As a business owner, customer satisfaction is your utmost priority. Whether you are planning to launch a product or create an eCommerce site, the aim should be to improve the customer experience. So, you must be on the lookout for what customers want in an eCommerce site.
When Jeff Bezos created a website to sell books from the comfort of his garage back in 1995, he probably did not know it would grow to become the world’s largest eCommerce site. Back then, it was hard to set up an online store on your own. But today, the eCommerce business is fast-growing, with more entrepreneurs creating online retail stores where they sell all kinds of consumer products. What once took months to launch can now be created in weeks – even days.
According to a report by Ethan Cramer-Flood, despite the pandemic in 2020, worldwide eCommerce sales increased by 27.6%, with sales reaching well over $4 trillion. Because of the lockdown, more consumers took to online shopping. And they transitioned into the new year with this newfound buying alternative. Customers love the convenience of shopping online. With the growing ease of buying and selling online, the use of brick-and-mortar stores may soon be obsolete. Suffices to say that eCommerce sites are here to stay.
More than ever, business owners are looking for ways to improve their eCommerce sites to keep up with the evolving trends in the industry. Whether you already have a thriving online store or new to the game, you need to get on board with the program. Building a successful eCommerce business is not just about designing a fancy website with beautiful aesthetics and quality products. Other factors come into play.
Now, you are probably wondering, what makes a successful e-commerce website?
Well, the question should be, “What do customers want in an eCommerce site?”
The golden rule is you must be able to attract customers to your online store because they are the lifeline of your business. Remember, they bring the cash flow, which makes your business profitable. Securing buyers for your online store is not as easy as it sounds. But with the right tactics, you can attract customers to your e-commerce site. It starts with understanding what customers want in an eCommerce site.
Are you looking to grow your eCommerce business?
Well, you are just in luck today. In this article, I will share what customers want in an eCommerce site you may have missed.
ESSENTIAL E-COMMERCE WEBSITE FEATURES
Customer satisfaction comes down to the perception of their experience with your brand. No matter how good your products are, if customers do not enjoy their shopping experience on your site, they are never coming back. Remember, there are a variety of options available to them. So, if you must stay in business, you need a good customer perception and branding for your eCommerce website.
It does not matter what you are selling. The end game is to captivate your ideal customers by showing them that your eCommerce site is the best place to shop. Some essential eCommerce website features can give your site a unique brand identity. They give your customers a good impression and help you build a reputable eCommerce site.
Here are all the essential eCommerce website features you need to attract online shoppers.
What customers want in an eCommerce site is an accessible site that is easy to navigate. Have you ever tried buying from an online store, and everything seemed to have glitches? I bet you were frustrated. That may be how customers feel when you visit your eCommerce site. When you see abandoned carts on your site, don’t be quick to assume it’s because of the price tag. Think again. It may just be that navigating your website is a nightmare.
Attracting customers to your online store begins with your website design. Your site should be compatible with devices of different shapes, sizes, and processing systems. Browser compatibility is also important. Customers should be able to access your website on any browser.
Now, remember this, everybody hates slow internet. Nobody wants to sleep on a site that takes forever to load. So ensure that your site has a fast page loading speed. This improves not just the user experience but also Search Engine Optimization. Other essential eCommerce website features can make your site more user-friendly and increase conversion rates. They include:
i. Top-Level Domain
Top on the list of your must-haves is a top-level domain with a secured URL connection. This ensures that the data your customers share on your website is encrypted and cannot be accessed by third-party sites. If your eCommerce website is exclusive to a particular country, you can use a country code domain. Don’t forget to place your brand logo at a prominent spot on your website header, preferably at the top left corner.
ii. Customer Login
Allowing customers to register and log into your site can help you manage user data to improve their shopping experience. Just make sure you are not asking for a drop of their blood as part of the login details. I’m just kidding. But don’t make the registration process more stressful than it should be.
iii. Language Options
What customers want in an eCommerce site is a brand that cares enough to add the little extra details. I bet your customers would love to see that they can read the content of your store in their preferred language. If you want to build a global online store, then include language options so your customers can switch between different languages. This way, you get to reach people in non-English-speaking countries.
iv. Product Description
What customers want in an eCommerce site is a store that is visually optimized. You must add product description, quality images, and videos. Product images should have a zoom functionality so that customers can zoom in to view different parts of the product. Each product should have an add to cart button. You can have categories for featured products, best-selling products, new arrivals and special offers. Don’t forget to include the price details and relevant call-to-action buttons for sales and special offers.
Ever heard of window shopping? Yeah, some customers do that too in online stores. They may be interested in your products, but they don’t have a budget for them yet. You can help them make up their minds faster by creating a wishlist that allows them to store a list of these products. This way they can find them easily when next they visit your site.
vi. Shopping Cart
What is an eCommerce site without a shopping cart? The shopping cart should include the product name, price, and quantity. You can add a button that allows customers to change the number of products they want to buy. Also, display shipping and payment system icons so that customers will know the payment options you accept. Most customers will prefer a variety of options to choose from, as it’s more convenient.
vii. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
viii. Contact Us
You need this for customer support as users may want to reach out to enquire about products, delivery info, your working hours and physical location. Some may prefer to call, text, email or fill an inquiry form. So, don’t forget to add these essential eCommerce website features to your site. If your eCommerce site has a physical outlet, it would be great to add a store locator on your site so that customers can find their way to you with ease.
ix. Security Seals
What customers want in an eCommerce site is a brand they can trust. Nobody wants to be exposed to hackers just because they want to buy something online. Protect the personal and credit card details of your customers with secured payment gateways, SSL certificates, and security protocols. Also, reassure them that your eCommerce site is safe by adding security seals or trust badges where they can see it.
