How to Increase your Ecommerce Conversion Rate during COVID-19


The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way we used to live. Recent studies on consumer habits during Coronavirus back me up on that. People’s demands have changed. Their purchases now focus on their practical needs – personal protective equipment, medical supplies, household products, food, and personal care.

These trends impact the global economy, including ecommerce businesses. While some ecommerce companies have been struggling with the dropping conversion rates since the outbreak of the pandemic, others are even forced to create virtual lines to limit the number of shoppers. This, of course, depends on your niche and the type of products you sell.

This article will provide you with a few practical tips on how to improve your conversion rate during COVID-19.

Ecommerce Conversion Rate

Reduce Shipping Costs

For ecommerce businesses, offering free shipping is one of the most effective ways to reduce your shopping cart abandonment rates and help customers make purchasing decisions faster. Sure, it is important to use this technique strategically:

  • Limit your free delivery – this way you will add urgency to your marketing tactics and trigger customers’ FOMO.
  • Encourage users to buy two or more items to earn free shipping.
  • Offer discount codes to loyal customers for free shipping.
  • Provide free shipping on a minimum order amount.

Upsell Customers Strategically

During the Coronavirus pandemic, product upselling may be one of your major revenue streams. Namely, did you know that only 5-30% of company revenue comes from your initial sales? On the other hand, between 70-95% of revenue originates from product renewals and upsells.

The idea behind offering upsells is simple – you encourage a customer to upgrade the product they already bought or purchase a more expensive item. For example, if a customer wants to buy a bluetooth speaker, why don’t you recommend a similar item with better sound quality, sleek design, and extended battery life for just $20 more?

Sure, creating annoying popups and displaying them everywhere will not cut it. If a customer has just landed on your website, they will not be interested in your upsell offers. Or, if they want to purchase a $50 item, they will probably ignore a popup promoting a $200 product.

In other words, your upsell offers should be highly personalized and relevant. That is when you should consider getting an upsell app that supports your ecommerce platform. For example, if you are running a Shopify store, you should install a Shopify upsell app to help you create and personalize in-cart upsell offers.

You could also follow Amazon’s lead – the ecommerce giant provides upsell recommendations below the product a user is viewing.

Extend your Returns Policy

Amazon, BestBuy, Monsoon, Adidas, and eBay are just some of the numerous brands that decided to extend their returns policies to appeal to customers during the Coronavirus lockdown. Given your courier services are affected by Government restrictions, extending your online returns policy is a logical step to take.

This way, you will support customers and provide them with stability during these troubling times. Most importantly, this is an opportunity for you to build trust with them and convert them into paying customers faster. Knowing that they will have more time to return unwanted items, they will be more likely to purchase from you.

Sure, do not forget to update the Returns Policy page on your website and inform your customers about the update via social networks and email.

Be Honest about your Delivery Times

Over 74% of consumers say that late deliveries affect their satisfaction with brands, while half of them believe that a company is responsible for the delay. As Coronavirus may impact your inventory management and delivery services, you need to focus on customer satisfaction and building transparent relationships with them:

  • Provide real-time customer support.
  • Inform customers about estimated delivery times during Coronavirus.
  • Let customers track their packages.
  • Inform customers about any shipping delays.
  • Provide refunds for late deliveries.

Send Abandoned Cart Emails

Stats say that over 75% of buyers abandon their shopping carts. During the Coronavirus, this figure may be even higher, since people want to save up and spend their cash reasonably.

However, this should not discourage you. Just because a shopper left their cart does not mean the sale is gone forever. Sending an abandonment cart email can help you retarget your customers and inspire them to buy from you. Back in 2014, Salesforce did a comprehensive research study and found that 60% of buyers returned to their shopping carts after receiving a personalized abandoned cart email.

Their name is self-explanatory – abandoned cart emails are automated emails sent to customers that added a product to the shopping cart without finalizing the purchase. While the abovementioned statistics show that sending this type of emails can be super-effective, you will first need to optimize your abandoned cart emails:

  • Write catchy, original, and informative subject lines.
  • Personalize your email copy. Engage your customers, inform them, and persuade them to come back and make a purchase.
  • Include fun, high-quality photos.
  • Add a clear and convincing CTA.

Monitor and Improve your Website Speed

Apart from being one of Google’s most critical ranking factors, website speed is also a major UX factor. Research says that even 100-millisecond delays may harm customer engagement and conversions, while a two-second delay may enhance your bounce rates by worrying 103%.

That is why you should monitor your website speed regularly. For starters, it would be enough to carry out a simple page speed test to learn more about the performance of your pages and get actionable tips on how to optimize them.

If your pages are slower than you expected, there are many simple ways to improve them, such as cleaning your code, compressing images, reducing redirects, investing in a CDN, or upgrading your hosting plan.

Over to You

Ever since the outbreak of COVID-19, the future of small business landscape lingers in limbo. Experts warn that 7.5 million businesses are in danger of closing due to the pandemic.

To see through these harsh times, you need to adapt fast to the new environment. Stay on top of your changing market demands and listen to your customers. Review your delivery and returns policies. Keep track of your inventory and shipping practices and communicate openly to eliminate uncertainty and frustration. Most importantly, rely on your web analytics tools to monitor your ecommerce site’s performance and identify and eliminate any problems.

What tactics do you use to improve conversions during Coronavirus? We are listening!