One of the main aspects that must be taken into account in eCommerce is to analyze how users interact during their visits. This is essential to optimize the user experience and increase conversions.
Knowing how the conversion funnel through which visitors of your online store go is essential, if you want to optimize the sales process and convert more.
With this you can see at what point of the funnel you lose potential customers and thus strengthen that step to complete the purchase.
Any web analytics tool will help you know how users interact in your store, so that you can set much more realistic goals.
In addition, these objectives will be the focus when making comparisons of the different actions you take, to optimize the conversion funnel of your eCommerce.
So that you can understand well how your sales process works and optimize each of the phases, in this article I propose to address the following aspects:
What are conversion funnels.
What are the stages of a conversion funnel and why you should optimize them.
The key conversion factors in an online store.
In short, with this article my challenge is to help you understand the process that users go through, from the time they visit your eCommerce until they finish a purchase, so that you can make things much easier for them.
Conversion funnels: Definition, stages and content maps
The first thing you should know is exactly what this process called in marketing consists of as a "funnel of conversion", since otherwise detecting how you could encourage purchases in your store would be really complicated.
The conversion funnel refers to the different steps that a user must carry out through an online channel, to fulfill a specific objective: a registration, a purchase, a lead, etc. "
In this case, the conversion funnel to which we refer is, specifically, that produced through the interaction of users with your online store or eCommerce.
Conversion Funnel Stages
Well, once it is clear what I mean when talking about a funnel of conversion, I want us to see its representation graphically, so you can see the reason for its denomination.
As you can see, a user will go through different moments, from accessing your eCommerce as a visitor until you make a purchase. The fact that only a percentage of visitors end up being customers is what gives it the shape of a funnel.
Its different stages are precisely those that you must have well defined in order to analyze what route users and potential clients take to detect at what point there could be a leak.
The process through which a user passes along the conversion funnel has three general phases that not only occur in online stores:
How to optimize the funnel conversion phase discoveryPhase 1 - Discovery: it is the moment at which the purchase process begins within the user's mind. It is when he realizes a need or a problem that he must solve.
Phase 1 begins naturally, at the user's own initiative or at the suggestion of a brand through its advertising messages.
research-250x250.pngPhase 2 - Research: once the user is aware of the need to cover, he will begin investigating options. It is the moment when you are looking for products or services that help you solve the situation in the most efficient way possible.
decision-250x250.pngPhase 3 - Decision: once the user has clear all the options, he will make a decision based on price, quality, facilities, shipping, added services, etc.
These stages have certain nuances, when it comes to the funnel of an online store with sales objectives:
The discovery phase, if it is natural, will always leave the user. But it can be suggested by a brand. For example, with banners that direct the user towards eCommerce, newsletters, messages on social networks, etc. Then we will see the sources of traffic to an online store and how to boost them.
The investigation phase in this case is closely related to the actions to incentivize phase 1. When users search on the Internet how to solve their need or problem, they should be able to find your online store. For this it is necessary to work well the communication of the different channels, SEO positioning and visibility and online reputation in general.
In the decision phase it is the one that we are emphasizing in this article, and that is when the user interacts with the online store. Know other options but at that time it is in your store, how does it work ?, does the purchase end ?, does it leave the cart halfway?
In turn, when a user has already decided to make the purchase, they can go through different states before choosing your online store or go to the competition:
Visit: In this case, the user determined to buy visits your ecommerce, but does not arrive to stay. This situation can be saved with a second chance thanks to remarketing, but in any case it will be a sign that you should do something with your web design to improve the user experience.
Listing: Here, the user browses your eCommerce and visits the different categories of your products.
If this is so, it is probably because your website offers an intuitive navigation that facilitates research, so if you leave here it is probably because you do not find what you need.
Do not have items in stock or do not have all your products well visible?
Product: If a user comes up with the product they really want to buy, but does not end up buying it, you probably have not used attractive enough images, the technical data sheet is not complete or, simply, your competitors offer better prices.
Start of conversion : If the user leaves at this stage, the problem is usually technical. You have entered the data, but leave the website before confirming, or do not make the payment on the gateway. Although there are cases of conscious abandonment, abandonment is usually more common due to connection problems, load times or security.
Add to cart : In Spain it is quite frequent that the process is abandoned just at the end of the transaction, for fear of making an unsecured online purchase.
Having different payment options and even a website hosted on HTTPS can help you convey confidence.
