Whilst high street sales are stagnating, growth in e-commerce continues apace, with retail spending online projected to reach nearly $300 billion in America alone by 2015.
With customers making up their mind about your store within seconds of hitting your site, you could be missing out on that increased revenue.
So what makes an exceptional e-commerce store?
- Great navigation – Any website needs great navigation, but an e-commerce site even more so. Users need to have the ability to browse among different categories and products quickly through an intuitive navigation system. Amazon are a great example of a company that has got this right.
- A great search engine – I don't know about you but I use the search function as my first option when hunting something down online, so you need to make sure your search box returns the results people want. Having a clear and well-positioned search box is crucial to an e-commerce site. The ability to search an e-commerce website is very important because many online buyers have a specific item that they are looking for.
- An easy to use shopping cart – It's rare to find an online store without there being a shopping cart. It's a fundamental part of the checkout process and therefore needs to be easy to use if you're going to convert visitors into customers. Common elements of shopping cart pages are:
- Product name
- Short product description (if the product name needs further explanation)
- Product’s price
- Total cost of products in the shopping cart
- Product image thumbnail that displays a preview of the item
- Quantity box that allows users to modify the number of items they want to purchase
- Personalised offers – Amazon set the bar high when they introduced their product matrix way back when. Now you can't have a great store without showcasing personalised product recommendations for users based upon their past history.
- Super images – We are largely visual creatures online, so you need to sell your products through the display of fantastic photographs. Images of the products being sold must be included and displayed in an enticing way. Images must be big enough to see details and features of a product.
These are a few things that every store should do well if it wants to succeed online. For more information on how you can build a flagship online store tune into this free webinar from the Process Excellence Network.