No matter if you run a completely online business or use your website to supplement in-person sales, an ecommerce website can be a valuable tool for growing your company.
It is not enough to simply accept online purchases, however. It is necessary to provide a seamless customer experience. An ecommerce website, which serves as the online representation of your company, must provide the best possible shopping experience. Here are seven essential elements that your ecommerce website must have in order to stand out from the competition.
1. High Levels of Security
Employing secure communication protocols and a secure ecommerce platform, maintaining PCI DSS compliance, implementing strong firewalls, allowing customers to log in using secure logins, encrypting customer data, using the most up-to-date software versions, and promptly installing recommended security patches will demonstrate to your customers that you care about their privacy and the security of their financial and personal information. In order to demonstrate to visitors that your site is secure, consider including trust seals such as those from Norton/VeriSign and McAfee on your pages—studies have found that trust seals can significantly increase conversions and sales.
2. Extremely Good Functionality
A successful ecommerce website must function smoothly and provide users with a seamless and enjoyable online shopping experience in order to be successful. Make certain that your ecommerce website is mobile friendly, responsive, fast, and easy to navigate for site visitors to avoid losing business. Continue reading our blog post, Website Navigation Tips to Provide Your Website Visitors with an Excellent User Experience, for more information on this topic.
3. Customer Service that is easy to reach
Hopefully, the product pages on your website provide your customers with all of the information they require. Otherwise, providing them with a simple method of contacting you in order to get their questions answered is critical to completing the sale. Make your phone number prominently displayed on your product page, and provide clear instructions for returns and exchanges to your customers. If possible, include live chat as well. According to a Forrester Research study, 44 percent of online consumers said that having questions answered by a live person at the point of purchase was the most important feature a website could provide.
4. Clear Product Pages
Visitors are less likely to make a purchase if they don’t understand what they’re purchasing. Make certain that your products are labeled clearly and correctly, and that they include eye-catching photographs and original descriptions. Not only will thorough, precise descriptions provide your customers with a better understanding of what they’re purchasing, but they will also aid in SEO efforts on your website.
5. A More Streamlined Checkout Process
According to Statistica data for 2020, the average shopping cart abandonment rate around the world is 88 percent (see chart below). Many people who abandon their online shopping cart before checking out were just browsing or weren’t ready to make a purchase; however, shoppers who are ready to make a purchase may abandon a cart because the checkout process was too complicated for them to complete successfully. Make the checkout process as straightforward as possible in order to encourage visitors to complete their purchases.
6. Customer Reviews
A study by the Spiegel Research Center found that online shoppers are 270 percent more likely to purchase a product with 5 reviews than they are to purchase a product with no reviews. Also, don’t be afraid of receiving negative feedback. Bad reviews provide you with an opportunity to address issues and demonstrate your excellent customer service by responding courteously and resolving issues as quickly as possible. Make no apprehensions about asking for a review; according to BrightLocal’s Local Consumer Review Survey, 85 percent of consumers are willing to provide feedback if they are asked to do so.