Brandon Kirkland of Epic Flowers recently demonstrated some amazing features that are included in the Epic Flowers ecommerce websites for florists. All were focussed on a real problem: improving conversion rates on flower shop websites.
Conversion Rate: the percentage of users who take the desired action. If you have sell flowers online the desired action is that the visitor buys flowers, and the conversion rate is the percentage of website visitors who buy flowers on your ecommerce website.
The Epic ecommerce websites already converted very well, in fact they probably converted more efficiently that any other online shopping cart for florists. But there is always room for improvement and Brandon is always looking to make the Epic Flowers websites generate more orders for his florist clients.
It is very difficult work, and not particularly sexy. A better conversion rate might not appear as exciting as a new revenue stream since it’s more about minimizing the sales you don’t get. There is a weird kind of double-negative aspect to it – we’re talking about not losing quite as many sales as would have been lost otherwise. It’s a statistic, and not particularly compelling to read on a feature list.
But it is incredibly important. Even small improvements in ecommerce conversion rates have a profound impact on the online sales and profitability of a flower shop. Remember – each additional conversion means another order at a value at probably $40 - $100.
An improvement in conversion rate of say 1% might not seem like a big deal, but if your current conversion rate is 2%-3% (not uncommon) that means an improvement of 33%-50%! For even small shops that might mean one extra order per day coming from their floral website, and well over $1000 dollars in additional sales each month. Bigger stores with higher volumes will see even greater gains.
Improving conversion is a real problem, a problem faced by anyone who sells online. Solving it is very difficult, and takes the dedicated application of serious knowledge and expertise. A vendor who tackles the difficult, unglamorous and relatively thankless task of improving conversion rates is one that is truly dedicated to their clients.
Compare that with what are often called “solutions in search of problems” or “solutions for problems that don’t exist”. This happens often in technology when the people involved in product development don’t really understand a business, and introduce features because they are easy, or because they look good on a feature list, but don’t really solve any problems faced by their clients.
There is a lot of this going on right now among floral website providers. It almost seems like a magician trying to misdirect the audience – they want you to ignore the important stuff that is hard to get right (like responsive design and conversion rates - stuff that will bring you additional orders every day) and focus instead on stuff nobody is asking for (but might - if you are lucky) generate a few extra dollars each week).
If you are serious about selling flowers online conversion rates are the priority. Don't get distracted by features that address problems that don't exist - instead take a look at some of the exclusive features Epic Flowers offers to improve ecommerce conversions on their floral websites.