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6 Ways to Make Your WordPress E-Commerce Site Stand Out

October 1st, 2013


Building and maintaining a great e-commerce site can be overwhelming at times as it seems there is no end to what needs to be focused on. From overall design to navigation and infrastructure, you can be left with your head spinning, wondering where in the world to begin. WordPress is a powerful tool and you want to make sure you get the most out of it.

If you want to get a good touch point on your site and look at key areas where you can make a big impact, consider looking at your “typical” beginning (home page) and end (checkout page). While certainly people can enter your site at a place other than the home page, for the purposes of our discussion here, we are going to consider the home page as the entry point (and we certainly hope that the checkout page is the end, as that means they have bought your product or service!). Following are 6 things you can do on these pages to increase your e-commerce results.

1. Home Page: Showcase Your Top Sellers

Always put your best foot forward and lead with your heavy hitters. Make sure that you focus on the products or product lines that bring in the most volume of business for you. There is typically a reason this is the case and if you choose to try and downplay them in order to boost sales of other products, you may end up losing out on all of them.

2. Home Page: Highlight Security

Make it clear to visitors from the get-go that you have a robust site and business operation, with complete PCI compliance, SSL security and good payment options. If you are unsure of how to use your WordPress front end to offer all of the payment options and security that you need, we offer all of the security requirements you need. This will allow you to focus on the other parts of your site because you know that this very important piece is being taken care of.

3. Home Page: Display Payment Options

People like to know right away that they will have the choice they want in how to pay for goods on your site. Never limit people to only one payment method, especially if that method requires them to leave your site to complete the transaction. It is imperative that you keep customers on your site and ensure a consistent experience within your site. When people see the payment options on your home page, they feel reassured and are more likely to “enter” your store and shop.

4. Checkout Page: Implement Persistent Shopping Cart

Every e-commerce shopper does this at times—visits a site, puts something in the cart yet does not purchase at that time. There are many reasons for this but the most important thing for you to focus on is to have your WordPress site set up to remember that customer and his or her cart contents when they return. This is called the “persistent shopping cart”. It does not give up—your items are there waiting for you to simply complete the checkout process. This little “trick” does wonders to your overall conversion rate versus letting the cart be emptied upon exit.

5. Limit Exit Points on Checkout Page

This is huge. I cannot stress enough the importance of keeping the momentum going once you have a shopper that is in the active buying phase. You have obviously done a lot of things right to get someone to visit your site, locate a product, add a product to their cart—do not let them get away at this point. This includes keeping people on your page for a complete, secure checkout process. Do not encourage or force customers to go to a third party site for payment. Every chance you give someone to leave your checkout page is a chance they will not complete the transaction—and a chance they will not come back at all.

6. Checkout Page: Make It Easy

One of the simplest ways for you to make checkout easy for your customers is to reduce the amount of information they need to fill in or provide. Allow auto-fill of the city and county once a post code is entered, for example. Provide a check box for “billing address is the same as shipping address”. These may seem like little things, and they are in a way, but they are big in overall impression to the web shopper. Anything that expedites the purchasing process is a plus (and, it also goes back to limiting opportunities for the customer to leave you at this point).

If you are serious about making e-commerce work for your business, do your homework on some of these finer points, customer experience, security and other functionality you want for your WordPress site.

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