In mid-March, when the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic started to turn out to be obvious, I talked to a lot more than forty of our retail clients about their fears and questioned how Google could support. Weeks afterwards, I’m continuing to listen to from these clients about the challenges they’re experiencing, specially with the ongoing closures or limitations on their actual physical merchants.

Consumers are experiencing uncertainty far too. More than 50{e0233a5a8ca3dab8ed448c5451aba2c38c77d167988a5d203483ecea09d61312} of U.S. consumers searched for what is open or closed in close proximity to them previous 7 days. So the strain is now on retailers’ new primary merchants — their e-commerce internet sites —  to not only market stock and create revenue, but also to guidance, inform, and reassure clients together the way. It is a delicate balancing act, but not an unattainable one, and I’ve labored with my group to identify 8 approaches that retailers can apply to present their clients with applicable, frictionless, and valuable shopping activities ideal now.

one. Prioritize business enterprise challenges

Your group is likely currently being inundated with requests and new suggestions. But you cannot tackle them all at after. Prioritization is key. Appraise whether or not there are areas of your site’s messaging or design and style that are hurting the manufacturer or having a adverse effect on customers’ working experience. Adjust that 1st. Then dig into optimizations that can possibly make improvements to the working experience or make improvements to efficiency.

Items to consider involve web site efficiency and matching the messaging on your advertising and marketing channels to your web site. You may possibly also want to look at approaches to improve shopper guidance and promotions, as well as approaches to control volatility in web site traffic and transaction quantity. Concentrate on all those tasks that will drive the most effect, then determine how you will evaluate their good results.

two. Optimize web site speed

With ongoing store closures, a lot more and a lot more men and women are shopping on-line. And as on-line traffic spikes, it is significant that your retail website can cope with enhanced quantity. These suggestions will assure you are completely ready.

  • Check your content material delivery community (CDN) suppliers (for case in point., Akamai, Cloudflare, Google Cloud CDN) for options that can help a lot quicker requests.
  • Quite a few web site methods really do not demand updates on subsequent visits. Adopt uncomplicated HTTP-caching approaches that make improvements to load periods for returning people and decrease server load with minimum code modifications.
  • Make your web site load a lot quicker by compressing your photos and text, without the need of compromising visual quality.
  • Apply font-exhibit swap so clients can read through your site’s text, even if the primary font doesn’t load fast sufficient.
  • Delete unused tags from your tag administrators, cleanse up bloated CSS and JS code, and take out other deprecated functions.
  • Often check your site’s speed working with tools like Examination My Internet site and PageSpeed Insights. You will discover a lot more suggestions on how to speed up your website below.

three. Present a seamless checkout working experience

Seventy-6 percent of smartphone people are a lot more likely to order from companies whose cell internet sites or apps permit them to make purchases Make sure your payment processing process is fast and effortless. Also identify approaches to incorporate personalization enhancements, these as storing shopping information and facts or a short while ago explored items. In short, your front- and back again-conclude framework and technological innovation want to produce the greatest working experience feasible. Get the job done with your tech groups to map the infrastructure and tech stack that guidance your web site and make certain they interact seamlessly.

four. Leverage technological innovation to alleviate shopper guidance demand from customers

More than one in four U.S. consumers say manufacturers could be most valuable to them by training their shopper service groups on how to greatest cope with their desires in the instant.two With that in thoughts, are you providing clients the kind of guidance they want in today’s atmosphere? Use your groups and chatbots to make clear shopper service updates, be clear about expectations, and signpost helpful methods. Help and check any shopper messages on your Google My Organization profile far too, so clients get answers rapidly and very easily.