At Williams Commerce, as a Magento Partner and more broadly a digital marketing, hosting and ecommerce specialist, our primary aim is to help our customers grow and earn more money from their online businesses.

As well as wider opportunities we see for customers to increase product ranges, improve pricing, invest in marketing at the heart of any online growth strategy, we look hard at improving conversion rate. In many cases we focus on some early quick wins.

__________

Improve Site Search

Magento search falls short on delivering great search results, especially in the Community edition. Magento Enterprise has the advantage of SOLR search, but for customers with large product catalogues we strongly recommend implementing a search module like Sphinx Search. We have achieved great results for many customers using this. Sphinx Search greatly improves the accuracy with which users can search your website, enabling them to access the products they are looking for faster.

__________

Site Speed

With retail websites being three times slower than the average website due to the large number of products, according to ecommerce week [i], is important for businesses with an ecommerce website to keep their website as fast as possible to stay competitive. Many users will abandon a website if it fails to load after three seconds, and are likely to remember that website as one to avoid in the future. There are a variety of ways to keep your website up–to–speed, and Williams Commerce can help you take steps to ensure that your website is as fast as possible and a pleasure for your customers to use.

For customers with sales in excess of £2million / $3.5million USD we recommend Magento Enterprise. Magento Enterprise’s built in full page cache means that it loads significantly quicker, and allows you’re ecommerce site to scale and perform well under load. Williams Commerce also offer a number of performance enhancing features for Magento Community.

Third party caching modules and tools such as Varnish can deliver a significant performance boost. However in our experience they may be masking poor code and site design. Our recommendation is to have a code audit performed on the site to ensure no major issues exist.

Magento site hosting also plays a key part to Magento site performance. At a minimum Magento should be hosted on its own server, a VPS (Virtual Private Server) is the starting point. Optimised Cloud and Dedicated Server hosting options, caching tools, load balancers and broadly managed hosting solutions make a big difference.

This requires a hosting specialist or an ecommerce agency with strong hosting knowledge. Talk to our hosting team if you would like more information on how we can help.

__________

Simplified Checkout

A common stumbling block of an ecommerce website is the checkout. Many users will reach the checkout and be deterred by a variety of aspects, leading to checkout abandonments. Delivery and charges are policies of your business, but by simplifying your checkout process, you can improve the user experience of the checkout process which will in turn lead to fewer customers abandoning your checkout.

One Step Checkout is an excellent Magento plugin to help simplify your Magento ecommerce site’s checkout, reducing the steps to one page, offering your customers greater efficiency and simplicity at this vital step of the website. Allowing the user to view everything required for shipping and billing on a single page greatly reduces the risk of shopping basket abandonment rates.

Consider other payment options including PayPal that allow the user to enter a user name and password rather than full card details. This is a simple addition in Magento. And lastly, make sure your checkout is secure and there is nothing to erode trust in the checkout. An SSL certificate is a must, and a third party customer feedback rating system in the header of the site such as TrustPilot, Feefo, Google Trusted Store etc. helps convince the customer you are a genuine business.

__________

Filtering and Navigation

Ease of access is a necessity to any retail website. If your users can find what they are looking for quickly and easily, they are more likely to make purchases from your website. Therefore, filtering and navigation are two aspects of an ecommerce website that you must get right. Grouping your products into the correct categories and assigning the correct values so that your customers can filter them is key, and keeping navigation simple will give ensure your website is user-friendly. By benefiting your customers, you are benefiting your business.

Make full use of attributes in Magento to provide layered navigation. Everyone will have seen this on major retail sites such as John Lewis, Currys, Next, Macys etc, and it is a built in feature of Magento well worth using to enhance both the user experience and easy quick navigation. Take a look at one of our customers Hargroves Cycles http://www.hargrovecycles.co.uk for a great example.

Call us on 0116 326 1116 and speak to one of our development team and find out how we can help you to improve the conversion rate of your existing Magento website, or how we can build a website with a high conversion rate. We are creating conversion rate recommendations reports for our clients and they prove to be a fantastic investment for the future growth of your online business.

[i] http://www.ecommerceweek.co.uk/news/285/retail-websites-three-times-slower-than-standard/