5 Reasons Why UX Design Is Crucial for eCommerce Businessesin Design
As customers grow impatient and their expectations become more exigent, eCommerce businesses must get creative with their UX experience to keep users engaged and acquire new clients. The trends are constantly changing, and some are just temporary fads, while others may create drastic shifts in the industry. The eCommerce UX (user experience) design should go beyond a beautiful website. It should include multiple key elements that work in harmony to make the user journey intuitive and easy so that the visitors can complete their goals most efficiently. When creating or redesigning your website, from website architecture to product details, everything should be optimised with a valuable user experience in mind.
Follow along to learn more about what UX means for eCommerce stores, five reasons why user experience design is crucial for your eCommerce business, and optimise your UX to improve customer engagement, attract new qualified leads, and improve your online shopping experience.
What Is eCommerce User Experience?
The core of a great UX design is to know what your end-user is expecting from your website and identify a way to provide a smooth, logical, visual hierarchy and a satisfying shopping experience.
eCommerce UX refers to a visitor’s perception after interacting with your website. This perception can be positive or negative. When their encounter is negative, or they are not impressed with your online business, it will end up in cart abandonment. 76 out of every 100 visitors abandon their cart when they are unsatisfied with the experience.
It is crucial for business owners to understand that a great perception is highly relevant, even for the first time, the second time or the hundredth time when a customer interacts with your website.
A seamless experience online is not that different from in-person interaction. When you go to brick-and-mortar retailers and what you are looking for is hard to locate, you will seek assistance. But when the customer service employee is busy or not available, you feel disappointed and annoyed and will probably walk out of the store. The same feelings apply to online shopping, and a rising cart abandonment rate reveals a customer’s struggle to complete their purchase. This leads to a substantial amount of lost revenue.
What Does UX Mean for eCommerce Platforms?
UX design is an essential part of the overall customer experience while shopping online. An appealing eCommerce web design generates higher user engagement rates and speaks volumes about your brand image. Whether you are a new player on the online market or a well known, established company, your website design should be a priority. Keep in mind that UX design should be paired with the UI design (user interface). If you are new to these concepts, you can read a couple of helpful articles about the difference between UX and UI design and the importance of UI design for user engagement.
Moreover, your website should be compatible with both desktop and mobile devices. Responsive design is not just a nice to have feature but a must for all eCommerce platforms. 52% of potential customers are likely to leave your website if it fails to impress them while using their mobile phones for browsing. If your website is not responsive yet, you have three options: responsive design, dynamic serving, and dedicated mobile sites that accommodate multiple screen sizes.
UX design process for eCommerce platforms should take into consideration the following aspects to avoid a bad user experience and encourage potential customers to complete the purchase process:
- Branding elements – powerful branding is the key to being recognised by potential customers or sticking into online users minds. Branding elements such as the logo, the colour pallet, fonts, tone, voice and vocabulary should be consistent across your website and other communication channels as much as possible. Don’t forget to add a personalised touch to your product photos and tagline.
- Simple navigation and intuitive operations – this means positioning your search bar or the search box in a place that users are used to finding it (for example, in the top right of your menu). We strongly recommend hierarchically organising your menu and splitting your products into categories and subcategories.
- Use an SSL certificate – going from HTTP to HTTPS will give users more certainty that their data is secure. Also, do not forget to add security badges in the footer of your website. Moreover, you can also create a piece of content where you describe how their data is protected.
- Use visual elements effectively – having multiple visual elements and animations can slow down your website. We recommend sticking with the necessary features and working with the development team to improve your page speed scores.
- Enable product reviews – allowing your customers to provide feedback on your products will increase the trust in your brand and products or services. Customer reviews are essential for new potential clients.
- Present your company – make sure you have a contact page and am about us page where your target audience can read about what your business stands for, what are your values and business goals related to your audience.
- Your UX design must support SEO – when launching or redesigning your website, SEO is a crucial part of the design process. Even if it’s not that visible, SEO is responsible for attracting new traffic to your site. You can read our article about seven SEO tips for fashion eCommerce websites if you are in the fashion industry.
The role of UX design is to make everything easier for the customers, provide a smooth experience, build trust, increase engagement and bring every piece of code and functionality together to work in perfect harmony and balance.
