How to Effectively Reduce Shopping Cart Abandonment

Shopping cart abandonment is common, with people deserting their carts due to several reasons. Sure, there will always online shoppers who abandon their carts. Such is the nature of online shopping. People browse or “window” shop, save items for later purchase, and even compare prices.

A recent article by Baymard Institute – an independent web usability research institute – analyzed 34 studies on the shopping cart abandonment rate. The findings? Well, on average, 68.81% of shoppers abandon their carts.

That’s the reality online.

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But there are also factors like user experience that impact cart abandonment. However, these are factors that you have control over. For example, the Baymart study cites reasons why people leave their carts. Out of 1044 participants, 27% said the checkout process was too complicated.  You will be in a better position to fix them if you understand these problems.

And this is the focus of this article; listing common problems causing cart abandonment and solutions to solve them. By implementing these techniques, you’ll convert more of these shoppers into buyers and repeat customers.

#1 Be Transparent About All Costs Involved.

In the Baymard study, 24% of shoppers abandoned their carts because they were unable to calculate their total order cost up-front. Many shoppers today are also hit with extra charges at checkout.

You must make these costs visible to shoppers before the checkout stage. If you don’t shoppers will feel cheated. It’s really that simple.

Understandably, there are certain variable charges you cannot avoid. But again, you can rectify this problem by adding a sales-tax calculator for people to work out costs before proceeding to checkout. A post on Crazy Egg highlights how Best Buy does this to avoid surprise charges.

#2 Provide Free or Flat Shipping Costs

A study by Forrester highlights that 44% of online shoppers abandon their carts because of shipping or handling.  And 82% of customers want free shipping at checkout. There then is some serious demand and valid reasons for you to offer free shipping.

Free shipping offers the extra benefit of increasing the average order value as shoppers are more inclined to buy more . It also gives you a competitive advantage over stores that don’t offer it, with the potential to attract more online shoppers. So, offer free shipping – and importantly – make it visible for everyone to see.

#3 Build Trust; Include Trust Seals

The study by Baymard highlighted another telling statistic: 18% of people didn’t fill out their credit card information because they didn’t trust the online store with this information. If you want to achieve success online it’s crucial to build trust. Remember, many of the shoppers cannot connect with you. All they see is the store.

Further, credit card fraud is on the rise and many shoppers will be reluctant to give you their card information. Build this trust by including trust seals and guarantees. Be wary of which badges you use, though. According to Baymard, all badges are not made equal. For example, of the people in a survey, more people trust Norton (36%) than Comodo (2.8%).

#4 Make the Checkout Process Simple

For many online shoppers, a lengthy checkout process is an inconvenience.  Customers will be less likely to buy if there are many forms, questions, and pages. People shop online for convenience. For speed! And any process that infringes on those benefits is a hindrance. Make the checkout process simple. Offer an express checkout option to streamline the process.

#5 Provide Multiple Payment Options

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Customers want multiple payment options. If you’re unable to provide different payment methods you will lose customers as they will be unable to pay. The article in Crazy Egg highlighted how Walmart has reached a larger customer base since adopting this strategy. So, offer credit cards. But also offer the likes of PayPal, Apple Pay, and even Google wallet.

#6 Let Users Register an Account After The Sale

Some companies need shoppers to register an account before they buy. For many shoppers, this is an inconvenience and it’s no wonder that so many leave before buying.

As an online retailer, you want to track customer activity as having that data is essential. But, you need to do balance the need for that information vs shopper convenience. Consider employing a tactic that Walmart uses where shoppers are able to register an account at a later date.

#7 Remind Customers of Their Abandoned Carts

While the method we discuss here isn’t to reduce cart abandonment, it will help you recover potential lost sales. Remember: there will always be those customers who abandon carts.  

In such instances consider sending follow up emails to email customers notifying them of their abandoned cart. Or automate the process by using the many apps available on the market. For example, the Shopify App, Beautiful Abandonment Cart Emails,  will pull images of the applicable carts, allows you to customize email templates, and then send a follow-up.

Final Thoughts

Shopping cart abandonment is here to stay. This is the nature of online shopping. So, you will never get rid of it entirely. However, accepting this fact should not cause you to become complacent. You need to focus in on why people aren’t making that sale. Why are they abandoning the carts before checkout? You then need to make changes to your store to reflect the desire of shoppers.

The techniques listed here will help to reduce cart abandonment rates, with a spin-off: increased average order value, customer retention, more money, and ultimately more profits.

What techniques do you use to cut shopping cart abandonment?

8 Reasons Your Small Business Needs a FAQ Page

FAQ (Frequently Answered Questions) pages are one of the  most underutilized pages. For many businesses, it’s a mere afterthought and many others don’t have even have one.

In short, a FAQ page is where you address common concerns or questions that your customers may be having. It deals with the nitty-gritty relating to your product or service. Depending on your business, common questions may include: What is the cost of shipping? What’s your privacy policy? How can I track my order? Can your solution integrate with [insert name]?

If used strategically and created correctly, with thought and care, a FAQ page can be a powerful addition to your website.  FAQ pages provide needed SEO juice, reduce customer support queries, assist customers in their purchase journey and alleviate purchase anxiety, to name but a few benefits. Here are 8 reasons your small business needs a FAQ page.

1. Saves You Time and Resources

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If you find that you’re always receiving the same question from different customers, perhaps it’s time to consider creating a FAQ page for this information?

Not only will you help your customers by providing this information where it’s accessible, but you’ll be freeing up time for yourself to focus on other pressing issues. No longer will you have to individually respond to these requests. And should a customer contact you with such a FAQ, you can refer them to your FAQ page. This will also alleviate the burden placed on support staff who would have to respond to these requests.

2. Builds Trust and Relationships

A FAQ page is also a signal of transparency. It shows potential customers that you’re willing to address their concerns. This, in turn, builds trust, which is one of the most important building blocks in a solid relationship. Through building such trust you’re also aiding in creating repeat customers.

3. Establishes You as an Expert

FAQ’s also provide the perfect opportunity to showcase your product expertise and industry knowledge. This improves your credibility and brand perception and also aids in building trust.

4. Adds Needed SEO Juice

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By including valuable content and relevant keywords FAQ’s can improve your search engine listings. FAQ’s then are not only valuable in answering customer questions, but they also provide needed SEO juice.

However, search engines prefer pages that contain one theme or keyword. So, if you’re creating one FAQ page -which will have many themes- the quality of the information becomes diluted. From an SEO point of view, this is not optimal. So Scrap that idea!

Rather consider creating individual dedicated pages for each specific answer/theme. This is easier for Google to crawl as it immediately establishes what the page is about. To do this create a landing page with the questions and then hyperlink to the answer on a separate page. Do not write out lengthy answers to the questions all on one page!

Having separately optimized pages is more search engine friendly. Your chances of visitors finding you in search engines is higher,  even when they are searching for answers related to your industry and not your specific brand.

5. Improves Your Site Navigation

Hyperlinking can also form an important part of your site navigation strategy. Provide hyperlinks to relevant products, services or other pages. In doing this you re-direct consumers to solutions that have relevance to their questions. It also presents opportunities for further engagement on your site and the potential for a sale.

6. Presents an Opportunity for Making a Sale

FAQ’s present extra opportunities to make a sale. Once consumers have discovered your site, whether it be by accident or via search engines, why not add hyperlinks to pages and information? This encourages them to take further action.

