In a world driven by aesthetics, good design is non-negotiable. Design is what gives that nudge to make the purchase, especially when it comes to an e-commerce website. It is what differentiates a ‘brand’ from just another product on the internet.
“Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.”
– Steve Jobs, co-founder of Apple, Inc.
In the e-commerce world, especially, the decision-making process of the customer can be heavily influenced by design. After all, a good presentation is what appeals to the eye.
Just how important is design?
A study by Forrester shows that whether you have an established e-commerce website or an online store, you can boost customer conversion rates up to 400% just with a frictionless user interface!
The fight for the top spot in e-commerce is fiercer than ever before. To stay on top of their competition, businesses must find ways to innovate and impress their customers. A great design can go a long way in forming a lasting impression. So, here are a few hacks to take your e-commerce website design a few notches higher!
Mobile-optimized e-commerce websites
The most important factor to keep in mind while designing websites in today’s age is to make sure they are tailored to fit a mobile view. Most website visits are garnered by customers casually surfing the internet via their smartphones and tablets.
Statista claims that mobile devices account for 48 percent of all webpage views. Having a mobile-optimized website can help you boost your conversions greatly, too.
What’s more, all new sites are being indexed using Google’s mobile-first indexing. The world’s biggest search engine, Google’s crawling, indexing, and ranking systems now use the mobile version of your page to rank your e-commerce website for mobile-initiated searches.
Minimize loading time
The average attention span of a human being has dropped to 8 seconds and if that isn’t alarming, we don’t know what is. Companies now have to think harder to catch the attention of fleeting minds.
People are busy and expect quick responses. This is why loading time plays a huge role in customer acquisition. A slow website can cause most of your customers to abandon their purchase and move on to other options. According to CrazyEgg, a one-second delay decreases customer satisfaction by 16% and 7% loss in conversion.
One tip is to use applications to compress CSS and JS files to optimize your e-commerce website design. You can also look to enhance server response times by looking for performance bottlenecks.
Provide social proof
Customers always love to see some proof whether the product works before they make a purchase. And, who better than a customer who already enjoys your product?
Customer testimonials and reviews are an important part of the e-commerce industry. In fact, 68% of Generation Z analyzes and inspects reviews before making a purchase.
Here are a few tips to make the best of your customer testimonials:
- Place them strategically in a distinct part of your website, in a way that website visitors won’t miss seeing it.
- Make sure to include a picture of the customer (with their consent) to legitimize your testimonial. This makes it a tad more relatable than usual.
- Finalize a clear, concise testimonial in a legible font to make it easy to read. Testimonials form solid impressions at first glance, so make it count!
Include a global search bar
More often than not, repeat customers and referrals usually know what they’re looking for in your website. A global search bar shortens the time spent searching for the product and speeds up the purchase.
Simply put, if a user cannot find a way to search your site quickly for the product they want, they are more likely to go somewhere else for it. A pro-tip is to also add filters to your search bar so the customer can sift through your products category-wise. Popular search filters include size, colour, brand, and price.
Ensure a secure checkout process
Payments lie at the core of any e-commerce customer experience. With a payment provider like Razorpay, you can now offer a safe payment experience for your customers.
Digital transactions are on the rise and the Indian audience is finally beginning to break out of its shell to confidently place prepaid orders. A simple, seamless checkout page with multiple options to pay can help lessen abandonment of orders.
At the checkout page, you can also suggest items that are relevant to the customer’s interests according to their cart/wishlist. This may also prove to be an effective way to cross-sell your products.
Minimalism is key
Nobody likes a crowded website with too many things to say. We’re not saying that you only need to have two icons on the whole website to display minimalism but there is a middle ground that we can find.
A concise layout with bold text and hues to indicate changing styles and seasons can have a world of difference to your e-commerce website. Make sure to display your flagship products on the front page of the website, from where you will lead your customer to where they want.
Sharper icons and fewer words can sometimes convince your customers more than you think.
Link your social media
You may have noticed that most popular e-commerce stores have social ‘badges’ that link their social media to the website. Including social icons in your e-commerce website design invites customers to keep in touch and encourages more long-term customer/brand relationships.
Having social media links on your website has also been proven to boost SEO rankings, not to mention increasing chances for that extra follow or like! Ensure that the links open your social media accounts in a new tab to minimize drop-off from your e-commerce website.
Organizing is crucial
To make it as easy as possible for users to find the products they are looking for, make sure to keep the products on your site classified into specific categories. A chronological list of all your products in a clean, organized manner can boost your e-commerce website by a notch.
The categories should be easy to find through a menu bar to streamline the search process. This can also give users a glimpse into product categories they might not know you offer.
Condensed FAQ section
A majority of customers have a lot of questions about the product before making a purchase. This especially applies to the clothing and fashion industry where finer details are crucial. A major number of users abandon websites because a lot of their questions are not answered.
‘Is this 100% cotton?’
‘Does this come in medium size?’
‘How many days does it usually take to deliver this sofa?’
…are a few examples of questions that your customers may have.
In your product offerings, make sure to add a section of FAQ where you answer all the questions that customers may have. This may concern matters of size, colour, texture, etc. Also, make sure to place it clearly beside the respective product so the customer need not look any further.
Visual appeal hacks
As a business owner, your wish is to make it as easy as possible for visitors on your site to make a purchase. Keep in mind the natural flow of the eye when designing your e-commerce website.
Studies and heat maps have shown that people tend to view websites in an E or F formation, starting at the top-left corner and working their way horizontally across the page, then down the left side, horizontally again, so on and so forth.
This is why navigation menus on e-commerce websites typically appear horizontally across the top of each page of a website. Use the E formation in your e-commerce website design to guide visitors’ eyes towards main conversion points.
That ends this article on how to improve your e-commerce website design and bag those extra conversion rates. We hope these hacks will prove successful for your e-commerce website and design. We’ll see you again soon with another interesting piece!
Meanwhile, check out how our e-commerce offering, Razorpay Thirdwatch is helping businesses slash RTO rates and increase their revenue!