Simple Ways to Boost Conversions on Your Shopify Store

by Kurt Elster

This is a guest post by Ron Dod.

Finally finishing setting up your Shopify store and getting your first streams of traffic can be an exciting moment, but this excitement soon turns to apprehension if you are not getting the conversion rate you desire.

But the site looks good. I’ve got a wide selection of products that people usually want. What’s going on?

You start to doubt whether the time and money you’ve spent on attracting visitors is worth it. You might be getting visitors on your site and navigating through your pages, but, ultimately, they come and go without making a single purchase.

Don’t worry; this is a common issue that both beginners and veterans have to deal with. Shopify is an amazing platform for eCommerce and guiding your visitors on their journey to becoming customers. Here are a few simple ways to fine-tune your website to make sure you are making the right impression on all your visitors with the goal of converting them into customers.

Integrate Customer Reviews

Customer reviews are an excellent way to help visitors validate your business and products. Visitors ultimately want to see if they can trust your website and whether or not your products and services are worth their money. Learning these two things on their own is viewed as a risk, and, inherently, an obstacle to conversion.

Shopify allows users to not only integrate reviews but, also, to moderate and choose which ones to put on their site. While it may seem tempting to prune your reviews of the most negative ones, having a product page with flawless 5/5 reviews may seem suspicious. People want to see organic, real reviews that provide the pros and cons. Allowing them to view their concerns externalized on your product pages helps to make the decision much easier.

Seeing that your business welcomes and showcases reviews gives customers the peace of mind they are dealing with a transparent company. Additionally, integrating reviews into your product pages will bring your reviews to search engines.

A study by Bazaarvoice found that, by adding customer reviews, Figleaves.com was able to boost conversions by 35% compared to pages without customer reviews. When it comes to collecting your reviews, you should encourage shoppers to do so organically. If the reviews don’t come trickling in, you could follow up to see how they liked the product and encourage them to leave an honest review.

Emphasize Your Site’s Copy

Your site’s copy primarily refers to the text it contains. Specifically, for eCommerce and conversion oriented sites, copywriting is the content on your various web pages aimed at eliciting an action or providing a visitor enough information about your business to make their next decision.

What trips up many business owners is they underestimate the copywriting dilemma: having to be descriptive enough of your business but in succinct to-the-point content. Many merchants will try to explain everything about their business and end up creating a gigantic chunk of text that won’t provide any value to readers who will likely only briefly skim over it.

Every word in your copy matters. Additionally, your copy must match your audience and communicate the value and benefits of your service or products. If your copy wanders toward being rambling, you could be missing out on traffic that gets bored or confused.

Simply put, good copy will lead to more sales and bad copy will confuse or turn away purchase-ready traffic. Every page on your site should be written in a way that gives the most amount of valuable information relevant to that point in the buyer’s journey. Everything from your lead pages down to your individual product page descriptions should be made a point of pride for your site.

Showcase High-Quality Images

Every portion of your website must reflect high quality, but few sections are as important for conversions as your images. People are visual creatures, and for you to have lackluster stock photos for your products would be a huge miss.

Hiring a professional photographer to take pictures of your products might seem like a big investment up front, yet having a series of beautiful images that separate you from the competition could be just the edge you need to not only create a great impression on your site but, also, to stand out in front in your social media and PPC campaigns.

If using a professional photographer isn’t in your budget, there are some free stock photos sites that are full of high-quality images. While you may not find one that exactly matches your product, there are significant amounts of stock photos that can be used throughout your site and still be relevant to your product lines and services.

Include Product Videos

To take the visual preferences a step further, you could include product videos on your product pages to help visitors better conceptualize what you are offering. While your product pictures are great and have their own functionality, they are limited. Videos do a much better job to help fill in the gaps.

A study by Internet Retailer found StacksAndStacks was able to increase the number of customers adding a product to their cart by 144% after watching a video. Shopify has some great eCommerce product pages video integrations, such as Dynavi, that allow merchants to place their videos so they are easily accessible for curious visitors.

Create a Frequently Asked Questions Page

Your website may be your number one salesperson that works around the clock, but what good are salespeople if they can’t answer any questions?

One of the main reasons customers are hesitant about completing a purchase is they might have unanswered questions.

