Previously, in the series, we talked about the E-commerce trends in 2021. As the next step, after careful consideration, you’ve decided on a self-hosted or a hosted E-commerce store. You have a beautiful website up and running. Now, it’s time to look at maintaining your E-commerce store.
Consumers prefer to look at well-constructed sites. Undeniably, 94% of conversions happen based on your web design – WebFX. After all the hard work, losing a bunch of customers is not what you want. That’s why it’s important to maintain your E-commerce store monthly.
In this comprehensive checklist, we’ve put together the elements to retain the functionalities of your store and keep your customers.
How to run a successful E-commerce store?
With more and more Saas companies in the market, it’s easier for store owners to sign up, pick a theme, and get started. Everything else is taken care of by the hosting company. Unless you have a self-hosted platform, which is great for customization, we recommend signing up with a Web solutions company. But if you’re looking to grow your business single-handedly, check out the Marketing starter pack. Below are a few things to keep in mind while maintaining your E-commerce store.
1. Providing better user experience
When customers only have a few minutes to spend, 66% of them prefer to look at beautifully designed websites. A well-designed E-commerce store not only converts leads but builds trust.
Here are few things to remember:
- Check the loading speed
- Make the navigation simpler
- Provide an intuitive checkout process
- Install the auto-complete feature
- Have quality images and videos
Improving on one or two of the things above can make a drastic difference in your traffic. If you’d like to know more about designing landing pages, checkout anatomy of a great landing page.
2. Security maintenance
Security maintenance is the most important aspect of running a successful E-commerce store. One little thing that goes wrong can blow the chances of trust and sales at the same time. Here are a few checks to perform.
Data loss is common and can happen because of human errors, malicious attacks, and more. The best solution to prevent such incidents is to have backups of your website and test them.
- Store the backups in a separate server
- Capture all data from your site
- Update as often as possible
Speed and performance optimization
For better performance of your E-commerce store, compress video/image files. Compressing does not mean compromising on the quality, but being able to provide the best with a smaller file size. As the next step, focus on using a CDN (Content delivery networks). The CDN enables faster download speed irrespective of your consumer’s location. And finally, reduce redirects from your site.
No matter how well your E-commerce store performs, it’s always good to upgrade at intervals. Upgrading can be through one of the following:
- Providing a better experience for the customers
- Inventing single product pages
- Simplifying the purchase process
- Using SEO effectively
- Analyzing data
3. Store customization
No two customers are alike, and it’s important to personalize your store for each of them. In fact, 53% of customers found the personalized experience useful – Invesp. Find out where they are in the customer journey and collect data to personalize their experience.
Another way to implement store customization is to provide customized homepages for visitors. Based on their interests, show them the relevant products on your page. Finally, use marketing automation to inform and engage your customers at regular intervals.
4. SEO Check
SEO is the root of your E-commerce store, and it’s vital to keep a check on it regularly. Google’s algorithms keep changing, but there are a few ways you can work your way towards success.
- Have a blog and provide valuable content
- Introduce FAQ
- Display product reviews, descriptions, and guides
- Use SEO keywords on all pages of your site
5. Flexible product options
Adding too many products could overwhelm the visitors. However, adding a flexible product page will spike interest and conversion rates. Provide product comparisons, a customized swatch box to display the products, and group similar products together.
There are a lot of style elements to make your product page stand out. But always remember to keep it subtle and informative.
6. Social media validation
Customers decide on a product based on the number of likes and shares on social media. As silly as it sounds, social media validation is a primary concern in brands alike. To keep things real and enhance emotional touchpoints, use humans in your ads.
Additionally, address consumer pain points on a public platform. Refer to them by their names and provide the best customer support. Doing this will increase trust and give you better reviews and ratings.
The benefits of maintaining your E-commerce store
All your hard work pays off when you properly maintain your E-commerce store. Here are a few benefits of doing that.
1. Reduction in cart abandonment
When you provide easy access and personalization, there’s no way the products will lay around in customers’ carts. The simple way to their heart is by providing the best user experience and customer service.
2. Aggregation of data
The more you focus on elevating the customer experience, the more data you collect. Aggregating data can be used to segment products, review pricing, and more. This data acts as a bridge between giving your customers what they need. Hence, the process is a cycle.
3. Easy integration
A solid E-commerce store comes with huge advantages. It allows you to integrate and manage everything from one place. This includes CRM, inventory management, accounting, online marketplaces, and more.
4. Better onboarding experience for customers
When your E-store is up-to-date and user friendly, the onboarding of customers becomes efficient and easy. Additionally, the customers would rejoice in visiting your site.
5. Keeps away hackers
Hackers should be your main concern when maintaining an E-commerce store. A properly maintained store is safe from malicious attacks, at any point in time.
6. High site speed and traffic
When your E-commerce store is optimized, the speed of the site is stabilized and the traffic flows in.
Undervalued elements of an E-commerce store
Most of the E-commerce companies focus on the big stuff and forget about the things that contribute to the success. Below are a few things you should focus on to get better results over the long term.
Provide valuable content, industry thought-leadership, product information, and behind the scenes. Whatever you focus on, do not forget to implement SEO best practices.
The hierarchy of your site determines your sales. Display the products, information, and other details cohesively. In fact, our brains are trained to look from left to right, diagonally. According to Gutenberg, this is the eye-tracking pattern consumers use.
3. A/B Testing
As much as you’re confident about your site’s performance, an A/B test gives you results by eliminating the guessing game. It’s crucial to split test your site before it’s live.
Where to go from here
We’ve covered most of the critical aspects, however below are a few more to give you a broader outlook.
1. Cost of maintenance
E-commerce store maintenance starts from $200/month and scales up to a whopping $2500/month depending on the size and requirements of the store. Here at Woogo stores, we charge a nominal one time set-up fee of $990 and a monthly maintenance fee of $199. For more info, visit our pricing page.
2. Best service providers
Some of the renowned service providers are – Magento, Prestashop, Opencart, Shopify, Bigcommerce, and of course Woogo Stores. One thing that makes us different from the competitors – We provide a Concierge experience.
3. Hiring multi-faceted groups
We understand that running an E-commerce store is no joke. A lot of patience, time, and strategies take place. But there are two ways of handling it.
1- Hire a group of multi-talented freelancers, marketers, and more. Delegating tasks will give you enough time to focus on the higher-end tasks, while the experts take care of the process.
2- Customize your store and delegate the tasks to a solutions company (This is where we can help you run a stellar business! ).
A lot of businesses have a great head-start but soon tumble into defeat. The major reason behind this is not paying attention to the small details that lead to bigger results.
While the backend can solve your technical issues, you need to have an elevated customer experience to keep it going. Whatever options you choose, make sure to keep in mind the above methods for successful maintenance of your E-commerce store.
Stay tuned to the other parts in the upcoming weeks.
Part 4 – Reach your customers fast: A guide to online marketing strategies
Part 5 – How to keep your customers close and reduce cart abandonment