The 9 Deadly Sins of eCommerce Web Design
Contrary to popular opinion, starting an eCommerce business isn’t that hard. The real challenge lies in convincing potential customers to stay on your site.
The key step in this process is having a good eCommerce website design. The nicer your site looks, the more likely it is to make a great first impression. Proper web design also builds credibility with customers and makes your store stand out.
How do you put together an eCommerce website capable of pulling a profit? A good place to start would be learning which design mistakes you need to avoid. Here’s a list of nine common eCommerce web design sins you should avoid.
1. Poor User Experience
User experience (UX) may be the most important factor in web design. For starters, an effective UX is key for engaging your potential customers. In the long run, UX can also impact your marketing strategy and boost your conversion rate.
The thing about UX is that it needs to wow your customers as soon as they land on your site. Other than increasing your sales, this will lead to more positive customer reviews. Plus, a great UX makes your site more likely to rank well on search engines.
2. Low-Quality Images
Very few people buy products based on their descriptions. If you want to pique their attention, you’ll need the right product images. Despite that, many eCommerce business owners seem to treat their product images as an afterthought.
To boost your product photography, stick to high-resolution images. Wherever possible, use proper lighting and add some props to set up the scene. Depending on your products, you may also want to provide a 360-degree product view.
3. No Trust Signals
These days, all the best eCommerce websites display trust signals. This is a big help in dissuading any qualms that your customers might have. The lack of trust signals is one of the main reasons for customers abandoning their carts.
If you haven’t installed an SSL certificate on your site, do so right away. This allows you to use the HTTPS protocol, which protects your customer data. You can tell whether a site has an SSL certificate by a lock icon at the beginning of its URL.
Once you’ve done that, consider displaying some trust logos on your site. Don’t do that for the sake of having them, though — make sure you deserve to display them.
4. Lack of PIM
Product information management (PIM) allows you to have all your product information in a single place. This information includes everything from images to descriptions. This is an effective way to deal with some potential design hurdles.
One big benefit of PIM is that it accelerates your time-to-market optimization. Due to a lack of need for manual data entry, you can launch new products much faster. There are plenty of PIM solutions on the market, including open source PIM.
5. Complicated Checkout
Want more of your potential customers to proceed with the order? If so, do your best to simplify the checkout process. Ideally, the customer would only need to fill in the delivery details, choose the payment method, and confirm the order.
Another thing you can do is make it easier to add products to your carts. Make this as dynamic as possible and avoid design elements that disrupt this process. You can also add a progress indicator to let customers know where they are in the process.
6. No Advanced Search
When it comes to eCommerce, many prospects aren’t sure what they’re looking for. Oftentimes, they’ll land on your site because your products interest them. However, they might still be deciding between a couple of different models.
You can make it easier for them by adding advanced search options. These allow customers to look for products based on size, price, and other factors. In recent years, this has become one of the most asked-for eCommerce web design features.
7. Inconsistent Visual Hierarchy
Visual hierarchy refers to how easy it is to navigate through your eCommerce site. It’s a lot like giving your customers a gentle clue where to look. The point of visual hierarchy is to direct the customer’s eyes on the important parts of your content.
The key to proper visual hierarchy is consistency. Try to use similar color schemes for your background and foreground colors. Be consistent with the font sizes as well — this is a very common misstep in eCommerce web design layout.
8. Unclear Value Proposition
A value proposition is what makes your online store stand out from the competition. Without it, you’ll have a harder time convincing potential prospects to come back. This is why your store should make it obvious what your value proposition is.
The easiest way to showcase your value proposition is to publish relevant content. That said, using the right colors and images in your design can make an impact too. Having a consistent color scheme, in particular, can do wonders for your bottom line.
9. Missing CTA
All the above tips lose value if you can’t place your CTA in the right place. As compelling your products seem, customers won’t buy them if they don’t know how to do it. Having a prominent “Buy Now” button does a lot to solve this issue.
You should also use clear language wherever it’s applicable. For instance, an “Add to Cart” button leaves no doubt as to what it means. If you need to make your CTA stand out, use bright and contrasting colors to highlight it.
More on eCommerce Website Design
Keep in mind that it only takes about 50 milliseconds to make a first impression. By following the above tips, you can ensure that the impression will be positive.
One final tip: buff up your product pages. These are likely the first pages your site visitors will land on, so it’s important to make them look nice. Use the right images, talk about they can benefit customers, and add customer reviews.
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