Keep It Simple
At the centre of any Ecommerce strategy should be the simple maxim “keep it simple”. Most people look to advisors such as JellyWall to load their guns with magic bullets. Unfortunately these do not exist, Ecommerce strategies at their heart should be simple.
Firstly the quality of the data is key. If a retailer or brand has a healthy data file then their Ecommerce potential is greatly increased. It enables us to build a site with a category structure that best represents the product file. This makes making the site SEO friendly a simple process for my team. It also means we can discuss multichannel Ecommerce platforms. With a plethora of market places now available this is a central part of any Ecommerce strategy. Whether it is Amazon, FarFetch, eBay, ASOS, Etsy or Tesco’s to name a few, there is a marketplace available for all. Good data management means for the right brand you can sell your product on all available marketplaces.
Secondly, build a site that is easy for the customer to navigate and purchase your products. This may seem obvious, but all too often people become obsessed with unnecessarily complicated functionality. These “bells and whistles” can prove distractions from the ultimate aim of selling your goods. In many cases they add no value but slow down the site and actually harm conversion rates. Innovation can be key to staying ahead of the game in Ecommerce, but it should not be at the expense of navigation. A good example of Ecommerce developments which are beneficial are improvements to checkouts that are coming onto the market which reduce the fields needed to complete an order. This increases the simplicity of the process and therefore aids conversion.
Thirdly, optimise your content so as it isn’t too large. I have seen far too many examples of people who are too obsessed with branding, and on the homepage have an image that is too big. Page load times are critical, going from a 4 second page load to 2 seconds can half your bounce rate. It’s even more important on mobile devices as they often have slower connections, page load times even effect SEO, so you really need to weigh up how important that huge, hi res background image is.
Fourthly, keep your site up to date. I simply mean making sure new products are pushed live in a timely manner. Making as many of your products live so increasing your SKU count has one of the biggest impacts on conversion rate.
Fifthly, merchandise your site so that the best selling products are as easy to buy as possible. Etail is not that different in this way to retail. You put you best products in the window, and you lay out your site in a shoppable manner. Some people forget simple retail rules on their sites.
This is by no means a definitive list but hopefully proves my point that Ecommerce should be kept simple. Buy good product, make sure people can find it, price it competitively and you won’t go far wrong.