Consumers today have many more choices when it comes to shopping online. If a consumer comes to your site and has a horrible experience, all it takes is a couple of clicks for them to find a competing site to shop on. That’s why eCommerce site owners need to invest in improving their user experience. Improving user experience can decrease abandon rates, convert more visitors into customers and get customers to come back in the future. Here are some of the best ways to go about doing it.
1. Optimize Load Times
eCommerce sites are notorious for having long loading times. While loading times may not be much of an issue for desktops, it can hurt the mobile experience and lead to visitors abandoning your site. To speed up your site, enable compression, enable browser caching, optimize resources and use CSS for your site’s template. Another issue may be your web hosting provider. Web hosting services that run under shared hosting can serve websites slower than dedicated servers, so it’s something you may want to look into.
One of the common reasons eCommerce sites lose orders when a user is ready to make a purchase is due to cart abandonment. The user may not be ready to make the purchase at the moment or may have experience technical issues. The trick is to collect their email during the checkout process and have a marketing system that follows up with them if the user has not completed the order. You can even create a follow up campaign that incentivizes them with a discount if they complete the order.
3. Offer More Support Options
A good number of visitors will have questions or need assistance. Rather than just offering a contact us page, you need to offer options for them to connect with someone right away or figure out the answers to their questions themselves. This can be done by setting up a live chat function to engage your visitors.
Smaller stores may not have the resources to have somebody at the other end all the time, so the best way to use live chat is to pinpoint the timeframes that bring in the most sales and have somebody there during those peak hours. To get visitors find their own solutions, you can build a FAQ page based on common email support questions.
4. Use Content to Educate
More eCommerce stores are either linking to content on product listings or embedding content into their product listings. One of the best examples of this happening is clothing eCommerce stores. These stores are creating shopping guides, educating shoppers about the latest trends and providing examples of outfits. Content not only engage visitors, but it can also guide them through the shopping process.
5. Build an Intuitive and Organized Navigation Menu
Customers should be able to quickly find what they’re looking for through your navigation menu. In order for them to do that, you need to build a navigation menu that’s intuitive and organized. In order to do this, look at your analytics and figure out the main reason your site visitors are coming to your site. Then, organize your navigation to reflect these reasons. Make sure you also have a good search function set up to let visitors search for what they’re looking for directly.
Your photo is worth a thousand words online. You have to remember that visitors can’t see or touch your products. That’s why you need to use high quality photos to sell. Unfortunately, many eCommerce sites start out with subpar photos of their products. This is because it costs a lot of money to hire a photographer and purchase equipment.
Somewhere along the line, you’ll want to invest in better camera equipment to take better shots of your products. If your product photos are okay, you may want to try increasing the size of the photos and test different ways to position the photo. You’ll need to test your conversions to see what photo changes were the most effective.
7. Add User Reviews and Ratings
Shoppers are always looking for ratings and reviews to get an idea of how good a product is. If you’re not using ratings and reviews in your product descriptions, you’re not maximizing your conversions. If you have a lack of ratings and reviews, make sure you set up a campaign to get customers to submit their feedback. It may help to incentivize them for an honest review if you’re having trouble getting enough submissions.
User experience is an essential aspect of design for eCommerce sites. There’s a lot that goes into user experience design. You’ll have to test new designs and constantly think about how you can optimize the experience for your users. Part of the process is using the right software tools, so make sure that you use things like click tracking, heat maps and other advanced features in your analytics tool.