The Do’s and Don’ts of Ecommerce Website Design
Over the years, we have designed a large number of ecommerce websites. With that experience comes a vast knowledge of design elements and tactics that work well, as well as, others that don’t. If you’re considering a new ecommerce website design or looking for ways improve your existing design check out some of the things we’ve found. If you have questions or wish to discuss more about your specific ecommerce website reach out to a website design company or contact us.
Clearly List Your Products
Do: Give clear and concise titles as well as descriptions and specifications for ALL the products in your store. If you can fit a keyword or two in there, great. But do not force it. Everything should be an easy read for your customers that clearly describes the product you’re selling.
Don’t: Keyword stuff (using so many keywords on a page that it no longer reads correctly) or leave critical details blank. Leaving critical elements like a description or product specifications blank can lead to unanswered customer questions. Unfortunately, consumers will not take the time to ask and wait for a reply. If your item doesn’t answer ALL of their questions, odds are they will leave your website and from somewhere that does.
It’s About User Experience
Do: Make the purchase process as easy as possible. Let’s face it. People buy on emotion and impulse. To increase your likelihood of capturing these orders, your shopping and checkout process need to be simple and your pages designs where the customer is doing this should be free from distractions.
Make sure people can easily browse your items by creating categories or a search function. Then make it easy to check out. Try to keep your checkout to 12 form fields or less and even consider offering a guest check out.
Don’t: Confuse your audience or complicate the process by collecting more information than you need. Excess clutter such as unnecessary form fields, buttons, ads, etc. all lead to distraction which ultimately leads to cart abandonment and then you’ve lost the sale.
“Buying from Us Is Safe”
Do: Secure your website as well as your checkout process and make this clear to your customers. Make sure you have a site-wide SSL certificate, add secure checkout icons, and/or even other notifications saying that shopping is a secure process. Your website should scream “buying from us is safe”.
Don’t: Ignore security. With Google pushing security in their browser URL bar, and the increasing number of data breaches, consumers are becoming more aware than ever before about website security, or the lack thereof. Don’t leave any doubt in your customers mind if your website and entire buying process is secure. They likely won’t take the chance.
Do: Make sure your website is 100% mobile friendly. You should preform plenty of pre-launch testing from a variety of devices to ensure that no matter where your customer is trying to buy, they can do so without issue. Keep in mind mobile users are browsing with their fingers. Keep important elements easy to reach and click on with their thumb. Don’t put elements too close together as it could lead to mistaps and a bad user experience.
Don’t: Make your mobile website experience vastly different from your desktop experience. You never know where your customer will be the next time they want to order from you. If you want to increase repeat sales, take into consideration what it looks like for a customer that bought on mobile first and then desktop, or vice versa.
As I said in the intro, all this information is the result of years of ecommerce website design experience. In fact, our work has even resulted in us being recognized in the list of top ecommerce website design companies by Design Rush. But keep in mind these are some general guidelines for the time being. They can and probably will change. As time progresses, Google, shoppers, and new technology will reshape the way the web and buying experiences work. Even now people are starting to purchase items just by saying, “Alexa, order a …”. Which brings up a great question. Are you showing up in voice search? That’s a topic that will have to wait for another time.
If you liked the article, found something useful, or have a great tip or technique to add, let us know in the comments below.