Websites / 5 Pieces of Advice From Our Ecommerce Web Design Expert

5 Pieces of Advice From Our Ecommerce Web Design Expert

Andy Thorne
shopping trolley

With the rise of online shopping, there has never been a better time to improve your ecommerce web design. It’s easy to get caught up in designing an ecommerce website that looks beautiful but doesn’t consider the needs of the user. Keep reading to find out our top 5 pieces of advice from our Ecommerce Web Design Expert on user-friendly ecommerce web design.

1. Think like a website visitor

Understanding customers needs, questions and expectations will help your design

If you want to design a great ecommerce experience for your site visitors, you have to think like them. Understanding their needs, questions and expectations will help you to design a layout that is simple to navigate and ensure they have a successful visit.

Users often turn to eCommerce sites because it is a convenient way to shop. Therefore, your website should be just that, easy to navigate and well-designed to result in a smooth experience.

To better understand your visitors, use tools including empathy maps, interviews, analysis heuristic analysis to establish what they feel and think whilst using your site, what questions they have, their pain points and goals and any challenges they face whilst using your site.

This will give you a good picture of their experience and show you where to improve your eCommerce site to give your visitors a better experience.

2. Use high-quality images

Give customers an insight into the high quality of your products, this is the part where detail is key

Unlike in-store shopping, your customers can’t see up close what your products look and feel like, so product photographs and videos are the only visual reference they have.

Make it easy for visitors to get a better understanding of the look, quality and size of your products, by showing your products clearly. If you sell fashion, accessories and cosmetic products, show them on models. (be more inclusive by showing different size/skin tone models).

And if you do use models, consider your audience demographics carefully. A recent Yotpo survey confirmed that 84% of female shoppers prefer brands that employ a “variety of body types”. Another 75.3% of those female shoppers also said they prefer brands that showcase diverse ethnicities in their marketing materials.

Alternatively, showing your product alongside other objects for scale can help your customers envisage the size of the product better than if it is shown on a plain background.

If your products are amazing, but your images are poorly lit, low-resolution and misleading, your customer’s first impression will instantly be negative. Chances are, they won’t continue with their purchase and you may lose out to your competitors with high-quality images.

High-quality images don’t just apply to product listings. Use high-quality product and lifestyle images throughout your site to complement and amplify the design.

3. Be transparent and upfront about prices (product and delivery)

Informing customers about your delivery prices may encourage them to spend more

Friction caused by searching for difficult to find information can cost you successful sales. Be transparent and upfront about prices on your website, from the home page to product pages, to the checkout. Don’t make your customers wait until they’re on a product page to see how much it costs. Include the price (where appropriate, including the sale price and the original price) on the product listing page so that when visitors scan the page, they can acknowledge prices quickly.

Prices aren’t limited to products. Let customers know early on how much shipping is, and make it clear. Don’t hide the information in expandable info boxes, or at the bottom of the page.

67.4% of your users are likely to abandon the shopping process if they have to wait until they get to the basket to discover delivery costs.

To avoid friction down the line, make it clear to customers if they are responsible for the cost of returning an order.

If you offer free delivery and returns, let your customers know throughout your eCommerce site as this can be an incentive for them to make a purchase.

You can read more on shipping and returns best practice on product pages and more advice from our ecommerce web design expert in our 4 Essential Factors of Successful Ecommerce Product Page blog post.

4. Don’t distract users

Keep your customers on track to complete their intended visit, purchasing goods!

Ultimately, the purpose of an eCommerce site is to make sales. Whilst it’s good to show a snapshot of your website on the homepage, provide help and advice to customers and reinforce your brand’s story, remember what the main goal is for both you and your customers.

Prioritise the layout of the pages by showing best selling products, or popular product categories to help customers find what they need quickly and reduce the number of clicks it takes them to reach the checkout.

Make it as straightforward as possible for visitors to make a purchase. Causing distractions with pop-ups, for example, can be annoying and you risk not only losing out on purchases but also any potential email sign-ups or further engagement with your eCommerce site.

5. Include reviews and/or testimonials

Reviews have many more benefits than you think, such as SEO

Similar to how imagery provides potential customers with a visual representation of your products or services, reviews and/or testimonials help give more information from your customers. Reading both positive and negative reviews can help customers make an informed decision before making a purchase, and 84% of customers trust them as much as they would a personal recommendation.

Filtering reviews for each specific product can be beneficial as it makes it easier for customers to read the relevant reviews without having to apply filters.

Reviews have many other benefits, including boosting SEO rankings, creating loyalty between your brand and customers, and increasing engagement, so why not implement them on your eCommerce site and see the benefits for yourself.