INCOMING! – Super totally not real stat that is really engaging…
92.565985% of ecom stores lose money because of these 15 points….
OK it’s probably more like 93% but you get the point.
DUH! DUH! DUH! daaaa! ?
Wilak’s team of e-com engineers are on the job to make sure you don’t have to keep bailing yourself out with a bucket like our mate Jack…..
Pillar 1 – Paid Traffic
1. You have UTMs/tracking, EVERYWHERE
UTMs are little snippets of text that help you collect valuable data for your business.
Even if you’re not sure how to use that data, you know that collecting it is vital for future-you or future business partners to leverage.
What’s the purpose of UTMs?
Simply put, they pass extra data by adding some small codes to your links.
An example of this is getting Facebook Ads to send the ad placement through to Google Analytics.
UTMs aren’t perfect. There are plenty of reasons they can break or simply not load. However, the majority of your paid traffic will carry your UTMs.
So, without them, you’re missing out on loads of data to make smarter decisions & make more money – without spending more.
2. You cross-reference your ad platforms’ results against each other – and have a healthy dose of scepticism for each of them.
What to do:
Compare your results in each ad platform (just on a notepad), to your eCommerce store.
Here’s an example, who do you trust?
Facebook Ads claims 50 sales and $10,000 in revenue
Google Ads claims 50 sales and $10,000 in revenue
Shopify shows 75 sales and $15,000 in revenue
Don’t trust Facebook or Google in this instance.
Look at various different sources to paint a clearer picture of what’s actually involved in the customer journey.
Those sources include Shopify, Facebook Ads reporting, Google Ads reporting, Google Analytics and other third-party tools like TripleWhale or Northbeam.
We know there’s no such thing as “the truth” when it comes to mapping out customer journeys, but we avoid falling for platform bias by checking as many sources as we can & making educated guesses.
3. You deeply understand the transformation your business provides to your customers.
We’re selling the transformation – not the object/service. Put another way, you’re selling how it improves the customers’ lives.
Instead of “organic cotton”, you craft phrases like “help leave a better world for your bub with buttery-soft cotton, sustainably & organically grown to reduce our carbon footprint.”
Instead of “meals cooked & delivered to you”, you say “recapture family time this week, with wholesome ready-to-eat meals cooked to perfection and delivered to your doorstep”.
You gather information from your customers through Customer Surveys, Reviews or even through your business’ community platform (Facebook Groups, Discord, etc), and then execute on that vital feedback.
4. You don’t try to constantly outsmart the machine
You’re aware of the automation-based future of digital marketing, and instead of wrestling against it – you embrace it.
You lean into automation so you can spend more time on tasks that the machines cannot do – amazing customer service, creating unique & compelling offers, and guiding the machines in the right direction.
An example of helping guide automation is adding detailed information to your products (and we’ll talk more about this below).
Long gone are the days of extremely labour-intensive paid traffic – now there is only highly labour-intensive paid traffic.
5. You have Conversion Tracking best practices (Conversions APIs & Enhanced Conversions) enabled.
Tracking is a mess in this day and age, but you’re doing what you can by following best practices from each platform.
Facebook Ads: That’s the Conversions API – It’s incredibly simple to set up with Shopify, just make sure the privacy settings are turned to “Maximum”. Other platforms have
Google Ads: That’s Enhanced Conversions – This one is a little trickier for the average user, but following Google’s instructions within Google Ads should get you there. Or you can ask for help
Pillar 2 – Email & SMS
6. You consistently clean your email list
You combat the ever-growing costs of email marketing by making sure to “Clean Your List” on a regular basis.
This means that you’re taking users who don’t engage with your emails or SMS efforts, and suppressing them – which reduces their impact on your overall email marketing bill.
Routinely suppressing contacts from your database makes sure your:
Deliverability stays high (so you don’t go to spam).
Your bill stays low (so you can invest that money elsewhere).
Customers don’t get annoyed (and find somewhere to leave a negative review).
7. Your Signup Form converts more than 5% of people who see it.
A good Signup Form should convert ~5% of people who see it. A superb form will convert 10%+
The most common mistakes we see are:
Showing your popup too soon.
People don’t know you within the first 3 seconds of landing on your site. Offering them 10% off what they don’t know isn’t a good incentive or user experience.
Not testing the design on mobile & desktop.
These users are very different from each other. The perfect mobile signup form may not come across well on desktop.
Not offering a good trade
“Give us your first name, last name, date of birth, and phone number & we’ll keep you in the loop for any sale we might have!” is a terrible trade for the user.
“Want a free pair of socks with any shoe purchase? If yes, add your best email and we’ll send you the code! Plus, we’ll donate $1 for every pair of socks to help reforestation.” is a little better – they get something worthwhile in return.
