E-commerce Update: Traffic Continues to Bookstore Websites

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Here, the IndieCommerce team shares an important look at current trends in the world of e-commerce.

Below is a seven-day comparison of the e-commerce conversion rate for all IndieCommerce (IC) and IndieLite (IL) stores. The conversion rate is the percentage of visitors to websites that complete a purchase online.

When comparing the two periods, last week (blue line) had an average conversion rate of 7.83 percent vs. the previous week (orange line) of 7.79 percent. This represents a 0.56 percent increase in the conversion rate. This slight increase in the conversion rate halts the downward trend we saw in last week’s update.

Graph showing ecommerce trends

During the same seven-day comparison period, we also saw a 9.09 percent increase in the number of users to IC and IL websites (see chart below). As with the conversion rate, this increase in traffic last week puts an end to the slight downward trend we reported last week. Of particular note was traffic on Tuesday, May 5, with a 27 percent increase over the previous Tuesday, representing the single highest traffic day we’ve ever had.

Chart showing ecommerce trends

Another interesting trend is that stores are increasing the frequency of their email newsletters and other email marketing. In the past, stores have been hesitant to send emails too frequently. Stores that are increasing their email marketing are seeing increased sales conversion rates from those emails. The aggregate conversion rate for email sent between March 12 and May 6, across all IC and IL stores, is now averaging 3.65 percent. Last year, that average email conversion rate was 1 percent; that’s a 265 percent increase in the conversion rate for email.

Customers want to hear from your store. They want to support you. If you are not sending emails to them at least once a week, you should start. If you are already sending at least once a week, consider slowly edging up the frequency of newsletters. Keep an eye on the unsubscribe rate to determine when you’ve hit your customers’ email saturation point.