E-Commerce Monitoring Service | Canary


A dumping ground for thoughts on eCommerce, machine learning and economics.

Holidays Are Over!

Now that the holidays are drawing to a close, it’s time to figure out what you want to do in 2015.

Step 1. Consult Google Analytics

(or your analytics provider of choice)
Here’s my GA Checklist:

  • What are load times? If it’s not under 3 seconds, I need to start running performance monitoring on the server.
  • What is the #1 drop-off page? If it’s not the obligatory Thank You For Your Order page then I have a content or technical problem I need solved.
  • What is the e-commerce conversion ratio on all devices? If one device is particularly out of sorts from the rest then I have some front-end work that needs to be done.
  • When are the customers most on the site during the year? How do I leverage the seasonality in the business? Should we run more promos in off months?

Step 2. Do Some Features Research

Do some research on features that are trending to see if any apply to you. Here are some areas to check out on the web by just going to sites you enjoy buying from to see how they do it:

  • Search
  • Images / Media
  • Order Tracking
  • Category Filtering
  • Credit Card Management
  • Menus
  • Front Page (this will be pretty unique to each business though)

Step 3. What Does Mobile Look Like?

If you haven’t invested in Mobile, at least make sure that your site works on mobile and a user can checkout. We are seeing as high as 25% of revenue coming from mobile devices. If you can’t invest in a full mobile solution, at least ensure checkout works and the experience isn’t frustrating. Doesn’t need to be perfect, but it does need to work.

Here’s a good read on the changes in mobile: smartinsights.com/mobile-marketing/mobile-marketing-analytics/mobile-marketing-statistics/

Step 4. Automation

If your ecommerce business is growing, you may feel the pain of having to hire more people to fulfill orders. If your process is too dependent on labor, you may want to consider investing in technology that will make your staff more efficient. For example, if you are still printing off orders manually for fulfillment perhaps a tablet app that connects your fulfillment team to your orders software could cut down on paper and errors that come with print-outs.

Step 5. Planning

Hopefully, you have a list of things you want to do during the year by this point and it’s time to figure out what can be done. It’s important to remember that certain changes will have bigger impacts on process than others, even if they are easier to develop. If you are making a change to checkout, give yourself 2x time to work with because everything in checkout is complex and will have an impact on revenue even if it is simple. If you are making a change to your layout, expect more calls to customer service to handle the customers that can’t find a feature with the new system. Prepare your staff and your tools to handle these things so they aren’t so unexpected.

And good luck in 2015!