Do these shirts run small? If I’m a medium, should I order a large?
Is this shampoo made from animal products?
Can I upgrade to the premium version if I buy the basic version today

There might be a handful of questions your customers always ask, and adding a handful of the most popular to your product page is a great way to inspire confidence in your products.

It doesn’t make sense to answer every possible question in your product page descriptions, but it does make sense to provide a link to a FAQ page with dozens of potential questions your customers may ask. This not only removes the barrier preventing people from making a purchase, but it allows them to make an even more informed decision. This means your conversion rate will increase, and your return rate will decrease.

Additionally, you will receive fewer questioning emails and be able to spend the saved time further improving your site conversions.

A study by Optimizely found that Roller Skate Nation was able to increase their conversions by 69% by adding a FAQ section to their product page.

A good way to find which questions should make your FAQ list is by looking at the common questions that end up in your inbox, asking your customers if they have any questions, or coming up with a handful of questions you anticipate will come up in the future.

Use Customer Live Chat

Providing your customers with the ability to get live recommendations and answers to their questions is an easy way to add a useful element to your Shopify site to boost conversions.

Shopify is loaded with apps such as Tidio that allow visitors to connect with a live human being who can assist them with any questions they may have. Whereas the FAQ page provides a static page for popular questions, the customer live chat can be used for personalized recommendations that would otherwise be relegated to an email contact form. The customer live chat reduces the amount of time spent between interactions and can help visitors make a decision while engaged and on your site.

A study by Forrester found that Wells Fargo was able to spur a double-digit increase in conversions by adding a live chat functionality to their website. This live chat not only allows your visitors to make better, more informed decisions, it also helps your business appear more trustworthy. Adding the human element of chat, accessible at any point on your site, helps to make visitors more at ease when getting familiar with your site.

Final Thoughts

When it comes to optimizing your site for conversion, look at it from the perspective of one of your shoppers. It might even be helpful to ask a friend to navigate your site while you watch their actions over their shoulder. This will help you get out of your head and add some objectivity to your site’s conversion process. This feedback can be exceptionally critical to figuring out which steps need to be clearer and which steps could be removed altogether.

If you want to focus on conversion optimization on a larger scale, you should A/B test different variations of updates to your copy and processes to see which ultimately work best, and then continue to iterate from there.

Boosting conversions on your site isn’t a one-time project. It’s an organic process that continuously evolves, stemming from iterations you make based on real world results.


Ronald Dod is a partner and CEO of Visiture, LLC. After founding Grey Umbrella Marketing, an internet marketing agency which focuses on Search Engine Optimization for eCommerce businesses, he merged with Visiture to create a full service search marketing offering for eCommerce businesses. His passion is helping eCommerce business owners and marketing professionals navigate the search marketing landscape and use data to make more effective decisions to drive new traffic and conversions. He holds a Masters in the Science of Marketing from Florida State University and is certified in Google Adwords & Analytics.


[Shopify Drive] Which Key Metrics Matter

by Kurt Elster

Adam Owens says, "It would be an interesting show topic to discuss averages. I have a hard time knowing where I stand on some key metrics… finding what to expect and knowing if what I am doing is working well (compared to the industry)"

[Shopify Drive] If you build it they won't come…

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Tony Mantz emailed me to say, "Landing pages befuddle me, what they are supposed to do and or look like?"

How Negotiations Can Power Your Content Marketing Campaign

by Kurt Elster

This is a guest post by Nick Rojas. Freelance Writer, Californian, Traveler, Loving Husband. Fan of Oxford Commas and cursive.

What goes into a good content marketing campaign? It’s right in the name - content and marketing. A great content marketing campaign fuses both elements together to create informative content while simultaneously selling a product or service. It is a little bit of “give” to the customer, sort of a bonus for visiting your site over your competitor's. The right content marketing can make or break a sale, so you want to best content you can have.

Truly awesome content marketing negotiates with the customer right in the content. It says everything you would want them to know if you were discussing the transaction face-to-face. In fact, if your content is good enough, it can make a negotiation for you. This is the marketing end of a content marketing campaign. Putting your negotiation skills to work in your content can power your marketing campaign to new heights!

What is Content Marketing?

