Quite apparent is the fact that we have a reached a point where taking your business online will bring in more benefits to you. More often than not, small businesses have since begun looking for ways into setting up eCommerce websites to improve their revenue flows during this lockdown period. While this is the fact, not all such sites already setup are performing to scratch hence the need to look into ways in which these sites can be optimised for better functionality and improved results. In this article, I take a quick look at what I assume to be critical areas of your site you should look into as you optimise your eCommerce website.

What Is Search Engine Optimisation

Conversations around the performance of any website revolve around its efficiency in terms of search engine optimisation (SEO) and the accruing traffic thereof. SEO in itself is a process of increasing the search visibility of a given website and this can be both at a local and global scale. The scale of which is determined by whether or not your site targets the entire online space or just a portion of it which usually are the community from which your business operates. While on a global scale, you optimise your website to make it visible on the broader online searches. On the other hand, a localised SEO means a website is made to appear in searches based on the location of users. The implication is that a website owner in Harare can tweak his/her website so that it appears in searches made by users in Harare mostly. To achieve this, some tactics and techniques are implored to improve the site`s position on search rankings among other variables.

Making it easy for people to find you online

Perhaps the first and foremost important factor to take note of in optimising your site is guaranteed ease of accessibility. There is a sense in which developers of eCommerce websites overlook the fact that their site is still the same as any other website and all optimising rules apply. Therefore, the first thing you want to do with your eCommerce website to make it easily accessible is to ensure that it has friendly and transparent URLs and right target keywords. URLs will be useful in guiding people as to what they should get by clicking or following a given link. I mention this reflecting on some Urls which suggest something different from what the actual website is offering. It is understandable because some web developers want to drive traffic using a slightly catchy name for a URL address. The same also goes with keywords where developers stuff a site with all sorts of keywords most of which are irrelevant to the site`s offering. What you want is for people looking things offered by your website to find it and you as quickly as possible not the other way round.

Put Effort To Build Trust For Your Website

I have seen some people who would just not take the chance to make an online purchase because at some point they have been duped or tricked by some unscrupulous individuals. Paying attention to this fact should encourage you to make sure that you communicate the credibility of your business and website so that visitors will trust your business from the onset before they choose to part with their cents and dollars. For this, what you want to do is make sure that the About page of your website details who you are while your location and business address are visible. The page should also be linked to your social media profiles where you want to have trust signals for the products/services offered by your business. This is so because a recent finding suggests that incorporating customer testimonials and product reviews build trust which can boost your site conversion by ranges between 14 – 76%.

Improve Website Design and Shopping Experience

Website design and the shopping experience is important in the optimisation process of your website. This hints on such elements as the page load speed where simple designs offering seamless navigation between pages are important in so far as they make the process of page loading even simpler and efficient. I have had instances where a website features a lot of plug-ins and add-ons which do nothing but slow down the speed and response rate of your website.  Now, you should appreciate the fact that a slow loading site equates to lost revenue where findings suggest that any given site has a maximum of 2(two) seconds to get people interested. Interestingly, it is also stated that for every second after the first 2 seconds you will lose close to 10% of your visitors. So, this means that in about 7 seconds your website could lose half of the visitors. Hence the need to make your website as simple as possible should be underscored.

With regards to the shopping experience, it is equally important to ensure that your website search tools are as functional as possible. A functional search function tends to improve branding, conversions and sales of your website. With this, you also want to make sure that your respective product descriptions are quite interesting avoiding the generic descriptions. It would be better if the description of your product speaks to the problem which it solves. That way, visitors to your website will have relevant information upon searching for a product or browsing through your website.

Check Out Process

I have had instances whereupon completing my shopping I had to sign up to some site to make my payment. In some instances you will find extra charges either labelled as transporting/shipping fees and in the worst of it all is realising that my mode of payment is not acceptable on the given site. Hence, it becomes important to note that such information should be made clear from the onset rather than have it pop up as a surprise upon completing the purchase. It is also important to ensure that payment methods are made as accessible to all as possible so that you maximise sales and the overall profitability of your website.