eCommerce Web Design – 9 ‘Must Have’ Features
If you’re planning an eCommerce website, you have one simple goal – keep the customer on the site. Online shoppers love choice – and there’s plenty of it – so if they’re not grabbed the moment they land on your home page, they’ll simply click away to the next option. Knowing how to keep shoppers engaged from first contact, is the foundation of successful eCommerce web design.
Creating the eCommerce Customer Journey
In order to find the right eCommerce design for the businesses we work with, the Imagefix design team begins by creating a step-by-step customer journey. This starts with their first visit to the site and continues through to a successful sale. The journey may take several visits to complete, but we want to be sure that our eCommerce design is moving the customer along a trajectory from engagement to buying from the site.
In this article, we take a look at the essential features that any eCommerce web design requires in order to engage and convert visitors into customers.
Table of Contents
1. Mobile-Friendly Site
More than half of all online shopping starts on a mobile device. So it’s essential that your eCommerce site can be accessed from any mobile device. Sounds obvious, but it’s amazing how many designs are desktop oriented and look dreadful on a mobile screen. This is called responsive design and it ensures your site looks good, navigates well, and loads fast on mobile devices.
2. Clear and Simple Navigation
The navigation bar is one of the first things visitors look at. Online shoppers tend to be time poor, which means that eCommerce web design needs to make it easy to find what they’re looking for. We keep the navigation bar simple, and make sure that the descriptors are clear and carefully chosen. For example, if your biggest seller is cushions, there’s no sense in hiding the tab away behind ‘Homeware’. Whatever customers want should be no more than 3 clicks away.
3. Helping the Shopper to Buy
This is so important that we wondered whether to put it first! Calls to Action should help visitors to buy from you. The job of an eCommerce web design is first, to ensure that help is offered where it’s needed. Second, that ‘next steps’ intuitively guide shoppers towards a sale. Third, that information about products is available when needed. CTAs shouldn’t be aggressive or bullying. Their job is to offer the shopper a successful experience of your site.
4. Useful Content
Treat content as a valuable component of the selling process, and always provide clear, well-written copy. For eCommerce sites the most important copy will be Product Descriptions. Before writing, find out what shoppers want to know about the products you sell. This helps to ensure that your descriptors give them useful content. Format it carefully, so the text isn’t overwhelming. We tend to provide ‘more’ buttons, so shoppers can find extra information if they wish to.
5. High-Quality Images
Visuals sell more products than copy does, so invest in top quality images of your products. Remember, if your visitors were in a physical shop, they’d probably pick up the product, or feel the texture. Your imagery needs to give them an equivalent experience. Use product videos where it’s helpful, or offer the option to see the product from every angle, and in close-up.
6. Customer Reviews
Trust is an important factor when it comes to buying online. Shoppers want to know from other shoppers:
- Do products arrive promptly?
- Does the returns process work efficiently?
- Are products good quality?
- What happens if there’s something missing from the order?
Without at least 8 or 9 customer reviews that are obviously authentic (so not all gushing and 5 stars), visitors may hesitate to buy.
7. Easy Checkout
The current cart abandonment rate stands at 69.57%. That’s 7 out of 10 shoppers who leave the site without buying the product they’ve placed in their cart. The most popular reasons for abandonment is having to create an account (remember, people are busy), high shipping rates, or a sub-standard returns policy. The customer journey continues right up until the moment the product is successfully delivered. Support and care is necessary at every stage.
Being ‘recognised’ when you return to a website is as important as being recognised when you return to a restaurant. Use your customers name, where you can, demonstrate an awareness of previous visits. Keep it light touch, though. Remember, anything you do has to support and help the customer, rather than making them feel they’re being pushed towards a sale.
9. Tell Customers They’re Secure Buying From You
Imagefix is a web design and digital marketing agency with an award-winning eCommerce web design team. We’ve worked across a range of sectors over the past decade, including health, retail, automotive, construction, finance, and logistics. If you’re looking for experience, creative design skills, and a reliable team that communicates well and completes to deadline – we ready to start work with you.
Looking for an eCommerce web design that will help your business succeed? Call the Imagefix team today to get started – 01525 715608