E-commerce Website Design: Five Best User Experience Practices
Have you ever called customer support when you’ve encountered an issue with your online purchase? Most likely, you haven’t. It’s much easier to visit another online store.
Today, it’s crucial for retailers to give potential customers the best possible user experience (UX). Doing so ensures that customers make it all the way to the checkout—and come back for more in the future.
In this article, we highlight five critical aspects of UX for e-commerce website design.
1. Make a Great First Impression
There are three key questions every potential customer has once they land on your site:
- Who are they?
- What do they sell?
- What is their value proposition?
Landing pages should cover all these questions, without the need to scroll down or interact with the page. In other words, users should understand what the brand is, what products they can buy, and why it’s better to buy those from you, rather than your competitors.
2. Create an Intuitive Navigation
The customer’s journey to their cart should be as simple and clear as possible. Never let customers feel lost on your site. Here are some basic, yet crucial, things that you should consider:
- Make the menu visible
- Clearly name each page
- Make the URL easy to read
- Always ensure there is a way to navigate back home
- Include easy search and filter functionality
- Ensure easy access to more information about an item
- Provide a comparison option
- Include “add to cart” and “save for later” buttons
- Make sure that you provide seller contact information
Each link, page, and button can affect your conversion rate significantly. With the current level of competition, each mistake can cost you a customer—don’t waste your customers’ time on unnecessary steps, features, or complicated website architecture.
3. Tailor Your Site to Your Customer’s Journey
Ideally, you want your site to mirror your typical customer’s journey. Perfectly crafted, this technique should seamlessly guide potential clients all the way to an actual purchase. This journey usually involves the following stages:
- Attention: Give your customer initial information about your product or service
- Interest: Engage your customer and raise his or her interest by comparing the product to competitors or by talking about the product’s unique selling points (USP)
- Desire: Highlight product benefits. Why should someone buy this?
- Action: Find compelling and easy ways to drive customers to a purchase
Don’t forget to include retention features. Features such as an opportunity to leave feedback, rate the product, and receive special offers and promotions are critical to building up a base of customers who regularly come back to make another purchase.
4. Focus on Your Product Page
Another important aspect of user experience to keep in mind is the product page layout. This page or product card should contain just the right amount of information to direct a customer to make a purchase. Too much information can overload the page and distract the customer. Too little information might not be enough to help the customer make an informed purchase. Consider performing a target audience analysis and testing each product or service category.
5. Create a Sleek User Interface
Apart from concentrating on information architecture and logic transitions, user interface (UI) design is also a critical part of the customer’s journey. These are several aspects that UI designers should consider when creating an exceptional customer experience. The site’s color scheme should align with your brand but also engage the user. Color accents should be used to draw attention to calls to action and areas of interaction. Lastly, creating visual interest and harmony throughout will go a long way in engaging and winning over customers.
User research is always a central aspect of every strong online business. Knowing your target audience, what your customers want, and how they buy should guide your sales funnels and how you communicate USP effectively. Be sure to measure your results, compare them to industry benchmarks, and always seek new ways to enhance your user experience.