of conversion optimization is to hypothesize and test. Maybe the shipping is too high or they don’t like PayPal or maybe they were confused. How would you know? The fi