Does your eCommerce site have all these features?
If your answer is No, Iconic Digital World can help you fix that in no time.
2. What Customers Want In an eCommerce Site is Easy and Convenient Shopping
In this digital world, we all want to get things done without lifting a finger, and that includes shopping. What customers want in an eCommerce site is a place they can do their shopping with ease. Design your eCommerce site in a way that makes it easy for people to find what they are looking for. Arrange your products in different categories according to type, colour, size and brand to make their shopping smooth and hassle-free.
Provide a search bar that gives the option of searching for products based on brand and category. Consider limiting the clicks for checkout to avoid choice paralysis and order delay associated with bulk purchase. You can even leverage your customer’s frequent searches and information to customize the shopping process.
Now, the customer has visited your site, picked a product they want to buy, filled their shopping cart and are ready to pay. Eliminate barriers that could delay the payment process. This includes limited payment options and requiring first-time users to create an account before placing an order. Use a shopping cart software that allows customers to choose from a variety of payment options. And it’s better to let customers create an account after making a purchase. This way you won’t lose money if they don’t intend to come back to your site.
It doesn’t end there. Make sure you get your product from the right source. If the product isn’t delivered on time and it doesn’t work and look as described, that’s the end of their shopping spree on your site.
3. Customer Relationship Management
What customers want in an eCommerce site is good customer service. Everybody loves good customer service. How you treat your customers matters a lot. According to research by McKinsey, 70% of the buying experience is based on how customers feel they are being treated. If you want customers to fall in love with your eCommerce site, you must pay attention to your customer’s needs. Customers want to be seen as a priority. They want to know that you care about their problems and not just their money.
One way you can express customer care is to respond to their concerns and inquiries on time. If they relay a complaint, don’t get in your feelings. Take a deep breath and assure them you will fix it. All you need to get along with your customers is a little drop of patience and empathy. Trust me, the easiest way to scare off customers is a nasty attitude. People are more eager to share a negative than a positive review. Just one slip-up from you, and they will go shouting it to the rooftop. Remember, it takes 12 positive customer experiences to make up for one experience.
I once bought a shoe from a retail store, and they mixed up my order. Imagine how pissed I was when I got home to find that they had packaged the wrong pair. The following day, I went back to the shop ready to breathe fire and brimstone. I had expected them to be all defensive, but the sales rep was polite and apologetic. It wasn’t just what she said, but how she said it. They fixed not only my order but also gave me a complimentary gift. With that single gesture, they changed my perception of that experience.
There is no better publicity than satisfied customers. With good customer service tactics, you can attract more users to your site through word-of-mouth marketing. And please, make yourself easily accessible. Share your contact details so customers know they are not buying from a ghost. Knowing that they can call, text, live chat or email you when they are stuck gives them more confidence to buy from your eCommerce site.
4. Special Deals and Loyalty Program
Nothing screams “Buy me!” than a product with a special offer. If you want your customers to always come back for more, you must reward them for their patronage. Want more sales? Offer reward points, discount coupons and promotional offers. Customers are more willing to buy if they think that is the best offer they can get. Special offers motivate site visitors to make their first purchase. And it keeps long-time customers glued to you so they won’t go hunting elsewhere.
Transparency is an essential part of building trust and customer loyalty. Online shopping comes with its risk because of the delivery process. What do you do when customers complain about not having received the exact product they order? It would be easy to walk to a physical store and have it changed. But with online stores, it’s more complicated. This could jeopardize your brand integrity. You can reduce such risks by offering return guarantees at zero cost to your customers. Ensure that the return process is smooth.
Another thing that scares customers away is high shipping. Customers will fill their cart to the brim and are eager to make payment until they see the shopping. That’s because we all want fast and cheap delivery. Find alternatives to reduce shipping cost. You can also offer free shipping on specific days or for a fixed quantity of products.
5. What Customers Want In an eCommerce Site is User Generated Content
Finally, let’s talk about reviews and ratings. Uber drivers are not the only ones who need a 5-star rating. If you are in this game for the long haul, you must display customer reviews on your site.
What customers want in an eCommerce site is a store that has proof of its claims. No one will believe your site is the best if you are the only one saying it. We want to see what other people are saying about your online store. You can add a rating and review icon below each product so customers can share their experience. Site visitors can explore and compare reviews before making a buying decision. This is what will convince them to buy that product.
I know you are probably scared of getting a bad review. But look at it this way. With a bad review, you get to see the things you need to improve. If you do your homework right, you have nothing to fear. You can also include links to your social media accounts so customers can connect with you.
There you have it! All you need to know about what customers want in an eCommerce site. Now you have all the knowledge you need to build your eCommerce business and attract customers to your website. What are you waiting for? Get started with an Iconic E-Commerce Website today!