After all, this is what you want to do every time someone lands on your site. FAQ pages provide you with this opportunity, so use it! Give customers a choice about what action to take rather than leaving it up to chance and hoping they will spend time searching your website. Link to your services, products, sign-up and about page. If the link is relevant, include it!

7. Gathers Key Customer Insights

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Analytics are essential for any business. Through copying and pasting a Google Analytics code in the header of your site, you’re also able to gather key insights on customers. Insights include demographics, country of origin, time spent on the page etc. Your FAQ page presents an opportunity to analyze such analytics. Through this analysis, you can decide what relevant adjustments to make.

For example, if you bounce rate is high, perhaps customers found the page irrelevant or perhaps they got the answer they wanted and then left? You can reduce such bounce rates, by actually hyperlinking to other relevant information and guiding them on their purchase journey.

8. Aids Customers on Their Purchase Journey

By using a FAQ page right, consumers can also benefit by alleviating certain purchase anxieties. For example, a potential customer might be considering your product, but want’s clarification on certain aspects before purchasing it. Questions they might include:

  1. Can it integrate [insert business/product] with [insert business/product]?
  2. Do I have to provide my credit card details for the free trial?

Often they will search Google for such answers. If the answer is not immediately available this might deter potential customers, resulting in a lost sale. People are lazier than you think. They want answers and they want answers now!

So make it easy for them, particularly if you notice an influx of e-mails relating to a certain question. Make answers accessible. Do this and you reduce purchase anxiety and improve the chances of a sale!

Summary

Ultimately, if created correctly, FAQ pages can be extremely effective. Not only will you free up time and resources, but you will build trust, establish yourself as an expert, build relationships, improve your SEO and site navigation, provide extra opportunities for a sale, and perhaps, most importantly you will reduce any purchase anxiety. This all has the potential for more traffic and more sales for your business.

Ready to get started on creating your FAQ page? If you want a head start, consider using the following apps:

  1. Weebly: FAQ
  2. Shopify: Help Center

6 E-Commerce Site Mistakes (And How to Fix Them)

You’ve built your e-commerce site. Now, sit back and watch the sales pour in. Right?

If only it were that easy.

An e-commerce site is a profitable way to reach shoppers without a middleman. But many small business owners and entrepreneurs make mistakes with their e-commerce sites. Mistakes that lead to cart abandonment. Mistakes that lead to low conversion rates. Mistakes that cost store owners money. Mistakes that are avoidable. This post aims to highlight common e-commerce site mistakes and provide solutions to fix them. Here are 6.

#1 Mistake: Your Costs Aren’t Visible

Shoppers don’t want to spend time searching for shipping cost information. Many store owners make the mistake of “hiding” their shipping information. Perhaps you’re guilty of this?

Also, many shoppers make their way to the checkout and are then exposed to a host of extra charges. Doing this a sure recipe for failure. You will, more often than not, lose that sale, and any repeat purchases.

Solutions

  1. Make sure all costs are visible.
  2. Include shipping cost information near all your products.
  3. Let shoppers know of extra costs before checkout.
  4. Include a sales tax calculator for customers. The calculator helps them calculate the total cost of the order before checkout.

#2 Mistake: Your Product Descriptions Aren’t up to Scratch

Are you a store owner who has incomplete product descriptions? Are they generic? Not sure what the answer to these two questions are? Well, I urge you to review your products descriptions. Shoppers use product descriptions when making a purchase decision. So, if they’re generic or incomplete, chances are you’re losing sales.

Solutions

Review your product descriptions on your site and ensure they’re complete, accurate, and unique. Here is an example of a compelling product description of “Aura from the Women at Wrangler“. I took the image directly off the Practical E-commerce site.

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If you’re not sure what to look for, here are a few pointers from Kissmetrics on how to make product descriptions that sell:

  1. Understand your buyer persona – the imaginary customer who buys your products. What websites does she visit? What makes her happy? What makes her sad? You’re able to better engage with your customer if you understand them. It will allow you to move from being product centric to customer centric.
  2. List the features and convert them into benefits.  For example, a long lasting battery for a laptop might translate into the benefit of an entire day’s work without a charge. Be comprehensive. Customers only want to know what’s in it for them. They don’t care about you!
  3. Make sure your keyword is in your headline, sub-headline, and text.Include keyword in the name of your image, image description, and alt tag.
  4. Optimize your product images by using your key phrase in the file name, image description, and alt tag.

#3 Mistake: You Don’t Use People in Your Product Shots

E-Commerce sites are a convenient platform that offers a wide variety of products for sale. Yet, online shopping also has its drawbacks. Shoppers are unable to touch and feel a product before purchasing it. People can’t see how it functions in real life. They cannot see how that item of clothing will fit them. Many stores fail to address these concerns and they fail to reduce the shopper’s anxiety.

Solutions

  1. Create a real life representation of the product by including people.
  2. If you have the budget consider making a video or two.

#4 Mistake: Your E-commerce Sites Mobile Experience Is Poor

Mobile adoption continues to proliferate. A KPCB Mobile technology trends report – cited in Smart Insights, highlights that US consumers now spend more time using mobile digital media (51%) than browsing with a desktop (49%). See below.

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And if you’re thinking, “Well, this is the only usage. It doesn’t imply that customers even shop using mobile”, think again. Yes, research shows: conversion rates for mobile are lower than desktop, but they are on the rise as the below table depicts:

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And they no doubt will continue to rise.

So, is your mobile site responsive?

Solution

  1. Do a full review of your site by visiting it as if you were a customer or use the mobile-friendly test tool from Google.
  2. Type in your URL and the tool will tell you whether your site is mobile friendly. It will give you a black and white answer. Either it is or it isn’t.
  3. If it isn’t, you can:
  • Install a mobile plugin, that will give mobile visitors a different experience.
  • Install a new theme to customize.
  • Redesign your e-commerce site.
  • #5 Mistake: Your Ecommerce Site is Slow

Customers will not wait for your page to load. If it’s slow your bounce rate will increase. a Slow page loading time also impacts your SEO rankings, as Google bots prefer faster page load times. So, the faster the better. Your site may be slow for various reasons e.g. your images may be too large or you’re not on a dedicated server.

Solutions

  1. The easy way to analyze your page loading time is to use Google Page Insights.
  2. Enter your URL and wait while google analyzes your page.
  3. Google will then provide you with a comprehensive report that details what you must fix. Fix those problem areas.

#6 Mistake: You’re Hiding Your Buy Button

This is common for store owners who have wordy product descriptions. It leads to the buy button not being visible. This mistake can contribute to lost sales.

Solution

Piers Thorogood, co-founder of We Make Websites recommends placing the buy button close to the product. Why? Because you cannot assume everyone who lands on your site knows its an online store. And if they don’t they’re not going to spend time looking for the buy button. Make it visible, like Nordstrom do below. Make it easy for people to buy.

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Final Thoughts

You cannot  launch an eCommerce site and hope for the best. When you launch, you need to make tweaks to ensure the best user experience. If you’re an e-commerce site owner making any of the above mistakes it’s time to fix them. Make these changes to achieve better conversion rates, reduce cart abandonment, and increase sales.

Are you making any of theses e-commerce site mistakes? What are the other mistakes e-commerce site owners make?

