Ways to Humanize Your eCommerce Site


“Sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name…”

Few sounds are sweeter to most human beings than that of their own names. Brick-and-mortar businesses have a real advantage in this regard, as they can get to know people over time. Sales people can learn their customers’ names, take note of their preferences and accommodate them accordingly.

While it might seem difficult, this personalization can happen for e-businesses as well. Consider these ways to humanize your ecommerce site.

Ditch Robot-Speak; Use Human Terms

People tend to make purchase decisions based in part on their emotional responses to stimuli. If you base your calls to action in emotion, you’ll find you’ll convert a lot more shoppers into buyers.

Use words that conjure feelings. Say “explore” rather than “learn more.” Invite users to reach out with “let’s talk” as opposed to “contact us”. Beckon them to become a member of your fold with the phrase “join us” instead of “become a member.” These terms engender positive feelings.

When you make people feel good, they’ll remember you and are more likely to do business with you.

Use First Person Responses

If you want patrons to see you as a living and breathing entity, rather than some faceless automaton, speak to them the way you would in person. The words “You”, “your”, “you’re”, “I” and “we” should figure all prominently in every communication.

Remember, people are most interested in what you can do for them; this is why they frequent your business. Always speak in terms of their interests, emphasizing benefits rather than features.

Post Customer Reviews

People tend to trust the responses of other people. You can run beautiful pictures, exquisite prose and offer the finest products ever devised by humankind, but if you’re the only one saying they’re good, sales will languish. Never underestimate the power of word of mouth, regardless of what you have to sell.

When customer testimonials are featured prominently on your ecommerce site, shoppers have a readily understood method by which to validate your veracity. In other words, if everybody appears to be saying you’re cool, people figure you must be. A particularly effective approach is to include photos of the reviewer interacting with the product they’re reviewing. This gives the review more legitimacy in the mind of the reader.

If you’re in the process of designing your site, choose an ecommerce theme with provisions for customer reviews.

Tell Your Story

One of the most overlooked opportunities on the average ecommerce site is the About Us page. Too many e-merchants give it short and emotionless report, when it represents one of the best chances of presenting themselves as human beings. This is where you can absolutely let your visitors know people are in there somewhere.

Tell the story of why you started the business, relating it to the personal experiences that led to the decision. Let them see what you look like with photos—or better still—a short video in which you interact with your employees. The goal is to get people to see you as a personable individual, someone to whom they can relate.

Employ Personalization

If you have to send an email message or engage in a chat session with a customer, always make it a point to address them by name. Again, nothing warms a person’s heart more than hearing their name being used—in a good way, of course.

Prefacing your interactions this way tells your customer you care about them as human beings and they, in turn, will see you in the same manner. Incorporating these ways to humanize your ecommerce site will accomplish that feat handily.


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