How often have you felt overwhelmed by the continuous stream of “eCommerce trends” put forth by thought leaders, industry publications, external stakeholders and even your own team members? It’s enough to give even the most collected business owner a pounding headache. Whilst the majority of this advice is probably quite useful, it derives from people “on the inside” and not from the most important advisers – your customers.
Who knows what E-Commerce customers want from an online store better than the customer themselves? Paying closer attention to them can give your eCommerce store that extra dose of fuel it needs to please customers and keep them coming back for more.
Ways to Learn more about your Customers:
- Feedback Boxes
- Following User Activity via user journeys and heat maps
- Usability Tests
- Reach out Directly
- Online Surveys
- Post-purchase survey emails
- Onsite fly-in-polls
Now that all of that is out of the way, it’s time to get stuck into the good stuff. Here are the things customers want more than anything from their e-commerce shopping experiences:
Personalised and Clever Shopping Recommendations
Provide your website visitors with personalised shopping experiences to increase the likelihood of a full sales conversion. Gathering insights about your customer’s shopping habits can help you to catch their eye with relevant offers, related promotions and visual emphasis on the items most likely to be of interest. Customers prefer this kind of online shopping experience because it saves time and gives them new purchasing ideas. In fact, 54% of customers prefer to engage with an eCommerce store that caters to their individual preferences and personal tastes.
Access to Honest Customer Reviews
People appreciate honesty. When your website only shows the positive reviews and keeps all of the critical ones hidden, people will know there is something up. No website can be that good, right? Plus, it makes it look as though the reviews that you do show on site have been intentionally generated. Instead, publish user product reviews on your eCommerce store to improve your site’s credibility and trustworthiness.
Free Shipping Available
Who doesn’t like free shipping? There’s not much worse than hitting the “continue to checkout” button, only to find that the cost of delivery is nearly as high as the item you want to purchase. Paying for shipping is one of the main disadvantages of online shopping. Why pay extra online when you can probably find a similar item a lot closer to home? This is where qualifying for free shipping opportunities come into play. Interestingly, 68% of online shoppers admit that they would increase their order total in order to qualify for the free shipping deal. By offering free shipping to consumers when they reach a certain bench mark cost, you’ll attract a lot more customers.
Easy Product Returns
Shopping online means relying on pictures, videos and size charts etc. to determine if the desired product is right for you or not. Once it arrives and you find that it does not meet your expectations (perhaps it doesn’t fit or the online store delivered the wrong colour etc.), you may wish to return it. The rules and regulations surrounding product returns varies from store to store. The more difficult the return policy and process, the less likely it is that a browser will make a purchase. 65% of online shoppers say that they are more likely to buy from a site offering free returns. Make returning items as easy and hassle-free as possible for your customers. Broadcast this on your site and make buyers aware of how easy it is to return items.