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E-Commerce Bare Necessities

Posted on March 16th, 2016

E-commerce websites engage online consumers. Attractive designs and effective layouts are necessary to grow your customer base and bottom line.

People usually decide quickly whether they like a website or not which is why you need to grab their interest within 5 seconds.

Running a good e-commerce website requires user friendly navigation and a clear understanding of the main goals.

Customer loyalty these days tends to begin with best price, instant availability, and the quickest and most affordable shipping solution. It is imperative to link the appropriate pages from your home page.

Be Transparent

You have one chance to make a first impression. Competition is tighter than it’s ever been and people have become accustomed to getting what they want now. Some are browsing for enough information to make a decision, while others have already researched and made a decision. They want to know everything about the product they are going to buy including the purchase process, payment methods, delivery, available customer service and warranties.

Counter-intuitive use of a website and hidden fees at the end of the transaction tend to deter people enough that the excitement for the buy can turn to frustration and mistrust. Double that with the booming use of Facebook and Twitter and that customer’s experience can be broadcast widely and quickly.

Design a Clear Logo

Whether your business is online only or an online extension of a physical store, brand synergy is key. A clear and memorable logo is a business card for both startups and branded stores. When it comes to online shopping, a recognizable logo is a reassuring symbol of trust for the consumer purchasing from your store.

What are the Advantages of your Products and Services?

Your goal as an online seller is to stand out in the market and show consumers what they can purchase from you and the service levels they will receive, that they may not get elsewhere.

A list of product categories can help buyers easily navigate your online store.

For stores with large catalogues of inventory, it is not a good idea to put all your products directly on the home page. Instead, have the latest trends and interesting offers front and centre.

If you have branded goods on sale, display them on the home page. This is a great way to capture first time visitors.  While they may not know you yet, they do know the brand and this will help keep them on your site longer.

Deals, Discounts & Delivery

Nothing attracts new consumers and repeat buyers better than shopping deals. Special deals and new arrivals are good to highlight in order to capture higher sales transactions and repeat business.

Some consumers like discounts, some like to be the first with the latest styles and trends, while others are attracted by major markdowns and free shipping.

It makes sense to position discount offers on the upper part of your store’s home page.

Free shipping promos or minimums are also a huge hit. It may be a good idea to show customer’s your appreciation by offering the benefit of purchasing a minimum order amount, to qualify for free shipping.

Shopping Cart, Login and Search Boxes

The shopping cart, login box and search boxes are usually placed together on every e-commerce site. A shopping-cart function is pretty well an expectation of online consumers. The most popular shopping cart icon is a basket.

Every customer who wants to purchase requires a personal login and password for further access.

For online stores with large inventories, a search box is a ‘must have’.

It may also be beneficial to have an order history available for your consumers so they can easily refer back for repeat purchases.

Payment System Icons

E-commerce websites deal with consumers from all over the world and they each have their own preferred payment system. It is best to clarify payment options up front. Some e-commerce websites don’t accept international credit cards and others may require that the customer billing and delivery address be in the same country as the store’s location.

Online stores commonly use credit cards or PayPal as their main payment system. You will want to show these universal payment icons on your site. Payment options should be clearly displayed on the home page.

Social Media

Online purchases often take place after a consumer sees something through social media sites. People tend to search through public reviews. Social media sparks opportunities for promotion as online communities can help identify target consumers, or find new consumers who would be attracted to your online store. This is a good avenue to use to keep consumers tuned into the latest news, trends or special deals.

Phone & Online Chats

With online shopping, buyers interact with sellers making transactions that are not typically geographically bound. When there is a problem, consumers prefer to have someone they can talk to.

If online purchases can be done 24/7, it is a good idea to provide 24-hour customer service access by toll free phone and online chat to answer questions.

Trustmarks

Trustmarks are small images or logos that show a security guarantee by an external party indicating that it is safe to shop on the site. Some of these trustmarks come from McAfee, VeriSign, BBB, TRUSTe, and GeoTrust. These certificates give consumers a sense of security and the confidence to share their private information.

Expand your company online with a store front and enjoy the benefits of:

  • Increased Sales
  • Repeat Consumers
  • A larger average order value
  • A 24/7 advantage over your competitors
  • Management of your categories, products and inventory
  • Management of your promotions and loyalty programs to increase your average order value.
  • Making it easy for your consumers to buy from you and pay the way they want.
  • Charging applicable taxes with flexible tax rules.

Please call Ancell Marketing at 778 285 2288 for any E-Commerce website assistance.