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6 Critical Mistakes eCommerce Retailers Make Without Knowing
October 31, 2017
6-Critical-Mistakes-eCommerce-Retailers-Make-Without-Knowing

6 Critical Mistakes eCommerce Retailers Make Without Knowing

October 31, 2017
When entrepreneurs start an eCommerce business, it always seems like a wise decision. With modern technology, nearly every aspect of selling online can be automated, generating a nearly hands-free income source… in theory anyway. The truth is, many people dive in head first, not knowing that there are some critical mistakes that can ruin their success. In this post, we’ll explain six serious missteps you could be making, and actions to replace them with.

1. Drop shipping without branded packaging

Drop shipping is one of the most cost-efficient ways to conduct online sales because you never have to touch or store the products that your customers order. But do you provide branded drop shipping fulfillment? If not, you could be losing repeat-business.

Once people order from your eCommerce store, they expect a great experience to become loyal patrons. If the buyer’s journey doesn’t connect with your brand, there’s no reason for customers to order a second or third time from your company.

To avoid this issue, establish a branded fulfillment strategy:

  • Choose suppliers that allow you to use branded packaging materials.
  • Print your own packing slips.
  • Follow up with customers with tracking and delivery information.
  • Subscribe customers to a mailing list for follow-up communication and up-selling materials.

Not everyone in eCommerce uses drop shipping as part of their strategy. But, if you do, branding is a critical element in success.

2. Requiring shoppers to complete a lengthy registration process

Online shoppers don’t want to spend time registering for an account. As a matter of fact, nearly ¼ of online shoppers will leave a site if they are forced to register for an account. So, as an eCommerce retailer, you need to make your registration process as simple as possible!

An effortless way to ensure simplified customer registration on your website is to install a social login plugin. To do this, consider utilizing a software solution like Oneall, which provides social network integration. Their offers include seamless integration with your current registration system while improving data quality and reducing spam registrations.

Use this platform (or one like it) to allow your customers the ease of registering for an account through your website by way of their favorite social media or shopping platform. These platforms can include:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Amazon
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • Instagram
  • Google

3. Your page-speed is slow

Slow-loading product pages lead to a high bounce rate, the opposite of conversions. In fact, a one-second delay in page load speed can lead to a 7 percent reduction in conversions. Additionally, 39 percent of shoppers will leave a page if the images don’t load quickly. If you want your visitors to become customers, you must ensure that your pages load quickly and efficiently.

If you notice a higher than average bounce rate on your website, it’s time to check your page speeds. To do this, use Google Pagespeed Insights. This free tool allows you to see areas where your pages need improvement.

Simply enter the URL of your page to analyze its performance. Then, follow the Possible Optimizations generated. These step-by-step instructions make it easy to optimize your eCommerce pages for speed, so that you can eliminate this issue.

4. Your ordering process has too many steps

Like your registration process, your checkout process should be uncomplicated. 27 percent of total cart abandonments are due to a complicated or lengthy checkout process. This means that more than half of eCommerce customers put something in their cart, only to later leave the site without placing their order. Consumers expect simplicity and speed. If you have too many steps in your ordering process, you will have a hard time finalizing sales.

To combat cart abandonment, cut out any unnecessary steps in the checkout process. Keep your checkout pages straightforward, and only ask for the information required to place an order:

  • Shipping information
  • Billing information
  • Payment information

Another tip for optimizing your checkout process is to include a trust badge so that customers know you use a secure payment processor.

5. You manually handle shipping and transportation

In the technology era, nearly every step of the eCommerce fulfillment process can be automated. Aside from saving time, shipping automation can reduce your shipping costs by more than 20 percent. If you manually handle your internal logistics (shipping and transportation), you leave too much room for error in your processes.

Resolve this problem by leveraging a transportation management system (TMS). There are many TMS options to choose from that will employ data-driven packing and shipping algorithms while providing you with insights to power your shipping strategy. Improve your customer experience, save money and reduce human errors by automating your shipping and transportation processes.

6. Orders are only processed online

When you only process online orders, you ignore at least one critical fact: retailers who offer more than one option for order processing (web, phone, in-store, etc.) are more successful than those who only offer one. A brick and mortar store with no website, or a website with no offline options to place an order, are only hurting themselves.

With the plethora of choices available to help streamline your processes, there’s no reason not to offer your customers more options. Choose an eCommerce platform like Shopify that allows you to integrate an offline credit card reader with your online payment processing system and easily create an “omnichannel” retail experience.

Conclusion

Are you making any of the critical mistakes mentioned above? If so, you now know what you can do to fix them. Offer memorable branded packaging materials. Give shoppers the option to register via social media. Optimize your page load speeds. Keep your checkout process concise. Automate your shipping and logistics processes. Take an omnichannel approach to retail. These tips will enable you to enhance the customer experience, which will ultimately lead to success for your eCommerce business!

Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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Guest Post by: Ashley Kimler
With over a decade of experience with online promotions and web development, Ashley Kimler is a content marketing writer on behalf of Heroic Search in Tulsa. She specializes in eCommerce and productivity tools. If you want to see what she and the HS team are up to next, follow along on Twitter @ashleykimler or connect with her on LinkedIn.
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