Sunday, April 27, 2014

229- 5 Essential Tips For Optimizing Your E-Commerce Website

5 Essential Tips For Optimizing Your E-Commerce Website

5 Essential Tips For Optimizing Your E-Commerce Website

E-commerce websites are storefronts. For customers, your rival is just a click away! Keeping visitors hooked on to your site, to stay back and actually shop is pretty challenging. 


Most e-commerce websites go overboard with their designs - with wacky art, heavy flash animations that load slowly and hang browsers, and difficult navigation pathways. The best products and the lowest prices would mean nothing to your customers if they have difficulty in navigating, using the features and making payments at your website. 

E-commerce website development is a science in itself and needs just the right balance of creative elements and design that support customer engagement and visitor conversion. Here are five essential tips for your e-commerce website that will ensure you get the best out of your store.

1. Add to Cart and Call to Action Buttons - Clarity is the Key

Make sure the "Add to Cart" button is clearly visible, yes, CLEARLY VISIBLE. Many websites make the mistake of merging these and other call to action buttons within the color scheme of the website and make the additional mistake of using fancy buttons. The purchase button has to stand out. 

It should be the first thing a visitor or customer spots after seeing the product. It should be placed beside the product. Don't get too creative with the phrase too. A simple "Add to Cart" or "Buy Now" is better than over-creative wordings that will only make your website look spammy. 

Surveys have also shown that customers react well to direct call to action buttons like 'add-to-cart' and 'buy now' rather than indirect ones that say 'more details' and 'learn more'. Rule number one of e-commerce website development - If you want visitors to buy your products, make it CLEAR and easy for them!

2. Autocomplete Search Functions - The Magic Wand

It is highly important that you add a search function on your website. Customers prefer to make a quick keyword search rather than browse through hundreds of products to find what they are looking for. 

Most often, an autocomplete function in the search box is the one thing that leads them into buying your products. That's because it alleviates the difficulty faced by customers in recalling a product name. A search box with an autocomplete feature makes sure they don't have a frustrating experience. 

Rule number two of e-commerce website development - Add an autocomplete search box, it acts a sales assistant who gets them exactly what they want!

3. The Right Masthead - A Trust Inducer

Mastheads are used at the top of a website for design reasons. While some sites provide their helpline numbers and other utility links on their mastheads, others use them for logos and graphics. Usually, visitors mentally block out the contents of the masthead and only look at it when they require specific information. 

The secret to having a good masthead is that it should be subtle, non-distracting and informative. Preferably, it should contain your helpline numbers, links to policy updates, offers, etc. 

Rule number three of e-commerce website development - Use the masthead wisely. With the right content, mastheads induce trust and confidence among customers by being there with the right information when they need it!

4. Web Design - Cleanliness is the Best Policy

A clean design with less clutter and more appeal - that is what customers expect from online web-stores. The site should focus on products and customers should know what exactly you are selling them the moment they land on your home page. 

Customers should enjoy their shopping experience. So make it easy for them to see your products. Big, descriptive product images with the right tools that help visitors customize the displays according to their requirements (pricing, release date, reviews, discounts, etc.) are an essential. Do not confuse the shoppers' eyes with cluttered product pages, links and design elements. 

Rule number four of e-commerce website development - Clean up your store. Provide a simple design that focuses on the product and not the content.

5. Make Navigation Easy - From Landing to Checkout

One of the main reasons people buy online is that they wish to save time and shop fast. If customers feel their shopping is taking forever, they will abandon your site midway. How can you make sure your customers continue to the checkout page? 

Through breadcrumb navigation and effective navigation menus of course! Through breadcrumb navigation, customers know exactly where they stand in the purchase process. They also have the option of going back and altering their actions rather than starting over their shopping from scratch. 

A 'continue shopping' button should be placed after customers add a product to their cart so they can return to their shopping. The navigation menu should be easily visible and well organized. 

Products should be divided into the right categories and subcategories for easy navigation. While viewing a product, customers should know exactly which subcategory and category they are viewing. 

Rule number five of e-commerce website development - Customers should feel you are accompanying them at every stage of their shopping. This is possible through breadcrumb navigation and effective navigation menus that make sure they don't get lost in the product quagmire.

This is possible through breadcrumb navigation and effective navigation menus that make sure they don't get lost in the product quagmire.



Article Source: EzineArticles.com

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