With eCommerce, there is a lot of data that can give you data paralysis, a lot of opportunities and a lot of ways to get sidetracked into focusing on things that may not provide the biggest growth opportunity.

Understanding what your main KPIs are and using the data that matters to make decisions is key to ensuring you are focusing on the right things. 

This session is one that has brought us back on our feet. A true knowledge nugget you need to hear!

Who is Jeff Loquist?

Jeff Loquist is the Director of Optimization of the SiteTuners. He is a seasoned digital marketer and e-commerce professional with more than 15 years of experience designing, implementing and optimizing strategies to drive profitable revenue growth across multiple channels.

He has a strong background in PPC and SEO, as well as social media and on-site experience which helped give him a holistic view of how people find their way to a website and what they do once they get there to help turn visitors into customers.

After several years in the United States Marine Corps, Jeff started his career as a copywriter and grew his knowledge in the trenches and through the ranks to SEM manager, Director of SEM, and Director of Marketing for a major online retailer.

Key takeaways from this episode

Tips on how to keep your customers during COVID-19

It comes down to customer experience and how you are interacting and staying connected with your customers. It’s actually much easier for people to shop online and it is to get out of their house, go to a store, unless somebody needs something right away, like that minute.

Why wouldn’t you shop online? I think a lot of people have seen that during this pandemic. People that were afraid to shop online or they’re hesitant or they thought, “Well, I want to see it and touch it in person.” I’m starting to see that they don’t do that anymore. 

As long as a company can continue to really excite their existing customers and even future customers, they can provide what still feels like a personalized experience. People want that! We’re human beings, right? We’re social creatures we want to be cared about and I think that’s a lot of it. So if we can show our customers that we care about them and that we are going to be there for them to answer their questions even if it’s through chat or email, they still want to know they’re dealing with real people. 

If we can maintain that in e-commerce and that experience for people, those are the companies that are going to shine. The ones that only care about money or only care about getting that sale and then they just forget about the people after that, those are the ones that are going to fail. 

How to monitor the customer experience

There are a few different tools. Before we get into the actual feedback part, you can tell a lot if you can use a heat mapping tool, especially one that includes a video: you can see people interacting with your website, where they’re going, what they’re doing. You get a lot of feedback from that. You see if you got a high bounce rate on a page or something like that. You can go in and find out if they are trying to click on something or are getting lost. That’s step one, but after that, you really understand what that experience is.

I’m a big fan of surveys, whether it’s an exit survey or post-purchase survey because you really need both of those. If everybody did a post-purchase survey and that’s all you ever did on people, you may get sidetracked into thinking that everybody loves us because if your post-purchase experience is great, then you’re going to get a lot of positive feedback. But if you’re not asking those people who are just leaving without buying anything why are they leaving, you are missing out a lot. 

You really need to interact with those people through surveys, even follow up phone calls. Also, if you can do it – it may be a little more difficult now in the post-COVID world that we’re in – actually have people come in and sit down and watch them interact with their website.

The key to optimizing your eCommerce: prioritization

You’re always going to have a million things on your plate whether you’re a one-person company or you have 100 employees. There’s always going to be too much to do. The thing that you need to figure out is that you have to prioritize.

Many priorities are going to be different for everybody. But when it comes down to it, you need to worry about:

  • Are we getting enough people to our website?
  • What is happening when those people come to our website?
  • How are we treating them once they purchase or after they leave?

If you are having problems in a certain area, that’s probably an area you need to focus on now. You need to figure out what it is. And it can be overwhelming. It can be hugely overwhelming whether you’re looking at it like data points or you’re just looking at it more holistically, we’re talking about:

  • Do I worry about customer retention?
  • Do I worry about new incoming traffic?
  • Do I worry about getting enough reviews?

The first thing you need to do is figure out what KPIs are the most important for your business. Because if you don’t understand that, then you’re not going to make the right decisions. You’re going to get into Google Analytics or Adobe Analytics and you’re going to end up in data paralysis. You’re just not going to know what to do.

For most e-commerce websites, it’s going to come down to:

  • How much traffic am I getting?
  • What’s my bounce rate?
  • What’s my conversion rate and my average order value or revenue?

Then you can look at your ROI, our return on ad spend (ROAS) or other such metrics.

One thing people forget about and they don’t think about very often is lifetime value. I think that’s where you need to find a system that allows you to see that throughout time. You’re probably not going to find that Google Analytics – I know they’re trying to get that stuff in there – but you probably just need to find something that allows you to see that.

If a lot of your stuff is done and you can look at your customer data and figure out who your most important customers are, so who the people that keep coming back are, who the people that keep buying are (and they buy big).

Once you’ve got that figured out, then you can figure out what your problem is: sales are down or our sales are slow or we’re not getting well. Is it because you’re not getting enough traffic? If you’re running a 12 percent conversion rate, it’s probably not that.

Look at your traffic. Where are we not getting enough traffic? Do we need to work on our search engine optimization programs? Do we need to focus on getting more social traffic or paid search? Or, if you’re getting a lot of traffic like 20 thousand visits a day on the e-commerce site, but your conversion rate is 0.23, let’s start there.

We’re meeting next week Ryan Boonstra, the Account Executive from Sezzle. The topic of the day will be The Acceleration of Buy Now, Pay Later Solutions.

Stay tuned for this exciting topic next Thursday!