Online shopping is in vogue! Every brand and every store has created its online presence where prospective buyers can not only see the entire product line but easily and conveniently make purchases.
The sector of e-business that deals with online shopping and sales is known as e-commerce. The main goal of any e-commerce website is to sell its products. In order to do so, an online shopping website needs to highlight and showcase its best products and deals. It also needs to make the terms and conditions transparent, providing its customers with multiple modes of payment.
In general, e-commerce sites have certain features in common that do not change regardless of the companies who own those sites. These features can help in increasing sales for the site and create loyal customers that will return to the same site for all their future shopping sprees.
The features that any good e-commerce site should have include:
1. A Meaningful Logo
A clear logo is like a trademark, a stamp, or a business card. It provides a definite identity to the online store. Hence, it is an important element for any e-commerce site. The logo of your online store should not only be clear and bold, it should also reflect your brand and products.
Use colors and symbols that reflect your business but keep it simple, because the simpler your logo is, the easier it will be for people to remember. The most important part of designing a logo is to remember that your logo should always represent your business as a comprehensive whole.
2. Discounted Deals
When people browse online for a shopping website, they usually open up the home page and do not linger there long if nothing catches their eye. The home page of an e-commerce website needs to attract potential customers.
3. Shipment Facilities
The best way to do that is to highlight all the major deals that the website is currently offering. Whether there is a Christmas sale or an after summer sale, it should be made a centre of attention on the home page.
Another thing that attracts customers is the option to get their purchases shipped to their homes, right to their doorsteps. If the shipping is free, even better!
Most successful ecommerce sites offer free shipment facilities to their customers. If you can handle the shipping costs without suffering a loss, this is the best strategy.
However, if you want to charge your buyers for the delivery of the products, you can offer real time shipment rates or costs of delivery based on the weight and size of the goods. You can even apply delivery charges based on the distance that is being covered for the delivery. For instance, many websites offer free local deliveries but charge money for international shipments.
Along with discounted deals, some online stores offer free gifts with specific purchases or maybe it’s the holiday season and the website is offering a unique gift in a lucky draw. Adding these details to the home page causes customers to pay attention. After all, nobody says no to free stuff!
5. Newest, Branded and Hottest-Selling Products
The products that are being sold are the key components of an e-commerce site. Hence, they must be showcased on the website. The home page of an online shopping store needs to promote the newest products available at the store along with advertising the top-selling items and the branded goods sold by the e-store.
6. Product Catalog
In order to sell products in the best way, an e-commerce site needs to create a product catalogue. If you wish to increase your sales, make your product catalogue convenient and easy to use.
In order to do so, each of the products should be given with its image and detailed description. The price of the product should also be mentioned alongside it and most online product catalogues also provide a ‘Buy Now’ button that leads to the shopping cart.
7. Shopping Cart
The shopping cart feature is a must for every e-commerce website. For websites that sell a large amount of products, the ‘Buy’ button usually leads to the cart where the buyers can place all their purchases together, select the payment methods and enter the delivery details. It provides customers with the effect of shopping at a real store.
This feature should be located on each web page of your store and every product description should also have a ‘Buy Now’ button linked to each customer’s shopping cart.
8. Log-In Box
Regular customers to e-commerce sites can use the facility of account creation provided by the store. This enables customers to keep a record of their purchases, return to their carts later if they cannot purchase it at present and create a personalized shopping experience.
Customers can log-in to their accounts and shop to their heart’s content. Account creation also relives the customer of adding his personal, contact and delivery details every time he visits the site, because all of his details are stored within his account when he creates it.
If the online store is large with a wide selection of products, it is usually best to provide the potential customers with a means of searching through the products. Time is of the essence, even for the customers and if they cannot find something quickly and conveniently, they will move on to the next site to check the options available there. Creating a search box on the site helps clients to narrow down the products they want to buy.
10. Guest Checkout
For small and quick purchases, a feature known as guest checkout is provided to the customers of an e-commerce website. Not every customer has the time to fill a long form for details just to buy a single product and would prefer to use this feature. It is an easy and quick way of ensuring more sales.
11. Follow-Up on Cart Abandonment
Many online stores have a feature set up that allows them to send an email to their clients if they have abandoned their cart on the site. There could be many reasons for cart abandonment and reminders are a good way to ensure that at least some of the incomplete sales do get processed through the checkout of the store.
12. Live Chat
Customers to online stores prefer to clarify their queries with live representatives. Most e-commerce sites hire a group of personnel for customer care and they provide 24 hour help to the clients.
13. Multiple Payment Options
An e-commerce site should always provide buyers with a variety of payment options. Being able to pay by credit cars or to be able to pay cash at delivery at their convenience is appreciated by the customers and they tend to be loyal to the store that provides them with these services.
A perfect combination of the features mentioned above leads to the creation of a good e-commerce site that can maintain its sales and retain its customers through amazing appearance and services.