5 Ways to Increase Conversion on Your E-Commerce Website

First quarter is a great time to think about how to maximize sales in the new year. Here are 10 things you can do now to increase conversion and revenue in 2017.

Create a Marketing/Promotions Calendar

Now is the time to map out your store banners, marketing messages and promotions for the year. With a simple marketing calendar, you can plan weekly or monthly homepage banner updates, seasonal sales and topics for your social media and email marketing. I’ve found marketing calendars keep me focused and reduce stress because things are less likely to sneak up on me! Having consistency in your brand’s messaging means shoppers will see important promotions more often and repetition is known to help increase conversion.

Switch to Sitewide HTTPS

BigCommerce recently made sitewide HTTPS available to stores on all plans. By having your entire website on HTTPS (secure), shoppers will be more confident to purchase from your store, ultimately leading to an increase in conversion. In addition, Google is now starting to rank websites with sitewide HTTPS higher than those without.

Add Live Chat to Your Store

When shoppers have questions, most won’t bother to call or email you. By installing a live chat feature on your website, you can be instantly available to answer questions and help close the sale. Live chat is affordable and can be used as a general contact form when you’re not available to be online. My personal favorite is OLark, which allows you to see visitor behavior, create rules for when to initiate chats, customize the chat box and more. They are pre-integrated with Bigcommerce so it’s quick and easy to install the app, plus you can try it free for 14 days.

Activate Apple Pay and Amazon Payments

A great way to boost customer confidence and reduce their concern about shopping with a new store is be offering payment methods they already use. Shoppers who have Apple Pay or Amazon accounts can also checkout faster (since they don’t need to enter their payment information) and reducing barriers to checkout helps increase conversion. Depending on your current payment gateway, you may be able to activate one or both of these options in your online store.

Offer Toll-Free Customer Service

Even with long distance included on most phone plans these days, shoppers still prefer to call companies toll-free. Having easy, toll-free support reduces shopper anxiety and is likely to increase conversion. Getting a toll-free number is quite affordable and you can even choose a vanity number that spells out a word related to your brand or products. I personally use FreedomVoice and highly recommend it. Beyond the toll-free number, they allow you to route calls to your mobile phone during set hours so you can always be available for customers without having to list your personal phone number on your website. Plans start at just $9.95 a month and you can try it free for 30 days.

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Yotpo: Product Reviews and So Much More

If you’re like most e-commerce store owners, you try really hard to sell customers on the great products you offer. But let’s be honest – most shoppers are savvy. They know you’re selling them. They want honest opinions from other people just like them. That’s where product reviews come in.

You may already have a solution implemented to collect and display customer reviews on your website. But most review systems that come with e-commerce platforms are pretty basic. They do the bare minimum, providing a form for someone to write a review and then displaying it on the product page. But there’s so much more than reviews can do. And there are a few problems with default review systems that I often get questions about.

Enter Yotpo reviews. It’s an advanced product and website reviews solution that seriously upgrades what you can do with reviews on your website.

Yotpo Reviews Logo

Not Just Text and Stars

Obviously the basics of a product review are the customer’s text and their star rating. But there’s so much more that reviews can offer to other shoppers reading that review. What about photos of the product in action? Yotpo allows the reviewer to add photos to supplement their text. Was the review helpful? Yotpo allows readers to rate the helpfulness of the review so other shoppers know which reviews to read first. Maybe a shopper wants to share a review with a friend or family member who is interested in that product. Yotpo reviews can be shared via email or social media. Because wouldn’t it be great if people who didn’t even know your website existed learned about it from a review shared on their Facebook news feed?

Yotpo Reviews Features

Respond to Reviews

Don’t you hate it when a customer writes a negative review of a product and you can’t follow up? After all, if someone had a bad experience, the best thing to do as a store owner is reach out and make things right. But most review systems don’t display the review writer’s email address, making it impossible for you to do the right thing by them.

With Yotpo reviews, you can not only directly respond to every review (bad or good), but your response will be displayed on the website for other shoppers to read. Let’s say a customer wrote a review saying the product didn’t have an expected feature, but in reality the product does have the feature. Perhaps the customer missed it or didn’t read the instructions. By responding to the review, you can not only explain how the customer can utilize that necessary feature, but you can also correct the record for other shoppers who might be reading that customer’s review. It also doesn’t hurt to thank customers who have left positive product reviews and let them know how happy you are that they like the product.

Yotpo Review Responses

Social Media Integration

That brings us to one of the coolest aspects of Yotpo reviews – the ability to turn your best product ones into Facebook and Instagram ads. You probably already know the value of advertising on Facebook and Instagram, but by utilizing real, verified customer reviews, your ads become much more compelling. Yotpo makes it easy to build ads based on product reviews with their built-in Facebook and Instagram integrations, allowing you to give your reviews a viral quality that would be nearly impossible otherwise.

Yotpo Reviews Social Ads

Product Q & A

You’ve seen it on Amazon – shoppers asking questions about a product and other customers responding with answers that reviews might not mention. So many people shop on Amazon that your potential customers may expect to see a similar feature on your website. Why? Because product questions and answers are incredibly useful. Sure, you write detailed product descriptions and do your best to anticipate questions that shoppers might have. But let’s be honest – there’s no way you can know what questions people will have about every single item you sell. That’s why the Q & A feature is so great. You can leverage your customers’ real-world knowledge to help other shoppers with valuable insights and information, creating a little community right on your product page.

