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How much is your shopping cart costing you?

Have you ever searched, successfully found the product you were after on a website, popped it into the shopping cart and then eventually left the website?

This is called “cart abandonment” in the “trade”

There is some recent research that I think is very interesting. Research carried out by LivePerson. The online chat company. They have surveyed thousands of shoppers across Europe, the UK and the States.

An extract about shopping cart abandonment follows;

“Faced with a plethora of competitive website options, shoppers are becoming more demanding in their online shopping preferences. If they can’t find what they need easily or access help quickly and effectively on a website, they will go elsewhere. Customer engagement is known to increase customer spend and loyalty, and is paramount in the quest to reduce abandonment rates.

The top reasons for abandonment of online purchases:

– Unexpected delivery costs. (70%)
– Lack of information about product/service/delivery (56%)
– Navigation difficulties (46%)
– Difficulty with online customer service/support, e.g.,wanting to ask a question or not finding the answer (37%) and difficulty in getting any help on the website (30%)
– 83% admit they need some form of support during their online journey
– 51% either try once or give up immediately when seeking help before an
online purchase
– 71% expect to be able to access help when purchasing online within five minutes – 31% expect help to be immediate
– If a response is not delivered in the expected timeframe, 48% of shoppers will either go elsewhere or abandon the purchase altogether”.

Clearly then, there are multiple reasons why web visitors abandon a proposed purchase on a website.

You need to look closely at the statistics on your website and then consider carefully if your drop off rate is acceptable given the user trends highlighted by LivePerson. For more information on this research please visit www.liveperson.com.

Clickingmad start 2012 with a bang…

Clickingmad Ltd is a West Midlands based Website Design Agency


I am pleased to report that Clickingmad has experienced a brilliant start to 2012 with many new websites going live in December and January and some great new projects brought in to get our creative teeth into;

How proud are we to have landed Volunteering England as a new client? For a small niche agency based a long way from London this client acquisition is big news for us, and what’s more it came about from a happy client referral! Can’t be better.

As a national Organisation funded by Central Government they have recently undergone a drastic downsize. They needed to use the Internet more efficiently so they invested in a bespoke intstallation of a  content management solution: Joomla. We are acknowledged experts in Joomla and there is not much that we can’t make it do.

We made 5 sites live in December 2011 all for Volunteering England, their main website is on this link: http://www.volunteering.org.uk/ and looks like this:




Another one that we are very proud of is a make over and new Ecommerce installation for this very popular Lighting Retailer; Lighting Majestic. They are existing clients of Clickingmad and it makes us really happy when clients come back for more, hopefully this is because we were so brill previously!

This website is an “Aladdins Cave” with many thousands of lighting products on offer and also offers a unique advice service for those who are not quite sure what to have.

The advice is given by the owners of the website and store and importantly they are qualified electricians, which I think is fairly unusual.

Magento is the Ecommerce platform chosen and those who know will realise that this is a serious piece of software when it comes to selling online.

Magento is not easy to manipulate and program, so you need a lot of technical experience to make it sing.


But when it sings, it sounds (and looks) very good indeed. CHeck it out on http://www.lightingmajestic.com/


Another recent one has been showing off my video skills (!) I filmed and edited Stephen Flynn the Commercial Manager at Bradley Environmental, an Asbestos Testing & Health and Safety Consultancy based in the West Midlands.

Take a look: http://www.bradley-enviro.co.uk/

Website Design by ClickingmadMore and more clients are asking for video work as YouTube is a great way to talk directly to your website visitors and of course YouTube is owned by Google so you can draw your own conclusions about the validity of that.
When we advise clients on their websites we always talk about the promotion of a website as a key part of the overall strategy. Bradley Environmental is following our advice and has taken up our SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) service. This service whilst widely available now used to be fairy scarce. The best level of advise on this subject is based on an in depth knowledge and not silly promises.

To put it into perspective, when we started offering SEO in the year 2000, we were the first (to my knowledge) to offer a guaranteed result of our efforts. We do not now guarantee our work because well frankly, anyone who does is simply not being straight with you.

There is no way you can guarantee that Google ranks your website high in the natural results day in, day out because it wont. Google themselves state that they rework their results regularly to give everyone a better chance of being listed based on their search criteria.

Just make sure  you use someone who knows what they are doing so you don’t get your website banned by Google. That would be a problem! Need advice? Give us a call.




Finally how about this one for an unusual School Website?

