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Five Steps to Easier Site Usability for Online Shoppers

February 20th, 2014 Brianne Schaer No comments

Much like it can be difficult for a traveler to navigate a new land without a map, an online shopper may never find what he or she is looking for when dealing with a cluttered, complicated web design. Online shoppers are ready and willing to spend their dollars at your online sales channel, but if it is too difficult or tedious to do so, they will quickly and easily take their business to another outlet. After all, the next store front is just a click away, no need to factor in transportation costs.

There are a number of reasons a potential customer may decide to shop at a competitor’s store, from better pricing to ease of website use. Let’s focus on the latter with a list of five ways to improve your online sales channel to make it more user-friendly and easy to navigate.

Offer Promotions

Nothing will tempt online shoppers to make purchases more than an offer to spend less. A cleverly placed promotion could increase your sales numbers while helping your customer find the item he or she is looking for. For example, grouping similar items together under a “20% off” or “clearance” tab will make purchasing easier for the thrifty shopper by pinpointing discounted items. A hover ad may also help drive particular shoppers to items of similar interest to either another item or a promotion detail they are viewing. 

Offer Promotions

Advertising promotions allows customers to easily see which items are in their price range and tempt shoppers to purchase based on their total savings.

Easy Navigation and Clean Design

Without a fresh, clean design layout and a solid navigation, consumers will never find what they are looking for; or worse, they will find it at a competitor’s store. The website’s toolbar should provide relevant tabs to help the shopper find items quickly and efficiently. Each tab should also have an organized list of drop-down items to further narrow down the items on each page. A powerful search bar is also a necessity to view items that fall under specific parameters, such as color, size, or brand.

Establish Customer Loyalty

By offering customers a chance to sign up for a mailing list or rewards club, there is a greater chance they will make future purchases due to increased exposure to particular products. Items may be targeted to each customer’s preferences to allow only items of interest to make it in to each individual’s inbox. Once the need to sift through an abundance of options listed on the website’s home page is eliminated, your customer needs only to click on the item he or she wants to purchase and complete the checkout process.

Simplify Order Process

Once a customer has zeroed-in on an item for purchase, it should be simple to learn the specifications and details for said product. Online consumers do not have time to search for product details or customer reviews. All of this should be readily available and true to the actual product. Not only will this make it easier for consumers to navigate your website, it will also greatly reduce returns and exchanges. Zoom in capabilities offer consumers a chance to view details that may be hard to see in a small picture on a computer screen. Likewise, customer reviews are a great way to allow happy customers to promote the product.

Simplify Order Process

Offering zoom views of each product listed not only helps the shopper gain a better idea of what the product on order is, but it also greatly minimizes returns due to a product not meeting its description.

Once the decision to buy has been made, the checkout process should be as painless as possible. There should never be an excess amount of information requested, no surprise sales and shipping costs, or too many clicks before reaching the final checkout. Let’s not have our precious sale sit in an abandoned shopping cart!

Faster Load Times and Improved Mobile Site

Today’s busy shopper never has time to waste waiting for a website to load or trying to navigate a website that does not have mobile device capabilities. Improving website load times can be as simple as scaling or compressing images or minimizing html usage. The mobile site should load equally as fast as the main website, and should be fully compatible with all of its features. If a customer has an item in his or her shopping cart from shopping on a desktop or laptop, it should appear on their mobile phone as well to allow a speedy and simple checkout. It is also a good idea to link to social media such as Facebook and Twitter, and to offer promotions or product features on these networks.

Faster Load Times and Improved Mobile Site

A mobile store that is optimized for use on mobile devices is a necessity that allows shoppers to make purchases on-the-go.

Usability and design are top priorities for online sales channels to increase sales and allow consumers to search and browse content easily. Ignify eCommerce provides solutions to improve eCommerce capabilities like mobile site development, search engine optimization, and performance reports. There is always room for improvement to ensure the highest level of customer satisfaction is met by your online sales channel, whether the focus is on mobile devices, social media, or standard web mediums.

If you would like more information on how to improve your online sales channel, please email us at ecommerce@ignify.com.

Brianne Schaer is an Assistant Copywriter at Ignify. Ignify is a technology provider of CRMeCommerce and ERP, and Point of Sale software solutions to organizations. Ignify has won the worldwide Microsoft Partner of the Year Award in 2013, 2012 and 2011. Ignify has been included as the fastest growing business in North America for 7 years in a row by Deloitte, Inc Magazine and Entrepreneur Magazine from 2007 to 2013.