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Ecommerce Websites and Sales: What Do You Optimize First?

by Lyndsay Peters - Mar 01, 2016
ecommerce site updates

If you’re running an ecommerce store (or any other kind of business website, for that matter), you’ve probably run into a lot of confusing decisions. If you’re just starting to analyze your site traffic to make the browsing experience better for your customers, you may be in a bind: do you put time and work into optimizing the pages on your site that are underperforming, or do you try to boost the quality of your superstar pages?

The Argument for Improving What’s Working

If a page is already earning traffic, then don’t put too much time and work into fixing it - you could end up taking away what's working. However, you can examine the page for weaknesses and opportunities.

Ways to Improve Popular Ecommerce Landing Pages

1. Improved Photography
Can you provide photos that show people wearing or using your product? Photography that provides context for the visitor makes them more likely to want to purchase.
2. Related Products
What is often purchased with the product on the page? Suggest it – you may even consider providing a combo deal with a discount for customer who purchase both items.
3. Common Customer Questions
Answer these in an FAQ, or rewrite your product description to answer the queries customers send you most often.
4. Awards and Accolades
If your product or site has been featured by media or given an award, then talk about it! Ecommerce sales are a time for boasting.

Rooting For The Underdog

It’s a temptation to take an underperforming page and dress it up, give it some polish, and turn its fortunes around.
Putting time and work into underperforming pages can let you take advantage of quick wins – pages that had little to no optimization before you identified them as underperformers may begin to shine very quickly with a bit of love.

Ways to Improve Unpopular Ecommerce Landing Pages

1. Meta Titles and Alt data.
If your pages don’t have interesting titles, descriptions, and all of the proper meta tags, they’re probably being skimmed over in search results. Add this information and make it interesting!
2. Does it Need a Touch-Up?
If a page gets decent number of visits but has a very high bounce rate, there could be something about the page that is visually unappealing, making visitors leave immediately. Take a close look at the fonts, photography, and layout.
3. Give it some Love.
Is this product related to other things available on your site? Link to it in descriptions, and add it to relevant shopping categories so that buyers can find it.
4. Feature it!
Take a nice promotional photo to put on your homepage. Maybe buyers just don’t know it’s there!
5. Write about It.
Talk about underperformers on your blog, social media, and any other platform. Like in number 3 – maybe people just don’t know it’s even there! Shine the spotlight on an underperforming page and see if you can pick up some social and blog links as people discover it.
Between these two schools of thought, I definitely prefer frontloading my work with time investment in what’s already working, and getting to the pages that are on the bottom of the heap later. There is some risk to this mindset, however, as you can find yourself constantly improving the good, while letting the bad slide.
Once or twice a year, take the time to do a visual and SEO audit of all pages on your site. There could be technical reasons why certain pages - or entire sections - of your site aren’t getting the traffic you think they should be.

Need help with evaluating an ecommerce website, or are you looking for custom website design and development? At ATAK, we’re always happy to talk about your next website project, and how we can help. Get in touch today.

Lyndsay Peters

Lyndsay Peters is Director of Search Marketing at ATAK Interactive. She's also the one who brings a dog to work to keep everything around the office just a little more human.

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