How to Create a Highly Effective FAQ Page

FAQ (frequently answered questions) pages are extremely powerful if created correctly. Benefits include solving customer problems, reducing the burden on customer support, building trust and relationships with customers, establishing yourself as an expert, adding needed SEO juice, improving site navigation, providing extra opportunities for a sale, gathering key customer insights, and helping customers on their purchase journey by alleviating purchase anxiety.

But how do you go about creating a FAQ page to realize these benefits? How do you create a page that serves as a silent salesperson, both driving traffic to your site, whilst also contributing to your bottom line? Here are some tips.

Tip #1 Scratch The Traditional FAQ page

Before we forge ahead, let’s recognize something. The traditional way of creating FAQ page is not effective, at least from an SEO point of view. Traditionally companies list about 5-15 questions on one page and immediately under each question they include a two to three sentence answers. The answer in itself is often very poor.

Doing things this way is not good for a variety of reasons:

1. We live in an age of content where consumers enjoy consuming a lot of information. I use the word consume – and not read – as there is plenty of evidence that suggests that consumers scan instead. Regardless many of the two to three sentence answers are not sufficient in fulfilling the desire for content.

2. Search engines prefer pages that are thematic; pages that contain one theme or one keyword. This makes it easier for Google to crawl as it immediately establishes what the page is about. Traditionally, FAQ pages are created with several themes. This becomes confusing.

Having seen what’s wrong with traditional FAQ pages let’s look at how we can effectively create them.

Tip #2 What Questions are Customers Asking?

Start with establishing what pertinent questions your potential customers are frequently asking. You don’t want to guess here. These need to be actual questions or concerns from your customers. Start by scouring emails your customers have sent you in the past few months.

Braveen Kumar who is a writer for Shopify recommends that you “focus on relevance, utility, and opportunities to turn that question into a path to further engagement or conversion”. Before you consider answering these questions create a single page with all the questions.

Tip #3 Create One Page With all Your Questions

“But you just said that traditionally companies list all questions on one page?”  I know what I’m saying here may feel counter-intuitive but just bear with me. Create one page with all the FAQ questions listed.

Tip #4 Create Categories For Easy Navigation

If you find that your list extends beyond 15 questions, you might want to break all your questions into categories. This makes it easy for visitors to navigate your page. Including a search box to further improve navigation, especially if you have many categories and questions.

Tip #5 Hard Link To Individual Pages

Now instead of answering each question individually on your FAQ page, insert a link to a separate page. By hyperlinking to the answer on a separate page you ensure a one-page theme which as we’ve established is more search engine friendly. The chances are that consumers will also stumble across your site when they search for industry-related information, and not just information specific to your brand.

Tip #6 Link to Blog Posts

Consider hard-linking from questions to blog posts that answer the questions. This is a strategy that Marcus Sheridan from The Sales Lion recommends. Once they’re reading your blog post, you have an additional opportunity to encourage some form of action, whether it be signing up for your newsletter, or giving them the option to click on internal links. This slowly guides them on their purchase journey.

Tip #7 Include a Call-to-action

Another option is to turn your page into a valuable sales tool,  by including a call-to-action to sign up to receive an e-book that answers these questions. Again you’re encouraging the potential customer to take some form of action.

Tip #8 Answer Questions in a Personal Manner

If you’re linking to individual pages always answer the questions in a conversational style. Make it personal. Let them know there is a human being on the other side. This will help in building a relationship.

Avoid any technical jargon that’s hard to understand. If it’s too technical and difficult to understand, you may confuse the customer even further, ultimately losing a potential sale.

If you have and can afford a copywriter use them to ensure your writing is up to scratch. If not, read and re-read. Send to friends to double check. You want to make sure that you miss any grammar mistakes, that your sentences aren’t too long and that you make use of active and not passive voice.

Free online tools like Grammarly and Hemmingway Editor can help. Grammarly assists with spelling and Hemmingway aids with sentence construction and the use of active vs passive voice.

Tip #9 Create a Clean Layout

In terms of layout, we’ve already alluded to creating categories. For example, depending on your product or service you’re offering you might have an ordering, exchange, payments or even shipping category. Make your questions stand out, perhaps by making them bold or in larger text and then link to separate pages or blog posts on your site.

Tip #10 Study Other FAQ Pages for Ideas

To tie this all up, I thought I’d leave you with some examples of FAQ pages that put into practice what we’ve discussed here. Naturally, they will all be slightly different in terms of their design, but each of these perfectly mimics what we’ve discussed.

Example 1: 99 Designs

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They have different categories and a search box for ease of navigation. All questions are also hard linked to separate pages for added SEO juice.

Example 2: Pinterest

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Pinterest also follows a minimalistic approach, the design is colorful and inviting.

Example 3: Sound Cloud

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Soundcloud doesn’t make use of any specific categories, but they maintain a minimalist feel and hard link to separate pages.

Do  you have a FAQ page?

10 of the Best Online Tools For Your Small Business

Being a small business owner means that at any given time you’re working on marketing, accounting, taxes, sales, development, customer support and a host of other activities. We understand it can be difficult trying to juggle all of this. This is where online tools can help you! Understanding though that there are many to choose from, most of which are simply confusing, we curated a list of 10 of the best online tools for your small business. This list is divided in four categories:

  1. Note-taking and Brainstorming
  2. Finance
  3. Project Management
  4. Marketing

Here are 10 of the best online tools for your small business.

Note-Taking and Brainstorming

#1 Evernote

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With Evernote, you can make a note of almost anything. And the beauty of it? You’re able to access in the cloud, with any device. With this cloud-based software you can:

  1. Create a project to-do list.
  2. Take a picture of a sketch.
  3. Jot down a reminder.
  4. Save interesting articles and organize your reading list.
  5. Organize all your thoughts and ideas so you can access it in one place.

If you’re looking for something more visual, consider using Mindly in conjunction with Evernote.

#2 Mindly

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Mindly harnesses the power of associations, allowing you to create Mindmaps on your mobile device (or any device for that matter). Clear the clutter and showcase your thoughts in the form of mindmaps

With Mindly you can:

  1. Capture ideas
  2. Write a quick summary
  3. Plan presentations
  4. Create visual associations

Aside from note taking and brainstorming, there are some seriously powerful online tools for finance.

Finance

#3 Freshbooks

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PayPal and the majority of payment processing platforms charge you 3% to make or receive payments. With Freshbooks, there is a flat fee of $0.50, regardless as to the size of the transaction. Consider the cost saving on this, particularly as your business grows, and your international client base grows.

PayPal is one of the largest online payment processing platforms. So if you’re currently using them and concerned about how to switch, you’re in luck, as PayPal and Freshbooks have an agreement. It’s possible to send PayPal invoices using Freshbooks and pay a flat fee of $0.50! Freshbooks offer a free 30-day trial.

#4 Mint

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Mint allows you to effortlessly create budgets and stay up to date on how you’re spending your money. Through their phone and tablet apps, it’s also possible to manage your finances on the go and receive money saving tips.

Mint is totally automated. Through giving the platform permission to view your finances, it will begin to track, categorize – in the form of graphs and analytics – , and manage your spending. Setting up an account is free!

Project Management

#5 Trello

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Trello is the perfect collaboration app, particularly for geographically dispersed teams. Trello allows you to create, boards, lists, and cards which help you stay organized. Each individual card has the option of leaving comments and attaching a file.

