Your idea is set. The basic structure of your online shop is ready. Now, you simply have to put it all together. And business will start rolling in!
If only it were that easy! OK, so your product range, marketing strategy, customer service concept are all perfect. But now, everything depends on the design of your webshop. And when we say everything, we also mean it!
You know from visiting department stores, supermarkets, general stores or shopping centers that it’s the first impression that counts. You notice right away that at Mediamarkt, it’s all about low prices, whereas at the Apple Store, good customer advice and premium products are priority. At the department store, the focus is on selection. And at your general store, it’s the endearing quirkiness. You smell, you see, you hear. Light, atmosphere, presentation – all of this has its effect. And it puts you in the mood to buy – or perhaps the opposite.
It’s no different when someone visits your online shop. They know whether they have found what they’re looking for in just a few seconds. If not, they’ll leave before you can even count to three. Promise your visitors a great shopping experience – and actually make due on this promise on your other pages.
The landing page is extremely important. It should be clean, clearly designed, well-structured and illustrated with large, high-quality graphics. Studies have shown that three quarters of users judge the trustworthiness of a webshop by its design. And it’s absolutely essential that the more expensive your products are, the more effort you should put into the styling and professionalism of your photos!
Take your visitors by the hand.
What no one likes is a tedious search. So maybe your statistics show that people are spending quite a bit of time on your site. Unfortunately, this may have nothing to do with a fascination with your site – especially when your sales figures aren’t exactly shooting into space. Instead, this might indicate that people are searching in your shop but aren’t finding what they want. And that can be fatal to business! Usability is key: clear overview, comprehensible user guidance, intuitive navigation. And it’s very important that your homepage shows products and services that are typical of your shop. This way, visitors know at first glance that, yes, this is exactly what they’re interested in! And the second absolute must: place the search field where it will stand out. Very few customers like having to weed through the entire shop page by page. They type in their search term and want to land in the correct place right away. You’ve got your work cut out for you.
An endless array of fun options
The possibilities for your website design are endless and it’s tempting to try them all. Lines, boxes, colorful fields, flashing numbers, funky gradients, lots of original fonts, pop-ups… Wow, everything is so colorful here! And so lively! That’s right, there’s way too much going on here. Action that amounts to putting lipstick on a pig – avoid at all costs unless you’re running a flea market or a shop full of cheap gadgets. For anything else, these frenetic elements are a no-go.
15 tips in a nutshell
1. Professionalism makes an impression. Create a premium presentation of your products. You’re certainly free to try out your own hand-knitted creations as well. But be prepared for the ensuing disappointment – it’s simply part of the deal! And don’t hesitate to update your design every few years to adapt to new viewing habits. Nothing ages faster than mediocre web design.
2. Minimize the number of ideas. Limit and reduce the design to what is most important. Provide a clear, comprehensible navigation. Show your customers the way instead of confusing them. They’ll thank you for it – in the form of sales.
3. Adapt your design style to your products. Technical/streamlined for electronic devices; filigree and sophisticated for jewelry; dynamic for sporting equipment; clear, clean, ample and with a bit of understatement for expensive clothing.
4. A corporate identity is always worth more than what you paid for it. Use it with precision on each page: your particular language, your logo, your design elements.
5. Photos should do more than just look pretty. They’re also there to be clicked on! Take advantage of this possibility. And help your visitors so they don’t always have to search for text links.
6. Make your webshop secure. And communicate this with your visitors – starting on the very first page.
7. Offer deals for bargain hunters. And show them to your user – again, starting on the very first page.
8. Does your shop offer any special perks (free shipping, discounts, loyalty programs, etc.)? Tell your visitors – starting on the very first page.
9. Do you sell brand-name products? Then work with your names and logos – starting on the very first page.
10. Offer more than just the price to sell your products, unless you really are less expensive than all of your other competitors.
11. through 15. Write high-quality, descriptive headlines. Write high-quality, descriptive copy for your products. Write high-quality, descriptive introductory copy. Write high-quality, descriptive news copy. Simply: always write high-quality, descriptive copy. Google will be pleased.
That said, we hope you have fun designing your website. What’s that you say? You have ideas, but don’t know how to implement them? Then have a look around the Hostpoint website. Click on Ecommerce. And simply test some things out!