Each page of your website should have a clear purpose. For example, your homepage’s goal is to entice users to click through to your categories, or better yet, straight through to a product. On a product page, your objective is to provide the user with all the information necessary to convince them to make a purchase and make it very simple and easy to add an item to the shopping cart. Your shopping cart page’s purpose is to initiate the first step of the checkout process by clicking on “Checkout”. You get the idea. Keep this in mind when planning out the various types of pages on your ecommerce website.
Break down the wall between you and your customers to a minimum. Find ways to make it very simple and enticing for customers to contact you, thus putting you directly in touch with them. A few such example may be the ability to inquire about a product, to leave reviews, or to upload a photo of themselves using the product.
Create a checkout process that makes it effortless for your visitors to purchase your products. It has been proven that the more fields there are in a Web form, the fewer people fill it out. Also, the pages in your checkout process should be clearly labeled and free of clutter, so that visitors can easily distinguish between a shipping form and a credit card form. Besides maintaining a simplified checkout process, be aware of extra costs that could hamper a potential sale. For example, if your shipping rates are not customized to specific products weights and distances, your website may be charging too much for shipping, thus costing you potential sales.
Most people shop online by visiting a multitude of websites when searching for a particular product. They will eventually narrow down their choices to one. Whether your ecommerce website makes the cut will depend on a variety of factors.
Make sure that your hosting plan is solid and that it can grow as you grow. This is one place you do not want to be skimpy.
Look for ways to get users to regularly come back. One great example is through regular emails that go out announcing the arrival of new products. Another way is to allow users to get notified when a sold-out product is back in stock. Look for opportunities to bring users back to your website wherever possible. Ideally, the more a visitor visits your website, the more likely they are to make a purchase.
Display your contact information visibly for your customers. This way they know how to contact you if they have a question. Don't frustrate them by having them scour your entire site to find your contact information or it could lose you a sale.
Shopping online offers a lot of benefits, but many customers are still hesitant to buy because they are worried about having their information stolen. Do everything you can to keep your customer’s information safe. Display trust symbols like VeriSign or McAfee badges proudly on your site, indicating that your checkout process has been verified and is secure. Also, make sure that your hosting plan is reliable and that it has the ability to handle any future needs your website might have. Hosting is one place you do not want to be skimpy, because the legitimacy of your business depends on it.