Download for IOS, Android or desktop. There is a free plan with the option to upgrade. For maximum productivity consider using it in conjunction with Slack, another online business tool for your small business.

#6 Slack

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Available for IOS and Android, Slack is the perfect instant messaging tool. Create different channels for open communication, direct communication for specific teams, or private one-on-one communication.

Through integration with other apps, like Dropbox, all your files are available on the cloud. Available on IOS and Android, there’s a free plan, a standard plan ($6.67), and a Plus Plan ($12.50/month).

Marketing

#7 Bablic

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Business is not what it used to be. Having a website means you open yourself up to a global marketplace. The implications of this are:

  1. People from countries all over the world will visit your site.
  2. These people will speak different languages.

It then becomes imperative to tailor your website to their language preferences. Enter Bablic. Bablic is a cost-effective human translation tool tailored toward small business.

It will reduce bounce rates, improve engagement and drive sales, as 46% of people say they won’t buy products if a website is not in their own language. Getting started is as simple as pasting a line of code in your website header.

#8 SumoMe

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SumoMe is arguably one of the best online tools to grow your e-mail list. Building an e-mail list is essential if you want to grow your business and make money online. Through capturing e-mails you capture leads allowing you to engage in e-mail marketing.

SumoMe has a large suite of tools that allow you to create popups, improve mobile sharing, create sign-up forms, scroll bars, and monitor how visitors engage with your website through Heat Maps. Whilst the free version has more than enough to start, by upgrading to a premium version you’re able to engage in A/B testing and much more.

Seamless integration is available with all popular e-mail marketing service providers like Mail Chimp and Aweber. Also, link directly with your Google Analytics account to track analytics.

#9 Canva

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Hiring an agency or a graphic designer to create presentations, designs, eBooks, Facebook headers, and more can be expensive. It needn’t be this way. Canva has positioned itself as the design tool that anyone can use to create stunning presentations. With Canva you’re able to:

  1. Choose from a vast gallery of images and presentation designs.
  2. Edit images by adding text, cropping, filtering, blurring.
  3. Choose from pre-made designs and templates.
  4. Select icons from a vast gallery.
  5. Select social media layouts for Facebook, Twitter headers and much more.
  6. Upload your own photos and incorporate them into the design.

The above features touch but the iceberg. Sign-up for a free account. Though the features are limited with the free version, it’s a perfect start for the small business. In-app purchases are available for certain images and designs, although the bank of free options is more than adequate.

#10 Buffer

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The final online tool for your small business is Buffer. This social media sharing tool allows you to plan your content calendar, and schedule content weeks in advance. Save time, and have piece-of-mind knowing your content is being published across social media channels, even when you’re out of the office. For $10 a month it’s an absolute bargain – I mean that’s one beer or a meal in some countries.

What online tools do you use for your business?

15 of The Best 3rd Party Squarespace Integrations

There is often functionality that you wish to add to your Squarespace site. Functionality may include email marketing, social media integration, embedded video to something more complex like payment solutions.

Finding any solution, yet alone the right solution can be a timely and costly exercise. By using 3rd party Squarespace integrations, you’re able to solve such problems. This also improves the functionality of your site end enhances the user experience. Here are 15 of the best Squarespace integrations that will enhance the power of your site.

Blogging

#1 Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP)

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53% of people abandon their mobile visit if a page takes longer than three seconds to load. Research has also found that Mobile sites that load in 5s or less get 2x more mobile revenue. This is where AMP enters the picture. It is an open source project with a focus on optimizing mobile content for reduced load times. This not only enhances the user experience but drives revenue. It’s currently only available for your blog posts.

#2 Disqus

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Use Disqus for a more advanced commenting system on your blog compared to that of Squarespace. Disqus supports conversation threads, image comments and other functionality that Squarespace doesn’t currently offer.

Commerce

#3 Apple Pay

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Apply Pay ensures fast and easy checkouts for your customers. Your customers don’t have to manually enter their shipping and billing information. Currently, Apple Pay is only visible to customers who visit your site using Safari on a Mac and iPhone or iPad running the latest IOS. For customers accepting payments via Stripe, it is available via default.

#4 Stripe

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Stripe is Squarespace’s official and only merchant processing partner. 13 Currencies are currently supported (including US dollar, Euro, and Pound) on the platform. A host of customizable forms is available. This gives you the ability to handle any kind of payment and create some truly elegant designs. For full details on how to setup, your stripe account clicks here.

#5 FedEx

To simplify your shipping cost calculations and shipping procedures, consider using the FedEx integration. This integration automatically calculates shipping rates based on FedEx rates by package weight, dimensions and shipping address. Make sure the weight and dimensions of all products are accurately labeled.

#6 Xero

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Xero is online account software for small businesses. With Xero, you’re able to track your daily sales, run your business on the go and manage your cash flow (amongst other things). It will deliver a summary of the previous day’s transactions directly to your Xero account. This is a paid service, only available with the commerce product and within the United States.

Design

#7 Google Fonts

You have access to Google Fonts within your Squarespace editor. There is a choice of over 600 fonts to customize your site. You are also provided with a popular font selection to save you time.

#8 Typekit

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Typekit is a service offered by Adobe. Consider using Typekit if you want no limitations when it comes to your typography. Typekit gives you access to over 1000 high-quality fonts, “anywhere, anytime.” The Squarespace integration also allows you to add your own custom fonts for unique designs.

Images

#9 DropBox

Aside from being a powerful tool to store files, documents, and images in the cloud, DropBox allows you to publish images to your gallery pages on your site.

#10 The Adobe Creative Cloud Image Editor

Have a knack for image enhancing and editing? Why not consider using the Adobe Creative Cloud Image Editor. With this Squarespace integration, you have a built-in feature on your site which allows you to adjust the orientation, crop images, add a color filter, change brightness, add text and much, much more.

Marketing

#11 Mailchimp

2016-09-20-5-min

For E-mail marketing use the power of MailChimp. Design and send campaigns and e-mail newsletters. Mailchimp is available through your form block, newsletter block (subscribe option) and checkout page. Setup your Mailchimp account first, then connect Squarespace to Mailchimp. It’s free for the first 2000 subscribers and you even get A/B testing on the free option after you’ve sent a certain amount of e-mails.

#12 Google Analytics

This is a great way to track visitors on your website. View the source of traffic -according to a country, social media and device -, the bounce rate, demographics, and several other metrics. You can do all the above by adding a tracking code to the header of your site.

#13 Bablic

bablic
According to Bablic:

  • 73% of internet users aren’t browsing in English.
  • 72.1% of users spend the majority of their time on sites in their own language.
  • 56.2% value browsing in their own language over price.
  • 46% say they won’t buy products if they’re not in their local.

No doubt many people have stumbled upon your website, only to leave because they don’t understand the language. Enter Bablic, a cost effective human translation tool that will reduce bounce rate and improve engagement. Translation can be manual or automatic. All you need to do is paste a line of code into your site header. With Bablic you can publish or unpublish as many languages as you like.

#14 Geolify

2016-09-20-7-min

Geolify allows you to target different web content based on the unique location of your visitors. Geolify provides you with an intuitive dashboard for setup and full control over your geo-targeting services. You don’t need to be a technical whizz and integration occurs via one line of javascript. Price is on a per-page basis, starting at $0.005 per page up to 1000 page views.

