Ecommerce website design is not just about making an online store aesthetically nice (although that helps). More important is that the quicker the customer can get from landing page to completed order, the more likely they are to get to the end and give you their money. Quality E-commerce website design is all about getting potential customers through that process.
Here are a few tips that in our experience as website designers can help your e-commerce website design.
1. Let customers refine their options
When customers are trying to search for what they want on your ecommerce site, being able to filter their options will save them a lot of time and effort. This is particularly important when it comes to sizing, for items such as clothes. Customers hate finding that "perfect" piece of apparel, only to discover you don't carry it in their size.
2. Let them reverse their choices too
When a user starts to "narrow" their navigation inside a particular category (for example, selecting large clothes only), they may make a mistake, or change their minds. So it's vital that you allow them to remove those navigation selections - rather than forcing the use of "back button" clicks - which are repetitive at best, and may cut off their browser connection at worst.
3. Keep the search bar in easy reach
Many of us don't realize how often the search bar on our e-commerce website is used. When customer come to a site looking for something in particular, if it's not clearly identify on the landing page then the most common reaction is to search for it.
Consider making the search bar the key focus of your e-commerce site. This will also work to keep users on the site, as they may be tempted to look around more.
4. If items are out of stock, make it clear
The biggest mistakes you can make running my first e-commerce store is not keeping on top of the stock. For SEO purposes it is better to keep the product on the site instead of removing it and having to add it again. If a product is out of stock that needs to be crystal clear. Otherwise, like me, your client will be emailing angry customers apologizing about the fact you have to cancel their order.
05. Make use of quality photography
Ecommerce is all about buying with your eyes, as most of the time you won't get to see or touch the real thing until it's been delivered. Having plenty of photos is a guaranteed way to attract more business, so plan a website product page layout in mind. Will you have a product slide show? Or tiled thumbnails. Just as important is the quality of these images, as blurry or pixelated photos will be a major put off as well as bringing down the quality of the site.
6. Make the shopping cart visible
More advanced online shoppers will not want to be sent straight to the website cart page if they add an item. Therefore it is important that the cart is visible on every page of the site.
Many designers like to use the side bar for this. Think of the cart as the search bars partner in crime. They both need to be on every page so look for a way to incorporate them together for a clean looking site.
7. Make your site easy to navigate
For larger site there is a good chance there will be a lot of categories. However, fly-out or super menus (the drop down menus when you hover over them) are an effective way to keep your page from getting too cluttered whilst creating maximum accessibility throughout the site.
The key to fly-out menus is being simple and effective. Trying to be too elaborate defeats the whole point of making the site easier to navigate.
8. Don't add delivery charges at the end
Many users like to know how much delivery will be. A quick way to find abandoned website shopping carts is to suddenly have an extra fiver added right before purchase. Make sure on the product page the delivery options are clear - although try to avoid overpowering the description o the product in the process.
9. Question every pixel
WHY WHY WHY? This is what you need to keep asking yourself about every single pixel you decide to edit. Why do I need this? Why will this benefit the user’s experience?
The most effective ecommerce website design is so good you don't even notice it's there, and no user wants to be over powered by too much gloss, when all they are there for is the products and the price.
10. Consider SEO
SEO is something I severely underestimated on my first ecommerce website design project. Without a well optimized site they only way you will attract visitors is via pay per click.
Consider carefully how and where H1 and H2 tags will be used. For H1 tags, it is key you do not use the logo as one, as this will be repeated on every single page of the site. Think about utilizing the space below the header and navigation menu.
11. Give your site personality
To make a site stand out you need to add a bit of personality. Obviously a clean, simple to navigate site is the bedrock, but on it's own that's not enough. Without that small bit of personality, your ecommerce store will not stand out and be remembered.
12. Incorporate social media
But putting social media links on your ecommerce website is not a simple task. They need to be placed somewhere which does not dominate the page, however hiding them away will render them useless.
13. Provide a quick product preview
Visitors hunting down products online might want to quickly browse your category pages for items matching their needs. Whether due to lack of time, slow loading speeds or personal preferences, clicking on individual items for additional details on a separate page is avoided by some users.
By adding a quick preview to your category and search pages, ranging from a simply larger version of the image to a more complex view that loads details, you can get the user's attention towards your products and their details.
14. Add a newsletter signup form
Building up a strong email list is a long process, but incredibly valuable for promotion especially around Christmas. Having a newsletter sign up form on your webpage is standard on any ecommerce website, so try to make yours more appealing than others.
15. Keep product pages clean
There is a recurring theme in this article and that is keep it clean. This is most important on the product page.
An ecommerce website is a shop online, (stating the obvious), so treat it like your shop. You can't get away with the clumsy mess of products that store offer. You need your site to shine like an Apple store. The products are spread out in their own space, complete with a tidy description and price. The experience should be the same when online. No adverts, and as little distraction away from the product.
Adding 'also purchased', or 'also viewed' products are great ways to keep your user shopping, but must be used with care. It's easy to go far and create an overabundance of clutter.
16. Include testimonials
Had a lovely email from a customer complimenting your amazing service? Surely any potential user will only see this a more of a reason to spend money on your site. This is something that works well as a slider or sidebar addition.
17. Display product variations intuitively
Within many industries the ordering process involves selecting specific variations of the main product. For any item that might require a size or color selection, be as clear as possible. Include images for the different combinations.
If a jumper comes in red, I want to see the red jumper. Use color swatches and graphical representations like a size chart in addition to more standard elements like drop-downs or radio buttons.
18. Eliminate checkout distractions
Once your customer proceeds to the checkout, you want them to find it very easy to complete the order. When ecommerce web designing, remove items like sidebar navigation and adverts to define a clear path to the goal. Don't try to promote more products and deals on this page.
The more content on the checkout page, the less appealing it will be. Single-page checkouts have the highest conversion rates; however if your checkout process has multiple steps, make sure the customer is aware on his progress. In the example above, any customer can clearly see what they have set so far, and if there are any spelling errors or amendments required it is easy to navigate to.
19. Keep the 'add to cart' visible
This is by far the most important rule, and it is very simple. The clearer, bolder and more attractive the add to cart button is, the higher the chance it will be used.
If you are designing an ecommerce website store for yourself then it is an easier process if you plan all these factors ahead. However, if you are designing for a client then I know how stubborn they can be over horrid things like product promotion and getting Twitter followers.
You need to stand your ground. Web designers are hired because we know best, and although a client only thinks about his margins, it is important to show how these design tips will improve the user experience of your store. If you have any other tips you have picked while working on an ecommerce website design then please comment below and share with the community.
20. Make contacting you easy
If you are likely to attract an older generation then it is vital that the site has clear phone numbers. Although technology like tablets and mobile browsing is growing in popularity, there are still a lot of potential customers who are very nervous about buying online.
If they see an option to speak to an actual person, there is a much more likely chance you can convince them of your trust and process the order over the phone with them. Otherwise you could be losing a lot of customers who are there for the taking.
If you have any questions or you need help implementing this tips do not hesitate to contact the best web designer in miami.