User experience (UX) is one of those things that is rarely noticed unless it’s bad. Like all good designs, from the chair you’re sitting in to the mug you’re sipping from, a good e-commerce site provides a smooth, seamless experience. Your site should make the process of purchasing something as intuitive and pleasant as possible. Frustrated site visitors are less likely to become loyal customers, so nailing the e-commerce UX is essential to staying competitive in today’s digital economy.
Of course, as any designer can attest, creating that kind of positive user experience is easier said than done. If you’re wondering where to start, don’t panic. We’ve got you covered with the best ways e-commerce sites can improve UX.
Easy to Understand Site Navigation and Browsing
Having great products on your e-commerce site doesn’t matter if your customers can’t find them! That’s why it’s so important to make navigating your site easy and intuitive.
- The navigation menu should be simple and clean. Make sure it’s easy to use on mobile as well as tablet and desktop. Use nested menus and dropdowns to organize sub-categories.
- Organize your product selection. Customers should be able to shop by category and sub-category to efficiently find the items they’re most interested in without having to slog through multiple pages. Make use of any sorting features available to you—size range, price range, color, brand, new arrivals, sale, etc.—to allow shoppers to filter items and find exactly what they’re looking for.
- Use high-quality images and descriptions on product pages. Shopping online is still perceived as riskier than shopping in-store by some consumers, so providing consistent and comprehensive information is the key to giving them the confidence needed to complete an order.
An Obvious “Add to Cart” Button
Creative web design can generate excitement and create a distinctive brand experience…But it should never overshadow functionality. “Add to Cart” buttons should be easy to see without scrolling or searching the product page.
While you’re at it, make sure it’s easy for users to navigate to the shopping cart page and to add, delete, or adjust the quantity of an item.
Clear Security Certification and Credentials
As the general population becomes more knowledgeable about computer security, data breaches, and identity theft, scammers continue to innovate new ways to take advantage of online shoppers. Set your potential customers at ease by making your site secure, and clearly displaying security certifications and credentials.
- Use HTTPS (HyperText Transfer Protocol Secure) on your domain.
- Get an SSL or TLS Certificate from your web hosting provider or through Certificate Authority.
Responsive and Fast Loading Site
Over 50% of web traffic is mobile, so it’s imperative that your site is mobile responsive, loads quickly, and is easy to navigate on ALL devices—mobile, tablet, and desktop alike. At TrustWorkz, responsive design is one of the key elements we focus on for all of our clients’ sites.
Easy Sign Up and Checkout
The last thing you want is to lose out on a potential sale right at the end of the checkout flow. Unfortunately, that’s extremely common, with the average shopping cart abandonment rate for e-commerce sites hovering around 70%. Make it easy for users to check out, whether they create an account or check out as a guest. Make the checkout process clear, and show progress throughout with a progress bar or other visual indicator of how far along they are in the process.
Brand Interest and Loyalty
Consumers expect a high level of transparency from the brands they support these days. You can facilitate a consumer/brand relationship in several ways.
- Make your Company or About Us page easy to find and informative. Keep it simple and relevant.
- Loyalty programs are extremely effective at generating repeat sales, so make your loyalty program easily accessible.
- Customer review and ratings systems are a great addition to product pages and can increase customer confidence in the items they’re purchasing.