For the 6th consecutive year Kyiv has recently hosted iForum, the country's biggest conference dedicated to Internet and high tech solutions. One of the speakers featured in this year's event was Head of Online Payments at Wargaming, creator of the legendary World of Tanks. In his keynote he explained how the optimization of certain web store components might increase online sales by at least 20%, and also shared the three rules that any online store must follow in order to succeed in e-tailing.
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Here's the summary of his iForum speech.
It is expected that online payments will account for over 90% of the whole retail market in the EU and the United States by the end of 2014. Having conducted a few experiments with their web stores, Wargaming came to the conclusion that 20% of revenues from online sales would depend directly on the web store's UI and UX design.
That's what makes any online sale a success:
- 50% - product quality
- 5% - brand name (this finding fully disrupts the myth that the more solid and famous the brand, the more sales it makes online)
- 15% - interaction with customer (e.g. engagement in social media, tech support, etc)
- 10% - promotion, and
- 20% = user currency (7%) + translation / localization (5%) + payment methods (5%) + user support (3%)
Now let's take a closer look at the latter:
- Currency accounts for 7% of your online sales success. If you only sell within the United States or the European Union, it's OK for you to charge your customers in USD or EUR. Yet, once you move your online business to other countries, you must provide an option for your customers to a) view all prices in their native currency, and b) make a payment transaction in their native currency. That said, web stores that let their users view prices and pay online using native currencies are likely to increase sales by 7%, compared to those that only show prices and allow transactions in USD or some major currencies only (such as GBP or EUR).
- The next factor able to boost your online sales by 5% is your product localization. Again, if you target at more than just your home country, make an extra effort and let your user get information about your product in their native tongue. Of course, no one has cancelled Google Translate yet, but real life experiments show that letting customers read product descriptions / details in their native languages can actually drive your sales up to 5%.
- Payment methods integrated in your web store account for the next 5% of your sales success. You need to put all of your enabled payment methods in order, and improve significantly the check-out process (visualize it and make it as user friendly and trustworthy as possible) to make more people want to buy from your site. Wargaming says a properly optimized payment system can increase your sales by at least 5%.
- The last factor that can help increase your online sales by 3% is tech support you provide to your customers. First off, a good web store usually provides a mix of different types of support such as online and offline support, hotlines, tickets system, instant support in Twitter / social media, etc. Make sure you localize and provide tech support in your users' native languages as well. Just like in cases above, this will enhance your use loyalty and make more people press your BUY button.
And here're the three simple rules that any web store owner should obey to increase sales and brand loyalty.
- Make UI / UX design of your payment page just perfect!
A payment page is an important element in your online sales cycle, so it should have the same look and feel as your main website, should load fast and provide seamless check-out experiences to your customers.
2. Visualize the payment steps for your user!
Remember - customers are your key business stakeholders and success drivers, and they want and should know how exactly the payment is processed and whether it's really safe enough. As such, restrict a number of payment steps required to 3 only, even if you need one more page for a promo code or anything else - let it happen in step #3, not step# 4! Make each step dynamic or animated so that your users won't be bored while awaiting their payment completion.
3. Never overload your contact or registration forms with many fields!
Each extra field will only decrease your conversions. Make sure you use effective website user visitor tracking systems and never ask registered users for information they've already provided before.
For your information, Wargaming made $372 million with its World of Tanks in 2013 and now ranks 4th globally by revenues from micro transactions, having left such gaming monsters as Counter Strike, World of Warcraft and Lineage behind.
Source: ain.ua, 2014