In the next section, we will talk more in-depth about the importance of UX design and why it is crucial for eCommerce retailers.
5 Reasons Why UX Design Is Crucial for eCommerce Businesses
We strongly recommend eCommerce websites be designed from a user-focused perspective. This way, you cannot miss on the momentum to launch or redesign your site right from the first time. Prioritising your user’s needs and focusing on a smooth and flawless customer journey will benefit your business in the long run. Optimised online stores with great products or services are bringing users back repeatedly, increasing the customer retention rate and converting simple users into loyal customers.
Keep in mind that the eCommerce industry is highly competitive, with almost 24 million eCommerce sites across the globe. Below, we are going to discuss the five reasons why UX design is crucial for eCommerce businesses:
1. Increase Conversion Rate
Your website should look professional and trustworthy for online users to entrust you with their money or personal data, especially during online payments. If they feel that you don’t know what you are doing, they cannot quickly and efficiently navigate your website, they won’t convert. Your website losses credibility in their minds. 95% of the products launched each year in the United States fail because the website is not proving credibility. You can have the best products on the market if you don’t know what you are doing and how to present your goods, your business is destined to fail.
A great user experience translates into an increased conversion rate. More than that, you will gain credibility among online users and inspire trust. Trust and credibility will not be built in one day. You must be patient and consistent in each user interaction and online transaction.
2. Enhance Usability and Reduce Product Information Overload
When you give too much information or options, users become distracted and move away from their objective. Product usability establishes the easiness with which a user uses the product. When a UX design is done correctly, the expectations of a target customer are fulfilled from the start. Users expect to receive particular pieces of information or specific moments for action at the right time. For this reason, your UX eCommerce design facilitates the purchasing decision because customers don’t have to spend a lot of time and put in a lot of effort to search for what they are looking for.
3. Boost User Engagement
One of the most extensive purposes of UX is to determine the feeling users get when they interact with your website. Our advice is to keep a neat and straightforward design that stimulates the user’s sight, grabs attention and impact the experience in a meaningful way. Strive to create a unique and distinct customer journey that separates you from the competition. Your eCommerce website design and colour palette should be clever, tell a story about your brand and inspire users to connect with you. Design and tone of voice consistency can achieve user engagement, brand recognition and reduce the bounce rate. When the two elements are not connecting, users get confused and lose trust in your business. Visual elements and the website content should be alluring, creating a need for further exploration on other pages of your website. We suggest including interactive elements such as videos, call-to-action buttons, social media icons, etc. Give your customers the chance to engage with you on multiple platforms and make them impatient to return to your website.
4. Increase Brand Affinity and Customer Loyalty
The sum of establishing trust and inspiring credibility is customer loyalty. The result of customer loyalty is an increased retention rate. When you offer an outstanding customer experience through your UX design, users will feel an affinity towards your brand because the content is relevant for them. They get the help they need and feel understood by your brand. These powerful emotions towards your business will help you increase the customer lifetime value in the long run. We strongly encourage you to reach your customers, maintaining and building a solid relationship with them. Do your research and anticipate user intent, behaviour, and issues at different phases of the sales funnel and the purchase cycle. Make sure you address the problems that you found and let your target customers know that you take action in solving the problem as soon as possible. By showing empathy, you humanise your brand, product or service. This genuine connection to your users will make them more loyal to you, and you will increase the level of customer satisfaction.
5. Expand Market Reach and Increase Lead Generation
Almost 68% of the world owns a mobile device, and 52% of internet searches are done from mobile devices. Not having a mobile-friendly website can lose more than half of your potential customers. Mobile users expect to have the same experience on their mobile devices as when they are using a laptop or a PC. 61% of customers are more inclined to buy from a mobile-friendly website. However, most mobile users will leave the site when they experience a problem.
Focusing on delivering the right message at the exact time will show your online visitors that you care and listen to them. More than that, the chances of them reading and understanding your message increase and they can perform an action that brings them towards your brand. When you know your audience’s pain points, the more likely it is for your leads to come back to your product.
Our Advice on How To Optimize UX Design for Your eCommerce Store
The role of UX in the design process of your website is to focus on the user’s needs and feelings, anticipate their journey on your site and guide them through the purchasing process as smooth as possible. Getting your UX right from the start will save you additional investments.
