7 handy tips on how to boost your ecommerce business

So you run an ecommerce site, and want to boost your takings? Well of course you do. Fortunately, we’ve got some advice on hand to help you do just that, taking in topics from product descriptions through to customer feedback and ensuring you have proper policies in place.

Let’s get straight on and dive into the tips…

Let customers contact you: This might seem obvious, but it’s imperative that your contact details aren’t tucked away somewhere. Make your site's contact information – street address, email address, and phone number – are all easily accessible through a "Contact Us" link. Doing so will inspire confidence in both current and prospective clients. Would you buy from a company which seemed like it didn’t want to give any details about its real life whereabouts or contact number?

Enlarge product descriptions: Give the customer as much information as you can about the features, capabilities, and limitations of your products, whether there are different configurations, and how they compare with other products. A mere product number doesn't hack it.

See what your customers say: Google your company name or website and see what feedback you turn up. Remember, this is exactly what potential buyers will do if they’re cautiously weighing up a purchase. If you come across any negative feedback, make sure you respond to it, and make things right.

Pretty pictures sell products: Adding plenty of product photos makes a site appealing. First off, get a good photographer to shoot them. Then later, in a program like Photoshop (or a freebie alternative – see our 5 best free photo editing apps), you can optimise size, contrast, and brightness, and minimise file size by saving as JPEGs. Keep images small to prevent pages from taking forever to load, but link to larger and better quality versions people can click on if they want to see more.

Keep in touch with customers: Collect email addresses from customers who wish to subscribe to newsletters and/or other mailings. You can do this by adding a form to your site or providing a link to a separate subscription page.

Create a privacy policy: Your ecommerce site should have a privacy policy detailing what you will – and won't – do with customer information. Examine the policies of major retail websites you visit to see what they include if you’re not sure about what to do in this area. Also, while we’re on the subject of policies, remember that your returns policy is another area you need to spend time honing – make sure it’s perfectly clear to customers, to avoid spats and potential bad feedback post-purchase.

Recommend products: Provide a list of recommended products and things "other customers also bought" with each item. You can do it in your database by connecting products based on customers' actual purchases. This is, of course, one of Amazon’s favourite tricks – enough said.

Also, you should take a look at our feature on why you should give your SMB ecommerce website the human touch.