Ecommerce Links: September 2012

Before we jump into the link list, a quick announcement. If you missed it, my webinar with Chris Goward of WiderFunnel E-Commerce Conversion Optimization from Entry to Checkout is available on demand now.

On to the links!

  • The lines between search engine optimization and social media optimization continue to blur. RKG Blog has a fantastic tutorial on how to optimize your metadata for Facebook, Twitter and Google+ schema to ensure shared content from your site appears as you want it in social feed “snippets.”
  • Smashing Magazine’s State of Ecommerce Checkout Design 2012 is a comprehensive look at the top 100 ecommerce sites’ adherence to conversion funnel best practices. Here’s a teaser of some of the findings:

    • The average checkout process consist of 5.08 steps.
    • 24% require account registration.
    • 81% think their newsletter is a must have (opt-out or worse).
    • 41% use address validators.
    • 50% asks for the same information twice.
    • The average top 100 checkouts violate 33% of the checkout usability guidelines.
    • What’s the fold got to do, got to do with it? When it comes to conversion optimization — less than you think. What really matters is… explained in KISSmetrics’ Why the fold is a myth.
    • Speaking of conversion myths, grab a coffee and have your mind blown and your gut feel challenged by Unbounce’s collection of shocking A/B test results.
    • What about the things that ain’t so easy to A/B test, like marketing apps? iTunes, Google Play and Amazon don’t allow for split testing, which forces marketers to make gut-feel decisions on branding, value proposition, screen shots, description copy and price. But there’s a workaround — KISSmetrics reveals the secret of “micro-testing” using free and inexpensive tools in a tutorial that details the process step-by-step. This is a killer strategy for anyone selling digital content within competitive marketplaces.
    • “Choice paralysis” is a conversion killer, and a silent one for sites that can boast a large selection of products, or that use state-of-the-art recommendation engines. Invesp shares ways to combat this foe through design and messaging.

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