design, digital marketing, digital strategy, ecommerce, website top tips, websites

Eight tips for building a great online shop

Integrating ecommerce into your website can be a tricky thing to get right, but it’s so important. According to, 40% of web users worldwide shop online and sales figures are only increasing – so brands simply can’t afford to be left behind.

Getting site visitors to your web shop has been the primary goal of all of your digital marketing efforts, so you don’t want to fall at the final hurdle. Your online store needs to be easy to navigate, provide all the right information and be persuasive at selling products. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Choose a scalable storefront design and platform. You may start with just a handful of products, but your product line is bound to grow. Make sure you choose something that’s easy to scale up.
  1. Prioritise exceptional quality product photos. Images are what sell the product, so put them at the top of your priorities. High resolution is the key, but make sure that they don’t slow down page loading speeds.
  1. Make online support available. What if a customer gets stuck using your web shop, or has a question about a purchase? Online support options such as live chat messaging and easily accessible FAQ pages are essential – helping them to get the answers they need to feel confident in hitting that ‘checkout’ button. Without these tools, they could easily go elsewhere.
  1. Simplify the checkout process. Make it as easy as possible, with as few clicks as possible, for customers to make a purchase, pay and receive a confirmation. The more complicated it is, the more likely it is that a visitor will lose interest or shop elsewhere.
  1. Include filtering options. Visitors don’t want to scroll through page after page of products to find the one they want. They want products sorted into clear, sensible categories, and the option to filter the view by factors such as price, product type, brand and ratings. This both speeds up and personalises the shopping experience.
  1. Consider quick view. This allows visitors to stay on the product listings page but access more information and images of a product, without having to open a new page. This, and an ‘add to bag’ option on quick view, can satisfy the impatient customer and make a sale more likely.
  1. Get the SEO right. Your product pages need to include the right search keywords and be clearly categorised, all to make your online store as SEO-friendly as possible. Kissmetrics has more insight into optimising ecommerce websites for search.
  1. Write your own descriptions. Just like with images, if everyone else is using the manufacturer’s descriptions – you need to do something different to stand out. Write your own, ensuring you hit the perfect balance between providing information and dazzling with persuasive language to sell the product.

What do you think is the key to ecommerce success? Have we missed something out? Please feel free to share your thoughts.

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