The Art Of eCommerce: How to Create a Successful Website for Your Business

July 23, 2013 6:30 am3 comments

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Maintaining a Consistent Consumer Base Relies on How You Design Your Online Business

People are spending more time than ever before online surfing the web. In 2012, the global online community spent 35 billion hours online; that’s the equivalent to 3,995,444 years.

So what are we doing whilst we’re online? According to research carried out by Go-Gulf, we spend the majority of our time online chewing the fat on social media. After that, the global community enjoys checking their emails, reading online content, conducting internet searches and visiting multi-media sites – that means funny cat videos to you and me.

However, what’s most surprising from this study is that we spend only 5% of our time shopping online. That doesn’t sound like a lot, but there’s a huge amount of money spent in that tiny 5% of time.

This year, we’ve really outdone ourselves. In the first quarter of the 2013, consumers spent $50.2 billion globally online. Getting your business online and selling your product or service on the internet is a big deal these days. Businesses around the globe are after a piece of the pie and competition for traffic and conversions is bigger than ever.

So what does it take to create a successful ecommerce website?

Design

First thing first: you’re going to need a decent website design.

As with most things in the design world, the simpler your website is, the better it will perform. That’s not to say that your site has to look boring and dull, but the journey for the customer, from your landing page to the checkout, should be easy to navigate, clear, and concise.

There’s nothing worse than an overly complicated website that makes you jump through all sorts of hoops to get end of the process. You’ll find that your basket abandonment rate will go through the roof as customers become frustrated and leave your website to shop somewhere else.

Remember that your nearest competitor is only a couple of clicks away; you don’t want to lose customers to a rival just because their site functions better than yours.

Detail

Your design should continue throughout your site. It’s all well and good having a beautiful home page which directs your customer to all of your wonderful products, but when they get to a product and find a tiny blurry picture of the product in question and very little information about the specific detail of the product, they’re soon going to lose interest.

A little detail can make a huge difference. You’re proud of your product right? Good! So tell your customer all about it, get passionate with your copy, and let them know why this is the best product on the market. The sole reason for a customer going to a product page is to find out more about that specific product, so it’s your job to give them all the information they could possibly need.

SEO

If you’ve got a great website that’s just begging for people to come along and browse your online shopping aisles, you’re going to need to get some traffic in to make some sales. But how do you do that? There are millions of ecommerce websites all fighting to be found through popular search engines, making search engine optimisation (SEO) essential to remain competitive in online markets.

Let’s say you want to buy a handbag. A simple search in Google brings about 218,000,000 search results for the keyword ‘handbags’. Get a little more specific and search for ‘red leather handbags’ and you’ll get 28,400,000 results. Is someone who’s looking for a red leather handbag going to go through all of those search results to find the right handbag for them? Of course not; it’s more likely than not that they won’t even get past the first page of search results. Ensuring that you appear on the first page of search results for keywords related to your product is essential for getting people to your website, how are people going to find you otherwise?

Adapt To Change

Who knows what’s going to be around the corner in terms of trends and ecommerce sales. The ways in which we shop online and spend our money are always changing, and with new devices always being added to the fray, these are turbulent times for people in the ecommerce business. What this means though is that there’s a lot of excitement and opportunity for people to make their mark on an industry still in development. You need to be at the forefront of this development, pushing boundaries and giving shoppers new opportunities to find and buy the items they love.

Image: iStockphoto

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Jeff Nevil

Jeff Nevil

I am a Dad, full time content writer, interested in rising technology, saving money, traveling, current affairs, and have invested in a few internet companies so I know B2B. I am semi-retired having left my job a few years ago and am currently establishing myself as an expert in various subjects by providing interesting, insightful and helpful content on the internet to broaden my portfolio. Connect with me on Twitter and Google+.
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