Designing an E-commerce websites has become more popular and easy nowadays with availability of various new online themes and payment processing systems. But while designing an E-commerce site there are some key usability elements which should be kept in mind apart from security issues. Deciding on what is the product or the service to sell is the easiest part. The important part is how you can create the best user-friendly design to engage and attract users and convert them into a customer from prospective visitor. The following suggestions would help you build a successful E-commerce store, maximize conversion rate and increase your sales.
WEBSITE USABILITY- The primary focus of the site would be the products, so the main layout has to be uncluttered and should avoid having lot of text or any sort of distractions. If the site has too many options the visitor can get confused, seeing your site the visitor should be able to take find what they are looking for easily.
FASTER WEBSITE LOADING – Since there are thousands of web stores selling similar products, do not expect a visitor to spend too much time on your site if your site’s loading time is slow. Moreover you should choose a good web hosting company as your E-commerce sites are mostly image heavy. Follow some basic guidelines as using JPEG format for bigger images whereas using PNG for other images, include CSS and JS inline in your own HTML code, using common image folders and so on. Also give importance to some technical server issues like using VPS or Dedicated servers, caching and HTTP compressions.
PRODUCT ACCESSIBILITY AND IMPROVED SEARCH- Many times a visitor will try to do a quick search or refine his searches by prices, date, names. So your search features should be easy and easily navigable for the visitors. Some visitors can look for an expensive product or some may want a trendy one, so the search functions should give lot of options and allow them searches based on prices, colors, sizes, and more. You can also give thumbnail images on search pages; multiple images enhance the possibility of sale. Also recommend your best products or related products based on the searches done by a specific visitor. Use breadcrumbs for customers to know where exactly they are at your site.
EASY CHECKOUT PROCESS- After a customer selects a product to purchase, provide them a simple and easy checkout process. You can either give a one-page checkout or a step-by step check out system. As per statistics quite a good percentage of people quit the shopping cart at last moment. You should not use very long checkout forms; only try to keep just vital fields as Name, Billing info, Payment method. The best way is to let visitors purchase being a guest without any login and just give them registration form during final checkout. Many people are also not comfortable purchasing online, so think about the possible concerns like security, order and delivery queries and stuff. Also send a confirmation mail after the order is placed with details like order price, quantity, delivery time etc.
TESTING AND PAGE OPTIMIZATION- To end up with a very successful E-commerce site you need to do a lot of testing for various kinds of pages, checkout pages in the website. You need to conduct many kinds of analysis and tests namely A/B testing and Multivariate Testing for the website. There are many web tools available like Userfly, Crazyegg, Vertster, Sitespect which would help you to collect data, analyze the information and implement the best design to provide the best user experience and maximize sales.