Spring is in the air, the holidays are over, and it’s a great time for retailers to do a bit of website spring cleaning. And like finding a forgotten tenner in your favorite pair of Bermuda shorts, you never know what a little spring cleaning will uncover.
Let’s get started.
Here are 5 spring cleaning tips to help keep your site fresh and set you up for a successful summer.
1. Improve Conversions with a Simpler Design
Website design has a big impact on overall usability, so use this downtime to improve the shopping experience on your website.
One design style that has become particularly popular among online retailers is the card layout. Introduced by Pinterest, a card design displays content in rectangular containers which can be easily rearranged or even “stacked”. This allows the content to adapt responsively to the height and width of the particular device being used.
There are a number of pros to using a card design. First of all, it’s easy to use. No matter what device a consumer is using to browse your online store, they will be presented with a consistently simple user experience. Cards also present user with a manageable amount of content, which make it easy to click on or share. Card design is also highly flexible, so it works with minimalist sites as well as high content sites.
2. Mobile is No Longer Optional
At over 30% of US ecommerce sales, mobile has become an indisputably important part of online retailing. This spring, look for ways to ramp up your mobile channels.
Even if desktop is your main money-maker, 39% of desktop purchases involve a mobile device in the path to purchase. So chances are that some customers are using a mobile to browse your site or research products.
Although they have fewer users than browser-based shopping, mobile apps can potentially be your best performing digital channel. A report from Criteo found that mobile retail apps have a conversion rate that is twice a high as desktop. And with the help of service such a Nativ, even small retailers with limited resources can create an app fairly easily.
In addition to boosting your revenue, becoming mobile friendly will also boost your organic traffic. That’s because Google plans to roll out an update this coming May which gives mobile friendly websites a boost in rank over their non-responsive counterparts. So if you were hesitant to make changes in past, now may be the right now.
3. Revisit Your Rankings
Speaking of rankings, when was the last time you audited your keywords and meta descriptions?
Take some time this spring to revisit your current SEO and ensure everything is as it should be. Your keywords should be tailored to your customers’ search habits, meta descriptions should be relevant and up-to-date, and menus should be easily navigated.
Meta descriptions are important for a number of reasons. While the particular keywords used in the meta description impact SEO, it is also the description people see in organic search results.
Freshening up your content will also help to boost your rankings. Google’s algorithm puts more weight on fresh content for certain queries, so pages that have a high “freshness” are more likely to be found. Of course the best way to maintain this freshness score is by regularly publishing high quality content.
4. Make Sure Everything Works
It wouldn’t be spring cleaning without a bit of maintenance, so look around and make sure everything works properly.
Start by removing broken links and redirect loops. Sites like www.brokenlinkcheck.com are a free and simple method of checking to see if you have dead links on your site. Also, make sure you don’t have any remnant holiday references. Basically, don’t just set it and forget it.
Perhaps the best way to test that every works is by being a test shopper. See what it’s like to make a purchase, sign up for an account, or complete whatever other action you ask customers to do while they browse your site. As you go through the process look for steps that can be updated, condensed, or taken out entirely.
5. Audit Your Cart
In terms of bounce for your ounce with spring cleaning, look no further than your shopping cart. That’s because increases to conversion rate directly impact your bottom line. So take this time to audit your cart from start to finish and look for ways it can be optimized.
Is it Obvious?
Make it obvious how to move through each step of the checkout process. It should be outrageously easy to add a product to a cart, begin the checkout process, and complete a payment.
Is it Short?
Having a long and tedious checkout is a good way to repel customers. Reducing the number of pages and steps in the checkout will also reduce the amount of time and friction required to involved and help to increase conversions. This will help capture the 10% of shoppers that abandon their cart due to a lengthy checkout process.
Does it Have Options?
Accepting multiple payment options is an often under appreciated factor in cart optimization so be sure to explore the benefits of offering a range of payment options. For instance, many consumers today either don’t have a credit card or don’t want to use one to buy online, make sure you have a way for these shoppers to pay. In fact, 83% of consumers feel retailers should look to add more payment options.