4 tips to increase online sales

Aug 05 2020 | PayPal editorial staff | 4 min read

“I want to make more sales through my website.” It’s a commonly heard statement but many businesses aren’t sure where to start
You could pay for SEO optimisation or employ a digital marketing agency to run a short-term campaign. But while these strategies may increase brand awareness, they don’t guarantee more sales.

When looking to improve your website sales, there are a number of factors to consider.

“A visually pleasing and professional-looking site can be the difference between someone clicking through or navigating away,” says Anna O’Toole, digital analyst at Digital Marketing Works. “Site speed also factors in when converting users to customers. Ensure your site is fast-loading and easy to navigate. And reducing the number of clicks and forms your customers need to fill out before converting a sale will make a huge difference.”

By creating a positive online buying experience, you’ll increase the likelihood that website visitors buy from you and turn into loyal, repeat customers. So where do you start?
 

1.Create a clear call to action



When you’re selling online, your customers need a clear instruction – a call to action or CTA – that will guide them through to complete a purchase. Common eCommerce CTAs are “Add to Cart”, “View Cart” and “Buy Now” buttons.

When developing a call to action, O’Toole says “Make it direct and interesting. Give them what they want to know to save them having to click around for the details.”
An effective call to action should also be easy to understand and stand out from the rest of your page.
 

2.Simplify the checkout process



Simplifying and shortening your checkout process is one of the most effective ways to convert prospective customers into real ones. While it might seem like a good idea to ask the customer to register for an account or fill in multiple forms, being asked for too much information is one of the most common reasons customers abandon their online shopping cart.

Consider what information you really need to complete a sale and ask for nothing more. You can always ask the customer to create an account with you after they’ve made a purchase.
PayPal Checkout can help simplify your payment experience and give you up to 82% better checkout conversion rates.*
 

3.Use a trusted payment provider



When shopping online, customers need to know their information is safe and secure. If they’re not sure, they may buy from your competitors instead.

When customers arrive on your website, they’ll often check how they can pay before committing to browsing your products. They want to see a provider they recognise, know are legitimate and have used before. Placing payment acceptance logos and buttons on your store is a simple yet effective way to show customers they can pay how they want to.

Remember not everyone will arrive via your homepage. Customers often land on product pages from price comparison sites or search engines so displaying acceptance marks on key product pages or in your website footer will help improve your customers’ confidence.

If you accept PayPal, you can add PayPal buttons and logos to your site to show your customers that they, along with more than 7 million other Australian customers, can pay quickly and securely.
 

4.Measure conversion



The best way to know if your website traffic is translating to sales is through measuring conversion. To do this, you’ll need to set up an analytics tool for your webstore.

PayPal Marketing Solution gives quick insights into your conversion rate for PayPal shoppers. Hosted eCommerce platforms like Shopify, Neto and WooCommerce often have reports and analytics built in to make measuring success easy. If yours doesn’t, or if you manage your own site, there are a range of powerful and free tools, like Google Analytics, that you can use.

“Analytics give you a massive amount of data on how visitors use your website and where problems may lie in terms of shopping cart abandonment,” says Salli Jokinen, marketing manager at Yoke Design. “Data is the key to success in online sales. All decisions should be made based on data, and data should be monitored on a continuous basis to identify new opportunities.”

To measure your website’s success, you’ll need to first determine your goals and the information you need to measure them against. For example, you might want to know the rate that website visitors convert to buyers, sign up to your newsletter or start a free trial.

Once you’ve defined what you want to measure, you can simply determine your success rate as a percentage by calculating:
# completed action in a set period / # visitors to your site in a set period x 100

So to measure your sale conversion rate, you’d calculate:
# sales / # visitors x 100

It’s a good idea to measure your conversion rates weekly so you can track improvements over time and the success of any strategies you implement.
 
Once you have the basics of your eCommerce site right, every new site improvement should help you nudge your sales a little higher.

 
*comScore online panel, Q4 2017. Analysed shopping behaviour of 1 million US customers on 20 large merchant sites. Checkout conversion is measured from the point where the customer selects a payment type to completion of purchase.

The contents of this site are provided for informational purposes only. The information in this article does not constitute legal, financial, IT, business or investment advice of any kind and is not a substitute for any professional advice. You should always obtain independent, professional accounting, financial, IT and legal advice before making any business decision.
The contents of this site are provided for informational purposes only. The information in this article does not constitute legal, financial, IT, business or investment advice of any kind and is not a substitute for any professional advice. You should always obtain independent, professional accounting, financial, IT and legal advice before making any business decision.