If you own an e-commerce site, your main aim is ultimately to get more people to buy; from how your website logo looks to the color and wording of your checkout button, everything should be designed to get more people to pay you.
In other words, while it’s important to have a great product, it’s also very important to focus on ensuring the experience people have on your website is great.
Here are some things every e-commerce website should have that will not only increase sales but that will also dramatically improve the overall user experience on your website.
1. Consistent Branding
If you want to build a successful e-commerce website, branding is critical. You don’t want a user feeling lost after spending just 2 minutes and visiting a few pages on your website; everything on your website, from the logo to the design of your checkout pages, should have consistent branding.
The ultimate goal is to create a memorable experience that leads to people making a purchase and this starts with ensuring they know where they are; if the color scheme used on your website is not consistent or if your checkout page looks strange to them, you’ll most probably lose the sale.
Ultimately, you want people who visit your website to be able to think about you when they see a familiar color used elsewhere.
2. Site Search and Related Products
It sucks when you visit your favorite e-commerce site, planning to buy a certain product, only to find out you have to go through hundreds of pages just to find that product; unless that product is critical to your livelihood, in 99.9% of the cases it isn’t, you’ll most probably leave for a competitor’s website.
Make it extremely easy for people to search for whatever they want on your e-commerce website; to take things further, show them related products whenever they make a purchase or add a product to their cart and you stand to get more sales.
This article on Practicalecommerce.com, backed with a few studies, explains how important showing related posts can be for getting more e-commerce sales.
3. Most Recent Products
What’s new right now?
Most people are always on the lookout for what’s latest and fashionable; by giving these people an option to know what’s the latest on your e-commerce website, you stand to make a lot more sales.
4. Most Popular Products
Just like with most recent products, showing people popular products can help you increase sales.
Everybody wants to be in the know and nobody wants to be in the minority; by highlighting the most popular products on your e-commerce website or in a particular industry at the moment, you’ll be able to sell more of those products.
Every major e-commerce site – Amazon, BN etc. – allow people to browse products based on their popularity and this is often where most shoppers start on the site; sometimes, it’s out of curiosity to know what others are buying which eventually leads to them finding a product they love.
5. Stock Availability
It isn’t a great experience when a customer finds a product she likes, believes she can get it and then adds it to cart only to find out it’s no longer available; usually, time and often emotions would have been invested into this and if it’s becoming common customers will no longer trust you.
When a product is available, make it clear; if possible, let people know how many of a certain product you have in stock. By doing this, not only will you save your users’ time and increase their trust in you, you’ll also increase demand for products that will soon be out of stock.
6. Keep it Simple, Stupid
Remove all clutters. especially on the page that determines whether people buy or not.
When someone is still undecided about buying a certain product, the last thing you want to do is bombard her with adverts for other products; remove all clutters, unnecessary sidebars and even links to related products; you can show these once a user has decided to buy a product, not before they have.
7. Ensure Each Product Has a Description
Is it easy for people to know what they want to buy or do they always have to do a Google search to determine if a product is right for them? If they have to do a Google search, they’ll most likely have to visit another website for information on the product, which automatically increases their chances of buying from that website.
8. Constantly Recommend Your Favorite Picks
Sometimes, it can be very difficult deciding which product to buy from a sea of products. You can make more sales by dedicating a portion of your website to letting people know what your favorite picks for the day/week are and the benefits of having them; this could be done for each category on your website and you could have industry experts discuss products they like most.
To take things further, you can even give people discounts if they decide to buy some of the products.
9. Make it Easy to Get Help
Shoppers will always have questions, so make it easy for them to get answers to these questions; create a FAQ page that answers every major question people could have and then make it extremely easy for them to get in touch with you if they have questions.
The customer experience is often the deal breaker for most e-commerce sites; if people can’t get the answer to common questions exactly when they need them, you will most probably lose the sale.
10. Don’t Force People to Register
In other words, don’t force people to register before they buy.
How much could having people register before they buy be costing your e-commerce business? It might be difficult to tell exactly how much, but it cost one business $300 million annually. Yes, that’s $300 million, annually!
Should you have a registration option on your website? Definitely. However, don’t force people to register before they buy; it’s like having people get a membership card before they buy from your offline store and, yes, it’s costing you sales.