As an eCommerce site owner, you face several challenges before making a sale. There are various factors you have to worry about. The most fundamental variable that generates sales is what most tend to gloss over: simplicity.
Creating an eCommerce site doesn’t have to be complex. Most get bogged down by features that are not necessary to drive revenue and increase their bottom line. The key is finding ways to decrease the number of clicks between entering one’s site and completing a transaction.
At Romain Berg, we are passionate about creating efficient and engaging websites. Reach out today to learn more about how to improve the performance of your website.
In this post, we’ll examine the concepts that govern the success of high-converting eCommerce websites and even high-performing business sites. And they all have to do with taking visitors to the right place with fewer clicks.
Don’t Follow the 3-Click Rule
The “3-click rule” originated in a 2001 book by Jeffrey Zeldman called “Taking Your Talent to the Web.” He mentioned it as something other web designers were using back then.
The concept was merely an assumption by the author about visitors bouncing away from your site to another. They could quickly move on if “they can’t find what they’re looking for within three clicks.”
The concept caught on among web designers. The 3-click rule was taken as gospel truth despite no studies or evidence backing it.
To be fair, the 3-click “rule” taps into the visitor’s desire for “fast gratification,” as mentioned in the book. But it is by no means a strict rule that all eCommerce sites must observe.
The biggest problem brought upon by this rule is the broad navigation UIs that some online stores utilize. Hover your mouse over a category on the menu. It will display subcategories under it to help you narrow down your search. And the same thing could happen if you place your cursor on a subcategory.
Organizing submenus this way is a logical and sound concept. However, it creates a wide variety of options that can become overwhelming for users. This organization isn’t helping users get to where they want and need to be. You’re delaying their path with the myriad of options you’re offering them all at once.
As a result, the 3-click rule betrays the most fundamental idea it’s trying to champion. This brings us to our next point:
Make Purchasing Simple with Less Clicks for Customers
The number of clicks is correlated to the simplicity of making purchases from your website. It’s good if you’re finding success with the 3-click concept above. However, imagine if you can take visitors less than three clicks to find the page they’re looking for. You can expect more sales as a result because it’s much easier to navigate your site.
Faceted navigation allows visitors to view a category from an eCommerce website and filter the results based on their preferences. Amazon does this to great effect on their pages (Exhibit 1).
Using this navigation feature, people can find what they’re looking for with just one click from your homepage to a category.
Visitors land on their desired product page and are ready to purchase. They will be brought to the checkout page to fill out additional information to verify the transaction.
While this is a necessary step, it can be a tedious one. This reason is why the “1-click” ordering that was patented by Amazon in 1999 makes for smooth and frictionless transactions.
Once users have entered their personal information into their Amazon accounts, they can forgo entering them again during checkout.
Amazon’s patent for the “1-click” buying expired in 2017. Therefore, eCommerce firms can make the same ordering process available to their customers without the risk of legal repercussions. Take this opportunity to leverage this convenient ordering system on your online shop.
“Your site’s design should make it simple for online visitors to find what they’re looking for,” says Aria Tsiomakidis, Romain Berg’s Creative Director. “Your site’s content should provide value and a solution to their problems/improve their lives in some manner. Ideally, this process happens in 3 clicks or less and efficiently provides a clear journey for them to checkout.”
Improve Loading Time
Studies have shown through the years that users leave a site that doesn’t fully load after a few seconds. According to Pingdom, 38% of visitors leave a site if the site loads longer than five seconds (Exhibit 2).
Slow-loading sites are bad for the user experience. Nobody wants to stay on a site that takes more time to load. Visitors can easily jump to another site that offers products like yours and loads much faster.
Worse for slow sites, Google is putting more onus on site speed. Page speed was a ranking factor back in 2018. It put into consideration UX in the Page Experience update. It now takes into account the Core Web Vitals score. Core Web Vitals calculates not only page speed but other factors pertaining to a site’s interface and layout.
Therefore, it’s time for you to make your eCommerce site load faster and more efficiently.
There are lots of ways you can do this. For instance, compressing images allows you to decrease the file size of images without compromising their quality. This is vital for online stores since they heavily rely on images to showcase their products to customers.
Also, to help deliver your content faster to visitors, use a content delivery network. This loads content from the nearest data center where the visitor is located. The short distance between the data center and visitors should reduce loading speed significantly.
Observe the best practices of reducing loading speed. Then test your site using Google PageSpeed Insights to see if your site improved its Core Web Vitals score.
We at Romain Berg make sure that our site loads instantaneously to show clients that we know our stuff (Exhibit 3). This helps us to rank our pages higher on organic search to attract visitors who will convert into clients.
For eCommerce site owners, improving your Core Web Vitals score prevents visitors from bouncing away from your site. Keeping that traffic on your site increases your chances of turning them into customers.
As the number of competitors increases, attracting your target audience to your online store is getting more difficult. You need to pull out all the stops to get their attention by driving as much traffic as possible.
But just as important is optimizing your product pages to convert in as few clicks as possible. By following the tips above, you make buying from your store a breeze.
If you want to learn more ways to increase your eCommerce sales, drop us a line at Romain Berg. We’ll be more than happy to help.