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9 Web Design Tips for E-commerce Sites

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Online shopping has absolutely exploded over the past decade.

Thanks to the pandemic the shift to online shopping accelerated on a global scale. 

People had no other choice but to order online as all the shops were closed.

Now it seems like everyone is an avid online shopper and as a result more and more e-commerce stores are popping up.

If you own an e-commerce store then you’ll need to make sure it looks the part so your website visitors know you’re a legitimate business.

Using clever website design techniques this is something that can be achieved.

In this article we will be giving away 9 tips that will help you design an e-commerce store your customers can’t get enough of.

Let’s get into it.

A man designing a website

9 E-commerce Web Design Tips

Here are our top design tips that you need to consider when it comes to an e-commerce website.

If you want to find out how to optimise your websites for conversions, check out our blog.

1. Simplicity is Key

Simplicity is a fundamental principle in designing an e-commerce site as it directly impacts the user experience.

The user experience is everything when it comes to websites.

If your customer lands on your site and it’s hard to navigate and just downright confusing then they’ll just leave.

They have come to your site to browse and possibly buy something, the last thing they want is a headache trying to find out how to find products.

A simple and intuitive design enhances user navigation, making it easier for your customers to find products, complete transactions, and engage with the site. 

Clear and straightforward layouts reduce confusion, leading to a more enjoyable and efficient shopping experience. 

2. Optimise for Mobile

Let’s be honest, mobiles run our lives.

I bet you’re reading this blog post from a mobile phone.

And if you’re not, I bet you will be looking at your phone in the next 5 minutes because you suddenly feel the need to check it.

Mobile phones have become almost an extension of ourselves..kind of like an episode of Black Mirror where technology takes over the world and makes everything weird.

We do everything on mobiles.

Especially online shopping.

So if your e-commerce site looks dreadful on mobile, you’ll be isolating yourself from the majority of your potential customers 

Mobile optimisation not only enhances user satisfaction but also directly impacts search engine rankings, as search engines prioritise mobile-friendly websites.

A well-optimised e-commerce site for mobile devices increases accessibility, enabling customers to browse and make purchases conveniently, anytime and anywhere. 

As mobile devices become the preferred choice for online transactions, businesses that prioritise mobile optimisation gain a competitive edge.

3. Ensure your Checkout is Intuitive

Your checkout process is one of the most important parts of your customer’s e-commerce journey.

When they want to checkout they want to make purchases.

These purchases bring in revenue and help grow your business.

Keep this process short and sweet.

Ensure they only need to provide the necessary details to complete the checkout process.

Doing so will ensure the best chance of them completing the purchase. 

Also, don’t wait until the very last step to tell your customers about shipping fees and processing fees.

Tell them all the costs as soon as possible. 

That way they know there will be nothing added on when going through the checkout journey.

If you wait until the end to add on all of these prices, customers might think you’re trying to charge them extra for the sake of it.

Imagine you were in a physical store and you grabbed some items and you knew how much they all cost.

Then when you got to the tills you found out there was an additional charge that you weren’t aware of.

You might feel the business wasn’t being fully honest with you. 

This is exactly the same with e-commerce stores.

Designing a website with code

4. Best Products on the Front of Your Site

On the high street shop windows, they have a selection of items that they place there to attract the eyes of people passing by.

Do you think they would put their worst products on display?

Or would it be the best they have to offer?

Their best of course!

For e-commerce stores, the same rule applies.

You want to have your best products front and centre on your site. 

That way when potential customers land on your site they can be blown away by the sheer class of your stock.

The homepage serves as the virtual storefront and featuring your most appealing and popular products immediately engages visitors, enticing them to explore further. 

This approach not only showcases your brand’s strengths but also capitalises on the goldfish-like attention span of online consumers. 

Strategically placing top products can lead to increased sales, as customers are more likely to discover and purchase items that are visually appealing and in demand. 

5. Use Pop-Up Sign Up Sheet

Employing a pop-up sign-up sheet on your e-commerce site holds significant importance in building and expanding your customer base. 

This unobtrusive yet attention-grabbing tool allows you to capture valuable visitor information, such as email addresses, fostering a direct line of communication with potential customers. 

By encouraging users to subscribe through a pop-up, you create a means to deliver targeted promotions, product updates, and exclusive offers, thereby nurturing customer engagement and loyalty. 

Pop-up sign-up sheets are instrumental in growing your marketing database, enabling you to implement personalised and data-driven strategies. 

Email marketing is still one of the best tools you can use as a way to market your products and bring in some additional revenue to your business.

That’s why you want to sign someone up for your email marketing campaign as soon as you get the chance.

Just be aware that people are more reluctant to hand over their personal information these days.

Personal data has been compromised a lot in recent years which is where the mistrust comes from.

While not every person who visits your site will make a purchase, there is an opportunity to grab their email address.

