Despite a failing world economy, the online sales have increased per a Mastercard report. With the impending holiday (and shopping season), these sales are set to increase even further. As the web continues to swell and grow, more and more businesses are identifying and embracing the power of eCommerce to reach a wider global audience. This looks promising and is all set to improve sales for organizations that are front-runners in adopting eCommerce web solutions. However, it has to be remembered that there are traits common to successful eCommerce websites.
Here are some of the commonalities that we have found in successful eCommerce websites world over:
Properly Defined Goals
Every page on your eCommerce website should serve a purpose. This seems like an overwhelming statement to most of the people as they think that their eCommerce website has thousands of webpages.
While this is true that your site has hundreds to thousands of pages, if you adopt proper eCommerce website design practices, this is an easy implementation. Your website actually has less than 100 most important pages. These may be your product pages (best selling ones), category pages, review pages, contact pages and about pages. With standardized design and a universal architecture, it is possible to offer visitors a unique path to follow. It also helps you visualize your website in terms of “hierarchical units” or steps that your visitors tread. You can adopt best practices for one category page and apply it to all of them.
Effective eCommerce Website Home Pages
It is true that eCommerce websites that have visitors landing in from internal pages, outperform those that solely depend on website home page as the landing page. However, the contribution of the website home page cannot be undermined on any website. If you confuse or overwhelm visitors with too many products, tens of offers and specials and an obscure search box or navigation, your eCommerce website will experience a high bounce rate and a lower conversion rate.
Usually, SEO practitioners and businesses both, place Web Analytics at the end of their list. While it is important to increase the “mouth of your website traffic funnel”, it is equally important to take corrective actions, based on your web analytics data, to stop visitors dropping out of it. When you visualize visitors as people rather than “Visits” or “Hits”, things start making more and more sense to you. Once you realize that the Visit data shows the struggle of a real person on your website, you strive to end that struggle. That is what most of the successful eCommerce websites do everywhere and that is what you should do too.
Same is true for easy checkouts, order confirmation and order shipment emails. Get the basics right!
Ease-of-use at every point
It can be a simple one page checkout form or the diversity of the product image showcase, attention to details can help you in selling more and successfully too. An interesting case in point was a shoe company for whom we designed and developed and eCommerce website. The hiking shoes purchasers always used to place prominence on the sole and its grip. We understood this from a research that we did about their audiences. We made sure we asked the client to add the photos of hiking shoes that had their sole displayed prominently, helping the adventure types and sport lovers to take a decision in favor of buying.
Establish a connect
People like to deal with those whom they have trust in. This doesn’t means that you go all out and make friends with everyone who visits your website. It is simply not possible. Instead, make sure that you give your visitors every opportunity to know about your and get in touch with you. What made you start your eCommerce website, where are you located, do you have any real storefronts, people who run your office, some nice pictures of it being well run etc.
Giving your eCommerce website a warm and a personal touch helps in improving the confidence level of visitors in it.
In a nutshell, thorough planning and impeccable execution is only possible if you emphasize each and every phase of your eCommerce web development process thoroughly. eCommerce website owners need to analyze and re-analyze their website and make updates based on smart information through the analytics tools that they can use.