3 Essential Design Features of Successful E-Commerce Websites

E-commerce is big business. As of February 2019, Amazon.com was valued to be worth around $775 billion. Only twenty years ago, this would have been completely unthinkable. Those were the days when the vast majority of people still shopped for CDs on the high street and did all of their Christmas shopping in the frantic hustle and bustle of a shopping centre. Now that the turns have turned firmly in the favour of online shopping, there are more and more people out there who want a piece of the lucrative e-commerce market.

On the one hand, this is very wise, because there certainly is money to be made in the e-commerce space. On the other, it's harder than ever to stand out from the crowd and make sure that your e-commerce website can compete in the marketplace.

If your e-commerce website isn't flawless, you won't gain consumer traction to build a successful online company. When working with e-commerce website development services, it's absolutely imperative that you brief the company creating your site thoroughly so you invest your time and money in a way that delivers the very best results. This means you need to have a strong grasp on which design features will make your e-commerce site a popular shopping destination. Here are three important things to take into consideration:

More design is not the best design.

Many store owners feel that the more bells and whistles they can fit into their online store design, the more sales they will make. This is not the case. Remember that people will land on your website because they potentially want to purchase a product, not because they are intrigued by your extravagant site design. This means that your design should serve your products—the products should not serve the design—because the main objective has to be sales. Avoid clutter on your website, avoid working with too many colours, and avoid design features so striking that people will look at the design instead of the product. Keep things simple and your products are more likely to fly off the shelves.

Intuitive navigation.

A big mistake that a lot of start-ups make with design is that they think design is all about making something look pretty. That is definitely an important part of design, but the design of your website will also control how users navigate their way through your store, and this is so important because if an end user can't find what they're looking for, you will lose sales. Navigation is a particular challenge for e-commerce sites with a great deal of products. You don't want your potential customers getting lost in a quagmire of pearl necklaces if what they really want to buy is a pair of sapphire earrings. Navigation should be clear and intuitive, with many links and search features to help end users every step of the way.

Don't neglect the shopping cart.

If your product is great but your potential consumers find it difficult or clunky to add items to a basket or modify their orders, this gives them a reason to click off your website and not make that all-important purchase. Of course, showcasing your actual products is hugely important, but closing the sale is equally so, and shopping cart design is all too often neglected. Key features should include the ease of adding and removing products on every page. At the final shopping cart page, ensure there is functionality to check and modify an order, and that product images are present on the final checkout page so that the customer is very clear about their order.

Armed with this information, you'll be able to work with an agency specialising in e-commerce website development to create an online storefront that turns a great profit.