4 steps to improve your online sales

Convert more Internet users into paying customers with the following four steps.

Step 1: Determine your current performance

The first step is to assess your current situation in order to optimise the process of converting visitors into customers. There are a number of free or inexpensive analytical software programs on the Internet that can help you.

Your goal is to estimate your current rate of visitors becoming customers. This figure will allow you to estimate where you stand, but also to set a target to exceed as you improve your performance. Then drill down to find the pages that are making you gain customers or lose visitors.

Which pages produce the most sales? Where do visitors leave the site without taking action?

Once you know your current performance, you are ready to identify opportunities for improvement, including in your site design and SEO.

Step 2: Create customer profiles

In the second step, you need to focus on your ideal visitor. Who are they? What are they looking for? And, most importantly, how do they buy? A good way to do this is to create categories of users (personas), which are in fact just fictitious people representing your ideal visitors.

These users will allow you to visualise the type of people you want to attract and use this knowledge to improve your website, including its visual aspects, editorial content and promotions.

You need to put yourself in the customers' shoes. Try to understand their needs and desires and offer products or services that meet them, directly on your website.

Step 3: Define a buying process

Armed with statistics and imaginary users, in the third step you need to determine the navigation path you want visitors to take on your website and simplify certain tasks for them.

Your core products should be easily accessible from your home page, and your products should be categorised for easy navigation.

Your forms should require minimal effort and think. Ideally, your calls to action should be associated with the content presented on the different pages. For example, visitors are more likely to subscribe to your newsletter if the subscribe button is juxtaposed with a practical article highlighting your expertise.

Step 4: Optimise individual pages for conversion

The fourth and final step is to methodically test your assumptions and make incremental adjustments. For example, you should focus on optimising individual pages rather than trying to restructure your site all at once. If you change too many elements at once, you will not be able to know which ones have helped you to accelerate the conversion of visitors into customers.

Online customers are easily frustrated and will quickly leave your website if it is not user-friendly. Small improvements to the speed of your website, for example, can boost your search engine rankings and prevent visitor dissatisfaction.

Small improvements can turn into thousands of dollars
So now you have a four-step process for improving your visitor-to-customer conversion rate.

At first glance, this may seem like a never-ending task, which is partly true because optimising visitor-to-customer conversion is an ongoing process. But you should also consider the benefits. For example, if your conversion rate increases by just half a percentage point, you could be making thousands of dollars.

From this perspective, it is well worth the effort.


Strategic planning consultants