Design Tips for Great e-Commerce Websites

There is no doubt that people like or dislike a brand based on their experiences of the brand as users, be it online or offline. They will always go back to the brand that has provided them with good user experiences and vice-versa.

Brands realize this and try to create great User Experiences or UX for their customers.

WHAT IS USER EXPERIENCE (UX)?

User Experience is the sum total of all the little intangible things that makes the user feel good while on the website of a brand or otherwise. Research has proved that good user experience keeps the user engaged and loyal to a brand and helps in conversion.

HOW TO CREATE GREAT UX ON E COMMERCE WEBSITES?

The first step to creating a great user experience is to know who your users really are, know their likes and dislikes, needs and aspirations.

Then create user personas of your “ideal” customers whom you want as well as those customers whom you don’t want (negative personas) by analysing market research insights.

Download the detailed buyer persona template by Hubspot. It really helps.

The next step is to create design and content that take care of these needs and desires and provide value to your target group (TG). Your design should always aim to appeal to your TG’s hearts and minds and create value from them.

 Now we go on to share a few tried and tested design tips that have brought good results to our clients. You can use these tips on your websites to really see some good results too.

1.   ONBOARD CUSTOMERS QUICKLY

Help your customers. If they are ready to sign up, make good use of their positive mood. A long list to fill up can be a big turn-off.  Avoid it.

    • Have an easy sign-up process

Forms should have the most necessary fields only like name, email and password. Nothing unessential. Giving value to your customers’ time is highly appreciated.

    • You may even let your customers browse and buy without signing up

This will let them complete the shopping process unhindered in a natural way leading to better conversion. Ask for details after purchase.

    • Old customers should have fast sign-ins

Remember the details of old customers so that they do not have to fill in the details each time they log in. This is a good and easy way to make your old customers feel privileged.

2.    MAKE SEARCH FOR PRODUCTS EASY

Like a skilful shop assistant help your customer zero in on what he/she wants to buy. Value your customer’s time. If she has chosen a blue shirt of a particular size tell her right away if that is not available before she goes to the billing section. Help her choose something else instead or tell her when that particular size will be available. You should also do the following:

    • Categorize your products

Categorize the products in a systematic way. This helps customers a lot to sift through thousands of products and find what they need easily.

Product categorization on e-commerce websites

Source

    • Provide relevant Filters

Helping customers pinpoint their ‘search’ (using filters for price, size, colors, etc.) saves them time and helps you retain customers.

    • Make product suggestions

Suggesting similar products while visitors browse is also a good idea to help them make up their minds.

 3.   PROVIDE INTUITIVE NAVIGATION

It’s all about how you design the “flow” on your website. Visitors would habitually/intuitively behave in a particular way when online. Create pages that will offer least resistance to them to fulfil their aims when on your website. Faulty design can make visitors discard the website within seconds.

    • Follow a natural flow by understanding user behavior

Design the Landing Page, Home Page, Side Bars, Product Pages or other content pages by understanding how users habitually navigate on websites.

    • Use Breadcrumb Navigation

Let your customers know where they are on the website. Help them navigate easily from one page to another.

4.       FACILITATE COMMERCE

Have you noticed how products are displayed strategically and information about deals and offers shared with you in a retail outlet? They are all done to help you buy. Similarly, help your customers with information on deals and offers, stunning product placements as well as useful call-to-actions all through the website to facilitate commerce at every step.

    •  Provide stunning product images

Good quality pictures of the products taken from different angles that can be zoomed are essential to let your customers look and feel your products before they make up their minds.

    • Create uncluttered product pages

Create neat product pages with all necessary information like descriptions, price, offers, customer reviews, and ratings systematically.

    • Provide a handy shopping cart

The shopping cart should be visible to them at all times. The wish list option is also a good idea to help them shortlist what they like. Knowing what they like will help you make proper suggestions.

    • The Search Bar

Help your customers as much as possible and keep the search bar constantly visible.

    • Keep relevant call to actions

Encourage people to click and buy by keeping prominent call to action buttons.

Example of product page on e-commerce website design

Source

5.    MAKE THE BUYING PROCESS FAST

Who likes to wait in a long queue at the billing till? It’s the same for your online store. Make the billing process fast and efficient.

    • Keep the billing process fast and simple

The billing process should not involve many steps. It is better to let your customers know of the number of steps involved.

Like: “You are just a step away to finish the billing process.”

        “Two more steps and you are done.”

    • Keep prices transparent

Do not add taxes, shipping charges, or other hidden charges to the price of the products in the end during the billing process. Quote prices inclusive of everything (with proper break-ups) from the beginning.

    • Build trust

Your customers should feel safe to share their credentials with you. Help them by getting certifications from network security solutions like McAfee, Verisign, etc. to let them know that their transactions are safe and secure.

6.       MAKE CONTACTING YOU EASY

Be available whenever you are required, to help resolve issues, answer questions, or simply chat with your customers like the chatty shopkeeper does to help build relations. Follow him and you’ll never go wrong.

    • Easy Contact

Display your contact coordinates prominently. Customers should be able to contact you immediately in case of an issue with a product or in the case of any grievance. Always keep a “Need Help?” button visible to them.

7.      REACH YOUR CUSTOMERS, BUILD COMMUNITY

Optimize your website to reach where your customers are. Rank well on searches. Try to be recommended by friends. Become a trusted brand. Build relationships by engaging with your customers on social media channels.

    • Optimize Your Website

Reach where your customers are. Increase your online visibility and also greater engagement and conversion by optimizing your website.

    • Connect with your customers on Social

Keep social buttons to connect socially.

8.       IMPROVE WEBSITE LOAD TIME

Speed is important. With ever shortening attention spans of your visitors, you have to ensure that your website and all its features load fast.

    • Fast websites lead to greater conversion.

 Conclusion:

Research shows that worldwide retail e-commerce sales will top $27 trillion in 2020!!!

Is your ecommerce website ready?

Here are three places that have very helpful and doable design tips. You may check them out.

1. Kissmetrics:100 Conversion Optimization Case-studies

2. Kissmetrics: What Converting Websites Do

3. Shopify:15 Design Experts Share their Tips and Advice

Happy designing!

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