15 required items for online stores
All sites are unique in their own way.
We are seeing trends in e-commerce website design such as animation, 360-degree product preview, advanced filtering, and dynamic product search.
However, trends do not guarantee conversion or reliable user experience. There are certain points, respecting which each e-commerce site can remain relevant and competitive.
1. User friendly
Simplicity must be the goal of good design, and you don’t need to sacrifice elegance to achieve it.
In fact, research shows that 76% of consumers say that the most important characteristic of the site is ease of use.
The goal is to help buyers quickly get what they want. Online sellers have minutes, if not seconds, to make a sale. Focus on user experience by providing shopping categories, filters, and comparison options.
To make your e-commerce site more user-friendly, consider the following:
• Improve your search functionality with the auto-fill option.
• Create effective visual navigation.
• Pre-fill forms
E-commerce sites must be a competitive advantage.
2. Mobile site
Mobile purchases account for 50% of online transactions.
Thanks to a responsive website, content intuitively adapts to any device to ensure maximum usability.
Walmart increased sales from mobile devices by 98% after optimizing its mobile site.
And Intelligentsia has created a better shopping experience on mobile devices, leading to an increase in mobile transactions by 16%.
It doesn't matter if you have millions of product pages or five.
Creating a convenient mobile application for your customers will improve sales and, possibly, your rating.
3. Photos and videos in high resolution
Gone are the days of posting a single photo with several items and a price tag.
Buyers want to see different perspectives and people using the product in different conditions. They want to be able to scale up and feel the product.
Technical solutions for images are very important. According to Adobe, for images that do not load or are loaded for too long, the consumer reduction rate will be 39%.
And we are not only talking about professional photos. Vanity Planet found that adding Instagram photos to their product pages increased views by 24%.
E-commerce websites should display multiple photos for each product. Photos must be high resolution and optimized for page loading.
4. User reviews
Buyers read reviews. About 95% of them.
And 57% of consumers will use the business only if it has 4 or more stars.
You might think that negative feedback is a sales killer. In fact, the opposite is true.
Having negative feedback can often be a positive thing. It has been shown that products without negative reviews are considered censored, and, in turn, buyers will find that positive reviews are fake.
Depending on the functionality of the websites, e-commerce sites may use plug-ins from the most popular survey platforms, including Foursquare and Facebook.
Far-sighted e-commerce sites use reviews as user-generated content to attract public attention and attract fans.
5. Special offers
Most e-commerce sites promote special offers using standard marketing methods — via email, social media, text messaging, etc.
The next level e-commerce sites use the site’s features and publish special offers in the headlines.
When buyers realize that they are getting a special deal, it encourages them to buy more and spend more time searching the site.
If e-commerce sites use regular promotions, and even select a menu item and page for this, this will not only increase sales, but also improve SEO.
6. Wish lists
Shop, save and share!
E-commerce sites that do not use wish lists leave revenue.
What could be better than having customers on the lists of products they want and most likely buy in the future? This is just a dream remarketing campaign.
It is also an opportunity to share the brand with new customers. When shoppers share their wish lists with family and friends, it sends free traffic with embedded social proof to the website.
7. Find in the store
Sometimes you do not want to wait for the delivery of goods. You want instant gratification.
Many people like to learn about the product on the Internet before ordering its delivery, they are also interested in the availability of this product in the offline store, so as not to wait. This makes it incredibly useful icons in which local stores have products in stock.
8. Similar products
A simple vision of the phrase “you might like it” triggers a surge in serotonin, signaling curiosity and arousal.
The “Similar Products” feature on an e-commerce site creates the desired “sticking” effect that many marketers are striving to achieve.
Related products may also include comparisons, “people who bought this product were also looking for,” and so on.
9. Frequently asked questions (FAQ)
Complex purchases require trust in the seller and detailed information about the product.
Frequently asked questions also provide an opportunity to solve problems with the purchase - buyers often ask about product support, returns, lost account passwords, etc.
10. Social proof
Brands and online sellers who communicate with their customers on an emotional level create trust and brand protection.
Social connections are indisputable, and the ability to communicate with the audience has become easier than ever.
Linking social profiles and user-generated content to an e-commerce site is a must-have feature that will give the online retailer brand a character.
Buyers are inundated with a constant “buy now” and “get it” stream. It is the brands that interact with customers in social terms, create customers for life. They offer products that help others and that care for people.
Social networks allow e-commerce brands to demonstrate authenticity and associate an emotional connection with their products.
• View your Nike account on Pinterest to see how combining products with motivational images has a huge impact.
• See how Ikea uses custom content to share design ideas and inspire us to use their products.
• See how Lowe's releases how-to videos that teach people how to use his products.
11. Security features
Online transactions are an integral part of our life.
Thus, e-commerce websites can be a profitable target for cybercriminals. It is very important that online merchants protect customer information and take steps to ensure confidentiality.
It all starts with a secure e-commerce platform.
12. Additional payment methods
In the world of Apple Pay and PayPal, advanced payment options are a must-have feature for an e-commerce site.
Just consider the ease of use associated with shopping in one click on Amazon.
There are many popular ways to pay online. The key is understanding who your customer is, and implementing the most effective solutions.
If your site restricts payment options, be sure to explain why.
For example, an e-commerce site may not offer Bitcoin as a payment method after determining its unreliability.
13. Delivery Details
Surprisingly, unexpected shipping costs are the main reason for not buying.
It is imperative that e-commerce sites include shipping information in the early stages of the checkout process, including a zip code calculator showing the cost.
It is also useful to specify the delivery time and options for faster delivery. The sites should have a list of countries that are outside the normal delivery zones.
Interestingly, buyers spend 30% more per order if free shipping is included. Be sure to include codes for free delivery on all pages of the site through the navigation header, if applicable.
14. Contact page
When it comes to launching an e-commerce site, where most of the business is conducted on the Internet, nothing builds trust, except for the overly obvious and well-presented “contact us” function. This is especially true when selling high-quality products or technical products.
Never stop a customer from contacting or asking for support.
Consider the contact page as a website function. Include several communication methods, including phone, email and online form.
15. Refund policy
Return policies are an important feature of any e-commerce site.
Your return policy must be clearly visible and well written or illustrated.
This is another feature of trust in online sales. This convinces buyers that if they are unhappy or simply need a different size, the brand is always open to them.
E-commerce sites have an incredible opportunity to use proven features mixed with innovative new elements to create fantastic sites that buy a lot!