You've got a beautiful website. It
cost a lot of money. But your e-commerce sales are almost
negligible. Is your website working? And if
not, why not? Due to the digital nature of the
Internet, you can't just stroll in and see the
problem. If you walked into a retail store that attracted very few customers, you'd have a chance of intentifying
the problem. If the clerks were less than
informative, or the merchandise was badly displayed,
you'd recognize the problem immediately. But how
do you get the information you need to find ways
to maximize the effectiveness of your website?
- Traffic & Conversion
Rate - Are visitors getting to your
site? Of potential customers that visit your
site, what percentage actually make a purchase?
- Site Audience
- Are you getting visitors who are likely to
want your product?
- Usability &
Navigation - Can people find the information
they're looking for on your site? Is your content
designed for the web so it effectively conveys
your product's benefits?
|Low Site Traffic - Not enough
visitors to your website
Low Conversion Rate - Few visitors
The first possibility,
that too few users are visiting to your
website, is probably the easiest to assess.
Your web master can use web logs to access
the daily (or weekly, or monthly) number of unique visitors to your site. If you expect 50,000
people a month to visit the site, but you're
only getting 5,000, you are now ready to
address the problem of driving more people
to your website. As this information,
in a raw form, is already captured on your web server,
it should be easy and inexpensive to
get this information from your company's
webmaster. To get your website's conversion
rate, divide the number of purchasing customers
per time-unit (day, week) by the number of unique visitors in the same timespan.
Reasons for a low conversion rate will be
discussed under Inappropriate
Audience and Usability
& Navigation Difficulties.
|Inappropriate Audience - Many
visitors to your site, but few potential
If you find that you have
a high volume of site traffic, but a low
conversion rate, your audience is one of the
first areas to examine. You need to identify
the demographics of the visitors to your
site, and compare them with the target profile(s)
for your products. The easiest way to do
this is to offer an online site audit survey,
which can also contain questions for use
in assessing website
|Usability & Navigation Difficulties
- Customers can't find the information they seek,
or online content fails to persuade
them to purchase
If you're getting a significant
volume of your target customers to the site,
but the conversion rate remains low, your
website should be reviewed for usability.
It may be the customers have to click through to many pages to access the desired information, or certain
pages may take too long to download over
a dial-up connection. There are many
reasons people don't buy on the web. Usability
analysis can help you find out exactly what
those reasons are for your website - and what
areas to focus on to best improve your e-commerce
A website log analysis
should be performed to find out at what points visitors
most often leave the website. This information
can be used to target questions for a two-part
online survey. The first part of the survey
is delivered to visitors as they enter the
site, and asks them about their expectations.
The second part of the survey is delivered
later, via email, and solicits their impressions
of the site, including ease of navigation and why
they did or did not make a purchase. These
surveys deliver information that is crucial
for your company in developing better content
and navigability for your site.
Beautiful websites don't make
money. Effective websites make money. At Compu-Solv,
we enjoy finding new ways to improve the ROI of your website. Call
us and set up an appointment to discuss how we
can help your company make more e-commerce sales.