# 15 Muut

Muut is the “complete discussion system for your website”. By powering live discussions, you create a sense of community on your website. This increases engagement and improves the likelihood of visitors returning to your website. Create forums, a blog commenting section and even have a private discussion with Muut.

The above Squarespace integrations provide added functionality and power to your Squarespace site. For these and other Squarespace integrations be sure to visit the Squarespace Integrations page.

What integrations do you currently use?

21 Money-Making Responsive Shopify Themes 2016

Best Shopify Themes

Every month thousands of merchants look for “the best Shopify themes” to enhance their Shopify store’s look in order to hopefully increase website conversions. Selling on Shopify but not willing to dish out money for a Premium theme? No worries, we got you covered with some free Shopify themes for 2016 as well! While there aren’t many free Shopify themes, there are some really excellent ones that you can use to get up and running. Check out our 21 favorite, money-making, Shopify themes for 2016!

1. Brooklyn

free Shopify theme that can be used to create a modern-looking store no matter what you are selling. Ideal for smaller stores, 20 to 50 products. The theme offers good features including edge-to-edge homepage, dynamic product page, amazing responsive and user-friendly design, unique typography and much more. It is currently our number 1 because it is simple, effective and it fits perfectly with design philosophy. You can get it for free, just click here.

brooklyn

2. SimpleGreat – Premium Responsive Shopify Theme

SimpleGreat is a universal multipurpose 100% responsive Shopify theme with built-in Blog for any kind of shop with modern design and powerful back-end. It is created using the latest HTML5 and CSS3 features so design bugs should be a thing of the past. The extensive admin panel with easy navigation and dozens of configuration options helps you somewhat easily attain a fairly customized Shopify store. It costs 59$ and you can buy the theme here.

simple

3. Lookbook – Retro

Lookbook Retro has a fully touch-friendly design, which allows you to scroll sideways on devices that support scrolling. This allows for a beautiful showcase of your products to all of your tech-savvy customers. It supports customer accounts, drop-downs and has a fantastic slide-out cart. It is best for shops with high-resolution photography. It is better than other themes because its full-page design focuses on the product and nothing else. Checkout is as simple as it can get. You can use this theme for free if you click here.

lookbook

4. New Standard – Sepia

This theme is ideal for selling any type of product. New Standard is a responsive theme with a clean and minimalist design. It comes with standard features including mobile-optimized responsive layouts, a slideshow, featured collections, products, and more. It’s simple, clean and looks great. It is free and you can get it here

standard

5. Milan

Another upscale theme for Shopify is the Milan theme. It is ideal for high-end products like expensive menswear or luxury accessories like watches and rings. It is a trendsetting, cosmopolitan theme with a striking presence. The classic vibe of Milan is coupled with advanced features for easy management of an online store. It costs 160$ and you can buy it here

milan

6. Blockshop

The Blockshop theme draws on flat UI design – boasting spacious, customisable layouts with a minimal user interface that endures trends with simplicity and style. Blockshop is a unique, premium Shopify theme, which is perfect for emerging and established businesses, start-ups, boutiques and artisans. It is made for everyone and built to sell anything. It costs 140$ and you can get it here

blockshop

7. Supply

Supply theme is excellent for new stores focused on jewelry and luxury items. The dark theme goes well with royal, prestigious, items. It is best because it is designed to make it quick & easy to browse through all the categories and products that your store has to offer. The theme features include prominent navigation, multiple homepage collections, sidebar filtering, and easy integration with the Product Reviews app which we suggest using in order to increase your conversions using social proof. It is fully responsive, simple, well-thought, beautiful & features nice cart functionality. Best part is it’s free. Click here and the theme is yours for free

supply

8. Simple – Light

This theme for Shopify is another simple, but very effective template that can be used for your online store. Sharing design elements from Simple – Beauty, this theme includes a zoomable product preview option and a simple website layout. It is a free ecommerce theme officially supported by Shopify. It can work as well on mobile devices as it does on large monitors. It features sleek animations, easy to customize settings, and a sidebar navigation with dropdown menus. Get your theme here for free

Simple

9. Weekend

The Weekend is one of the most impressive themes in the Shopify theme center. It offers top quality responsive layout that can improve on the idea of creating a fully-furnished theme with amazing visuals. Large, full-screen images make this theme look friendly on mobile devices including the iPad and iPhone, as well as Android. This theme also offers excellent “add-to-cart” functionality. The functionality can easily be used by the store owner to sell his/her items. With great support, excellent customization option and grid system. It costs 160$ and you can buy it here.

weekend

10. Everything – Multipurpose Responsive Shopify Theme

Everything is a Multipurpose Responsive Shopify Theme with modern, clean style design. It is fully responsive, include 22 different homepage layouts and unlimited colors. It looks stunning on all types of screens and devices. It is great as a starting point for your more custom projects. Easily considered one of the best Shopify themes for 2016it will run you 56$ and you can get it here.

everything

11. Pop – Toy

Pop is a free Shopify theme collection that includes a total of 2 free themes – Pop Bone and Pop Toy. The best thing about Pop – Toy Shopify template is the “kid friendly” design, soft colors and a nice featured products section. The design itself is very simple but beautiful. Get if for free here.

pop

12. Classic – Sharp

It is ideal for stores with large inventories, because the theme Classic is designed with the traditional ecommerce merchant and consumer in mind. The theme features a large sidebar that can be used to feature multiple levels of navigation and custom content like ads or promotions. Classic also includes a responsive design, a rearrangeable homepage and 3 modern styles to start with. Bring some color in your life! Try it for free here.

classic

13. Bewear – Fashion Responsive Shopify Theme

Geared towards the fashion industry, the Bewear Shopify Theme offers to you 2 different kinds of lookbooks, fully designed in detail and responding to the needs of these kind of subpages. You can add nice pics of looks to category header pages and invite the client to blog pages where he can get inspired – everything to make the client stay on your website and enjoy the time spent. The theme is yours for 56$ and you can get it here.

bewear

14. Everest – Multipurpose

This theme is inspired by modern e-commerce designs. It’s best suited for any store including fashion, furniture, lingerie, technology, accessories etc.  You can get it for 56$ here.

everest

15. Qrack Theme

Qrack – Responsive Shopify Theme with Mega Menu is a modern, clean and professional Shopify theme and it comes with a lot of great features that would take you months to develop. It is fully responsive, it looks stunning on all types of screens and devices. It includes easy to set up to your Instagram feed and Twitter widgets. Qrack theme is yours for 56$, buy it here.

qrack

16. Queen – Responsive Shopify Theme

It is great theme because it has piles of customization options, as well as quick and reliable support. It is highly recommended if you are using Shopify and want a powerful, feature-rich theme. It will cost you 56$ and you can get it here.

queen

17. Avenue

Another amazing fashion theme for shopify is the Avenue – Responsive Fashion  Theme. It brings you a very nice and neat design. Your online store is going to be so fascinating that once visiting the site, your customers will hardly take their eyes off. Buy it for 56$ here.

avenue

18. Parallax

Featuring a special layout that will easily help you define a modern, fashionable look for your shop. Other notable available functions are the blog, product image effect and the dropdown menu which allows better navigation for larger Shopify stores. You can buy it for 56$ here.

paralax

19. Minimal – Fashion

Minimal fashion theme is clean, fully responsive (it renders perfectly on desktop and mobile devices), and includes multiple, enlargeable product previews. It also allows you to add a “Sale” icon to any individual listings, which is a nice and conversion-enhancing touch. It’s packed with great features that you can customize according to your brand including the background layout, typography, product and collection views, navigation, color schemes and images. Get it here for free.

minimal

20. SAN_FRANCISCO Responsive shopify theme

Another great-looking Shopify theme is San Francisco. It exudes a fanciful treatment of what e-commerce shops should look. The fun and pleasing earth tone pastel colors will win the hearts of your customers. The advanced features of this theme also makes it a delight to use. This theme offers in-depth customization but the default design is already pretty and functional. This theme costs 160$ and you can buy it here.

san francisco

21. Salt Yard Theme

Salt Yard is a dynamic theme for Shopify. It comes with Live Search feature so customers can quickly find the items they want to buy. The homepage layout can be changed in a modular fashion, features or content areas can be toggled on or off. This theme also supports insertion of custom HTML codes. You can buy it for 180$ here.

yard

Those are our favorite responsive Shopify themes for 2016, we hope one of the above themes will help you achieve a more professional brand image as well as eventually a better conversion rate once your chosen Shopify theme is properly integrated.

