When designing an ecommerce website, there are many important elements to consider. In the same way that bricks and mortar shops pay professional designers to create stunning window displays to draw customers in, you want a website that is visually appealing to retain visitors when they land on your page. In addition to the look and feel of the site, you need to ensure you are providing as much information and making it as easy as possible for them to purchase your products.
Here are our top tips for designing a great ecommerce website.
Consistent branding helps to build brand recognition and trust. Research by Forbes shows that using the same branding across all platforms increases revenue by up to 23%.
Branding not only includes logos but also font and colour schemes. Certain colours in web design are used to promote specific behaviours, this is why you expect to see, for example, offers and promotions in red as they impart a sense of urgency.
Using colour in your branding also improves recognition by 80%. When you think of the top 10 brands in the World, 8 of them include primary colours. From Google’s multi-coloured logo to Facebook’s blue, Coca-Cola’s red and McDonalds’ yellow arches, they all pack a punch.
The design of your ecommerce website is one of the most important initial factors. 38% of web users will stop using your website if the layout is unattractive.
UX designers and developers have spent years researching which layouts produce the best results, this is why you’ll encounter similar formats across the majority of ecommerce websites.
From top menus and banners highlighting new and hot products to left hand filters and the basket in the top right corner, these design elements have become the standard for anyone wanting to increase their conversions.
Product Photos & Videos
Visitors to your website will be relying on the information you provide to decide whether they want to purchase your products. As they are unable to touch and inspect the products like they would in a bricks and mortar store, providing high-quality photos and videos will allow them to look at the item in more detail.
Ensuring your photos are optimised (i.e. using the best format and smaller file sizes) will improve loading times and provide a better user experience. Slow loading or broken images contribute towards lost income with 39% of users leaving when the images are unavailable.
Including videos that show the product from all angles, and in the case of clothing, shown on a model will help people better understand the product they are purchasing. In fact, 64% of users make a purchase after viewing a branded product video.
As with images and videos, the content you provide helps visitors better understand the products you are selling. Letting them know everything from product measurements to cleaning instructions and materials can help them determine that your product matches their requirements.
Including detailed product descriptions of ideally 300+ words will also allow Google to pick up your website for specific terms and phrases you may not be targeting with your main SEO. Improving your website content can generate up to 3 times more revenue than using paid search.
Using clear navigation on your website helps your users to quickly locate what they are looking for and make a purchase. Any information available on your website should be no more than a couple of clicks away.
Use easy to follow menus with accurate descriptions. Including a category and list of sub-categories is a great way to simplify the menu.
Adding an easy to use checkout will help to reduce the number of abandoned baskets.
Making sure the basket is located in a prominent position at all times of the customer journey will allow them to keep track of their purchase.
Simplifying the checkout to only the essential information and keeping everything on the minimal number of pages will speed up the checkout process. Offering a range of payment options will also open up your site to a wider audience.
Even if you only ship locally or UK wide, opening up payments to multiple countries will make your website attractive to non-UK residents looking to purchase gifts for friends and family in the UK.
Adding the ability to save your cart gives visitors the option to come back later and complete their purchase if they are unable to do so immediately.
Site speed is not only important to your visitors, it is a major ranking factor for search engines.
The longer your page takes to load, the higher the likelihood that users will click back to the search results. 39% of users stop engaging with a site if it takes too long to load. These users contribute towards your websites bouncerate and the higher your bouncerate, the more search engines will determine that you’re providing a negative user experience or your pages aren’t relevant to your target keywords.
Google is currently in the process of releasing a core algorithm update and updating their tools to include page experience as a ranking factor. A major part of this is page loading speed, so ensuring your website loads quickly is essential to the success of your ecommerce website.
Over the last few years, searches on mobile devices have overtaken searches on desktops. The growth has been so significant that Google has switched to prioritising websites that offer a great experience on mobile devices.
Optimising your website includes resizing to fit different screen sizes and serving content in a different format so that it is easy to read. In some cases, your mobile version may look quite different to your desktop as you may need to serve a more minimalistic version to encourage conversions.
If you would like assistance designing and building an ecommerce website that focuses on user experience and conversions as well as SEO, our Fabshop package is the ideal choice. For £60 per month, we’ll create a website that includes all the essentials such as domain registration, web hosting, and an SSL certificate.