5 must-haves for a high-converting eCommerce website
If you want to grow your eCommerce business, an effective website is a no-brainer on the list of places you have to start.
But creating a high-converting eCommerce website is easier said than done.
Rather than trying to reinvent the wheel, the best place to start is looking at other successful eCommerce brands. So let’s do just that with a brand that rose to prominence over the past decade with hilarious ads like this one they dropped during the 2021 Super Bowl.
In the past decade, Dr. Squatch has skyrocketed to success in a crowded marketplace of personal care products eclipsing $100M in revenue…that’s a lot of suds!
Much of that success comes from making a great product, but here’s a newsflash: it doesn’t matter how great your product is if nobody knows about it! If you build it, customers will NOT come. You have to get them to come to your business.
Dr. Squatch does that with viral ads, bingeable content, and spot-on marketing.
And their website is a key driver of that marketing success.
So, if your website sales are in the slumps, I’m going to break down the five key elements that make Dr. Squatch’s website so great so you can clean up your ecommerce act. (See what I did there. Clean up?…Dr. Squatch..get it?!?).
Here are 5 must-haves for a high-converting eCommerce website.
1. AN ATTENTION-GRABBING PRODUCT TRANSFORMATION HEADLINE
Fun fact: you only have a few seconds to grab a visitor’s attention, so if your headline doesn’t stick the landing, they’re gone.
How do you do that? With an attention-grabbing product transformation headline.
People don’t buy products and services, they buy better versions of themselves. They buy a transformation and that’s what your headline needs to communicate to get attention.
If Dr. Squatch was just selling non-toxic soaps, they’d be a dime a dozen. They’d be like and sound like every other clean soap brand…and there are plenty of them.
But Dr. Squatch gets it. They don’t just sell soap, they sell soaps that make you feel like a man and smell like a champion. They’re not just selling a product, they’re selling a feeling, an identity, and a transformation.
Read a few reviews from their customers and you’ll see they aren’t just buying soap. They’re buying a transformation. Like this one:
“I have not been disappointed! It is a squatchsome soap that left me feeling like I had just hiked naked up a pine-tree-covered mountain with my pet bear (on his leash, of course).”
It’s funny, it’s clever, but more importantly, they take the mundane – soaps and personal care products – and connect it to something much greater. A transformational identity.
The transformation they communicate is just one piece. It also has to be communicated fast. It’s what I call the 5-second rule. If your visitors can’t answer the following 3 questions in 5 seconds or less, they’re gone.
Here are the questions:
- What do you sell?
- Who’s it for?
- What transformation do they get?
Now run this test through Dr. Squatch’s site:
- What do they sell? Soaps.
- Who’s it for? Men.
- What transformation do they get? They’ll feel like a man and smell like a champion.
That’s a hell of a headline, a hell of a soap…and I want it.
Now run your above-the-fold headline through the same 5-second rule.
2. A BENEFITS STACK
“Why should I buy your product?”
That’s what your customers are asking themselves when they come to your website and they want the information fast. You’ve got to give people a reason to buy your product.
But too many brands sell features, not benefits. Nobody cares about your product features, they only care about the outcomes (the benefits) they get from those features.
Dr. Squatch does this quickly and effectively with their benefits stack section, communicating why their products are better using a simple formula: the top three benefits of their product, an image that complements each benefit, and a descriptive paragraph that adds context.
But, here’s the thing: you can’t just list any old benefits.
You’ve got to make them unique, specific, and memorable. Why’s your product so great? What can you do better than anybody else? Nail that down and repeat it everywhere. As one of my former leaders at Nike used to say, repetition equals reputation.
Now look at your website, what’s your benefits stack section going to have?
To answer it, use the formula:
- Identify the 3 biggest benefits of your product
- Create an image or icon that visually complements your message
- Add a descriptive paragraph that adds context
Pro tip: Limit it to 3. Less is more. The more things you try to say, the less your visitors will remember.
3. AWESOME PRODUCT REVIEWS
The third thing that makes Dr. Squatch’s website so great is its awesome reviews.
They aren’t just hilarious and entertaining, (side note: their reviews are so funny, they dedicate blog posts to them), they highlight what makes their products great.
But what makes their reviews so powerful is the content and how they present it.
Here’s why their reviews are great:
- They highlight what makes their product great
- They show you ways to use the product
- They highlight the outcomes their customers get
- They overcome objections their customers may be thinking about
And look at how they present their reviews.
- 5 stars: The universal signal of proof captures your attention.
- Review headline snippet: You don’t need to read the review, the short phrase says it all.
- Major social proof: 100k people can’t be wrong. Quantify how many you’ve impacted.
For your website: collect and present reviews following the formula Dr.Squatch uses.
Fun fact: You don’t need hundreds of reviews to increase your conversion rates. According to the Spiegel research institute at Northwestern, “the purchase likelihood for a product with five reviews is 270% greater than the purchase likelihood of a product with no reviews.”
So don’t overlook or think you don’t have enough reviews.
Pro tip: automate the product review process so you can continually collect great reviews with apps like Okendo or Growave. What’s great about these is they automate the collection process and allow customers to upload photos which adds legitimacy.
4. A GUIDED PATH TO SALES
Dr. Squatch understands with dozens of products available, it can be overwhelming for customers to find the perfect option.
That’s why they guide their customers to the products they know they’ll want in key sections, like the “What’s New” and “Best Sellers” sections, eliminating any unnecessary steps and making it easy for customers to find and purchase the products they need.
If you make it hard to find the right product, you’ll sell less.
For your website: chart your typical customer purchase paths.
What are your best-selling products and where are they most likely to go based on buying behaviors? Make those products easy to see and easy to get to, and they take the guesswork out of it by guiding customers toward the product.
5. A CLEAR CONSUMER FOCUS
Here’s a common myth I come across all the time with businesses, the belief that their product is meant for everyone.
But as the old saying goes, “A friend to everyone is a friend to none.”
That’s why even brands like Nike that appeal to hundreds of millions of people still get very specific about who their product is for, and more importantly, not for.
Dr. Squatch knows who their customers are: men. Men that want to smell like a man using products without toxic chemicals, and most importantly, don’t smell like their girlfriend’s perfume.
Men are their sharp-point and nobody else.
That focus pays off in a major way. Their brand is fun, energetic, and hyper-relevant to the men they want to attract.
There’s plenty to be done when it comes to creating a high-converting eCommerce website but you don’t have to reinvent the wheel. Take cues from brands that are already knocking it out of the park.
And while many brands get overwhelmed and bogged down by all the tech and options out there, follow these 5 tips and you’ll have a great ecommerce website.
- Don’t sell products, sell transformations.
- Use a 3-benefit stack section to highlight why your product is better.
- Highlight great product reviews.
- Make buying easy by guiding visitors to top products.
- Clearly identify and speak to the customers you want to attract.
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