Click and collect

Achieving strong conversion rates is tough whether you’re dealing with direct mail or an online shopping basket. But we’re seeing good rates for our clients especially with their ‘click and collect’ ecommerce sites and with online abandonment rates a hot topic at the moment, it seemed like a good time to talk Conversion Rate Optimisation (CRO).

Shopping basket abandonment rate has increased to 75 percent in the first half of 2011, according to website research by SeeWhy. The rate, which averaged 71 percent in 2010, measures the proportion of online shopping baskets that are started, and then abandoned.

On average only 2-3 percent of website visitors convert to paying customers. Most visitors abandon their shopping basket, online forms, applications and registrations before performing that final click. The same piece of research also found that 90 percent of these customer prospects go cold within an hour.

So how do you overcome one of the largest marketing hurdles for online retailers? Well, there are some proactive steps you can take to make the checkout process more user-friendly and ways to ensure the customer has fewer reasons to abandon purchase.

A strong marketing strategy of course, real time customer service support, removal of online registration and the provision of clear purchasing information such as money back guarantees, exchange and refund policies, and shipping and handling fees will all help prevent purchase abandonment.

Last but not least – and arguably one of the most important considerations – however is to make the process as easy as possible. Things that may sound obvious such as providing progress indicators which guide the customers through the purchase process; creating the ability to return to the previous page without being required to re-enter information, and limiting the checkout process to three steps will create a favourable buying experience and therefore increase the chance of that all important final click.

We’re here to help you do all that. We’ll look at your site’s usability and user experience, and everything in between from keyword research, current positioning, on-page and coding optimisation, link building and site map analysis (and generation) to help you maximise your website for rankings and traffic gains and most importantly improved click-through and conversion rates.

So far it’s a tactic that’s working: This month’s online conversion rate for one of our key clients and the ecommerce site and digital strategy we developed with them is 2.83 percent. That’s almost triple the average conversion rate.

And it’s not just online conversion rates that are good for oneagency clients, a recent direct mail campaign for client Celotex got great figures too. Celotex has benefitted from a couple of highly creative direct mail campaigns which saw their messages exposed to an exceptionally high number of potential customers – 15 and 16 percent response rates for each project within a month. With a 1-3 percent response rate considered ‘solid’ this is a great achievement for the team.