If we missed any Shopify theme you’d like to recommend go ahead in the comments, we’ll keep posting about the best Shopify themes once in a while since new ones are launched almost daily!

 

30 Tips to Optimize Your Landing Page

It’s a fact: Landing pages can help generate qualified leads and increase your sales and business goals while lowering your advertising/marketing costs.

Optimizing Landing Pages

The easier you make it for your visitors to see who you are, what you’re offering, the value you provide and what you’re asking in return, the more likely that person is going to convert.

perfect-landing-page

Here are 30 tips you should immediately use to make the copy, design, layout and ease-of-use of your landing page more effective today.

Easy to Navigate

Keep your page free of too much information, too many pictures and too much clutter. Make it easy to see why your visitor is on your page and what they need to do. Keep in mind, online users have an attention span of about a few seconds, if you can’t clearly deliver your message within a few seconds to a visitor who lands on your page, you’re doing something wrong and it’s costing you big time.

Bullet Points

Make it easy to understand your advantages and more people will want what you are offering. See how Wishpond does this properly on one of their many landing page templates with easy-to-read bullet points.

bullet

Clear and Concise Headlines

Being one of the first things your visitors will read, your landing page headlines should not confuse or bore, but convince a visitor to take a closer look and pay attention. Addressing a specific point that is related to the content of the website will catch a reader’s attention more than having an imprecise and boring headline. Use your headline to immediately show how your visitors will benefit if they keep reading and click on your CTA.

Whitespace

Use clean designs and direct your client’s attention to your offer, benefits and Call to Action. Leave empty space on your page to increase conversions by providing a clear design of what it is you’re offering and what your visitors’ next step should be, no better way to do that than by using whitespace to your advantage.

Images

You know that pictures tell a thousand words. This is specifically true online. Images are the most shared and liked content on social media. They can be very productive and convincing on your lead-generating landing pages too. The more a potential customer likes your page and relates to your design/images, the more likely they’ll convert.

Complementary (and contrasting) Colours

Colour design is extremely important in optimizing your landing page. Use complementary colour schemes to make your page appealing to the eye. Make your Call-to-Action in a contrasting colour to stand out.

If you don’t have a graphic designer, there’s a number of free colour scheme tools online such as Hex Color Scheme Generator or Adobe Kuler! Check them out!

5 second rule

The ‘5 second rule’ applies to landing pages too. You’ve got about 5 seconds to attract and draw in your visitors. If your page doesn’t appeal immediately, your potential customer won’t hesitate to visit a competitor, which might even be your competitor’s one!

Impeccable Grammar

Not just landing pages, but all website grammar needs to be perfect. Always double and triple check your copy, and have someone else read it through. In the case of an online retailer who is asking for visitors to purchase and provide personal and billing information, the trust of the customer will be risked if there are spelling errors and  grammar mistakes.

anatomy-spelling

This page has one small grammar error, but that one error can make a difference in conversions. You’re asking visitors to trust you. Grammatical errors are not a great beginning.

Call To Action

Your Call to Action (CTA) is the action you are asking your visitor to take. Your CTA should be the most noticeable characteristic on your landing page. Make your Call to Action buttons clear and use contrasting colours. Keep them short and use action-oriented words to invoke an immediate reaction. When possible, try to include a benefit in your CTA.

anatomy-cta

Blue Apron has a strong call-to-action on this page. It’s clear what the user should do and even highlights a per person price.

Buttons & Call to Actions Should Stand Out

Determine the keywords people interested in your service might be looking for and use words such as free, new, buy, or download now. A conversion button should stand out and be placed right below a call-to-action or have the call-to-action as the button. In addition, the button should be big, bright, and above the fold.

Keep it Above the Fold

The space a visitor sees without having to scroll is where the most relevant parts of the webpage should be. Place the call-to-action button above the fold and in a location where the viewer’s eye will scan to. Never have the button or form in a place where it has to be searched for.

anatomy-above-fold

 

Competitive advantage

Use your marketing smarts to show how and why you’re better than your competition. Show off your unique selling point for your campaign. The more convincing you are to your market, the more sales you will get.

Sense of urgency

Use scarcity tactics such as a limited supply of your product offering, limited time for your offer, or a coupon that expires shortly for example.

To create urgency, use phrases such as “only two days left”, “limited supply”, “don’t miss out”, “click now, while supplies last”.

Know your offer

Before you create your landing page, figure out what your offer is. Answer questions like:

  • What problem are you solving?
  • What are the specifics of your campaign?
  • How will your offer most benefit your customer – and why should they care?

    Know your customer

    In order to design and create a fully optimized landing page, you need to know who it is you’re marketing to. Make a list of demographics for your target market, or even write out a number of buyer personas that detail the daily behaviours of your intended consumer. Make customer personas to understand your consumer, their needs and their online behaviors.

    Taking Advantage of Trust Indicators

    For an effective way of building trust, include testimonials, reviews, press mentions, and 3rd party trust and security certification.

    anatomy-trust
    This landing page from Mayflower uses the company’s average rating to display trust in their service.

    Always Be Testing

    Optimize a landing page for conversion over time. Run A/B tests, change copy, images, and call-to-actions to see what resonates most with users. Moreover, testing two completely different site designs against each other will be beneficial in the long run.

    Know your competition

It’s business. Check out your competition and do a competitive analysis for their landing pages. Your research can help you reach two goals: inspiration to outperform their page, or generate creativity to innovate something unique.

Contact Information

Show your phone number, social network links, and even the address and a map of your location. The more accessible you are, the more friendly and ‘open for business’ you look. Don’t hide from your customers if you want their business.

Example of a renovation landing page with a clear phone number in the upper right hand corner.

contact

Don’t oversell

Don’t over-promise only to under-deliver. That is the fastest way to lose trust – and customers. Say what you’re offering, and give your customers what you’ve promised. Once they’ve got what they want, then give them a little more. You may be pleasantly surprised at the word-of-mouth marketing you gain as well as returning customers.

Use Oversized Buttons

Donʼt be afraid to design big shiny buttons that really stand out. They donʼt need to be grey or be the same height as a standard text field. Go big to stop your visitors from going elsewhere.

Don’t Repeat Errors of The Past

It might sound simple, but unless you make the effort to record problems in old campaigns you will never learn from them. Put a big poster on the wall with your top 10 things to avoid doing, or reminders of things you’ve learnt from previous landing pages.