If you want to get behind the scenes of a School, how about Video Interviewing the Head Teacher? That’s what I did for this avant-garde style website. She kindly agreed to be interviewed about what it’s really like to run a School of this stature.

Website Design West MidlandsQueen Mary’s High School is a very popular and successful School based in Walsall in the West Midlands. Many of the students go on to be doctors and professionals etc.

Our brief was to make them look different, because they are. I think we have achieved this very well with a brand new styling and a full Content Management System through which they can control everything the website shows.

No more boring School websites… at least not from Clickingmad! Check it out here: http://www.qmhs.org.uk/

I hope you’re 2012 is a great as ours has started out to be. Maybe we can welcome you to the Clickingmad family? Give us a call and see if we fit your organisation.

All the best, Shaun Carvill. MD.



Clickingmad Ltd is a West Midlands based Website Design Agency. Started in 2000 we now have 11 dedicated full time staff based in Shropshire and Birmingham offering a wide range of website design, website promotion, ecommerce advice, hosting, search engine optimisation and related services to our business clients. All with a consultative approach. We never sell you something that you don’t need, only what your business needs. Our advice is often as important as any service we provide you. Our principal Shaun Carvill is an acknowledged expert in the Internet, having been involved right at the start of the commercialisation of the web in the UK some 20 odd years ago. If you mix traditional Marketing experience with technical development and programming then you get the Internet.

Our services are taken up by companies large and small and in nearly all sectors. From Estate Agents to Schools, Charities to Engineering companies. Manufacturing and Service sectors alike all receive the same quality Clickingmad treatment. As quality mark holders and members of the UK IT Association (our Principal; Shaun Carvill is also on the board of UKITA) ISO9001 accredited and rigorously tested by many Government and Public Sector purchasing consortiums, we have been accredited to be able to create, build and supply a comprehensive suite of Internet related marketing products and services for our clients.

We welcome all enquiries as we bring our method to a business near you. Give us a call on 01746 769612 or email sales@clickingmad.com with your query. Join the growing Clickingmad family. You will be made very welcome.

I have the best job in the world – it’s official – read on…

What are our prime motivators when agreeing to something? It’s not always price, it’s not always features and benefits, there are numerous factors. Most of all it’s about trust.

I am really very very lucky. No two days are the same in my job. What is my job? I am the MD of Clickingmad, as you know we are web designers and web developers based in Shropshire and Birmingham serving the whole of the West Midlands and other parts of the UK.

Back to the question as to why I am very lucky. I am going to give you a taste of what I do just on two days this week. Not a long diatribe on my company ethos, our services etc. I will not blather on about how wonderful we are at what we do and waffle that we are the best at designing and building websites. I can hear you sigh with relief. No, I am not going to blog about why you should choose Clickingmad to be your web partner. None of the usual nonsense that you get from everyone, not in this post at least!

What I want to share with you is what I actually do and how that makes me feel. “Why do I care” I hear you ask? Well for one thing most people don’t understand my role in my company, and secondly after I have met a potential client they are often heard to say “what just happened?, you didn’t try and sell me anything”. Now that could mean that I am either

a)        A rubbish salesperson, after all my company needs to sell our servcies to stay profitable and if we didn’t we wouldn’t be here after 11 years trading etc. Or

b)        I don’t sell anything….. I learn.

I have a calendar that controls my time, time that is shared between meeting prospective clients of Clickingmad, running the business and all that entails and then, thinking.

Thinking about my company and my staff and their well being, thinking how we can improve what we do, thinking about how we can increase profitability, thinking how we can work smarter and not harder, thinking about the “interweb” and thinking about my clients.

The most important thinking I do is the latter; thinking about my clients. I think because often they have a unique set of problems, problems that are to do with their business; not enough sales; rubbish website; no clear brand identity; no marketing understanding. Or they may have some of these sorted but have different problems of a more specific nature; why aren’t they controlling how they communicate to the world using the web? What impact on their business is this new ecommerce website going to have? Have they considered the unusual but not unique problem of being too busy, having too many orders? etc etc.

I spend a good deal of my time thinking about the solution that we should provide them, and that is sometimes not the one they expect. For example I have at the moment a client who is procrastinating over the images we should use on their website. They are very very keen to look “just right”. I totally support them in their goal of achieving the correct look, but I am struggling to get across that it’s the message that the website gives, the visibility of the website in search engines, the ability for people to actually buy; based on their pricing and delivery model that is more important to the success of the website at the moment. Images can be easily changed but the structure of a website is not so easy.

