It is established that if you want to ensure that a good portion of people visiting your website does not leave the purchasing process midway, you need to provide a decent shopping experience to the users, amongst other things. You spent thousands on building your website, but what good is any of this if you don’t make sales. Traffic alone won’t cut it. We all know that, don’t we?
Even as businesses strive daily to create a lasting impression on their visitors, many of these efforts go in vain. If you are sailing in the same boat, know this: conversions do not come easy. Leads are not easy to find, especially when the world is overcrowded with e-Commerce options. Let’s find out what’s causing people to leave your e-Commerce website without buying.
Your Content Structure Is Bad
It’s not always about finding the right words to say. It’s also about structuring your content in the right places. Do not distribute content across too many pages, if it can all come under the same page. If your visitors are leaving without converting, maybe they are not reading the important stuff just where they should. Statistics reveal that 50% of sales are lost when potential consumers do not find what they are looking for. When a piece of content can be placed on the first page, do not shift it to the inner pages.
Costly or Slow Shipping
When most of your competitors are providing free shipping, if you charge high prices for shipping, there is a chance that you will lose the customer when he or she becomes aware of the extra cost. Also, a user indulging in an impulse buy may choose not to buy a product if you are unable to deliver it fast.
Long, Confusing and Annoying Checkout Process
Almost 30% of shoppers reported abandoning their carts because the checkout process was too complicated, so it’s a good idea to walk through your website on a regular basis to test its usability. Sit down with a friend or a potential customer and watch them try to complete a transaction on your website.
- Try to reduce the number of pages a customer has to navigate to complete a purchase.
- To speed up the process, only require customers to provide essential information to process the order, and make all other fields optional.
- Make sure that return policies, your contact information, and other important details are easy to find.
The checkout process has to be simple and easy. If the users need to fill lots of information and if the forms are lengthy, many users may get turned off. Also, checkout spread over pages without clear progress indicators can be a major annoyance to shoppers. Similarly, if any charges are sneaked in during the final stage of the checkout, the user may feel cheated and abandon the cart right there.
Lengthy Payment Security Processes
One of the biggest pains in online shopping is jumping through the hoops of payment processing. Not only does the user need to enter the CC/DC or other payment-related information, but he or she may also need to enter a One-Time-Password to validate the transaction. If the process breaks (page crashed or incorrect information) and the customer needs to go through the entire cycle again, there is a chance that you will be left facing an abandoned cart.
No Sign of Customer Support
Although most online shoppers don’t need the help of some employees from the e-commerce store, there are times when chat or call support can be the difference between a sale and no sale. Ecommerce sites that do not offer customer support stand to lose the custom of dithering, borderline buyers.
Lack of Proper Navigation
An e-commerce store that doesn’t have intuitive navigation makes it impossible for the user to find what they are looking for. A ‘search’ button can help the user out in this situation, but if these features are not functioning smoothly, or if they do not exist, it becomes difficult for the users to locate their desired items. In this case, they will bid your store adieu.
Lack of Security
While more people around the world are opening their minds to paying and buying online, the fear of getting cheated out of their hard-earned money lurks at the back of online shoppers’ minds. If the website ‘looks’ shady, or if the users don’t find your e-commerce store trustworthy, there is a good chance that they will leave without buying anything.
- Ensure SSL certificates and safety logos are visible.
- Show a list of the different payment methods you accept to give your checkout a professional look.
- Include customer testimonials and reviews throughout your website.
- Remember, your checkout should always run on HTTPS when you’re taking sensitive information like payment details. If people don’t see that little padlock, then they’ll probably run a mile.
No Competitive Pricing, No Market Research
Competitive pricing is one of the most important factors determining if a customer buys from you. Owing to the availability of the internet, it’s now very easy for customers to compare prices and choose from numerous alternative retailers for a particular product.
One study suggests that 36% of online shoppers will leave a site in favour of another if they find the same product at a lower price. It’s important to know your competitors and do adequate research into the market to determine the demand for the products and the lowest price at which you can afford to charge for them.
Not So Social
Having social media accounts can also be a vital factor in enhancing an eCommerce website’s credibility, especially taking this era of social media into consideration. When an eCommerce website has no social media presence or if there is a lack of social media activities, customers don’t feel the enhanced level of trust and connectivity.
5C’s of creditworthiness: What lenders, Investors look for in a business plan
Business owners need to be aware of the criteria lenders and investors use when evaluating the creditworthiness of entrepreneurs seeking financing.
Banks usually are not a new venture’s sole source of capital because a bank’s return is limited by the interest rate it negotiates, but its risk could be the entire amount of the loan if the new business fails. Once a business is operational and has an established financial track record, banks become a regular source of financing.
For this reason, the small business owner needs to be aware of the criteria lenders and investors use when evaluating the creditworthiness of entrepreneurs seeking financing.
Will the business that an entrepreneur actually creates look exactly like the company described in the business plan? Of course, not.
The real value in preparing a business plan is not so much in the finished document itself but in the process it goes through – a process in which the entrepreneur learns how to compete successfully in the marketplace. In addition, a solid plan is essential to raising the capital needed to start a business; lenders and investors demand it.
Lenders and investors refer to these criteria as the five C’s of credit.
