customer experience

Lead generation has been at the top of every e-commerce marketing leader’s agenda for many years. For marketing functions specifically, the focus has always been on driving consumers to your website, optimising their journey through the site, and presenting them with the information and offers that make them want to stay there.

Of course, all of this is futile if it doesn’t lead the window shopper to buy.

To achieve this sought-after result, the marketing manager underpins the customer journey with data such as heat maps of where consumers are clicking, their dwell time on critical web pages, and split testing to see what works best for getting a consumer’s attention.

For any marketing campaign, be it sales-focused or awareness-raising, getting a grip on this data is key to success.

However, whilst these metrics are critical, there is another key metric that has long been overlooked. To optimise it, marketers must look beyond the surface of glossy websites and marketing materials to truly optimise the customer experience.

That metric is authorisation rates or the percentage of transactions that successfully pass through the full authorisation process to complete payment.

Put, improving authorisation rates increases revenue, leads to better customer satisfaction, and ultimately improves customer retention and loyalty.

In fact, PayPal research shows that a two per cent increase in approvals could translate into more than a million dollars of previously unrealised revenue.

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Steering clear of cart abandonment

Those in the e-commerce industry know all-too-well that cart abandonment is a huge issue, and it won’t go away or improve without action. Customers who have had a poor experience on your website may go online to share their reviews and to warn other potential customers about their negative experiences.

This can lead to long-term knock-on effects and severely impact the customer base that your team have worked so hard to build. However, all too often, the issue is not solved because its cause is not adequately addressed.

To truly optimise customer conversion rates, marketing managers need to understand the customer’s pain points when making a transaction on their website or app.

To aid this, there are experts and resources out there to help, including insight from PayPal’s specialists that shows why, when a customer journey isn’t smooth from start to finish, with a simple checkout process, consumers almost certainly abandon their cart, head to a competitor, and never come back. After all, today’s consumers are short on time, and their loyalty is hard to keep.

With the PayPal commerce platform, partners and customers can better understand and improve conversion rates on their websites by enabling merchants to optimise every critical stage of processing using PayPal’s unique mix of tools, technology and data to make informed data-driven decisions.

By having access to this actionable data, there is a much greater chance of approval of customer transactions. For many, the impact of poor authorisation rates might not have been a consideration in the past for improving marketing metrics.

However, in today’s competitive e-commerce environment, marketers who take the time to look beyond the surface-level metrics that are so commonplace and fully analyse why those with full carts didn’t complete their transactions can make huge gains and realise success.

Knowing where to look

When looking at the backend of a website and payment platforms and pathways, marketeers should ask some questions: what journey is a customer going on to find themselves at the checkout? Are there too many clicks? Is it too complex?

By working out the answers to these questions and determining what elements of the process need improving, optimised payment authorisation rates will positively ripple through the business, which could be the difference in millions of dollars of profit.

With this information at hand, marketers will no longer be so quick to ignore what has been written off as a seemingly insignificant back-end metric. There has never been a more crucial time to optimise conversion rates. It is no secret that many industries have been shaken up due to the pandemic, but few so much as the e-commerce industry.

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The last 12-months has seen new demographics of consumers shopping online for the first time, and others convert to completing the majority of their shopping online as a more hygienic way to get the goods and services they need.

To gain their slice of this market, merchants need to be nimble and adapt to consumers wants and needs – those that don’t will get left behind.

The solution is simple, and payment platforms such as PayPal offer merchants all the tools they need to optimise conversion rates and capture and grow their slice of the e-commerce pie by ensuring valued customers don’t go to the competition.

This end-to-end payment know-how is all marketeers need to realise success when optimising authorisation rates at the checkout.

To future-proof their careers and strive toward truly optimised metrics, marketing departments must get behind the surface of the data they have at their disposal and start looking at the full customer journey.

There is no doubt that it might seem like a daunting task, but expert support is on hand.

PayPal can support marketing managers by helping them optimise authorisation rates to capture more revenue, increase customer volumes and avoid losing customers to their competition.

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Image credit: photonphoto

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