|Who is this for?||E-commerce Businesses|
|What is it About?||Usability & User Experience|
|Reading Time||2-3 Minutes|
These days, most purchases will begin online- whether they are completed on an e-commerce site or not. This makes it more important than ever for websites to be designed to catch the eye and boost sales by making a purchase possible with minimal effort on the users’ part.
On e-commerce sites, any buying experience needs to be seamless – end-to-end –it is surprisingly easy to inconvenience online shoppers. Tackling these pain points that prevent purchases while building your site or making changes to it can make all the difference between building customer loyalty, and loss of sales.
Firstly, some general points which are useful to any website. There are five key areas people will expect to be visible without them having to scroll. These are:
· Your brand – What it is, does or offers
· Visible phone number and/or email address
· Contact Us link
· Customer testimonials wherever possible
· Mobile optimisation – does your site look just as nice on a phone as it does on your desktop?
If you make sure these areas are covered, you will definitely be on the right track no matter what kind of site you have, but e-commerce also has some very specific usability and functions you want to be sure to tackle – some more obvious than others.
Costly delivery- This is the single biggest reason for cart abandonment in e-commerce sites. If delivery is necessary you need to make sure this is clearly displayed well before your customer reaches the checkout, or your abandon rates will soar.
Site speed- A site which crashes or has below average loading times prevents more than a third of people from completing their purchase.
Lack of product pages- A lack of products can give the impression that the site and the business itself hasn’t been around for long which can make people uneasy about parting with their hard-earned cash.
Poor payment options- If you don’t offer PayPal at your check out, I can absolutely guarantee this will be putting some of your customers off. They will want added security on their online payments if they are going to try your business for the first time. You should also consider looking into adding trust seals such as Norton Security and Google to show your potential customers you are an authentic business.
Broken Links- clickable links that take you nowhere lose potential customers, it gives the impression the site is poorly maintained – and who wants to put their money with a company that isn’t taking care of itself, never mind their customer?
A website that is too complicated– Dropdown menus with (minimal!) defined sections are better when you have more to offer, or immediately visible sections on the home page if your offering is simple. If your customer has to think to be able to find what they need, chances are they will move on to another site.
A lack of product information & poor pages –Never presume (if you are not the manufacturer) that the manufacturer’s description and the image will be adequate! When you can’t find the sizings, guarantees/ quality assurances on products for example – it’s bound to make you wary about buying it. Is the image good enough for you to assess product quality? Is the description just a spec, or does it explain the various uses?
A website without customer reviews – They can be difficult to obtain for some businesses more than others, but reviews are a very important way to build trust between you and potential customers, especially online. If you feel you don’t currently have enough reviews it may be time to think about where you can fit this into your marketing plans- if you don’t ask, you don’t get!
Pre-purchase registration requirement –This is especially an issue with mobile users. We’ve all been there, you’re in the middle of doing two things at once and you find a product you like. You go to check out, telling yourself it’ll only take a second and it starts a game of 20 questions to make you sign up; instant turn off. Always give the option of guest checkout, there are plenty of other methods for retargeting customers that don’t require a customer to be on your mailing list – you just have to put the right plans in place!
If you want to talk more about improving your customer’s buying experience, call me in the office or tweet us anytime.
Testimonials here: www.bluestrawberryelephant.com/us/
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