Digital marketing depends heavily on percentages. Small fluctuations in conversion rates can make the difference between eCommerce success and business failure. That’s why it’s so critical to use technology applications to their fullest abilities. Advanced plugins can extend your website’s capabilities to deliver great user experiences and boost conversion rates. Once you’ve installed these plugins, they work for you automatically 24/7 to shepherd customers through the sales funnel for higher conversions and sales.
Gartner predicts that customers will manage 85 percent of their online business by 2020 without interacting with a person. People like and expect self-service as part of a desirable online experience. An incredible 86 percent of customers are happy to pay more for products in return for a great online experience.
Plugins Deliver the Online Experiences that Customers Value
Decision-makers for eCommerce companies – in both B2C and B2B companies – can choose from open source, proprietary software and SaaS plugins. Some of the most effective plugins for increasing conversion rates include applications in these categories:
There are thousands of plugins available for building better page designs to convince your customers to convert. Optimizing product pages with relevant content – which includes text, videos, illustrations and graphics – does about 80 percent of the persuasive work. Plugins help to manage the customer experience and make it easy to update catalog descriptions, etc.
Popular plugins for page design include
- WP Smush: This plugin enables your customers and staff members to perform many tasks such as resizing pages, compressing data, speed page loads and edit product images.
- EWWW Image Optimizer: Compressing the data that are used in images can speed page loads and create more options for resizing and manipulating images.
- BJ Lazy Load: Each time someone visits part of your website, the data must be retrieved from your server or hosting platform. The Lazy Load plugin limits image loading to those sections that are being scrolled, which reduces page loading times.
Advanced automation plugins can handle an incredible number of conversion-related tasks such as providing customers with chat options such as providing answers to their questions using AI-powered chat robots. Some of the plugins for automation include:
- Live Chat: Live Chat widgets are one of the most used customer service applications. Nobody wants to play phone tag or go through an endless list of phone-answering options. The Live Chat widget allows someone from your staff to monitor and handle multiple contacts with customers. Live Chat is a free plugin with automated greetings and chat notifications to keep customers engaged.
- WPForms: Automated forms make it easy for customers to sign up for an account, request further information and pre-load forms with existing account information.
- NextScripts: You can post information automatically to social media sites using this plugin.
- Gravity PDF: You can use this plugin to generate, download and email PDF documents.
The speed of your website often determines whether site visitors stay or migrate elsewhere immediately. Customers will only wait about 5 seconds for your website to load. That’s the first test. Each area or your site needs to load just as quickly if you want to sell faster and avoid customer churn. These WordPress plugins optimize site speed and integrate well with WooCommerce and other eCommerce store platforms:
- WP-Optimize: This plugin from WordPress eliminates clutter in your database, and the app is a free management plugin. It keeps your database clean and free of duplicate entries, which speed processing speed.
- WP-DB Manager: This plugin also cleans data, streamlines storage and makes it easier to back up your data.
- W3 Total Cache: This plugin can store critical website information across CDN networks using multiple servers and caching data, which reduce storage needs and accelerate finding information for customers.
Increasing processing speed ranks among the most powerful ways to increase conversion rates. Research shows that faster page loads lead to conversion rates that are 7 percent to 12 percent higher than the conversion rates of slow-loading sites.
Multiple Payment Solutions
The ability to offer multiple payment solutions and free shipping is one of the most effective ways to increase conversions. Free shipping ranks as one of the most important influences on favorable buying decisions. About 55 percent of online shoppers rank free shipping as the decisive factor in buying a product.
When customers get ready to buy, there’s nothing that causes them to abandon their cart more frequently than discovering that a given site doesn’t take a key method of payment. Payment gateways can take PayPal, Amazon Pay and other third-party payment services, debit and credit cards, bank transfers, online checks, purchase orders and in-house credit accounts. Some of the most popular payment gateway plugins include Stripe, Mollie Payments for WooCommerce, Authorize.net and PayU EU Payment Gateway.
Following Up on Failed Conversions
One of the best ways to increase conversions is to re-target customers who didn’t buy. These visitors might be interested, but many abandon their shopping carts. This could happen because of a phone call, kitchen emergency or other distraction. Key plugins can be useful for re-targeting customers with email incentives, reminding people that they have products in their shopping carts and offering a selection of related products that might be more appealing. Some of the top plugins that give marketers a second chance at sales include:
- WooCommerce Recover Abandoned Cart: This plugin helps customers to recover their abandoned carts and provides incentives for completing a sale.
- OptinMonster: Customers aren’t always ready to buy, but you don’t want to give up on them completely. The OptinMonster plugin helps you gather information on customers who don’t convert. The plugin can convince visitors to sign up for newsletters and emails, which can generate steady leads.
Plugins Maximize eCommerce Conversions and Foster Automation
Making things easier for your customers is the relatively simple premise behind maximizing sales conversions. Easy to use self-service options and advanced plugins can optimize your website, remove unnecessary clutter, generate a pipeline of sales leads and personalize the customer experience.
Caryl Anne Crowne is a contributing writer and media specialist for Digital Marketing Training Group. She often produces content for a variety eCommerce blogs.