Imagine you just opened the eCommerce business of your dreams. You’ve been dreaming, scheming, and planning for so long, and you finally launched your site. You’re waiting for the orders to roll in, but nothing is happening. This is a new business’ worst nightmare. Before you do launch a new eCommerce site, peruse these common design mistakes, so your dreams don’t falter before they’ve had a chance to take off.
Requiring An Account To Purchase
There are good reasons to require customers to open an account with your business to make a purchase. A customer account helps you create a more direct relationship with the customer and enables you to collect more precise data. But view this from the customer’s perspective.
Think about how many accounts a person has on the internet, now you are asking them to add another. Opening an account with a business they have not interacted with before is a massive leap for customers. Ideally, you should minimize the steps towards a purchase. Always keep that in mind.
So, rather than requiring customers to register an account before placing an order, try to encourage registration at the end of placing an order. You want to give the option to register as a means to make future orders more straightforward and to provide an order tracking service.
Using A Non-Standard Design
Having a unique design will get you noticed, but deviating from the standard will alienate customers.
For example, there are lots of car designs, but they all keep the standards similar such as the position of the steering wheel, speedometer, gears, and ignition. There is wisdom in a standard layout that allows customers to navigate a product without relearning how to use it.
Websites are similar. Design layouts, including where you place your menu, contact details, and shopping cart controls, should all be intuitive. This allows new users to navigate your website and make purchasing a simple process.
Customers look for the shopping cart in the top-right right corner, contact details in header or footer, and a zoom option on mousing over. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel to create a great website; you can use any of the best website builders for eCommerce to get the right layout.
Poor-Quality, Tiny, Or Limited Product Images
While physical stores offer customers an experience that uses all five senses, websites can only use two (seeing and hearing). The images and videos on your website must convey the quality, features, aesthetics, and unique selling points of your product.
To improve the customer experience, you must have large images or images that can expand if clicked. Keep in mind that the customer can only experience the product through the website, so include as many pictures as possible from multiple angles.
A rule of thumb is to use four images per product. These images must be at least 1024 by 768 pixels. The photos must view the product from the front, back, and sides. You can add more images to focus on features and different colors of the product. You want the customer to feel like they know exactly what they are getting.
Not Displaying Related Products
Not displaying related products might not be the worst thing in the world, but it does lose you money. Think about it; physical stores display their products according to categories for a reason. If you are buying flour, you will likely need baking powder; if you purchase shoes, you will probably buy socks; if you are purchasing a blanket, you will likely purchase linen.
You should consider designing your website to include related products. It’s the perfect opportunity to up your sales. Some software programs do it automatically for you, but you should try to do it yourself manually. Sometimes software doesn’t have the eye or industry knowledge to know what works best, such as coordinating clothes to create an outfit.
Nonstrategic Product Hierarchy And Layout
Many eCommerce sites (and websites in general) have a standard layout. The product hierarchy follows the following template: broad categories > subcategories > products. If your website doesn’t support this flow or just doesn’t display it well, you make it confusing. And in the words of Donald Miller, if you confuse you lose.
Product hierarchies are essential for computer-generated related products. It is a crucial element in how your website will inform customers about related products, similar products, and what other shoppers also bought.
Having a clear product hierarchy and layout is also crucial for the user experience. E-commerce stores usually have 100s of products and their variants; the only way that a consumer can navigate through the options is if the products are well categorized.
Success by Design
Having a smooth eCommerce website can be very beneficial for your business, so long as you avoid some of these common mistakes. Always keep in mind that the user experience should be as quick and straightforward as possible. Put effort into your design, and it will yield results with increased sales, return customers, brand value, and higher search rankings.