User experience (UX) encompasses all facets of the end-consumer’s interaction with the business, its products, and its services. A great UX can help boost your orders, as it allows users to find what they’re looking for trouble-free and discover new products fast. With good UX, consumers will likely spend more time on your website, which increases the possibility of them buying more products.
What’s more, it can assist you in retaining customers, as they prefer online shops that are easy to use and pleasant to look at. This can, in turn, boost your customer return rate.
If you’re looking to improve your e-commerce UX, the first thing you need to understand is your target audience’s behaviors and anticipations. With this information, you can get into the details of optimizing your user experience. That said, here are x best practices for improving e-commerce UX!
1. Customize the Checkout Process
It’s no mystery that e-commerce is extremely personalized nowadays. For example, if users search for a product, they’ll probably notice ads regarding that item. Or, they would get follow-ups when they visit an e-commerce shop or receive email promotions with similar products. But, personalization usually ends before the checkout process, making the checkout experience equal for all users.
However, not all customers are the same and the checkout needs of each differ. By avoiding customization of the checkout processes, merchants often lose the profits they’d otherwise have. That’s why it’s critical to focus on the personalization of the checkout processes.
Mladen Maksic, CEO of Play Media digital agency agrees with this, as seen in sincspider’s recent article: “eCommerce platforms are now using artificial intelligence (AI) to provide a more personalized experience to customers. For instance, Amazon uses AI to recommend products to customers based on their purchase history and preferences. This helps customers find the products they are looking for quickly and easily.” He believes that UX can be improved by offering a personalized checkout process.
2. Make Your Interface Spam-Free
Too many fields to complete before buying, pop-ups, clicks to arrive at the checkout page, and distractive ads not only slow down the purchasing process but also annoy your customers.
For this reason, you will want to check how effective your checkout process and pop-ads are and optimize the steps that increase your bounce rates.
3. Create a Mobile-Friendly Website
More than half of all internet searches are conducted via mobile phones, making it crucial to ensure your online shop is mobile-friendly. Note that mobile users are very likely to leave a site that isn’t mobile-responsive.
If you already have a website, make sure to optimize it to become mobile-friendly. And if you’re just starting your eCommerce journey, focus on creating a mobile-responsive site as this will boost both your reach and sales.
4. Ask for Customer Feedback
There’s always room for improvement, and customer feedback is one of the best ways to see what needs to be improved and change those areas accordingly. Often, customers will offer suggestions before you even ask, but optimizing your feedback process is still vital to improving the overall user experience. You can do this by using automation.
Instead of sending emails manually (time is money and who has time for that?) you can automate feedback request emails to be mailed after customers’ first purchases and designated periods. This way, you will be consistent and able to measure the whole process.
You can also offer incentives for providing feedback, such as a gift or a discount code on the next order. This is an excellent way to motivate users to give you feedback, and thus help you improve user experience.
Once you collect feedback, you may want to show it under particular items or other areas of your website. This is a great way to leave a positive first impression on your new visitors. Note that even bad feedback isn’t the end of the world if you contact the customer and let him know that you’re working on solving the problem.
5. Prevent 404 Pages and Broken Links
No one likes 404 pages and broken links, especially your website visitors. However, they are an inevitable part of e-commerce as online shops have many items to be added and removed throughout the process. Moving a page, migrating the website, changing a page’s directory, and broken redirects are other common causes of 404 pages.
Regardless of the reason, broken links and 404 pages will affect your UX. To prevent and avoid them, you have to regularly watch how your pages perform and act fast in case they appear. You can do this by using plugins like WP 301 Redirects as they will watch for any alterations in your URLs and automatically establish suitable redirect rules. That’s how you won’t experience a loss in users, conversions, or traffic, making your UX pleasant.
6. Allow Consumers to Buy Without Having to Sign Up
Requiring users to sign up for your site before buying from your online store is a popular sale tactic in e-commerce as marketers use these emails for promotional purposes. However, customers typically just want to buy your products and move on with their lives.
If you want the chance to send, for example, a promotional newsletter to your buyers, you can give them this option after the purchase with no strings attached. This way, your customers won’t be leaving your site annoyed because they were required to register before purchasing.
7. Have a Neat and Clean Homepage
Since your homepage is typically the first page your users visit, it usually gets the most traffic. For this reason, it needs to look clean, clear, and purposeful. You only get one chance for the first impression, so make sure you make it a positive one by using a stable color scheme, a simple design, and quality images.
8. Add a Wishlist Option
When an online store has a wishlist option, buyers are much more likely to return to the shop. Take Amazon as an example – their customers can save numerous items in their wishlist which allows them to visit whenever they want to buy. This takes the pressure away, allowing users to shop comfortably and rush-free.
9. Fast Loading Speed
If your site’s loading speed is slow, your customers won’t have a fun time browsing your website. Not only that, they will likely leave your store in search of another that offers a better user experience. That’s why you will want to focus on optimizing this technical aspect of your website as soon as possible.
A Good User Experience Is Vital for E-Commerce Stores
E-commerce businesses that offer poor user experience often end up empty-handed as their website visitors go on with their lives looking for something more seamless. If you notice your website traffic is less than desirable, your bounce rate is skyrocketing, and your profits are disappearing, the culprit is likely poor user experience.
Fortunately, this can be fixed with a few tweaks. By following our advice, your website will eventually come back to life and so will your customers with their orders. If you don’t see immediate results, don’t give up. Instead, be patient, learn more about UX and how to improve it, and your business will recover, and might just thrive.