When writing this blog I am putting myself in the shoes of a buyer and wearing the hat of a marketer; you just can let go off your professional traits after all.
Today’s online shopper has not only turned smarter but fidgety too; and why shouldn’t he be! When there are so many brands competing amongst themselves to get the customer’s attention; he has every right to choose what serves him best.
I would like to begin by clarifying that the term ‘mobile’ here is not restricted to smartphones alone; hence when visualizing the details mentioned in this blog you need to have a broader perspective. The frontend requirements of an e-Commerce website are critical in deciding
- The ratio of hits and bounces
- The conversion rate of leads and
- The assurance of revisits from the buyers
Why discuss about the frontend considerations only?
As simply as Friedrich Schiller puts it, ‘Appearance rules the world’; and in case of ecommerce websites this rule applies to the fullest. The mannequins on the store’s display when in complement with the décor lure you inside the shop. It is the same with the frontend and the info display on your e-Store.
If you do not answer the door in time i.e. if the landing page takes longer than expected to load, someone else is sure to fascinate your customer with their promptness and of course better offer.
Would you like to know about the best frontend measures to reap maximum benefits from your ecommerce store?
Let’s take a tour:
1. Page Loading Time is Inversely Proportional to Traffic Conversion Rate
To stress on the importance of this point I will begin with it, they will leave as soon as your loading time exceeds 5 seconds. There are several measures to adopt which will lighten the burden and speed up your e-Store. We have discussed some of them in detail in the points that follow; however the most important aspect is increasing the loading speed without compromising on the best features which keep the visitors engaged.
2. It’s Time to Switch from Dedicated Server to Clouds
Maximum chances of traffic upsurge are on an ecommerce website and if you have announced a sale then be ready for a rampage. Recently a renowned e-store had to send out an apology mail to all its customers because they failed to handle the traffic during one of their Big Day Sales, even after deploying 5000 servers which was meant to handle an extra 20% upsurge than estimated.
Hence, it is advisable to prepare yourself to take the bull by its horns. Clouds help you get rid of the estimations related confusion and it is reasonable because you will be paying only for the space that you use. For instance, it is simply foolish to buy a palace today because you think you will have a family of hundreds in the years to come. You can always expand the size of your house as the family grows; it is the same with cloud. By deploying clouds for managing the variable footfall on your website you can connect better with your customers and handle sudden expansions with grace.
3. If You have a Well-structured Website Your Job’s Half Done
Another critical point to consider is the number of images on an eCommerce website; naturally they are too many and will only increase with the passage of time. Hence, it is advisable to use CSS3 properties instead of images; thus bringing down the download time on different browsers.
4. Replace HTTP Requests with CSS Sprites
The lesser the HTTP Requests will be, the faster will be the loading process. CSS Sprites basically combines all the images into a large one; so that there is no need to gather separate HTTP Requests. If your page loads faster, then half the trouble is done away with. Especially considering the aspect that your prospects are ardent mobile gadget users it is advisable that you opt for quick loading options.
5. Colours, Fonts and Image Size
Your designer’s capability to enhance the User Experience speaks volumes about your competency in ensuring smooth engagement of the visitors. The colours & hues; type and size of fonts and even the images play a crucial role in deciding whether your e-Store will be able to attract the required footfall or not.
Since your buyers are solely relying on product descriptions and images for making their pick; it is absolutely valid that you take these decisions after proper brainstorming. Also, you need to ensure that these little details are compatible with the different devices they will be displayed at; smartphones, phablets, tablets and other types of wearable.
6. Social Media Connectivity Counts
Want to spread word about the ongoing sale on your ecommerce store; or desire to publicize about the exclusive collection available for a limited period, making use of social media is the best move. However, if you keep your social media presence focused only then will it yield desired results. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+ most businesses ensure that their presence is prominently visible on these platforms, yet they sometimes do not have a proper strategy in mind, it just gets limited to talking about whatever is happening currently.
Social Media Marketing is the art of utilizing these forums such that you are able to gauge your presence amongst your competitors as well as connect with your prospects in a more cordial manner.
7. Cross Selling and Upselling make the Customers Desire More
Most websites provide their customers with small images of the products they have browsed so far, making it easier for them to compare their selections. Also giving suggestions like, ‘people who bought this also bought……’ is another way of increasing user engagement. Making intelligent use of the available space based on different screens pertaining to various gadgets is counted amongst the best acumen of the eStore owner.
8. Nobody Spares Time to Fill Complicated Forms and Details
As much as you hate it so do your visitors; instead of filling complicated ‘contact us’ forms your customer will like to go to a different site which does not bother them about constantly filling personal details. Make it easier by asking them to sign in through their social media links; you can get your required information using cookies. Yet when thinking like a user I always like forms which are short, simple and can be filled in no time.
9. Make the Customers Feel You are Reachable
The most important aspect of customer management is your ability to reach out to them when they are clueless. Be available to your customers and make them feel that you are there to solve their problems not just to attend to calls. The more interactive you are with your buyers the more comfortable they will be able to shop. If you are making the buying process simpler make certain that the shipping, payment, cancellation as well as refund procedures are equally smooth.
Adding buttons like ‘click to call’ or chat buttons make them feel they are dealing with authentic and responsible vendors.
10. Optimize for Optimum Results
Optimize your images by selecting PNGs, the smaller the file size the better for your website. Moreover, you need to stay a step ahead in the competition by applying the smarter and applicable SEO techniques. Not only does Meta tags count but Schema tags and Open Graph tags should also be given equal importance.
The new offers and sale related information should also be a part of your descriptions so that they are included in the displayed search results of the visitor. Whether it is the paid ad services or your simple organic search results including relevant keywords will always attract a more convertible traffic.
Well, an additional point to be included here is that as an ecommerce vendor you need to pick your third party extensions after proper scrutiny. When I imagine myself as a buyer I am often disappointed at not being able to apply the same thoughtfulness when playing the role of a marketer. If you constantly keep a check on your site’s speed using one of the efficient tools available in the market, you will realize what you were letting go by not being watchful.
If you find these tips useful you will surely like to know how design-led development helps in creating products which are rich in user-experience and prove to be great problem-solvers.