Ecommerce Website Design
What is an Ecommerce Website Design?
An ecommerce website design is an online marketplace where users can engage in online transactions. It is a virtual store offering products and services allowing users to select their preferred goods and services just like they would in a physical store. Product types may include physical products, virtual products or downloadable products like images, music and ebooks. Examples of services could be a plumbing service or a fumigation service. Web design has changed the way business serve their customers.
An ecommerce website allows payment to be made for purchases through an online payment gateway. After a payment confirmation, the user should get an email notification confirming the placement and payment for an order. The customer is then entitled to the product or service.
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Do You Need an Ecommerce Website Design and Development?
If you have any product or services to sell, you can have a professional ecommerce website or webshop to showcase this to the world. It is best that you have substantial amount of goods or services to offer because this will justify the time and cost of a website. Developing a user-friendly and functional online store will not only increase your potential for sales, but will also increase your visibility towards your target market.
There are several routes to go if you want to build an online store for your busniess, you can take advantage of many available CMSes and frameworks online if you have the knowledge to go through with the whole process of web design. Examples of CMSes and frameworks you can use include WordPress with woocommerce, Magento, shopify, elastic path, opencart and many more. Alternatively, you can:
- Hire a freelance web designer or developer
- Hire a company offering web design services
Benefits of an Ecommerce Website Design and Development
All-round Convenience - This applies both to the seller and buyer. Consumers can order products quickly without having to visit your physical store. As a business owner, you don’t have to be at the store when the product is ordered, you can process the order from a remote location before it is shipped.
Increase in Sales - This is undeniably a huge part of why many businesses hire a webdesign agency to develop their online store. It exposes your goods and services to many potential buyers in addition to the local store. More buyers can access your online store increasing your sales volume and ultimately your revenue.
Save Cost on Advertisement - It might be that you are already asking questions like how much does a website design cost. The overwhelming majority admit that the cost of a website and the cost of advertisement is much cheaper on when you have a website. A good ecommerce website design presents great opportunity to for saving cost.
Awareness and Global Reach - Your online store or webshop broadcasts your presence to the whole world. By implementing a good SEO strategy and conversion optimisation, you are able to target a broader audience than your primary targets. This accelerates your brand awareness and helps you reach a broader audience which you can convert into sales.
Multisite Possibility - This means that your products can be featured in many other websites online other than yours. You will get the opportunity of exposure on multiple channels leading to increased awareness of your brand. The multisite online presence is utilised by many web design companies and agencies in the bid to gain a greater exposure.
Open 24 hours - Your online store continues to generate money while you might be asleep in your bed. This is especially important because your business can be visible to the whole world regardless of the time difference in the regions around the world.
Valuable Feedbacks - Visitors to your online store can provide you with valuable information through reviews and analytics, the information collected can be analysed and used to make informed decision in your conversion optimisation. The conversion optimisation effort you implement on your online shop is important because it helps you turn visitors to your website into returning customers.
What Should You Do Before Developing Your Professional Ecommerce Website?
Now that you realise the advantages of having an online store, you can see your brand awareness get bigger, a global reach and the means to serve your customers more effectively. If you are already considering the design and development of your online store, it would definitely boost your online business. There are however, certain things you need to know and take into consideration, this will help you avoid common mistakes that many businesses make.
Considerations Before the Design of Your Ecommerce Website Design
Business Structure- Is your business already incorporated? Then you probably only need to have the proper documentation once you start your online business. If your business is not incorporated, decide what is best for you especially if you are a small business. Being incorporated will shield you against possible personal liabilities related to the business. In the event of the business running into debt, your personal assets are not at risk of being compromised.
Regulations - You should take great care that you know the general regulations guiding businesses online and more importantly if there are relevant guidelines specific to your business, you might need to ask an expert in online business or consult your lawyer in order to avoid breaching existing laws. Regulations regarding your products and services with regards to other countries is also very important.
Taxes - When you have an ecommerce website design where you generate revenue from, you are expected to pay taxes. The amount of tax you pay varies in different countries. It is your job to make sure all documentation relating to your taxes and online transactions are in order. Find out if you are eligible for tax breaks or if you will be incurring additional taxes shipping to certain countries, this might affect your business if the overall cost for you or the customer becomes astronomical.
Bank account - By now you should have a separate bank account for your business, many entrepreneur have made the mistake of mixing funds from different sources with their personal account. You will do yourself a lot of good to avoid this mistake. knowing how much money your online store generates helps you measure your growth and if you need to change some aspects of the business.
Get an Insurance - Insuring your business should be made a priority. If you run a small business from home, don’t assume your home insurance covers your business assets as well. You have to talk to an expert or your insurance company to be sure you are covered in the event of an unwanted occurrence.
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What Essential Features Must Ecommerce Website Design Have?
Having an ecommerce website design and maintaining it can be challenging. This of course doesn’t change the perception of your customers that certain features which will help them shop quickly without hassle is very much desired. The following features should not be compromised when setting out to hire the best web design agency for the development of your online store.
Visible logo - Your company’s logo is the face of your business, the fact that your customers can recognise your logo give them confidence in dealing with you. A visible logo allows your user to be able to return quickly to the homepage of your ecommerce store.
Functional navigation - The importance of a very good navigation cannot be over emphasised. Customers are more likely to exit your online shop if your navigations are considered bad. Nowadays, websites use sticky navigation that constantly sticks to the top of every page as users scroll down the webpage. This makes it easier for them to quickly navigate away from the current page they are in, this ultimately improves their user experience.
