How To Dramatically Increase Your Conversion-To-Sales Ratio
It happens more often than not. You get a fair amount of visitors to your web site, but few sales result. You make some changes, but sales continue to be flat. What’s Wrong?

Before you even take a step toward looking at your website analytics, you must know which questions to ask? In order to ask the right questions we are going to take the most difficult step a website owner can make; we are going to take off our own shoes for a day and completely step into the many shoes of your customers.

This task may seem daunting at first. In order to make it easier you may need help from a friend or random stranger that fits the demographic of your target market and who doesn’t stare at your site all day. That person should be instructed to find a few products that they really like and purchase it from your store with their own money on the line. Now here comes the fun part. Have them write down every question that they have during the shopping process.

You may have to perform this task several times to collect enough qualitative data before moving on. The type of questions you want them to ideally think about are: Why do I need this product? What are the specifications of the products? What information do I evaluate in comparing 2 or more products? How does this website compare to others?

If you can afford it, there are several more precise, systematic methods like focus groups to collect this information.

The goal is to collect their questions and identify what you’re missing on your site.

Once all of the questions are collected from your shoppers, put them aside. If you have not done so yet, perform the same task yourself, writing down all of the questions you think your customer may have. Then compare the questions, you may be amazed to see a completely different list of questions from your shoppers. Start tallying up questions that are similar through out each list, and place the most frequent questions near the top of the list.

Prioritizing will help you begin the process of making changes to your site.
• Are you answering the most important questions on the right sections of your website?
• Are those answers clearly highlighted making it easy for your shoppers to make a buying decision on your site?

In this example, the main question that both you had and your shoppers had as well was: what is the price and how much do I save? Similarly, you had also anticipated that color options would be important.

What this exercise brought out was one key new bit of information within the example: your customers want to know how the products will feel when they wear it. It’s so simple, but you didn’t think it was important until you did your data collection from your shoppers.

This activity should help you begin the process of finding what elements and changes need to tested throughout your site. You may discover that the few shoppers you enlisted today may not reflect the majority of your customers questions and attitudes. This is why testing is so important to make your site the best e-commerce store possible.

So to summarize, here are your steps:
First, find a base of people to ask your questions to. You can start with people who know well who fit your demographic. Eventually, you should gather focus groups to collect larger sample sizes.

Secondly, have them list all the questions they have while shopping. You should do this exercise as well.

Third, collect the questions and systematically organize them in a way that reflects common questions.

Finally, create a set of tests to answer these questions throughout the relevant parts of your site and see how connecting more with your user can take your conversion rates into higher territory.

Remember, the industry standard of 1% conversion rate simply means that 99 of every 100 visitors to your site still need to be convinced and this is a very simple, but smart approach to getting there.

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