Colors

Colors that attract a visitor will vary between different sites, audiences and so on. Applying the right colors might draw in traffic, bore viewers, or scare others away. They set the mood of a landing pages and influence a viewer’s actions. It’s important you choose the right colors for your lander, product and even more so, your visitors. Pick a color that associates itself with trust in your industry.

anatomy-colors

Go Easy on The Links

Links connecting the user to a a lot of other sites or pages will distract them and have a negative result on conversions. Lots of links may make sense on a regular home page, but on a landing page, simplicity is key.

anatomy-links

This landing page is well designed, but look at all those headers links getting in the way of the message! Remove excess links in order to reduce the distraction level on your landing page!

Show a Face

Studies have shown that using smiling faces increases trust. Show the face of you, you and your team or a happy customer. Increasing trust is a big step towards increasing conversions.

Speak to Your Customer

Use “you” in your landing page copy. Think of your landing page as a place where someone is visiting you in-person. If your demographic is the millennial generation, use language and images that relate. if you’re marketing to a geo-location target, use local references to give trust that you’re a business that relates to them personally.

Use Customer Testimonials

Share good quotes from your customers – and show their face and name or website if possible. People trust the opinions of other people, particularly those of friends. Social endorsements are an efficient way to gain trust in future customers.

Use Images and Videos that Relate to Copy

Implementing motivational speeches, videos of user testimonials, and product images into a home page can have a positive impact on viewers, as well as give shoppers additional motivation to look further into a product.

anatomy-imagery

Bellroy uses great imagery and videos on many of their pages. Every product page has a great video and a large number of pictures of that wallet. This makes selecting the right wallet extremely easy for buyers, it’s a close as a visitor can get to actually touching the wallet without being in its physical presence (in a retail store for example).

Use keywords in your Page Title

Make sure to include your targeted keywords in your page title, this will help less with conversions but more with SEO, and who doesn’t want free traffic?

Include Social Sharing Buttons

Google “likes” a highly shared page. Make your social sharing buttons easy to see on your page. Put them at the top of your page, and make them highly visible on your landing page. They help with SEO, getting more social traffic for free, and most importantly they serve as social proof which definitely helps increase your landing page’s conversion rate.

Start with a few of these tips – or try them all – to immediately increase your landing page’s success.

Which ones are you already using, and which ones are you thinking of trying out? We’d love to hear about optimization strategies that are working for you, so leave a comment below and make sure to let us know how your next landing page performs!

10 Tips to Customize your Squarepace Website

As most of you already know, Squarespace is a fantastic tool for business owners and bloggers who need an easy, attractive platform for building a website.
Learning how to use it is not complicated and best of all, it’s affordable for small businesses and even entrepreneurs just starting out on a new venture.

However, the fact that Squarespace templates are beautiful, simple, and easy to setup is also why many users have a hard time customizing their site and making it look different, unique and personalized all while remaining efficient from a marketing perspective.

I’ve prepared some helpful tips that I’ve found for switching up the look and feel of your Squarespace site as well as helping gain more traffic and an increased conversion rate. Some of these might be new to you and some you might already know or use on your Squarespace site, but I hope you’re able to dig deeper by implementing the following Squarespace tips.

Labelling Images- Alt Tags

Alt tags is text associated with an image that mostly search engines will see instead of the image. Search engines use them to identify the content of a image. Adding alt-text to images is a fantastic way to give your site a quick and easy SEO boost to climb higher in search engine rankings. This tip can require a lot of time according to the amount of images your site has but it’s certainly good practice for all websites as it’s excellent for SEO if done properly. Try using targeted keywords in your image alt-tags as a bonus tip!

Set Image Focal Points

With focal points (the small grey circles that appear over images you’re editing), you can control the focus area in your images.

In many cases, the system will crop an image so it fits efficiently in your template. When you move a focal point in an image, you reposition the image within its container and adjust what displays in the cropped area. For example, you may want it to focus on someone’s face, or another specific part of an image.
set focal

Simply go to the image you want to edit, and drag the small circle to the area you’d like to highlight to ensure it doesn’t get cropped in the wrong place.

Upload a Browser Favicon

Customization is all in the details, from the color of your navigation menu to that little image that appears beside your website’s name in a web browser tab, also known as branding. Get rid of that black box and add a touch of your brand to the browser by uploading a custom favicon. In the main menu, click Design > Logo & Title and under the Browser Icon (Favicon) section, upload a .png file with a transparent background (a white box around your image doesn’t look quite as professional). Not sure how to make your own Favicon? Just upload an image here for free to get yours.

 

genesis-favicons (1)

Don’t forget  that favicons don’t appear very big on the tab, so try to find something simple, something that doesn’t show many details like a letter or an icon. By adding even a small detail like a favicon, your site will appear more professional, exclusive and customized.

404 Error / Page Not Found Custom Page

This isn’t essential, but it is something that can make an important difference to your website. You can personalise your 404 Error page to make it friendly and approachable rather than a mistake when someone types in an old or incorrect URL relating to your site. Just add a new unlinked page with your chosen graphics and text, then go to Settings/Website/Advanced/404 Error / Page Not Found. Here you can select the dropdown and choose the page you’d like people see. Bonus tip, try collecting an email from it by offering a coupon, a free ebook or anything of value.

Multiple Languages in the Same Squarespace Site

Localization is a huge topic in terms of Squarespace, unfortunately there’s no easy way to have a multilingual Squarespace site by just using Squarepace, you’ll have to build several versions which turns into a mess. Thankfully, we (Bablic) offer an extremely easy way to translate Squarespace (Bablic X Squarespace tutorial) using just one line of code. Try it now, for free, just visit our homepage and enter your URL to get started.

Squarespace Cover Page Autoplay Video Backgrounds

Are you asking if asking if is it possible to create cover pages with automatically looping background videos? The answer is yes!
Get this FREE addon that allows you to install looping video backgrounds on Squarespace Cover Pages. This solution uses a locally hosted video rather than a video from YouTube, Vimeo or other streaming video services.
To learn more about how to do this, read here.

Using Google Analytics to Measure Visitor Engagement

“78% of you will start reading this article but only 31% of you will read all of the way to the end. Find out how I know.”

If you want to understand how people are engaging with your Squarespace website, you should perform a test to measure visitor engagement and to work out whether single page “bouncing” visitors are engaging with the site at any level. If you are not sure how to do it, then check this link.

 A Scroll Hint that Fades out When the Page is Scrolled Down

Facebook Object Debugger for sharing pages

Sometimes you realise that Facebook is either picking up the wrong image, or no image at all.

The Facebook Open Graph Object Debugger is a free tool that allows you to preview and understand how your page will look when shared on Facebook. It also allows you to change its cache and force the changes you would like to make.

Enter the page URL you’d like to check and select ‘Show existing scrape information’. At the bottom of the results you’ll find a preview of what Facebook has recorded and how your post will be shared.

From there you can go back to your website to edit your image accordingly if it’s cropped oddly and alter your page title and description if required.


jdbfh

Facebook+Object+Debugger+results

Connected Account for Social Media

One obvious but important thing you should make sure of is if your Squarespace website is connected and consistent with all of your social media accounts.

