Design plays a crucial role in your e-commerce store regardless of platform. Aside from making it appealing to users visually, it also helps to make it functional. It has the potential to improve your customers’ experience in your site, which could lead to more sales.
In designing the perfect e-commerce store, there are many different considerations you need to make. Here, we share ten simple tips to help you with your store’s design.
1. Keep Things Simple
The focus of an e-commerce website should always be the product offerings. Filling up your website with countless useless elements pulls focus away from your products. The more elements you add on a page, the more distracted your customers become. You wouldn’t want that as it would be counterintuitive.
Remember that you want your visitor’s attention to always be on your products. For this reason, the website’s design should always be kept simple. Simple is always better. Keep your design clear, clean, and simple. Keep the focus on the sale – not just the site.
2. Make Branding a Priority
Online shopping can be a scary experience for anyone. A big contributor to that is the big layer of uncertainty surrounding it. That is why buyers prefer to buy from established brands as they have a “face” that everyone can interact with. In contrast, businesses that don’t have a brand are “faceless” and are generally not trusted.
How we define branding now is a far cry from how it was defined in the past. Decades ago, branding entailed having a name, a slogan, a logo, or a combination of these elements. Today, branding is more complex yet it is even more crucial to your business.
Branding today controls your whole identity as a business. It not only contains your name and logo. It also contains how you want to be perceived by your audience. It controls how you interact with your audience and how consumers will identify with you. This allows your customers to connect with you on an emotional level.
It drives sales and creates an environment of trust. This way, you not only gain customers but also ambassadors for your brand.
3. Put Yourself in Their Shoes
One of the most important parts of building an e-commerce website today is the user experience (UX). The user experience is an all-encompassing term that details the experiences of a customer with your brand. Within your e-commerce website, every single detail will become part of the user experience.
To form a better understanding of your site’s user experience, you must put yourself in their shoes. Of course, by this, we mean keeping your audience in mind during the design process. It would be helpful to ask yourself these questions, among others:
- What kind of layout would be easier for my audience?
- How can I organize my products to make them more visible?
- Will this new feature help them with their selection and checkout process?
- Is this design appealing and easy on the eyes?
- Does this font enhance the appeal of the site?
The whole point of the user experience is to make your users’ visit to your e-commerce site pleasant. Give them a site that is well-designed, easy to navigate, and provides a hassle-free shopping experience. Ultimately, the sales will follow.
4. Use Colors to Your Advantage
Color is a powerful tool that you should put to use for your website. They not only give your brand personality but also improve how your customers perceive you. Practically speaking, a suitable color can help your brand stand out. It helps your customers tell you apart from your competitors. In fact, it helps to improve brand recognition by as much as 80%.
Colors have different meanings and can evoke different emotional responses. Here is a general color guide for meanings behind each color:
- Red – dangerous, passionate, exciting, and energetic
- Orange – fresh, youthful, creative, and adventurous
- Yellow – optimistic, cheerful, happy, and playful
- Green – natural, full of life, prestigious, and wealthy
- Blue – communicative, trustworthy, calming, and melancholic
- Purple – royalty, majestic, spiritual, and mysterious
- Brown – organic, wholesome, simple, and honest
- Pink – feminine, sentimental, romantic, and exciting
- Black – sophisticated, formal, luxurious, and sorrowful
- White – pure, simple, innocent, and minimalistic
Colors can also be used strategically within your design. For instance, red can make buttons pop out. It also evokes a feeling of energy and excitement – driving factors toward spending. This makes it a perfect choice for the “Buy” button. Studies show that having a red purchase button increases conversions by as much as 34%.
If you want to make an impact on your audience, make sure to use colors to your advantage.
5. Use High-Quality Imagery
It’s a well-known fact in web design that high-quality images boost conversions. That fact is even truer when it comes to e-commerce. That is because one of the biggest pain points in online shopping is the buyer’s inability to see items up close. The addition of high-quality images reduces, or even eliminates, this pain point.
Enhance your web design with the use of high-quality images – that is non-negotiable. No one will buy items based solely on product descriptions. And if you add low-quality, pixelated photos, you will only turn customers away.
Add a gallery of professional images of your products. Combining multiple angles of your product goes a long way in building trust. It also builds confidence in your buyers that they will be getting high-quality products.
6. Incorporate Social Proof
When designing your e-commerce site, look for ways that you can integrate social proof. Social proof is absolutely essential for you to showcase how well-trusted you are as a brand. Merely adding ways where people can add feedback shows you are open to feedback. Showcasing positive feedback helps persuade prospective buyers into making a purchase.
Provide areas where your customers can give feedback. Add a testimonials section where customers can add photos and a quote about working with you. Add a rating section where they can rate your products. Ask for reviews and testimonials from your customers that you can add to your blog.
The more people see how well-reviewed and liked you are, the more trusted you become. You generate even more sales as a result.
7. Make Navigation between Categories Easier
E-commerce stores rose to prominence exactly because of the convenience it brings to shoppers. Nothing can kill a sale faster than having that convenience taken away. If your store’s visitors find it too difficult to look for a particular product, then they will most likely just turn away. Worse, they could end up on your competitor’s store.
Make your site and product categories easier to navigate. Incorporate tools and features that make this process easier such as:
- Adding a view cart button
- Adding a navigation menu at the top
- Adding a search bar
- Allowing users to filter products
- Arranging items in a grid layout
Again, it’s all about the user experience.
8. Streamline the Checkout Process
Cart abandonment is a phenomenon that hits e-commerce stores all the time. As the name implies, this occurs when buyers fill their cart with items but abandon them at the last second. More often than not, the reason for abandonment is the lengthy process it takes for a purchase. Remember, nothing kills a sale more than going against convenience.
Make the checkout process shorter by limiting the number of hurdles they have to clear before delivery. Improve your site’s design by making it clean, simple, and easy to navigate. Limit the number of pages or forms they have to fill up. Finally, always be clear about your instructions. When everything is finally done, give customers a confirmation message to tell them everything went perfectly.
9. Optimize Your Store for Mobile
With continuous developments in smartphone technology, mobile has officially taken over as the most popular choice to surf the internet. The same goes for shopping as well. Online shopping has never been more convenient.
The number of mobile users around the world is expected to reach 4.68 billion in 2019. Securing even a small percentage of that can do wonders for your business. For this reason, you will need to optimize your e-commerce site for mobile browsers.
10. Make Content Easy to Digest
No matter how long you spend creating extensive descriptions for your products, it won’t matter. Studies show that users only read 20% of text within any given web page. But we still need to get our message across. How do we do that? We make content easy to scan.
Divide up lengthy information into smaller parts. Keep sentences and paragraphs short. Use bold or italic letters to draw attention to valuable information. Use bulleted lists to break up and condense large blocks of texts.
The easier it is to scan content, the more likely users will get valuable information. And the more information they obtain, the more likely they are to make a purchase.