A great Signup Form is a key to a strong foundation for any eCommerce business.
8. Your Signup Lists are set to single-opt in
If you have an amazing Signup Form, but if the List itself requires the customer to confirm their subscription by going to their inbox – you’re going to miss out on a tonne of revenue (unless you’re doing it strategically).
It is great to send users to confirm & open their emails though. It gives your business a strong open rate & helps your deliverability. However this should always be done intentionally, rather than having the default option enabled and not knowing!
How to check:
Klaviyo > Lists/Segments > Signup Form List (usually “Newsletter”) > Settings > Select: “Single-Opt In”
You A/B test everything you can
Almost everything in Klaviyo can be tested. Almost nothing ever is.
Test different language in your headlines, subject lines, and ad copy.
Test different delay times & types in your automatic flows.
Test different Signup Form types (a Popup vs a Flyout).
Test different segmentation strategies
Every Campaign you send, every Flow you build, and every Signup Form you create is an opportunity to learn & make more revenue.
9. You actively check your performance benchmarks
Within our favourite email platform, Klaviyo, you’re given access to Benchmarks. These tell you how your email marketing is performing, compared to other businesses in your industry.
Each month, you should regularly check in on where your benchmarks sit to make sure you’re patching any potential holes in your digital marketing bucket.
Fixing a struggling Spam Complaint Rate or Unsubscribe Rate before it gets out of hand can save your email marketing’s digital life. Prevention is much prettier than Repair.
Pillar 3 – Website
10. Your website passes “The Mum Test”.
If you gave your Mum your phone, with your website open, let her look at it for 5 seconds, then asked her to tell you what the website does – would she give you an answer you like?
If your website isn’t clear enough for Homer Simpson, it’s not clear enough for the majority of users. Clarity trumps Clever, every day of the week.
Users are smart, but they’re looking for the lowest amount of friction possible when they’re browsing online – their time is valuable and they don’t want it wasted trying to find what they want to buy.
Focus on clear messaging, easy navigation & removing as much clutter and friction as possible.
11. You don’t use “Dark Signals” on your website
Dark Signals are things like “This person recently bought” apps or adding “No thanks, I don’t want to save & like paying full price” text on your signup forms.
All of these things build distrust of the brand. Users know how to spot them, and then get a sour taste in their mouths when they experience them.
If you need to deploy tricks & tactics to get your users to convert, then there are other more important problems to deal with.
12. You put the User before your Brand
You don’t plaster the forefront of your website with content like “About Us” or “Our Cause” or “Our Mission”.
When a user lands on your site, they want to know: “Does this website solve my problem/need?” and “How easily can they solve it?”.
This is where users have been trained to look from years and years of browsing habits.
Blend your business’ personality & quirks within the natural customer experience.
Use the chisel, not the sledgehammer.
13. You know how to find gaps in your conversion rate
Your conversion rate is the final gatekeeper to generating sales.
It doesn’t matter if you’re amazing at TikTok Organic or if you’re a Google Ads Wizard, if your conversion rate is poor – you’re giving yourself a deadly bottleneck.
How do you know what a good conversion rate is? There is no such thing – each store is different. Even within the same industry!
That’s why copying other brands don’t work here. This is a deadly trap businesses fall into all the time.
A good conversion rate is any conversation rate that’s improving over time.
At a very basic level, here are the core stages of your Conversion Rate: [Added To Cart] > [Initiated Checkout] > [Completed Checkout].
Between each of these stages, you can expect roughly ~50% of users to drop off. If 100 people [Added To Cart], you expect 50 people to [Initiate Checkout].
If you notice a large drop-off between any of these stages, you’ve just identified a source of friction for your customers. Then it’s time to investigate.
14. You add vital information to the back end of your store
The most common mistake we see is Shopify owners not adding information to their products. The biggest culprit is “Product Type” on the product page.
Google has a complete list of all the different types of products it recognises – and there is a nice little text box in Shopify, on each product, for this information to be added.
If you don’t do this Google will guess, to its best ability, what that specific product is. And it’s often wrong.
We’ve seen businesses spend hundreds of dollars on Google Ads for a product that was showing up for “Books” searches when the product was actually a cooking ingredient.
15. You’re collecting data & feedback before making any website changes.
You never make website changes, without first checking with your customers and your data.
Unfortunately, this is one of the most common mistakes eCommerce businesses make. Relying on intuition can cripple the business’ experience for its users.
You always start with a goal in mind (increase the add-to-cart rate), consult the data & users (heatmaps & surveys), change one thing at a time, and measure the results. Rinse & repeat.