Our Favorite Web Development Tips for EcommerceDecember 22, 2021
Thoughtful development of your ecommerce site contributes in a lot of ways to your overall success in online business. Through strategic development of your site, you can streamline the path to purchase for your customers, reduce cart abandonment, and even improve brand perception. Whether you are launching a new ecommerce website or upgrading an existing one, we think these are the most effective tips to keep in mind as you go.
Making sure that your ecommerce site is compatible with mobile devices is critical for maintaining a good shopping experience – not just for your current customers, but also for new customers who may get their first impression of your brand through a mobile browser. However, navigating the desktop version of a website on a mobile device can be a frustrating experience. You could maintain a separate mobile version of your site, but you may find it more effective and efficient to use a responsive design (i.e. one where the site’s interface can automatically scale itself to fit any size screen). Responsive websites remove the duplicate efforts that come with managing a combination of desktop and mobile websites, plus it helps standardize the interface in a way that’s easy to use for customers – no matter what device they are using to access your site.
Improve load times
There are a number of ways you can speed up your website, but these can involve cutting away features you like. Consider incorporating a progressive web app, which shows your web pages to shoppers in a way that is optimized to the device and browser they are using.
Clear next steps
Whether your goal is to get visitors to “buy now,” “contact us,” or “learn more,” the content and navigation on your web pages should make it as easy as possible for customers to figure out what they can do on the page, and how take the next step. Imagine the page from your customers’ point of view, and ask yourself: What do they want or need to know first? What info is vital to convince them to take action? Where should they go on the site next? To figure out the optimal layout and design of these elements, use A/B testing to find a configuration that works best.
Keep the checkout process simple
Shoppers are more likely to abandon their carts if any of the steps for finalizing the purchase are unclear. In one customer survey, 29% of users said that pop-ups on the checkout page distracted them from completing their purchases and negatively affected their perception of the website. Keep the checkout flow as clean as possible by saving unrelated prompts (e.g. “Sign up for our Newsletter”) for the “Thank You” page. Also, consider adding features that help users progress with checkout rather than pause it. For example, adding options to change the quantity, color, size, and other attributes of the items in their order without having to leave checkout.