So you have put time, effort and resources into creating your online shop but you are not getting the sales you want. In this article I put some of the home truths that you may need to hear, but may be in denial over about why customers don’t buy from you.

1: targeting the wrong audience

One of the things we see business owners get distracted by in the current world is chasing traffic and likes. Unless you are consistent with your message to your ideal audience those likes and traffic will not get you increased sales. What we would ask you is who is your ideal client. Give them a persona, understand who they are and more crucially what problem are you going to solve for them with the product you are offering them. Be consistent with this message and you will attract your ideal client. It is easy to become very busy on marketing to your social media channels – ensure you have a co-ordinated strategy that avoids duplication and most importantly connects with your website.

2 Unclear product information

The reality is we are now in world where people are spending on high value items – sofas, dining room table and chairs, beds and so on, so customers are prepared to commit to financial transactions online for large sums of money. Here’s the thing. With the right information, the customer will make the purchase. It goes without saying that sizes and dimensions are essential, but also the materials, what it’s made of and what does it feel like. Make sure your photos are good quality, professional and up to date. Videos are super useful for product guides and something customers do expect these days, plus creating your own specific YouTube channel is great for search engine optimisation. Give your customer the information they need to help them decide to purchase.

3: lack of trust

This is a biggy, and could be argued as one of the main reasons a potential customer will abandon a sale. If they just don’t trust you they will not give you their money. Its as simple as that. So how can you create trust, especially if you are a new business. Partner with global payment providers and make sure visitors to you site can see the logos throughout your site. Explain how safe and secure their information is and be very clear on your refund policy. Have a specific customer feedback process, so you can grow third party reviews (again also helps with your visibility online). Use third party review plug-ins so that potential customers trust reviews. Lastly on this point alone, tell your story. People ultimately buy from people, not stores, and its you that will differentiate your store from a competitor selling the same product. It’s you that is the unique element, make sure people know that!

4: Its Too Difficult

I think some ecommerce website actually forget that it’s all ultimately about shopping. Customers sometimes need to be shown what to buy and how to pay in the simplest number of steps. Make it complicated, or timeconsuming and in this day and age they will be distracted or get frustrated. Think about the journey your customer has to make on your website to buy one or two products. If they were sat at a bus stop on their mobile could they buy it in time before the bus came? Answer honestly now! What we always do when we start working with a new client is to buy a product from their site, and give them honest feedback about our experience. Try and avoid having to go off to third party sites for payment or registration. Make sure returns are hassle free and delivery charges and times are clear. Keep stock availability up to date and make it easy for people to see related items to increase the opportunity to upsell/cross sell.

5: customer frustration using your site on their device.

Irrespective of your product or service, most will start their customer journey on a tablet or mobile. The reality is though that customers don’t want to be viewing tiny text that they have to resize and keep fiddling with the screen to be able to read the text. Buttons are often too small to be able to be used and often means the wrong button is clicked or wrong quantity. Being responsive these days isn’t enough. Our advice is to invest in a specific mobile site using AMP – which google will also love and give you extra visibility points! Simple pages with limited text, use pictures and clear straightforward process to purchase.

6: It looks old fashioned

Let me be frank! Anyone going to your website will know if you haven’t updated it or altered it in 3 years and people will make judgements on your business because of the way your website looks. Also if you haven’t been continually updating your site it will not work as well on the latest browsers and search engines. I believe the issue here is that often companies invest a large sum in a website and think that is all they need to do. Unfortunately you need to continually keep improving and working on your website to help build confidence and keep up to date.

7: Its too slow

Did you know that nearly 50% of us visiting websites will not wait 3 seconds before going somewhere else. 3 seconds. That’s all you’ve got to get your shop door open into their world. That’s on mobiles or pc’s. The problem is, whilst everyone is trying to improve the customer experience by adding more photos and more videos for example, or personalising the site – this all impacts on page load time speed so its super important to ensure you monitor your site’s performance, and ensure you regularly review your hosting package.