That way, even if they don’t make a purchase you can entice them later down the line with innovative and compelling email marketing campaigns. 

6. Use High-Quality Images

Have you ever purchased items on a site which had pictures displayed that looked more pixelated than a Minecraft character?

No, I didn’t think so.

When it comes to your e-commerce site, high-quality images are hugely important.

They tell people that you’re serious about your business and the products you sell. 

Clear, high-resolution images showcase your products in the best possible light.

These images not only enhance the overall aesthetic appeal of your website but also contribute to building credibility and trust with potential buyers. 

The main difference between buying online and in person is that the customer does not get to touch or feel products when buying them online.

The only indication they have is the imagery you use.

If this image is low quality then it will hamper their only window into viewing the product.

It’s for these reasons companies spend mega bucks to produce imagery and demonstration videos.

They want customers to be star-struck with awesome images that look visually appealing.

You don’t need to have endless amounts of capital to make your images high-quality.

Usually, you can get amazing results with your phone, the right lighting and a little help from some free image editing software.

7. Make your Content Easy to Scan

Do you read every bit of copy on a site?

The answer is most likely no.

While copy is important for your site, it’s also important to realise that when it comes to an e-commerce site, copy needs to be easy to scan.

On the homepage, you’ll be using imagery and video to showcase your products.

You’ll still need to place some copy on the site but the words that matter will be easy to see and read.

That way, customers can scan the site easily to get to where they are going. 

And when copy catches their attention it’s also selling your business to them or by getting them to take action.

Which in this case is to buy stuff!

By structuring content in a scannable format, with concise headings, bullet points, and clear product descriptions, you cater to the short attention spans of visitors. 

This approach allows users to quickly identify relevant information, locate products of interest, and make informed decisions without feeling overwhelmed. 

For an e-commerce site, you want to put a big emphasis on the product description when it comes to copy.

Doing so can be a way to persuade people to make the product purchase and help from an SEO perspective.

Product descriptions are probably the only part of e-commerce sites that users will read fully.

As for the rest of the site, they will be trying to figure out how to view your products and navigate the menus for the most part.

A fully designed website

8. Reviews and Testimonials

One of the best ways to show trust and credibility online is by sharing testimonials and reviews on your site.

For e-commerce sites, you can have ratings and reviews for each product.

These ratings have a massive effect on whether a purchase is made or not. 

Think of Amazon. 

When you shop on Amazon there are hundreds if not thousands of products that are very similar.

The deciding factor that usually persuades someone to buy is the reviews.

Amazon even recommends products themselves and they highlight this by having an ‘Amazon’s Choice’ label on the product picture.

Who is going to turn down a product that Jeff Bezos himself hand-picks?

Okay maybe Jeff doesn’t hand-pick them but Amazon is one of the biggest companies in the world and they have a very trusting brand thanks to their ubiquitous nature.

So when they put a recommendation forward it has a better chance of selling over other products.

Genuine reviews and testimonials provide valuable insights into the real-life experiences of previous customers, offering a sense of authenticity and transparency. 

Positive reviews build confidence and reassure potential buyers, while constructive feedback helps in addressing concerns and improving overall product or service quality. 

Encouraging customers to share their opinions creates a feedback loop, enhancing your brand’s reputation and influencing others in the purchase journey. 

There is a reason that influencer marketing is so popular now.

When an influencer gives a positive review about your product, it will likely sell in high volumes depending on that person’s influence.

If your business is brand new and you don’t have any reviews or testimonials then send out a batch of free products to people and ask them if they will leave an honest review on their experience.

That way you’ll get some much-needed credibility once web traffic starts coming to your site. 

9. Make Categories Easy to Navigate

Your e-commerce store is just like a physical store that has different sections for different categories of products.

Imagine walking into a clothing store and all of the clothes were mixed into a clothing rack.

No separation of male and female clothing.

No order of sizes or styles.

You would give up looking for something after a few minutes of rummaging through the mess.

That’s why when you sell products there are different categories.

Items are separated so that they can be easily identified by potential buyers.

Well-organised and easily accessible categories simplify the process for visitors to find specific products, reducing frustration and encouraging prolonged exploration. 

Intuitive navigation enhances user satisfaction, allowing your customers to efficiently browse through your offerings and locate items of interest. 

Ecommerce Website Experts – Blaze Media

There you have it, 9 web design tips that will take your e-commerce store from an average run-of-the-mill site to a professional one that sells items like hotcakes!

At Blaze Media, we have been helping design, build and manage e-commerce stores for many years now.

It’s safe to say that we know what we’re talking about when it comes to website design.

We’ve got a track record of producing quality websites time and time again. 

These sites have helped generate our customers more revenue using innovative designs and eye-catching visuals.

If you have an e-commerce site that needs a refresh or you need to create one from the ground up, then please contact us and we can assist you.

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