Persuasive call-to-actions - Your call-to-action feature has to be well tested and be sure it has the high possibility of converting your customers. Use bright colours, legible text and readable fonts, all these contribute to the conversion rate on your online business.
Deals, freebies and free shipping - Allow deals, freebies and free shipping possibilities, it makes your customers valued, they feel they owe you in some way and that spurs them towards buying more from you.
New product update - Make it a practice to announce the release of new products and the availability of returning products. This helps you prepare your customers and some visitors to your webshop may choose to add the announced product to their wishlist if you have that functionality on your professional website.
Shopping cart, login box and search box - Avoid the mistake of making these features hard to find, instead make them visible and easy to find on important pages on your website and make sure they function optimally.
Visible payment options - Payment options on your online store should be visible to your customers. Customers have become used to having multiple payment options from many other website, make the opportunity available as well and where possible add PayPal to your payment options.
Social media icons - Let your customers know you have a social media presence and connect with them through these means, showcase your company’s new collections and products on Instagram and post updates on your Facebook page.
Phone numbers and online chats - Implement various channels for customers to your website to get help and make a decision. If you are able to help different customers through these channels, you will get good reviews leading to trust, reliability and increased sales.
Return policy and terms & conditions page - Give your customers information that will help them make a decision when using your website, this will help you be on a safe side as well. Afford your customers the opportunity to return products they are not satisfied with and make the process as painless as possible.
Store finder - Adding information about your local stores and how to easily find them is a big deal and should be a part of your ecommerce solution to generating more sales for your business.
TrustMarks -Trustmarks, the small images or logos that show a security guarantee indicates to customers that it is safe to shop on your online business. Some noteworthy trustmarks come from Network solutions, Verisign, TRUSTe, Trustpilot to mention a few. Allowing for user reviews and availability of feedbacks reflects trust and reliability.
Ecommerce web Design - Important Web Design Trends That You Need
Ecommerce websites design like many other aspects of technological development continue to evolve and the emerging technologies drives the way we shop online and conduct online transactions.
For instance, recent research shows that more than 50% of online shoppers in the UK carry out their transactions on mobile platforms, while others might eventually use a laptop to complete the transaction. This trend makes it important for web design and development agencies to start developing for the mobile devices. The following important trends should be a part of any ecommerce website design.
Mobile First - With the screens of mobile phones getting bigger and users feeling more convenient, the rise in purchases through these devices are skyrocketing. It is estimated that by 2020, online shopping through mobile will reach £42 billion. The ability of your ecommerce website design to deliver the same user experience like a laptop will serve your business well.
The idea is to design your ecommerce store with your mobile users first in mind and then adapt it other screens. Use the best web design agency to help you achieve this and beat your competition. Updates in Google’s ranking algorithm means that websites optimised for mobile are rewarded in rankings.
Personalisation and Big Data - This trend is already being used by large shopping sites like amazon, eBay and Netflix. Products are targeted towards user based on behavioural data collected through analytics tools. This is based on user action and examples of that could be earlier searches, set preferences and purchase history. This ability to personalise ads has been received with enthusiasm so you can expect users to want these offerings from other shopping websites.
Omnichannel - Users to all your channels should have a seamless transition whether they choose to use a mobile device, kiosk, laptop etc. Because of the rapid changes in technology, the gap between various channels through which you can connect with your customers widens. To solve this conundrum, retailers and business owners should start implementing more innovative omni-channel technologies and bridge this widening gap.
Online Loyalty Programs - Allow users who shop from your online store or webshop have the advantage of a reward, this could be in the form of promotions, credits, exclusive offers and deals. Research has it that 49% of consumers admit they will gladly switch brands if they will get coupons elsewhere. Create this atmosphere to reiterate your commitment to your loyal customers.
How to Choose the Best Ecommerce Web Design Service?
There are hundreds of web design services all over the UK, finding the best web design company for the solutions your online store craves will mean that you made the right choice. The important features and emerging trends for an ecommerce website design which was highlighted above is not provided by every web agency. Some ecommerce website design services are better suited than others due to a whole range of characteristics. The characteristics to look out for include the following:
- Specialisation in Frameworks or CMSs
- Experience in your desired solution and functionality.
- Availability of in-house designer and (or) developer.
- Web design cost and prices
- Online evidences of completed websites.
- Outsourcing possibilities
- Hosting company, types and location.
- Ownership and access to the files, login.
Before entering into a contract agreement with a web design agency, you might want to follow this guide to find the best web design service for your ecommerce website design and development. Beware of web design agencies that offer ecommerce web design packages, the chances are that these packages might be limited in functionality and scalability. Ecommerce web design price or cost can also vary from location to location.
Ecommerce Website Design and Development - Actions to Take Before Launching?
When your professional ecommerce website design is completed, the next step for you will be to test all the features and functionalities to be sure you are able to deliver the user experience your customers have to come to expect. You will need to carry out an extensive test, which should include testing outside your location, test on different platforms, browsers and completing a transaction process. Also follow this checklist for further testing of your ecommerce website design.
You also have to answer the following questions
- Have you done a conversion optimisation?
- Have you done an A/B or Split testing?
- Is Google webmaster tool setup to index your website?
- Is Google Analytics Account setup for data collection?
If you have checked all these boxes. You can set a Go-live date and promote your online store through your social media platforms. As you start to make sales, understanding your customers and updating your ecommerce website design will help you grow your business.
Are you already thinking website cost? Start here to find the best web design agency, Start by filling out the form, we will provide you with up to 4 quotes from the best web design services in the UK. At Market Inspector, our quotes are free and non obligatory!
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