Thanks to advancements in modern technology, online shopping is as omnipresent as ever with projections showing that there will be 1.77 billion digital buyers in 2017 compared with 1.61 billion in 2016. Most retailers and service providers have now moved online
and established solid, industry-specific websites, but that’s not where the story ends. For websites that work, retailers need to create sites that
offer customers advanced interactivity and usability. Here are 20 top tips that you can implement today.
- Focus on navigation and speed A potential customer should use the shortest time possible to locate the products they want on your
website, if they end up browsing five pages to no avail, they’ll most likely give up, close the tab and move to a competitor’s site. Improve your site’s navigation to give your customer an easy and convenient way to access your services. Brendan Wilde, Marketing
Manager at Umbrella Cloud Hosting, says “Navigation and site speed are two of the most neglected aspects of usability. Many website owners affect upgrades in many other areas of their site, but such changes will remain unseen if site speed and navigation issues continue to spike bounce rate numbers.”
- Evaluate error messages Error messages are frustrating when a customer is trying to access your site. Determine the cause of such
errors when customers are shopping or completing contact forms, and take the actions needed to remedy them.
- Fix browser-specific errors Customers’ tastes affect not only their choice of device but also which Web browser they use. The most
common browsers are Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Safari and Internet Explorer, so it’s imperative that you test your site’s functionality across all
- Launch a survey One of the best ways to get your customers’ feedback is through surveys. It’s easy enough to design a simple survey; you just need to be able to persuade
your customers to part with two minutes of their time. You can also send the survey by email to loyal subscribers and perhaps offer them the chance
of entering a prize draw to encourage more respondents.
- Use filters Useful filters should allow your customer to narrow down their search to produce the accurate results they’re looking
for. For instance, if you sell clothes, offering the opportunity to narrow down a search based on price, colour and size, is a good place to start.
- Item photos Most customers require the real pictures of what you’re selling. In some cases, customers complain that vendors fail to
deliver the item they ordered; such complaints are common in online shops that deal with physical products. Use clear, high-quality photos, to
visually communicate your products.
- Use a mega-menu You should include all of your products in one menu. You can have the main categories at the top
of the page while the subcategories fall under them.
- Social media plugins Many modern businesses use social media as a marketing tool.
Install plugins that allow customers to Tweet, Like, or share your posts with others, allowing you to reach out to thousands of potential clients.
- Make the website mobile friendly Online shopping used to be the domain of the trusty desktop at home or work, but nowadays retail
therapy can be had on the go with a tablet or smartphone. Make sure that your website has both a mobile and desktop version that’s easy to use. You can also determine
whether your site is mobile friendly through Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test.
- Respond to comments and queries Customers need to know that their voices are being heard, so it’s vital that you read their comments
and address issues that they raise. Include an FAQ section where you can refer customers to common questions and possible answers. Encourage your clients to comment on your products and blog posts, so that
you can use their feedback to enhance their experience.
- Contact details You should make it easy for customers to reach out to you. Include your contact information either as a header or
footer on your website.
- A call to action Creative call-to-action buttons will entice potential customers. Ensure that you include such buttons on each page
and make sure they are concise, compelling, contextual and clear.
- Evaluate your site’s accessibility When designing your site, you should take into account the varying levels of eyesight among your
potential customers. Short-sightedness and colour blindness are just two conditions that can get in the way of finding your products.
- Testimonials A good number of customers will make their purchase decisions based on what other people say about your site. Include
reviews from professionals and previous customers on your website to boost your credibility.
- Clean pages Some pages have low-engagement levels due to poorly researched information or contextual errors. These pages can affect the overall reputation of your site, so it’s important
that you find them and improve their content.
- Provide product overviews Some products have complicated specifications which consume a lot of browsing time. Provide a simple overview of your
products by highlighting the most important points; giving your customer a rough idea of what to expect will allow them to move on to the next
product if the current one doesn’t meet their expectations.
- Include a search bar Sometimes a customer may not have enough time to browse your mega-menu and its subcategories. Providing a search bar will
save time for the client who needs to find what they’re looking for in a hurry.
- Cognitive walkthrough This approach requires you to put yourself in the shoes of the client, and use your site as if you were looking for a
particular product to purchase. A cognitive walkthrough enables you to evaluate the whole process, identify any challenges and come up with lasting
- Simple checkout Complicated processes during checkout lead to a high bounce rate. Make the process as simple as possible and allow customers to save their details at the end of every step. It’s
also wise to allow your customers to log in using social media accounts such as Google+, Twitter and Facebook.
- Search Engine Optimisation A good website observes SEO best practices to remain competitive. High ranking on search engines ensures that your
site is always visible when customers search for specific keywords. Pay close attention to the number of posts on your site, their individual lengths,
as well as the quality of links on each page.
A website that’s easy to use will yield an increase in your customer base as well as a higher conversion rate. Implement your favourite usability tips
and create a website that works for you. If you would like help implementing these then give us a call on 131 247 1435 or email email@example.com.
Content provided by James Cummings from DailyPosts