Another scenario is that I am in discussions with a prospective client who thinks that it should only take us about 1 month to build their wonderful new website. Now for the record, if you can get a web site development company to design, build and then populate an ecommerce website with 2000 products that will actually work properly in that time, I will show you a company that will not be in business for long. Quality comes not just at a price but quality cannot be created quickly. The best websites we have built have taken many months to build. Sometimes these website are complicated and do things that no other website has done before, sometimes because they have been very large; three or four thousand pages for example. I choose not to automate any of our processes so that we can deliver a bespoke product to each client. One that actually meets their needs. This way it will last a lot longer. If it’s too good to be true, it probably isn’t true.

Now back to the point about why I have the best job in the world. We all get to the point in our careers/lives of questioning what we have done, why we have done it and looking to see if there is anything else we could do that would give us more inspiration, more joy, more job satisfaction and possibly; an easier life. I know I have had those thoughts since turning forty only a few months ago (joking – I am little older than that – nuff said).  I feel I am truly blessed to do what I do. I meet all sorts of busineeses throughout my working week, all with problems of one sort or another and all with problems that I can fix (most of the time) how wonderful is that?

I travel the west midlands and wider areas; recent destinations include; Herefordshire, London, Birmingham, Wolverhampton, Telford, Shrewsbury, Worcester and others. I meet businesses of all types and sizes, yesterday I was discussing with a client how I can help train their blue collar staff on communications techniques, this client has a great business but doesn’t ring fence their existing customers and keeps searching for more new ones. It’s easier to sell to your existing customers as they have already bought from you once. They have lots of clients who are “dormant”, so my first goal is to show them how they can use the web effectively to maintain communication with these warm clients at little or no cost and how then to turn them into cash business using traditional methods and new technology in a mixed way.

Today I learned all about the reality of Asbestos, I genuinely had no idea that it was a naturally occurring mineral. I did know that it and has great properties for sound and heat insulation, fire protection and many other uses. So whilst filming a client for their website I asked so what’s the problem with it then? I knew about asbestosis we (of a certain age) will all know that it can cause lung problems if breathed in. I recall learning about that when I was pretty young. But did you know that it is a carcinogen? It actually causes cancer? I had no idea. I also did not realise that many buildings used asbestos in their construction right up until 1999. So this client of mine has a very strong message. If your premises is older than that; get it checked! It could not only cost your business money should anything unfortunate happen, it could actually be harming your staff as we speak!

This month I have visited a business that started in 1853, a business that sells fish direct to your door, an electrical business, a manufacturer of turned steel parts, a health and safety training and audit company, and engineering company that makes parts for streetlights by the million, a company that makes tiny washers and grommets using really old, but sturdy machines.

Scheduled appointments before the month is out; a local authority, a hairdressing salon, a company that makes and installs mezzanine flooring, an insurance company, a florist, a bicycle shop, a company that manufactures and installs dynamometers (look it up – it’s interesting), two Schools, a college, a publishing company, a new education to business project in Birmingham, and probably some more. The point that I making is that the Internet can offer opportunities for all types of businesses. I learn so many facts sometimes my head is fit to burst!

The way I conduct my first meeting is to try and understand the client; what do they do, what are their problems, what are their strengths, what I don’t talk about (unless they want to of course) is the technology behind websites. What’s that got to do with real business and real business problem solving? Not much. The more I understand about a clients business the better I can advise them on what use the web could be for them, Our experience of marketing, sales, PR and technology is only relevant if we understand them. The client chooses what they want from us only AFTER we can demonstrate that we understand them. That’s the way I do it. It might not be perfect but it works.

Over the 11 years that Clickingmad has traded I guess we have seen in excess of 5 businesses a week, over say 50 weeks of the year times 11 years; that adds up to over 2700 businesses. Not all have become clients because frankly, we don’t fit with them or them with us. Sometimes we are too expensive and sometimes I just will not take people money because I disagree with them wasting it when they have other more pressing problems. When choosing a supplier in business I think it’s important to choose someone who you can trust and who can trust you, with no nasty surprises and that offers good communication, this to me should equal good service outbound and strong business relationships inbound.

My advice if I were asked by folks starting out on web development as a career would be to take enough time to get to know your client, don’t just give them techno babble, inspire them to choose you not based on price but on real value. The value you can bring to their business.  Think about how we all buy things. What are our prime motivators when agreeing to something? It’s not always price, it’s not always features and benefits, there are numerous factors. Most of all it’s about trust.