Those with online stores in Australia… I see a lot of posts in various groups from owners of online/e-commerce stores questioning why they are not making sales through their websites. Approaching this purely from a consumer’s perspective there are a few things I notice missing at a lot of these sites (and, admittedly I am perhaps a little pickier than others).

Online shopping requires trust. If I am going to buy online (which I do often) I need to know that I can trust the business I am buying from. I’m sure we have all shopped at the same sites repeatedly because we trust them. It’s hard to compete with that, but there are some things that newer online operators can include that helps build that trust for a consumer. For me this means at least the following things:

  • You’ve registered your business/company name with ASIC and I can locate that easily (if you’ve not registered a business name or company… I question how genuine your business is).
  • Shipping information (fees, time frames etc).
  • Refunds/returns policy that complies with the Australian laws. If you don’t have a refunds/returns policy – or worse, one that doesn’t comply with the legal requirements, this does not (to me) convey trust in purchasing from your site.
  • Privacy Policy (if you want customers to subscribe to a newsletter or give you their credit card information, we want to know what you’re doing with that information).
  • Terms & conditions at your website.
  • Contact information – other than a web form. If something goes wrong with my order I want to know I can get in touch quickly/easily rather than rely on a web form that may or may not be seen and replied to. For me personally, contact button should be top of the page, not hidden in a footer.
  • About Us – I enjoy supporting local, new and smaller businesses for all sorts of things I buy. I want to see some actual ‘about’ information from those that fall into these categories. If you’re local, or new, or small – own it as consumers will relate to your story and you as a person. I’d rather read about the journey of a small/local operator than clicking on an About Us button that simply tells me what your product is. If I have found your website it means I am interested in the product already – clicking About Us should tell me about the business, not the product.

[…] I do hope this helps some of you that have posted, or wanted to, questioning ‘why’ your web traffic is not converting. As I said, this is purely my consumer’s perspective – not marketing, not SEO, not advertising… a first impression happens only once. If your site doesn’t tell a consumer that you and your business are trustworthy and genuine, how many people will visit again once it does convey those messages?

This was originally written by Jacqui Pryor and has been re-posted with permission.

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