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10 UX best practices for ecommerce success

Jennifer Lonoff Schiff | Aug. 23, 2016
Experts in user experience and ecommerce share their top tips for how to get consumers to enjoy, stay and buy on your website.

The biggest challenge for ecommerce businesses is how to convert visitors into customers. One of the best ways, assuming that you are providing great products or services that people want, is to ensure that people visiting your site can quickly and easily find what they are looking for – and then are able to buy it quickly and easily.

So how can online businesses make the customer journey as pleasant and rewarding as possible? Following are 10 tips from ecommerce business owners and user experience (UX) pros.

1. Don’t make people wait to view your site

“Nothing gets a visitor to bounce faster than slow-loading pages,” says Ron Yates, the owner of Titanium Jewelry and Yates Jewelers. “Many studies have shown that slower page load speed equals lower conversion rates. Shoppers just won't wait around.”

“Forty percent of buyers will abandon a site that takes more than three seconds to load. And a one-second delay in page response can lower conversions by seven percent,” says Ray Grady, executive vice president, CloudCraze.

“For fast load times (and checkout experiences), look at cleaning up and trimming down your code,” says Jen Chow, UX research lead, Shopify. Also compress images, as large images take a while to load. And “consider responsive design, which adapts the design of your website to look its best on whichever device people happen to be shopping on.”

2. Understand how people read/scan information

“Put the important parts of each web page across the top and down the left-hand side,” says Daren Low, founder, Bitcatcha. “Visitors scan web pages in an ‘F’ pattern. So draw their attention with a [strong] header/headline” and layout pages accordingly.

3. Make it easy to find products

“Do consumer research to find out which categories are most important to people. [Then] create logical product and subcategories so people can [easily find] what they want,” says Zondra Wilson, president & CEO, Blu Skin Care. Also, “if you can, put color or size variations on a single product page to cut down on clutter and make it easier to navigate.”

4. Simplify your product page layout.

“Keep your layout clean and sleek,” says Dimitrios Kourtesis, CEO, Goodvidio. “Place the essentials – product code, price, brief description, color/size options, photo and video gallery [and ratings summary/link to reviews] – above the fold and use the rest of the page to give more details, such as reviews and ratings [and] shipping options.” 

5. Keep color under control

“Colors are great for evoking emotions and adding emphasis. However, using too many colors will dilute [the] results you're trying to obtain,” says Matt Tomaziefski, website and graphic developer, Miles Technologies. “Try limiting your color variations to about three. Best practices are to use your brand colors along with their varying shades and to remain consistent throughout your website.”


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