1. Capital: A small business must have a stable income base before any lender is willing to grant a loan. Otherwise, the lender would not be making, in effect, a capital investment in the business. Most banks refuse to make loans that are capital investment because the potential for return on the investment is limited strictly on the interest on the loan, and the potential loss would probably exceed the reward. In addition, the most common reasons that banks give for rejecting small business loan applications are undercapitalization or too much debt. Banks expect a small company to have an equity base investment by the owner(s) that will help support the venture during times of financial strain, which are common during the start-up and growth phases of a business. Lenders and investors see capital as a risk-sharing strategy with entrepreneurs.
2. Capacity: A synonym for capital is cash flow. Lenders and investors must be convinced of the firm’s ability to meet its regular financial obligation and to repay loans, and that takes cash. More small businesses fail from lack of cash than from lack of profit. It is possible for a company to be showing a profit and still have no cash – that is, to be bankrupt. Lenders expect small businesses to pass the test of liquidity, especially for short term loans. Potential lenders and investors examine closely a small company’s cash flow position to decide whether it has the capacity necessary to survive until it can sustain itself.
3. Collateral: Collateral includes any asset an entrepreneur pledges to a lender as security for repayment of a loan. If the company defaults on a loan, the lender has the right to sell the collateral and use the proceeds to satisfy the loan. Typically, banks make much unsecured loans (those not backed up by collateral) to business start-ups. Bankers view the entrepreneurs’ willingness to pledge collateral (personal or business assets) as an indication of their dedication to making the venture a success. A sound business plan can improve a banker’s attitude towards venture.
4. Character: Before extending a loan or making an investment in a small business, lenders and investors must be satisfied with an entrepreneur’s character. The evaluation of character frequently is based on intangible factors such as honesty, integrity, competence, polish, determination, intelligence, and ability. Although the qualities judged are abstract, this evaluation plays a critical role in the decision to put money into a business or not.
5. Conditions: The conditions surrounding a funding request also affects an entrepreneur’s chances of receiving financing. Lenders and investors consider factors relating to a business’ operation such as potential growth in the market, competition, location, strength, weakness, opportunities and threats. Another important condition influencing the banks is the shape of the overall economy, including interest rate levels, inflation rate, and demand for money. Although these factors are beyond an entrepreneur’s control, they still are an important component in a banker’s decision.
The higher a smaller business scores on the five C’s, the greater its chances of receiving a loan.
Written by Chukwuma Aguwa
Don’t be fooled by COVID-related scams
Always consult the institution in charge of health-related matters to confirm any fishy information you come across.
The nature of and the manifestation of the Covid-19 disease is such that there’s only a little time available to remedy the situation before it gets chronic. Although the infection begins by exhibiting mild symptoms, if you do nothing in a short time, it could lead to death in a matter of days.
This whole picture has caused many to become desperate about Covid-related issues, launching into panic mode at the sight of any information. As a result, such people are not far away from falling for fraudsters.
With the different kinds of news flying around, you mustn’t be fooled by Covid-related scams.
The Coronavirus threatens the health of millions of people around the world daily, also killing thousands along the way. To curb the spread and remedy the situation, bodies like the CDC, WHO, and every country’s local health organisation like the NCDC, frequently circulate information around communities. However, it has also led to fraudsters taking advantage to provide fake news, and even asking for donations.
Each day, there seems to be a new account or NGO asking for donations into the health sector, and though some are legit, many are just fraudsters posing to take advantage of innocent citizens. So far, numerous complaints about scams have been recorded, especially with people who are looking to support the health cause in any way they can.
Channels used for COVID-related scams
There are three major ways scammers take advantage of the haziness of the situation to dupe people. To start with, they appeal to the emotions of humans, who see the high death toll and suffering. As a result of what is happening, people have been willing to donate funds for medical supplies, isolation centres, and financial compensation for medical workers.
Scammers take advantage of this by posing as charity organisations and solicit for funds. Most times, as soon as their target is met, they clear their footprint without leaving a trace behind.
Another way they scam people is by manufacturing and selling fake or low-quality health products. Everyone wants to get their hands on a cure, or something that can at least protect them from the virus, and scammers are meeting their needs by providing just that.
The World Health Organization currently approves only one vaccine, and any other thing outside it is outrightly fake or just a supplement that will help your body. Currently, only the Pfizer vaccine is clinically tested and approved to work. Be sure to not throw your money in the wind by purchasing some of these fake drugs around.
Lastly, scammers create systems to extract a patient’s personal information, thereby having access to the person’s true identity. It could be in the simple form of opening a registration portal where you supply all your details.
Therefore, only give information to approved bodies and not any random online site that appears legit. These fraudulent individuals can do a lot of damage to your identity. Stay vigilant, only communicate with approved bodies, and always ask questions if you are not sure or suspect foul play.
The place of electronics in COVID-related scams
These fraudsters usually reach out to you through the digital sphere. Hence, watch out for cold calls, text messages, or emails requesting donations to certain bodies. The best way to confirm the legitimacy of such a message is to visit the organisation’s official website in a different browser. Never follow the link in the mail or text directly, as it can be easily embedded with spyware. Therefore, a single click could see them extract all your personal information, including bank details.
Also, please stay away from those who claim to have a cure, and accompany it with testimonies of people who have used it. They are low graders desperate for your money. Vet them by searching online and see what people are saying. In all, always look out for suspicious messages, and opt out if you are sceptical.
In a nutshell, you should not believe any cure, vaccine or supplement that the World Health Organization does not approve of.
The government or legit health institutions do not cold call citizens to request donations or coerce them into making one. If you receive a call out of the blues, chances are it’s a scam, which is why they mostly try to hurry you to donate before you realise it. Always consult the institution in charge of health-related matters to confirm any fishy information you come across.
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