Online shopping is definitely coming into its own. Many of us in the United States need only look at our towering Amazon.com box collections to realize just how much eCommerce has become a constant and indispensable part of our lives (you know who you are).
Indeed, more than 90% of consumers surveyed across 11 countries said they make at least 25% of their purchases online, and eMarketer predicts that eCommerce revenue will account for more than $3.5 trillion worldwide by 2019. It’s an exciting time for all brands looking to extend their reach into the global marketplace—but it’s also a time to get serious about building a strong online presence.
Not only are today’s savvy consumers knowledgeable about the products and services they’re looking for, they’re also discerning about what websites will earn their business—performance, design, and overall experience are all significant criteria. More brands upping their eCommerce game means that consumers have more places to look for (and find) exactly what they want, when they want it. Add that to a global marketplace that is steadily increasing in size and accessibility, and the stakes are higher than ever for brands that want to remain relevant and competitive online.
In short, this means that if your website isn’t up to snuff, you risk losing business to a whole slew of online retailers queuing up behind you. Here are 3 things that are keeping people from buying on your eCommerce site, and how to fix them.
eCommerce revenue will account for more than $3.5 trillion worldwide by 2019.
1. Your website is too slow
While about 10% of people will be a good sport and wait for your website to get it together, the vast majority of people will take that time to find a new place to spend their money. In fact, nearly 65% of global consumers aren’t willing to wait more than 3 seconds for a website to load! You can encourage people to stick around by optimizing your site for faster loading.
We’ve written before about a few of the ways you can do this, but the number one culprit for slow-loading eCommerce sites is often poorly optimized images (which constitute 50-60% of an average page’s total weight). Sizing, image format, and composition can all make a huge difference—and those are just some of the elements to keep in mind. For a comprehensive look at how to go about optimizing your site’s images, check out this handy guide from the folks at Shopify.
2. You’re neglecting mobile
The gap between in-store and online buying is closing, mainly because the online (read: desktop) buying experience is becoming more and more comparable in terms of usability. However, despite the fact that half the world’s population is now mobile, people are still wary about mobile shopping. Why? Because it’s still perceived as a hassle, both in terms of buying experience and overall service.
Eighty-five percent of all consumers expect the same quality and speed of performance when shopping on mobile as they do when shopping online. To meet these expectations, you’ll need to ensure that your buying experience is as consistent and frictionless as possible. Is the navigation clear and clutter-free? Are forms simple and easy to manage on a small screen? Are menu options, contact information, and shipping/return policies easy to find? These are all things that many eCommerce sites do NOT do well (hence the resistance of otherwise connected consumers to take their business mobile). Providing a stellar mobile eCommerce experience is one way to lift your brand well above your competitors in the marketplace.
3. Your user experience gets lost in translation
As mentioned above, consumers are looking for a fast, easy, and seamless shopping experience. Simplicity is essential, especially for retailers who are hoping to reach a global audience. Aside from creating country-specific sites or translating site copy into different languages (an ideal solution if you have the time and resources to manage it), there are simple things you can do to make your site more international-friendly.
Clearly state that you accept international orders; list out general shipping costs so these consumers know what to expect; offer measurements and specs in metric as well as customary units; prioritize minimal copy and images that are self-explanatory; and look into site functionality that will let consumers toggle to their local currency. A simple, intuitive user experience will go a long way in eliminating distrust and encouraging people to click “Buy Now.”
67% of consumers surveyed globally have shopped online with retailers in other countries, and that number will only continue to increase as technology and connectivity improves. The bottom line is, if you want to get in on the action, make it as easy as possible for consumers around the world to buy from you. Optimizing your eCommerce website and prioritizing an efficient, intuitive user experience—across all devices—will help make your brand the one people keep coming back to.