Building the perfect online store for your customers is a time-consuming task. There are a hundred and one things that you need to take into consideration as you work on the process, not to mention the constant updates and offers to be maintained to keep the store fresh. Despite these measures, consumers are lost due to various reasons, lack of efficient service, unavailability of products, new buying options, insufficient follow-ups, you name it.
The loss of a customer, existing or potential, is always a blow. However, several small steps on your part can go a long way in making your past customers return, and converting your potential leads into regular customers.
First, let’s understand why customers might consider shifting from your store in the first place. We shall assume here that leads are being lost despite the fact that your store is well-stocked, as lack of product availability is bound to drive your customers away to search for better shopping avenues. Having said that, there are plenty of other crucial reasons why they can be displeased with your store; some of these you might be familiar with, but a few might surprise you!
What Leads to the Loss of Customers?
Unwieldy Site Design
The very first thing a potential customer sees when he logs on to your website is one of your main pages. Depending on the point of entry (organic search/direct product search), customers can see your Home, About, or Product Page. Naturally, once they are in, they will want to explore the site, which can become quickly off-putting if you’ve designed it arbitrarily.
Customers appreciate consistency, logical pathways, and clear calls-to-action that let them know exactly where they are within the site; if your website falls short of those standards, they are bound to get frustrated and walk off!
Lack of Efficient Service
The next most important aspect that customers consider is how well the service is executed. People familiar with the art of online shopping expect the path of least resistance as they make their purchase. However, if this is impeded by constant delays, incorrect data submission and delivery and unnecessary complications in the service process, they are definitely not going to be happy.
There is always a small margin of error which is acceptable, but beyond that, you are going to start losing customers at an exponential rate.
No Point of Contact
The one drawback of online store as compared to real ones is that they are not conducive to human contact. In a regular store, you can simply walk up to the salesperson and make an enquiry about the product you are intending to buy; in an online store this becomes slightly more difficult. This problem can be mitigated to some extent if you have clear content that answers most of the questions your customers could have about the product. However, if they need to make a specialized enquiry and there is no point of contact, they are simply going to walk out.
If you are serious about setting up shop online, this is one area you should never ignore. The content of your website plays a huge role in converting potential leads into customers, provided it is clear and complete. Beating around the bush in your product descriptions, lack of important information like taxes and shipping costs, overly promotional content or excessive marketing techniques, and only stellar reviews do nothing but make customers suspicious if this is spam. A better option is to avoid ambiguous content and keep it simple and clear.
Complex Checkout Process
The checkout process plays an important role in impacting your conversion rate. Depending on the type of website, the process can be either short or long, there is no specific length that defines a perfect checkout process. That said, customers appreciate it when they need to fill in minimal details and receive confirmation that their confidential information is completely secure. An unnecessarily long process, compounded by longer site upload times can effectively frustrate your potential buyers and cause them to abandon their shopping cart halfway.
So much for the causes of lead-loss; let us now discuss the various measures that you can employ, as the store owner, to minimise this to the maximum extent possible. The approach to this is two-fold; one, you recapture past customers by using reminders, discounts, offers, and the like, and two, you engage new ones by providing the specialized shopping options they are looking for.
How to Secure Leads for Your WooCommerce Store?
Send Regular Reminders
If the customer trial has gone cold after a few purchases, you can renew it by sending out email-reminders that inform them about updates on your store. People like knowing that you care about your customers. Encourage this feeling by sending newsletters, posts, and personalized messages that might interest them based on their previous purchases, to gradually nudge them back towards your store.
You can use several newsletter and email marketing plugins that are available for WooCommerce, such as MailChimp for WordPress, Newsletter, MailPoet, and others, to this end.
Create a Point of Contact
Create a point of contact for your customers by adding an Enquiry button to your Product Pages. This lets them immediately send an enquiry they might want to make about your product, to which you can reply via email. Adding a Product Enquiry button helps potential customers get the exact information they are looking for, which in turn boosts the likelihood of completing the purchase. You can use plugins like Product Enquiry Pro for incorporating this functionality.
There is nothing like discounts and coupons to engage customers. A tried-and-tested strategy, discounts help in successfully capturing and sustaining the attention of consumers, especially if there is a significant margin of savings involved. You can also consider issuing coupons to new customers to encourage recurring purchases. Another good idea is to bundle products and then add a discount for the package which generates more sales.
There are several customer or user role specific discount plugins such as WooCommerce Customer Specific Pricing plugin, to help you with this. In addition, WooCommerce has a built-in functionality to enable the usage of coupons during checkout.
Easy navigation around the website and simplification of the ordering and checkout process is a good way to completing the purchase. It helps to keep the content concise and ensure that all the customer queries are successfully addressed.
Revamp Your Site
Optimizing your site is extremely helpful in retaining customers once they have reengaged. Generate feedback from your clients, find out what do they like and what they do not, about your website, and redesign it accordingly. It might take a lot of trial and error to get the site optimized for the web, but the end result will be worth the time and effort you spend on it. We’ve got a detailed WooCommerce Optimization Guide to get you started. If site optimization becomes too out-of-depth for you, you can always opt for professional services to get it done for you.
These are some of the ways you can use to prevent your WooCommerce leads from slipping away. Of course, as the customer psyche varies from individual to individual, there is no one, single solution for capturing customers.
However, these measures address the basic requirements any potential customer looks for in an online store, and work towards optimizing them accordingly.
What other methods do you think could be used? Let us know in the comments section below!