To see that comes up when “content marketing” is searched online, one would think this was a mysterious and arcane concept that Merlin came up with, standing over a bubbling cauldron. However, content marketing is really simple - it is creating articles, blogs, or video with information relevant to your product. For example, if your product is camping gear, you might have content on your site about campsite safety, camping recipes, or even first aid tips for campers and outdoorsmen. A yoga studio might feature articles about where to shop for yoga clothes or what poses are best to achieve certain goals. Quality content is important, but there’s more to it - it has to be engaging, and that’s where your negotiation skills come in.

Writing Awesome Content

Outlining and producing good content is a combination of lots of factors. You need to know your topic, but you also need to know about things related to your topic. The more informative your site, the more opportunities you have to work in some negotiating tricks, like giving the customer information they want. However, it’s even more than that! First, you need to make sure that your content is available to readers in every platform, especially since more people are using mobile devices to access information nowadays. Another important thing to do is to make sure your content is engaging, that visitors to your site are going to want to read it, is also extremely important. As handy as good authoritative links and solid facts might be, they have to be presented in a way that is enjoyable for the reader. You want them to want to read your content, and if they’re bored by it, that will turn them off, no matter how good your facts are. If you don’t think you can write content like this, consider employing a writer or writing service to create or edit the content for you.

Communicating to the Customer

In a negotiation, there are certain things you want to communicate without actually saying them - that you have practical knowledge, confidence, and the authority to negotiate. While content marketing might not involve haggling over prices, in effect your content is making your sales pitch and laying out your side of the negotiation. Effective communication, a grasp of what the customers want, and authoritative knowledge all should be conveyed in your marketing. These are tools you would take into a face-to-face negotiation, so using them in your marketing should be second nature!

Many people look things up online with the intent of learning something about them. Short articles of informative content from companies with relevant authority get referred to over and over again because they’re informative and interesting. Building up authority with content can be the best negotiating tool of all when it comes to content marketing, especially if you’re putting your negotiation skills to work all over the rest of the content!

9 Easy Ways to Increase Your Conversion Rate [Infographic]

by Kurt Elster

This is a guest post from Sarah Smith at letsstartbloggingonline.com

Are you tired of getting huge traffic to your website, but still unable to convert it into sales? The main reason why you want them to visit your site is because you want them to buy something from you. This is just like opening a store in a mall. People keep looking at the items you sell, but none of them actually buys something from you.  

This does not have to happen though if you have the best techniques to pull them closer. The first thing you need to do is to evaluate your advertising techniques. What have you been doing wrong? Is it the website design itself? Is it the kind of adverting tools you use? By understanding what went wrong, it would be easier for you to find out how you can improve.

You also need to understand that this is a process. You just can’t expect people to visit your site today and buy from you the next day. They need to be lured. It is the same with regular stores. You have to talk them into buying the products you offer before they actually get one.

This means you need to be patient. You have to wait until you finally convince them to buy what you offer, but also work hard to pull them in. Sometimes, they are already on the brink of buying from you, but they still need a bit more push. Once you have given them a reason to really buy your products or services, they will surely do it.

If you need more help, below is an infographic that presents the best possible ways to increase your conversion rate. Use these tips to make your business more popular. Little by little, you will see how it can boost your business.

9 Easy Ways To Increase Your Conversion Rate (HowSBO)

Startup Culture is Toxic

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I was talking to my friend Ross Beyeler, a fellow Shopify Plus Expert, over at Growth Spark last week.

I was venting to him about how ridiculous startup culture is. How sick it is that entrepreneur sometimes fetishizes the worst parts of being an entrepreneur.

In this 3-minute video, I offer my contrarian view on owning a business:

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Optimize your theme's image assets in five minutes.

The 3 Keys to Building a Team

by Kurt Elster

Jonathan Kennedy asked me a great question in The Unofficial Shopify Podcast Facebook group:

"How do you motivate team members & staff, and how do you keep them motivated for the long term?"

In this Sunday Drive video, I explore the three keys to building a team.

"How do I scale my Shopify store?"

by Kurt Elster

Jim Hudson asks, "I'm profitable. I have my email automations set up. I'm converting well. Now, how can I go large? Scale up! Do you recommend focusing on content marketing? Give away as much valuable stuff as possible?"

Learn the secrets of the world's most successful Shopify Entrepreneurs:

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