In real life, the shopping cart is the most fun part of going to the store. You can
ride push it around the building, fill it with goods you may or may not be able to afford, and use it as a type of barometer for how much you really need that pair of Hello Kitty sunglasses. It’s a blast.
Shouldn’t your ecommerce shopping cart be just as exciting for you and your customers? We certainly think so – that’s why we’ve put together a list of important enterprise shopping cart features that will awaken your ecommerce customers’ inner shopaholics. Enact these changes today and you’ll see profits soar.
Cross-sell/up-sell: Providing your shoppers with related or alternative products to purchase does more than drive up your sales – it helps customers find what they’re looking for without having to search your site. There are plenty of automated tools for cross-sell and up-sell suggestions, but it’s best if you supplement them with manual tweaks. Do a little research and review your sales data to find associations that will get your top items into more shopping carts.
On-site search management: Your customers can’t buy what they can’t find! If your visitors are frequently submitting queries that yield zero results, that’s a user experience issue you need to address. As with other algorithms, you shouldn’t rely completely on automatic tools. Think about your categorization and product descriptions, and set up redirects for items that still aren’t easily found via the most common search terms (“Hello Kitty shades” should redirect to “Hello Kitty sunglasses”).
SEO tools: Visibility starts well before users actually end up on your website. You probably know how important search engine optimization is, but it’s easy to let things slip when you’ve got hundreds or thousands of products. Focus on tightening up your page titles, keeping an up-to-date site map, and rewriting your URLs with natural terminology. And hey, you’ve always got the option of hiring an agency with top notch ecommerce SEO experience.
Tracking scripts: Outside of your normal analytics, custom tracking scripts can give you a lot more information about how your visitors shop. You’ll find out what items they put into (and take out of) their carts, in what order, and with what frequency. You’ll indirectly learn which products have instant appeal, as well as what type of users return to buy more of your goods. Plus, you’ll be able to follow guests through checkout and verify they’ve successfully completed their purchases.
Customer level reporting: If your store is doing well, you may think your combined marketing channels are working well. But maybe a handful of people who really like anime-themed eyewear have been digging your site since they first clicked on banner ads four months ago. Customer-level reporting (typically provided via third party tool) helps you track session-level data to see which shoppers return to your store, giving you more long-term info about the real sources of sales success.
Product feeds: While some people itching to buy Sanrio-themed sunglasses are naturally going to find your store, others are going to go to the big names in ecommerce: Amazon, eBay, and Google Shopping. You could look at the situation as a missed sale, or you could set up product feeds that link your inventory to these platforms. That way, shoppers will find your goods when they search your biggest competitors. They’re not guaranteed to pick your store, but it’s better than being invisible!
Multi-store capabilities: ecommerce isn’t one-site-fits-all anymore – your potential buyers are shopping from more locations and a wider variety of hardware than ever before. That’s why it’s vital to establish multiple versions of your storefront. The obvious split would be between desktop and mobile (we’ve discussed the importance of mobile ecommerce before), but you should also consider producing alternate language copies of your site, too. Study your customer breakdown, then hammer out regional versions where applicable.
Social logins: The average netizen doesn’t really trust Facebook, but they probably trust your much smaller (by comparison) ecommerce site even less. So when given the option to sign in to make a purchase, doing so with an existing account is faster, easier, and feels more secure. Allow your would-be buyers to log in with their social media accounts and you’ll find users often Like the option.
Triggered emails: Good email management can make or break your site’s user experience. And keep in mind, there are three major types of emails you need to master:
- Transactional: The good news is you just sold twenty pairs of sunglasses with red bowties on them. The bad news? The notifications your customers got didn’t give them any useful information about their super-cute accessories. Make sure your auto-generated receipts and follow-up emails are well-designed and useful.
- Requested: When someone signs up for your newsletter, creates an account, or otherwise begs you for an email, it’s especially pressing that your system responds quickly and professionally. Compare your requested email templates with those of major ecommerce sites to see where you might be lacking.
- Behavioral: This is one category that’s often overlooked by email marketers. Capitalize on opportunities to contact users who might need a nudge (they’ve abandoned their carts) or are dancing around a particular type of product (should they pick the black glasses or the white ones?).
Multiple payment options: This can’t be overstated – you need to make it easy for your ecommerce customers to give you money. You may not be a big fan of every payment system, but the more options your visitors have, the more likely they are to fork over their hard-earned cash. At the very minimum, you should accept Paypal, Google Checkout, and most major credit cards. Once you’ve got that covered, listen to your audience. Who knows, maybe Bitcoins will take off after all?
You don’t have to update your site’s functionality alone. Contact Ripen’s ecommerce engineering team today to discuss how we can help improve your site’s shopping cart for you and your customers.