online-shop-leaking-moneyE-commerce can be a tough business. When it works, it works. But when sales drop, it takes a little bit of investigation to discover the problem.

Finding the problem is a lot like trying to find the leak in a bicycle tire. You have to completely submerge the tube under water and carefully look for the air bubbles. Once you find the bubbles, you’ve got to stop and patch up the leak before putting the tube back in the tire, the tire back on the bicycle, and continuing along your way. It’s a process, but completely necessary and with its own reward. Fixing your e-commerce shop requires a similar mindset.

Some e-commerce “repairs” are practical in nature: high credit card fees and bug-ridden shopping carts, for example. But many more are philosophical and psychological issues that need repair. A new infographic by Red Stag Fulfillment raises a discussion about both types of e-commerce issues. We’ve reposted the infographic below with some insights into how we apply the principles of my latest book, Finally Human, to the problems.

Honesty Can Fix A Lot of Issues
When an item is out of stock, update your web shop immediately. Scurrying to fix an inventory issue while hiding it from your customer will result in a frustrated customer with failed expectations. Be upfront about your inventory, and you’ll gain trust. Speaking of, you have to work for your customer’s trust…

Work for Your Customer’s Trust
You can do this by:

  • Pointing them to testimonials and recommendations on your social media sites.
  • Providing a phone number that connects them to an actual person.
  • Providing a privacy policy.
  • Using security badges that show you have a secure checkout process.

Create Transparent Policies
Transparency is a major theme of Finally Human. E-commerce businesses have many opportunities for creating and practicing transparent policies.

  1. First, make your policies easy to find. Policy links should be prominent.
  2. Secondly, make your policies are simple and easy to understand. No legalese.
  3. Lastly, be flexible. Policies aren’t set in stone. You made them after all. So, be flexible when special circumstances arise. Remember, you designed policies in order to improve your relationship with your customers. So, don’t let policy become a roadblock; flex it to the customer’s advantage.

Check out more suggestions for tightening up your e-commerce platform in the infographic below.