Yotpo Product Q&A

So there you go. Four solutions from Yotpo reviews to problems most people have with their current reviews provider. And we’ve just scratched the surface of all Yotpo can do – SEO benefits, in-email review submission (so people don’t even have to visit your website) and did we mention Pinterest? They even provide analytics to show how much income they’re generating from their on-site and syndicated reviews.

My only complaint about Yotpo is their support team is based out of Israel, which can cause some delays in getting assistance for those of us located in the United States. Hopefully the company’s growth will lead to the opening of a U.S. office, which would also allow them to offer phone support in addition to their current email support option.

Yotpo is undoubtedly one of the market leaders in product reviews systems, and for good reason. But if you’re not convinced, schedule a free demo and see all of their features for yourself.

Do you use Yotpo reviews on your website? Let us know about your experience in the comments.

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Now, More Choice in E-Commerce Platforms

It’s a new year and we’re excited to announce that we’ve expanded our services to include e-commerce website design and development on two new e-commerce platforms – 3dCart and SparkPay (formerly Americommerce). With a choice of three platforms, it’s now easier to build a website that specifically meets the needs of your business.

If you’re wondering how best to compare 3dCart and SparkPay with BigCommerce, don’t worry, we anticipated that! In fact, we put together a handy and super comprehensive chart comparing the feature sets of all three platforms. This chart will allow you to focus in on features that your company needs and then see which e-commerce platform has the most of them.

You can get the awesome chart we created for FREE just by signing up for our email newsletter below. We promise to only send occasional emails (once a month or less on average) and you can unsubscribe any time. And trust us, once you see how much information is on this chart and think about how much time it would have taken you to create yourself, you’ll understand why we wanted to at least get your email address in exchange.

Let us know if you find the chart helpful in the comments below, or if there’s anything you think we missed that should be included in the next iteration.

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Save 15% with our Summer Special!

If you’re ready to take the e-commerce plunge but need help, our Summer Special is perfect for you! Now through July 31st, we’re offering 15% off a small-business package that includes everything you need to launch a Bigcommerce store in time for the holidays. This limited-time service includes a custom-branded website design, full store setup and upload of 50 products for just $1550. We’ll even provide comprehensive training on the Bigcommerce platform so you’ll be ready to manage your store after launch.

Get all the details >

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Find Great Holiday Gifts from Duck Soup E-Commerce Clients

Beyond the big box stores and national chains, there a thousands (if not millions) of amazing small and boutique retailers offering great products. We know, because we’ve had the pleasure of working with dozens of them! So to help make your holiday shopping merry, we’ve put together this list of Duck Soup E-Commerce client websites where you’re sure to find great gifts for all your family and friends.

Accessories and Jewelry

For the bohemian or world traveler, find fair-trade accessories, hand-loomed textiles (and home decor) from all over the globe at Nomadic Thread Society.

Find sexy and stylish body jewelry at Go Nearly Naked or pick up a one-of-a-kind ring or necklace at D Vintage Jewels.

Or give the gift of style with a luxurious silk belt from accessory and jewelry boutique Outfit Additions.

Apparel

Find wearable fashion curated by the blogger behind Frankie Hearts Fashion at Shop Frankies. Or find eclectic style from European and Canadian designers as well as unique American-made apparel at Show Pony Boutique.

Cigar lovers, lounge lizards, steam punkers and anyone who loves that old Chicago style will appreciate a custom-made smoking jacket from Smoky Joe’s Clothing.

Bath & Body

Nothing makes a prettier gift than handmade soap! Shop Comfort & Joy Soap Company for luscious body butter, delicious lip balm and fragrant soaps.

Or pamper someone special with natural cosmetics and skin care products made from moisturizing argan oil at Josie Maran Cosmetics.

Food & Drink

For the foodie on your list, look no further than a beautiful gift set from Texas Hill Country Olive Company. Home cooks of all styles and skill levels will love gourmet and organic spices for every cuisine from Kaina Organics and Spices for Less.

As a gift or to bring to holiday gatherings, pick up some flavored coffee or hot cocoa from Fireside Coffee. Made in Michigan, these tasty drinks are the perfect relief for winter’s chill.

Home Decor & Furniture

For contemporary home furnishings and holiday decorations, shop Home Decor Nation. Cozy up with a cashmere throw or premium bedding from Marcel Miller. For the DIYer, check out the world’s only recessed medicine cabinets with picture frame doors at Concealed Cabinet.

Looking for gifts for those people who already seem to have everything?  Find eclectic curiosities, essential home goods and vintage furniture at Sterling Place.

Specialty and Lifestyle

New parents will appreciate adorable, colorful cloth diapers from Moraki Cloth, while new dog owners will love the convenience of a gift membership to Poop Bag Club. For the gamer on your list, shop dice, game tokens and other role-playing game accessories at Dapper Devil. And fans of the Nutcracker Ballet will twirl over nutcracker and ballet inspired gifts from Nutcracker Ballet Gifts.

For gearheads, find performance parts for Corvettes, Camaros and more at Elite Engineering USA, or treat them to Made in the USA motorcycle accessories from Leader Motorcycle.

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