Go to Settings/Website/Connected Accounts and you’ll find the option there. You can then click on “Connect Account” and choose the ones you’d like Squarespace to link up. Make sure you have your usernames and passwords accessible.

Create Custom Buttons, Borders, and Graphics

The best way to customize your Squarespace site and make it your own is to fill your brand into it, and one of the best ways to do that is through photos and graphics; they’re a great way to bring in colors, fonts, and other visual elements of your brand.

There are unlimited things you can do to change and customize your Squarespace website. What you need is to try to use some of the tips mentioned above, a little of coding experience and some creativity!

I hope this post will help you! If you have anything to add or ask, just keep in touch or leave a comment below and we’ll be happy to answer you.

16 Tips to Easily Increase Shopify Conversion Rates

The online shopping industry is an extremely competitive one. Unlike a physical shop, customers have far more choice about where they spend their money, all just one-click away. They can flit from site to site quickly comparing deals, reviews, shipping timelines and a hundred other things before they choose where they’ll buy. That is why, as an ecommerce shop owner, you can’t afford to leave anything to luck, it’s extremely important to constantly work on your website in order to increase conversion rates. But before getting into testing and real optimization, there are some basics every ecom store should have.

One thing I’d like to start with is the product page since it’s often neglected, here we go. To help you beef up your sales, I’m going to share some simple ways to help increase conversions which you can implement today.

Product Page

Your product page is where the majority of your customers will finally make the decision between buying your product and leaving your store. Unfortunately, it’s an often-neglected part of the sales funnel. Most store owners tend to focus on improving their checkout page or tweaking what happens after a visitor adds a product to their cart, they forget customers won’t get that far unless you have a solid product page that converts.
Shopify Increase Conversions

A great product page contains elements that inform potential customers, show social proof, highlight all the features and benefits of your product, and build trust between your visitors and your business.

Design

Your web design should be kept simple and easy to navigate. When a visitor lands on your site they need to immediately understand the layout and how to navigate the website. If a customer cannot navigate the menu and interact with the site they will click off and find a competitor that offers a more user friendly experience.

Product Images

The product images should be allowed to speak for themselves without being overshadowed. That is why you need fantastic product photography to really sell your goods.  Blurry or small photographs are one of the easiest ways to put a customer off. Including professional pictures alongside a seamless zoom function on a product page will give a boost when trying to improve ecommerce conversion rates. But don’t worry, professional photography doesn’t necessarily mean big budget, check out the DIY guide from Shopify.

Create an Account? NO!

Creating an account on your website should be a choice, not a requirement, unless you enjoy massively losing sales. According to this survey by eConsultancy, 25% of shoppers abandon their purchases because they are forced to create an account. To understand what a big deal this is, look at the problem from a shopper’s point of view. They come to your website to buy stuff. When they see something they like and add that item to cart, they don’t want to be forced to make up a password and create an account. They want instant gratification, not in-advance commitment to your brand.

Free Shipping is the new Standard

I cannot stress the importance of providing free shipping as a conversion method.  A recent E-tailing Group study revealed that unconditional free shipping is the number one criteria users look at when making a purchase online. In another study 93% of respondents indicated that free shipping on orders would encourage them to purchase more products. High shipping costs were rated as the number one reason why consumers were not satisfied with their online shopping experience. Try to incorporate delivery costs into the price of your products if you are worried about losing out.

Live Chat

When a potential customer has a question about a product you stand a much better chance to close the sale if you answer that question immediately and while they are still on the website. A simple chat popup can be a low-friction way to get the conversation flowing with your customers. What’s great is there are some free live chat apps out there for Shopify, like this one, but make sure you have someone answering the chats to get the most out of it.

Increase Shopify Conversions with Live Chat

FAQs

When customers are on the fence about purchasing your product, oftentimes it’s because they have unanswered questions. Including a list of frequently asked questions and answers on your product pages helps get them off that fence. Think shipping times, accepted payment methods, return/refund policy and so on.

Use your 404s

Inevitably, users will hit an error page on your site, and they will likely get frustrated and leave. Instead of telling them to press the back button, consider a button directing them to a particular category page, a search field or even an automatic live chat popup that offers to help with whatever the visitor was trying to do. Another, more tricky, conversion booster would be offering a coupon code they “earned” by falling on a page not found. 

Videos > Pictures

One of the biggest downsides of shopping online is not being able to touch, feel, or physically examine a product you’re thinking about buying. When you go down the street to your local mall, you can touch products, better judge their size & quality, and get a better sense of what owning the product will be like. Pictures on your product page can only do so much. Often, a well shot video that gives a thorough look at your product can help potential buyers make those missing connections.

Real Reviews

Reviews from legitimate customers are one of the biggest gamechangers in an ecommerce store. A 2010 study by The Nielsen Company confirmed that people read reviews and decide by them. Nearly 60 percent of online shoppers said they consult reviews prior to purchasing consumer electronics and 40 percent of online shoppers claimed that they would not even buy electronics without seeking reviews about the product online first. Imagine users being able to read reviews without even leaving your product page? Plus, seeing that your business allows for reviews lets your visitors know you have nothing to hide and builds trust, the most important factor when selling online.

Increase Shopify Conversions with Customer Reviews

Endorsements

If your product is endorsed or certified by a reputable firm, let visitors know with a badge or seal. Any certifications or important characteristics of your product (such as safety, legitimacy, officiality) should be included and highlighted on your product page.

Refund/Exchange Policies

Proudly display your money back guarantee or exchange policy on your product page. Show off that you stand behind your product, make it risk free for your potential customer. If you put the risk on yourself, and give visitors more confidence, they’ll be more likely to trust you and in turn, purchase your products.

Social Media

Making sure your ecommerce store is connected to all your social channels is key for boosting conversion rates. Make sure that your social media profiles are easy to locate from the website. This builds trust within the brand. Consumers love social media and take every chance they can to interact with brands that they are interested in.

Payment Methods

Make sure you have a number of ways to pay available on your ecommerce site. It is also a good idea to display what payments you accept in the footer of your store. There is nothing more annoying than filling up a shopping cart, getting to checkout and realizing they don’t accept your preferred method of payment. Not only will the customer not convert but they will be left with a bad first impression of the site in general, and we all know first impressions are everything.

Blogging

Creating a blog that has interesting information in regards to your niche will help people use your website as a source rather than just a shop, you can quickly become an authority in your niche simply by blogging consistantly. Fashion brands should work on creating reputable blogs that have news, reviews and tips rather than just pushing their products. Your blog represents your brand and the ideals that your customers look up to so make sure you represent it. It can also become your number 1 marketing method, but more on that later.

Exit Popups

Show some interesting offers to your visitors when they’re about to leave your website. Discount offers, free shipping or anything that you can offer, could be a catchy way to grab your visitors.

Big budget, low budget or no budget, most of the above Shopify tips can be implemented today for free on your shop and they will definitely help increase your overall sales, it just takes a bit of time and effort. Before paying for an app, always look for a free version, especially when starting out. If you can’t find a free one then look for one with a free trial at least so you can test it out and see if it’s worth the money.

Some of the above tips sounds like they are for more professional, advanced users or even bigger companies but the truth is they are for everyone. Having a proper product images, or running a blog for example is something every online business should be doing, big or small.

Hope you enjoyed the post, please share if you did and check back later for more advanced tips on how to increase your sales on Shopify as well as other platforms.

Let us know about your Shopify tips and tricks in the comments!