After all the hard work, you’ve finally started your online store with a great selection of products, affordable prices and amazing web design; but for some reason buyers don’t seem to be rushing in to see what you’ve got. Perhaps you should rethink a few little ‘details’ that might potentially make a significant change on your online store. We bring you 10 tips with real-life examples.
10. Contact information
Your buyers are sure to have some questions about your products or services from time to time, so they’ll be wanting to get in touch with you as soon as possible by phone or email. Don’t hide behind the contact sheets and make your telephone number or email address as clear and as visible as possible. Take a hint from Ozscopes, the online shop that sells telescopes, for example. Users like to know that there is an (accessible) human face behind a service.
9. Live chat
Live chat is a step above the last advice we mentioned, and it’s getting more and more common in online shops, which doesn’t come as much of a surprise, since these days whatever saves time matters. Here the same rule applies: the more visible the live chat option is, the better; just like in the case of NastyGal. Amazon has recently made a step further with its Kindle Fire HDX eBook reader, which includes the Mayday Button service – the option of video chat with technical support.
8. The ‘add to cart’ button
The popular ‘add to cart’ button is an indispensable part of most online shopping sites. However, if it isn’t noticeable straight away, a new user might be discouraged altogether from registering and shopping. So make it as plane and as visible as they did on Zappos. You should also consider installing email reminders to those who’ve forgotten they’ve got products in their cart.
A picture is worth a thousand words, everybody knows that. Enhance your online shop with the best possible pictures you can get, and use as many, from as many angles as possible for each product. Also, always enable the zoom option for your pictures. People are visual creatures and those in sales have long been aware of that. See how Converse does it.
You want to show that your site offers actually useful advice from experts? Or perhaps you just want to entertain your visitors? Introduce a blog to your site, like the Seibei wacky T-shirt online shop did. Besides keeping the visitors on your site, the blog might also be useful for SEO optimization on search engines.
5. Shopping made simple
Make the shopping process simple, without unnecessary steps that might interfere with the user’s wish to buy something. Also, make it visually clear to the visitor how many steps they’ve got left before concluding the transaction, because people like to know how the process is going, and it might even make them more inclined to actually go through with the purchase. The famous Amazon.com is usually cited as a good example of simple online shopping.
Put yourself in the shoes of a buyer coming to your online shop for the first time. They’ll surely want to know as much as possible about the ways and terms of shopping there. You might think they’re obvious, but they probably don’t. The frequently asked questions column has been an internet requirement for a long time, and it’s one of the things that might affect the shopper’s trust in the site. Make the FAQ clear and visually comprehensible, like they did on the Puma online shop.
Enable your users to give you reviews, because they want to know what others think of a product they’re interested in, and it might affect their decision to buy it. Still, pay attention to what people write, because there is always danger of fake reviews. The option to leave a review is a typical online feature of shops like Best Buy.
2. Discounts and recommendations
We all love a discount, and a recommended product might solve someone’s dilemma whether to buy something or not. News about sales should always be clearly visible and displayed on the home page, like in the case of Hello Direct.
1. Wish list
Most shoppers can’t buy everything they want all in one go, but that’s what the wish list is for: an option that enables users to add products they want or might buy at some point in the future. The emphasis here is on ‘buying it at some point in the future’, which makes explaining the importance of a wish list redundant. The wish list is usually to be found next to the product description or the ‘add to cart’ icon, like on Overstock.