Let me tell you a story about a time when I went music shopping online. It was September 2016 and I wanted to buy Bastille’s new album Wild World, and Biffy Clyro’s latest, Ellipsis. I decided for the first time ever that I didn’t want to buy the physical CD, that I should get with the times, stop cluttering up my flat, and make do with the MP3 download versions only. I looked on Amazon first, and found the Bastille album for £13.99 and the Biffy Clyro album at £9.99. I wondered if I could get them any cheaper on iTunes, so I had a look and found the Biffy Clyro album at £13.99 and Bastille for £9.99. I thought “hmm, it costs the same amount to buy both of them on either website. I’ll get them from Amazon then, because I prefer Amazon and I’m not particularly fond of Apple”.
It didn’t even occur to me to buy the albums separately, at the retailers where each one was the cheapest.
It only dawned on me afterwards that I could have bought the Bastille album on iTunes for £9.99, got the Biffy one at Amazon for £9.99, and saved £4. Now, you could argue that it was just me being a bit dense (it happens), but it may be that this is a kind of buyer behaviour that is quite common now.
In recent years it has seemed like supermarkets have been springing up all over the place, with Tesco stores increasing by 745, from 2,715 in 2011 to 3,460 in 2016. Supermarkets have been blamed for the decline of the high street, as more people have been visiting superstores and retail parks on the outskirts of towns rather than their local, smaller or independent shops. The rise of the superstore has meant that people can buy groceries, clothes, televisions, iPads, crockery and everything in between, all in one place. Amazon seems to be the online equivalent, blowing competitors out of the water by selling thousands of products so that their customers needn’t look anywhere else.
Aside from that, people have favourite stores that they prefer to shop at for a number of reasons – they trust them, they offer good customer service, they offer free delivery or more convenient delivery options, the website is easy to use, and so on. The list is endless, and many of these factors outweigh the cheaper prices offered by competitors. Above all, consumers like to buy things in the same place because it’s convenient.
Provide Upsells and Recommendations
So how can you use this to your advantage, and encourage your customers to buy everything they need from you instead of visiting other online retailers? Amazon do this very well by dedicating space on their product pages to showing you other products. And these aren’t any old products they need to get rid of – they’re products that are similar to what you’re already looking at, products that you might be interested in based on your previous product views or purchases, and products that other people bought who looked at the same products you did. These are intelligent suggestions that are tailored to each customer, and that’s what makes them work.
This doesn’t just have to happen on the product pages – you can use remarketing ads or email marketing to bring people back to your website to make further purchases, or to continue with their current purchases if they have abandoned their cart.
Become A Hub of Useful Information
People aren’t just looking for products online – they’re looking for information and advice, too. They are looking for product specifications, honest and helpful reviews, and objective facts to help them decide which product or service they should buy. I’m sure I’ve said this in a previous blog post, but it’s worth repeating: if your customers are looking for information on a product and you don’t provide it, they will look elsewhere. And when they find a retailer that gives them the help they need, and that retailer also sells the product in question, the customer is unlikely to come back to you. Why should they, when the other website has proved to be more useful, and the product is right there waiting to be clicked? Unless you are offering the product at a significantly cheaper price, you have probably lost the sale.
Providing the customer with plenty of guidance and information means that if they need help with something else, they are more likely to stay on your website, find more information, and potentially add something else to their basket.
If you would like any help with creating content for improved conversion rate optimisation, get in touch with SilverDisc!