Change is a disruption that brings forth an adaptive mindset for a new paradigm – the same is for commerce.
5 Essentials That Your E-commerce Website Needs
The Internet and technology have evolved the way we search for information and products, consume content and make purchasing decisions. These have fuelled a continuous evolvement in commerce as more and more of it is happening online.
With that said, surviving and thriving in today’s overly competitive landscape calls for a well-thought eCommerce website design. This transition towards the online medium has become further prevalent given the ongoing pandemic.
Let’s look at the factors that must be considered when making a stellar eCommerce website.
Attention spans of online users are falling. If your website has a complicated interface and navigation mechanism that makes it difficult for visitors to view a product or put it in the online cart, they will go elsewhere.
An excellent way of figuring out this nitty-gritty is to glance at globally renowned websites and try and emulate those factors into your website. Think of these as mere templates – refer to them and add your style to stand out.
Another thing that your website should work on is the product category. This shall distribute the catalogue into exclusive subcategories. Also, ensure the categories and subcategories are self-explanatory.
Yet another aspect is searching for products. Online searches are all about keywords and phrases. Make sure that your overall eCommerce SEO is good to go. Finally, the site should also label products as sold, unavailable and available (quantity of stock) to a transparent picture.
A Simple Cart and Checkout Process
Once having scanned through your website, if the customer decides to purchase items, you need to make sure that the journey is as convenient as it can be. Although having a simple procedure is essential, this is not all! Ensure that the eCommerce site makes it easy to view with customer-friendly colour choices and preferences.
Another factor that should be a part of your eCommerce site architecture is an easy-to-edit cart that enables users and surfers to add items. Aesthetics also play a prominent role here! Make sure that the cart displays the product images selected for purchase.
Additionally, your site should also highlight the checkout button – maybe have a different colour scheme to make it pop up.
Lastly, be clear about the applicable costs, including shipping and delivery, before the final checkout. The customer should have the cost bifurcation before clicking the “make payment” button. More so, provide a drop-down menu for payment methods, including credit cards, debit cards, Paypal and others for absolute freedom.
Customer support or customer care is crucial to eCommerce businesses today. While online mediums give convenience, they are also susceptible to errors, issues and confusion.
Each platform has different types of problems. An excellent way to resolve the issues promptly and quickly is to have several channels – online support via chatbots, email support and call support through helpline numbers, for instance.
Additionally, include an FAQ – Frequently Asked Questions section that allows customers to find a quick resolution. An FAQ section helps augment the overall user experience. So make sure that your site has a comprehensive one! For best results, create multiple situations and align them with the eCommerce SEO.
While there are several avenues that Ecommerce brands can use for customer support, you need not go for all of them. Go for the ones that fit your budget and are most effective. Remember that a customer that feels cared for shall build your brand way more than any marketing does.
Data Privacy and Security Features
eCommerce platforms are vulnerable to predatory behaviour from hackers. More so, privacy is already somewhat compromised by the mere storage of confidential details such as credit and debit card numbers. Hence, customers need to be given the space to safeguard their data.
Insufficient security measures can create financial and legal risks for your business too. Only if your website is safe and trustworthy will more web traffic be directed towards your eCommerce marketplace. Therefore, some ways of ensuring that your website is secure are to:
- Purchase a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificate, which enables secure transmission of data
- Use an Address Verification System or AVS and have the credit card verification value or CVV
- Probe online users into creating secure passwords by categorizing the passwords into weak, medium and strong
Ratings and Reviews
Think of ratings and reviews as the virtual equivalent of word of mouth. These are the social proof that adds credibility and legitimacy to products and services. Every customer today looks at ratings before making the purchase decision.
Ratings and reviews are incredibly integral and have become one of the eCommerce essentials. Taking these for granted will cost you in terms of visibility, web traffic, revenues and reputation.
But, you cannot just include them anywhere. It needs to be prominent. One of the approaches is to have the ratings mentioned alongside the product or service itself. Ratings can be in several formats, including percentage and star ratings.
More so, your site should include UGR or User-Generated Ratings that put forth their personal experiences. We suggest having a feature that allows customers to give their reviews and recommendations across online platforms, including Google My Business and Facebook.
The Internet and technology have revolutionized eCommerce advent. Therefore, to stand out in a crowd, you’ll need a website that acts as your digital real estate.
The top five essentials of a stellar and functional website are a user-friendly interface that streamlines navigation, an easy-to-cart and checkout process, customer support, data privacy & security measures and ratings & reviews.
Once these are established, there is no looking back on your road to success.