10 Essential Aspects Any eCommerce Website Can’t Function Without
Earlier, shopping was a women’s thing, but not anymore! You will come across many online stores featuring a wide and an impressive range of tech gadgets that can allure any man to be glued to screen for long hours. There are also various online stores through which people can shop for kids, parents, teenagers and for various age groups. The fact is that today, eCommerce websites engage customer attention than never before. Online shopping is not confined to a niche or aimed at a small market anymore.
In this article, I am not really going to state the advantages of having an online store, we all know the importance of having one. The factors that I would like to talk on are the various home page designs and layouts that can determine the success of your online business.
Running A Good eCommerce Website
It is a fact that there are no universal features or specific design options that ensure the success of your online store. However, there are many essential aspects to be taken care of along with some desirable things that should not be ignored while setting up an online store.
Initially, it is highly important to have a clear understanding of the main goals of the eCommerce web pages
Making Your Online Store Sell
This might sound a little weird but it is a fact that many online stores are created without thinking about generating sales. These websites might look cool but the fact is that they are useless when it comes to online shopping. For these websites, it is enough that they symbolize the online presence of the brand or the physical store. All this type of website does is display a ‘buy’ button in a plain view. This is where some webmasters fail to get the attention of their users and allure them to buy products online.
Feature The Benefits Of Your Products
A readably list of product categories or a grid view can be the catalyst of driving online sales. Featuring ‘special deals’ and ‘new arrivals’ is also a smart way to entice the web surfers to buy from your website. You might be aware that there is a huge chunk of online surfers who are not sure about what they exactly want, all they want to do is hang around online. Your goal as an online seller is to target these types of people and tell them what they are missing out on.
Give A Reason To Your Website Visitors To Trust You
People always have a close watch on what they spend on therefore it is natural that they want to know every small detail about the product that they are going to buy. This includes the purchase process, the payment methods, warranties, delivery service etc. This information will help the people making a decision and completing the transaction. So, it is crucial to ensure that you have linked to the appropriate pages from your home page. This foresight will help you in saving a lot of time and will help in reducing the number of pre-sales requests from the customers.
And now you are ready to go ahead! I would like to suggest you any features that will help you to improvise on your web store usability and enhance the profitability. These features are desirable, not obligatory!
First things first! The logo is your online identity. A clear and impressive logo works as a business card for both start up online stores and already existing branded online stores. In terms of online shopping, a good logo is a reassuring symbol and works as an element of trust for the company. The famous online store brands can afford to create a stylish home page with minimum features. An impressive logo or a mascot, a beautiful image or video along with a ‘buy’ button will be sufficient for such design.
Great Deals, Freebies And Free Shipping
In today’s world, people make a quick decision whether they like a website or not. This is the reason why your website should be fully equipped for grabbing visitor’s attention in just a few seconds. In case you don’t succeed in doing that, your visitors will find an alternate website that is more attractive within no time. It is a fact that nothing attracts people other than great shopping deals. People tend to buy a lot of stuff online whether they need it or not just because they are available at discounted prices.
Some people are attracted to free shipping and some people are attracted to the mark downs. However, everyone is surely interested in any kind of promo offers or discounts. Thereby, discounts and special offers are the first important factors that people look for. Interesting promos and all time low prices allure the visitors to spend, spend and spend. Therefore it makes more sense to position the eye-catching promotional banners along with the discount offers on the upper section of your online store home page. Moreover, also make sure to feature the free shipping option in attractive colors somewhere on the home page that is prominently seen.
Feature The Latest News And Most Popular Products
The home page is the best place to feature the following things:
- A news
- A particular sales/discounts period
- Upcoming events
Or anything else the buyers should know about your products or services
Don’t make it very difficult for the buyers to find the exclusive deals and special offers. Also consider the fact that the recurring customers are likely to go through the ‘new items on sale’ instead of spending more time on browsing through the regular items.
Display The Brands
If you have branded products on sale, then feature them upfront on the home page. This is a great attention-grabber especially for the first-time visitors to your website who are not sure about what they want to purchase. Moreover, there are a wide range of large retailers who provide the opportunity for shopping for the brands. Customers can find what they want through targeted channels on your online store website.
Search Box, Login Box And Shopping Cart
These are important features of an eCommerce website that are usually placed besides each other. It’s difficult to imagine an online store that does not have a shopping cart function. The most widely used shopping cart icon is a simple basket. Many online stores also provide their customers with private accounts through which it is possible to view all their previous and current orders.
Every customer who prefers to shop from your website can select a personal username and password for further use. Apart from this, you can also send these customers the special discount and offer details. If you are operating a large online store that has a wide range or products then it is extremely essential to have a search box. This will also prove useful for the customers who need a specific product and they want to quickly locate it on your website for purchasing it.
Payment System Icons
eCommerce websites deal with a wide range of customers from all corners of the world all these customers have different preferences when it comes to online payments. There are also many technical limitations to any particular payment method or option. This is the reason why it advisable to clear the payment options in advance. For example, some online store websites do not accept payments through international credit cards while others do; some eCommerce website have a condition that the customer’s billing address and the delivery address should be in the same country.
Online stores usually use the credit cards, debit cards, gift vouchers, PayPal, cash on delivery etc. as their prominent payment systems. You can easily locate these payment icons in the footer or on the top right hand side corner of the prominent eCommerce websites.
Social Media Channels
It is said that almost 20% of the online shopping is done after browsing the social media websites. People prefer taking a public opinion as well. The famous social media websites like facebook and twitter are the best sources for getting the information one needs.
Moreover, the social media channels also provide with great opportunities for self-promotion. Online communities are helpful platforms for identifying the most active and influential customers. these platforms also help in getting in touch with new customers. for the online store websites, this is a good option to keep the customers updated with the latest news or special deals that are only meant for the Facebook and Twitter followers.
Contact Information & Online Chats
While shopping online, buyers interact with the sellers through computer networks and thereby the online transactions are no longer geographically bound. However, when there is any issue, most of the customers prefer someone to talk to instead of interacting online. This is one of the core aspects of an online store support team. 24/7 hotlines and chats add a lot of value to customer service.
A store-finder tab is an essential option for online stores that deal with various national or local retailers. A lot of conservative customers who prefer to go to the actual store might visit the website only for locating the nearest store branch. Most likely, one will find this option either on the top or on the bottom right hand side corner of any website. In case the store has a large trade network, then it is a good idea to create a special store location search box for specific country, city, state, zip code or address.
Trustmarks indicate logos or small images that show a security guarantee provided by an external party. This indicates that the website is safe for purchasing products online. Some of the prominent trustmarks are provided by entities like Verisign, Network Solutions, TRUSTe, GeoTrust etc. Such security certificates create a sense of security among the customers and they are comfortable sharing their personal information for making the online transactions. Visitors are more likely to make a purchase if they are assured that their payment details are safe.
The big brands can do without displaying the trustmarks as they have already secured a good online reputation.
Get these factors in place and you are good to go! While setting up an online store website the most important thing it keep in mind is that small things make a huge difference, thereby pay attention to every minute detail.