Now we have some advice for you on how to optimise your UX design for your eCommerce store:
- Choose the right eCommerce solution – based on the size of your business and your business goals, you can choose an already-built eCommerce software, or you can go with a custom eCommerce website development. If you have a small business and do not plan to expand, a boxed solution might be a good idea because they already have UX in place. Still, usually, you will offer the same experience and feeling as any other retailer that uses the platform. If your business is of medium to large size, we strongly advise you on choosing a custom eCommerce development. Read our article on why a custom eCommerce platform is a great idea to understand better how custom development can help your business. More than that, there are some aspects to consider before choosing to create your custom software. Before deciding on custom eCommerce development, you can read about the top 5 things to pay attention to.
- Make your website mobile-friendly – as we mentioned before, mobile optimization is critical as more and more people are using their phones to shop and surf the internet. Another idea would be mobile applications. Mobile apps are another way to get to your target audience and engage with customers.
- Organized and intuitive navigation – navigation guides users and assists them in browsing your product catalogue. We strongly advise you to make the navigation visible and very organized. Split your products into categories and sub-categories to make the user’s journey intuitive and easy. Keep your branding in the navigation. Use the same colours, fonts and style on all pages. You can also split your products by brand, collection, new arrivals, etc. Do not forget the search bar! By having a search box on your eCommerce website, shoppers will find exactly what they are looking for faster. Here are some tips on the search bar: make it as robust as possible, offer auto-complete suggestions, search by product name and model number, allow symbols and abbreviations.
- Eye-candy product photography/videography – you want your products to be well presented and catch the shopper’s eyes. Even if they cannot touch the product, they should be able to see the product in as much detail as possible. Our tip is to post high-quality photos of your products and implement the zoom functionality. Moreover, you can show multiple product angles, present product details, 360° views, put your product into a context, and include a video.
- Informative product detail page – many eCommerce businesses do not understand that the product detail page is the most critical page of your website. There is a thin line between keeping it simple but informative and way too littered. We suggest adding a visible add to cart button in a colour that stands out but is still within your branding. Use the present tense text such as “Add to Cart” or create a sense of urgency with “Buy Now”. Don’t get too creative. Just tell your customers what they should do!
- Make trust badges visible – they are usually presented in the page’s footer. You can also place them on your product detail pages, shopping cart and checkout process page. These badges will strengthen the shopper’s buying confidence. More than that, we strongly advise you to use an SSL certificate because Google is showing users if the website is secure (using HTTPS instead of HTTP), and it will also help you boost your search engine rankings.
- Enable reviews – this is a great way to show business transparency, and letting your customers fully disclose how they feel about a product will help create credibility. More than that, if you trust your product, then let people review it. Product reviews will help shoppers understand the value of what they are buying, and they can increase conversions by 74%.
- Implement AI-Powered chatbots – they are pretty popular nowadays and not only in retail. Chatbots come in handy when you want to answer FAQs, notify your subscribers about discounts, or they can perform other simple tasks.
- Design your website for speed – what users expect are snappy websites that load in no time. Online visitors what to find the needed information fast and order quickly.
- Clever checkout process – the checkout is the final step of your website’s user journey. This is a crucial page that should make things easier for shoppers. We strongly advise you to have a one-page checkout. You can use the auto-fill feature for some fields. You should allow multiple payment methods and have at least a couple of delivery options.
It is not easy to build and maintain an eCommerce website in today’s market. You should be aware of the top eCommerce features to implement and how much personalization matters for the eCommerce user experience.
If you are looking to develop an eCommerce solution that accommodates all your needs from the start and respects all the best practices, do not hesitate to contact us today! We do have experience in building eCommerce websites. Check out our case study in fashion eCommerce and take a look at our portfolio. Moreover, you can check our reviews and read our article about the five things you should know before choosing a custom eCommerce solution. Let’s start our journey together to achieve the results you want and much more!
Frequently Asked Questions
UX design is crucial because it helps the users navigate your website, find what they are looking for and complete a purchase.
No! UX must be paired with UI and great products to bring the best results.
UX helps enhance user engagement, increases conversions, reduces the bounce rate, creates brand affinity and customer loyalty.
The product page is the one that converts.