User Experience is very undervalued and underappreciated. Several brands and companies have not even invested in User Experience for their websites or web application or mobile applications. It’s important to remember that a UX-Rich website can provide more value to the the business than a website with rich design. E Commerce businesses generally revolve around a customer centric business model but fail in creating a customer centric website. If you’re a business owner or a design, take note of these 4 UX tips for E Commerce Websites.
Most of the times, business owners and designers think of User Experience as a part of design process. Although, it might seem to be, it’s not. User Experience of E-Commerce Website is the overall experience of a visitor or a customer who visits the online store from start to finish. There are several factors playing a role in providing a great User Experience. Though there are several other reasons, here are UX Tips for E Commerce websites.
First Impression is the best Impression
The English proverb “First Impression is the best Impression” is still relevant and will stay so forever.
In order to create a better first impression :
- The Website needs to be fast. It needs to be really fast to create a good impression on the potential customer.
- The website has to be multi device friendly. It should not look great on a desktop and bad on a tablet. Create a responsive website that looks good and easy to use.
- Do not add irrelevant content on the homepage or any page for that matter. Irrelevant content will only lead to visitors closing the browser.
If the navigation of an eCommerce website or any other website is not readily understood, the website clearly lacks an intuitive navigation. Or in other words, if a visitor or a potential customer knows what to do on the website without making an effort, your website has an intuitive navigation.
A website that clearly lacks an intuitive navigation suffers. This can be clearly seen in online stores. One big mistake, some of the eCommerce developers and business owners do is ignoring the usability of an effective search bar. An effective search bar’s impact on the rate of conversion is pretty impressive: customers who use the search box result in an average conversion rate of 2.4% against the 1.7% rate of customers who don’t. The search bar allows the customer to have a sneak peek into what you have in store.
Always keep in mind, the following points while designing your navigation system :
- Keep the menu familiar. Users or customers, especially E-commerce customers, would not want to figure out a way to use the website.
- Search option is not an option. It’s a MUST.
- Test the menu on multiple devices to make sure it’s responsive.
- Breadcrumbs can be very useful and disturbing at the same time. Make sure you implement it right.
- Use relevant and familiar icons along with the menu labels.
- Use Mega Menu if you have too many categories and sub categories.
Mobile Experience is different
Mobile is a totally different beast by itself. You might have a fantastic customer centric desktop website, but if a potential customer checks the website on their smartphone and finds an image overlapping a text, you have failed in creating a seamless experience for the customer. The mobile and tablet devices account for more than 60% of Internet searches and getting the mobile UX right might help your online business increase sales and conversion rates.
Mobile Experience is not just about a responsive website. A mobile website can be responsive but still not be customer friendly. Majority of E-Commerce companies provide the same experience on all devices. It might work for Desktops but doesn’t work for mobile devices because the intention of the customer searching on a mobile screen is different to that of customer searching on a desktop screen.
A few things to keep in mind when you’re designing an Online Store for mobile devices,
- Be clear and don’t stuff the screen with irrelevant content.
- Make use of the features, mobile phone provide and provide a natural experience.
- No body wants to keep on tapping their screens. Reduce the number of taps/clicks.
- Make all the important links easily accessible.
- Ensure that the website or application is fast. Speed, and not flashy design, plays a huge role in User Experience.
Function Over Design
Video Backgrounds, Automatic Sliders, Pop-ups, Email Optins etc are some of the popular words coming out of a web designer’s mind when it comes to web design. Design elements like Video Backgrounds, Pop-ups etc are still popular among CMS websites but will not be suitable for every website. Email Optins are extremely useful for websites that wants to collect emails for marketing purposes. Slider images would look good with a relevant Call to action button but would look bad if it’s irrelevant.
The functioning of a website is more important or as important as the design of the website. Any online store must be functional, not just flashy. Some of the best companies in the world have a good design and great functionality. Every element or every row or every section of a website must help the visitor in reaching his or her objective.