Conversion finished : If you have an average user profile that reaches the end, you are in luck, because it means that you have an online store that converts well. However, you can always improve by launching new remarketing campaigns to resell them to the most loyal customers.
As a summary of this point, we can conclude that the conversion funnel in an online store has an added process, since users are usually skeptical when making online purchases, to which the wide range is added of possibilities offered on the Internet.
Both in cases of abandonment, as well as successful purchase, it is possible to optimize conversions and sell more thanks to remarketing campaigns.
Advantages of optimizing a funnel
As you can see, conversion funnels allow you to fully analyze what happens in your store. See what is expected of users and whether they do it or not. In addition, web analytics and research on user behavior, involves many other benefits in eCommerce:
Increase in conversions : Having all the well-structured data of visits to your online store will allow you to work with a clear focus on your goals. Analyzing each phase of the conversion funnel will allow you to identify solutions to improve the sales of your online store.
Possibility of remarketing : Remarketing campaigns will be more effective, since you can target them to different users. You should not treat the same as one who has reached the shopping cart, than another who has left the web on the first page.
Measurable actions : If you carry out online marketing campaigns that direct users to different points of eCommerce, you can analyze how the funnel works from there. You will see who concludes the purchase and who does not, helping you guide the following actions.
Loop detection : Sometimes it happens that users do not just understand the information or some pages of the eCommerce. Analyzing the phases of the funnels you will see if the users go forward and backward at a specific point and you can clarify the doubts.
Key factors of eCommerce conversion funnels
In order to optimize the conversion funnel in your store or eCommerce, you need to have certain elements within your website. Without them you will not be able to set clear and measurable sales targets. Let's see them!
Shopping cart: In addition to being able to see the catalog of products and services that you offer, the online store needs a shopping cart. If what you have is an online catalog of sale in stores or by phone, the conversion funnels will not work within the page. You will have to analyze them with the offline options you offer.
Data form : Once users include items in the shopping cart, you must present the data collection form. Thus, you will know to which email or physical address you should make the shipments, and who is making the purchase. Without this step you will not be able to finish the conversions. Think carefully about what fields should be mandatory so that you have all the necessary information, but don't abuse this, since users are not friends of giving unnecessary data.
Means of payment : Your eCommerce needs to propose different options for users to pay. PayPal, cards, transfers, etc. Depending on what you choose, you can analyze the last phase within the store itself or with external actions (for example, if it is by bank transfer, the conversion phase will end when you receive the bank statement with the transfer).
In addition to these indispensable elements, there are many other aspects that influence the conversion funnels of an eCommerce. For example, calls to action within the store itself, online help chat systems, pop-ups ...
One of those aspects that influence the purchase are the online communication channels you use. Do they reinforce the brand image? Do they encourage users to make the leap and make a conversion? What is the relationship with users?
Main sources to drive traffic to your eCommerce
To increase conversions and therefore sales, the first thing to establish is a good network of traffic sources that take users to the online store. In addition, depending on the different campaigns they carry out, you can redirect users to different points in your store.
What are those sources you can use?
Google: With good SEO positioning, users will be able to find your online store when doing a Google search. These users will reach different pages within your store depending on the searches they perform.
Social networks: Your social network profiles must always be connected to the online store. In addition, you can make publications about the store itself, although you should not abuse them. In these channels, people want to have quality content and not just self-promotion. It is therefore not advisable to do too much commercial advertising on social networks.
Online advertising: If you carry out paid campaigns in Adwords or Social Ads, you will increase traffic to your store. Depending on the objective, you must send users to different stages of the funnel. You can carry out generic campaigns that take them to the home and let them perform all the steps little by little, or campaigns promoting a specific product that takes them directly to the product sheet.
Newsletter: A good email marketing service will help you create links with users and guide them through the funnel of conversions in different phases depending on the user who receives the emails.
External links : Working a good link building strategy, you will get other sites to point to your online store, carrying traffic and interested users.
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In this article we have analyzed point-by-point what the conversion funnels consist of and what is the specific behavior of the users when making an online purchase in an eCommerce, something essential to detect the vanishing points and optimize sales.
Analyzing all this, you can benefit from the benefits we have seen, such as the general improvement that this can bring in the opinions thanks to a better user experience.
So you know, start working immediately to improve the process of buying your eCommerce. You will see that applying only a few tips you will get to sell much more!