9 Elements to Factor in When Designing an eCommerce Website
Retail business will never be the same again thanks to the internet and the skyrocketing ecommerce model. The modern shopper finds it easier and more convenient to shop from reputed and secure online stores, all from the comfort of their own homes as they go about their daily chores. Sellers also love the freedom and scalability that ecommerce stores bring, seeing that one can run a business without having physical premises or lots of product stock at hand, and also be able to reach consumers from all parts of the globe.
Although it’s easy to be scared by mammoth established brands like Amazon and eBay and feel that your store may not stand a chance, the digital shopping cake is so large that any serious player can have a piece of it by employing the right tactics. Your ecommerce website will act as your vehicle for reaching global consumers, so a lot of emphasis and precision need to be applied to the design process. The digital ecommerce landscape is ever dynamic, and so even after you have launched your site, you will need a hands-on approach to ensure that you keep up with all the latest trends.
#1. Unique Brand Identity & Representation
Before you start the design process, ask yourself this one question: of all the millions of ecommerce websites available online, what will make customers identify with your store? This is where you need to create your own identity that includes aspects like a creative logo, eye-catchy colour pattern for the store, matching fonts, etc. You want to paint a certain picture of your brand in customer minds such that they can identify with your products anywhere. It is important to have a design that matches the products you are selling to know what the store is about at first glance.
#2. Easy Navigation & Fast Loading Speeds
Modern shoppers are very impatient and may not tolerate web pages that take ten minutes to load or confusing pages that are arranged haphazardly. This is why you need to ensure that your ecommerce website is optimized to load at the speed of light and that all the pages and categories are neatly arranged to allow the customer to locate what they want in real-time. A satisfying user experience is guaranteed to bring in more conversions.
#3. Professional Product Showcase & Descriptions
Although ecommerce presents us with a highly convenient and simplified shopping experience, the unique challenge is that a buyer cannot physically assess the product before making a purchase. It is up to the seller to provide high-quality images and videos of the products and matching descriptions to allow the consumer to properly evaluate the items on sale. It would be best to try providing clear product images from different angles and giving accurate descriptions such that what a customer sees is what they get.
#4. Effective Shopping Cart Design
It would help if you treated your ecommerce store like your local supermarket where you enter, pick your shopping cart and advance to the rows of the product you want. As such, you need to have an effective and simplified shopping cart design where shoppers can add and remove items with ease, adjust quantities, and proceed to checkout seamlessly.
#5. Guest Checkout & Easy Checkout Process
The worst mistake you can make as an ecommerce entrepreneur is assuming that every prospective customer is interested in registering on your site. The internet space has seen people create so many accounts and have to remember so many passwords such that a customer may be just interested in buying an item on your site without signing up. That is why you must have a guest checkout enabled to harvest those valuable dollars. Additionally, ensure that the checkout process is simplified and involves as few clicks as possible.
#6. Website Safety & Security
Another very hot element that you should never take for granted is enforcing website safety and security. The modern shopper takes online safety very seriously, especially when details like credit card info are involved. Your site must be HTTPS enabled, which is an easy process with installing an SSL certificate that ensures the encryption of in-transit communication that transpires between the web browser and the client-server. Displaying security seals and trust badges on your ecommerce site improves customer trust.
It is imperative to choose the right SSL kind for your website. After a lot of research and understanding, we recommend using a wildcard ssl certificate for your ecommerce website. This certificate ensures the security of your chosen main domain and an unlimited number of first-level subdomains under it. A cost-saving measure, it also saves you the hassle of managing separate single-domain SSL certificates for each new subdomain that you add.
#7. Multiple Payment Options
As the saying goes, do not carry all your eggs in one basket. The receiving payments part of your online store is the most important as this is where you realize your dreams. As such, you need to be as versatile as possible in the payment options available. Don’t limit yourself to just credit and debit cards, but also accept online wallets, crypto and other major forms of payment. You need to comply with PCI DSS regulations to carry out online transactions.
It is essential to install an SSL certificate to ensure your customers’ PII security, such as credit card, debit card details, etc. It uses public-key encryption technology to encrypt confidential information, decrypted only by the intended recipient. As we explained earlier, a wildcard certificate is the best choice for securing ecommerce websites. You can procure cheap yet premium certificates such as the RapidSSL wildcard certificate to secure your website.
#8. Transparent Shipping Information
One very sensitive phase in the ecommerce process is the shipping part. Whenever possible, offer free or low cost shipping as this is a major hit with buyers. However, this may not always be possible for some items, and the most important thing is to be very transparent about the shipping details like cost and duration from the word go. Don’t let the customer stumble on hefty unexpected shopping costs during checkout because they will surely abandon the cart and never return.
#9. Efficient Customer Support
Every business has a point where a seller needs to get in touch with the buyer either to inquire about a product or service, complain about a pending order, or raise any other issue they might have. That is why you need clear contact details in your store where customers can reach you at all times. Ensure that you respond to customer inquiries promptly as that makes them feel well catered for.
Ecommerce is here to stay. Regardless of the numerous ecommerce stores already available in the market, new entrepreneurs are still emerging with savvy product ideas and clever marketing tactics and hitting the jackpot. You can become a success story by coming up with an original business plan that you are passionate about and implementing the above gems of wisdom when designing your ecommerce website.