Ecommerce is an ultra-competitive industry, with countless new start-ups emerging every day. Whether you’re selling clothes, computers or personalized cards, there will always be other brands competing for the same target market.
While a unique value proposition will help your brand stand out from the crowd, a unique website will do wonders too. That’s where eCommerce web design comes in.
Apple triumphed in business because they thought differently, not because they followed the pack. When it comes to your eCommerce website, it’s important to do the same. Fail to do so and you could fade into the background.
Differentiate your eCommerce site and boost your growth with these top tips.
Before you even consider bold statements or flashy graphics, it’s important to look at the speed of your site. Yes, this might sound like an odd way to be different your eCommerce site. However, when you consider that the time to fully load the average mobile landing page is 22 seconds, one thing soon becomes clear. This is not the company you want to keep.
Consumers love a fast site. Not only that, they actively avoid slow ones. 53% of people leave a webpage after 3 seconds of loading time.
The speed of your site also reflects onto your brand. A slow, sluggish site will inevitably make visitors question how effective your products are or service is. In contrast, a lightning fast site will impress customers and give you the edge over competitors.
Google even rewards fast websites with better rankings. What better incentive do you need?
It’s important to research your competition when launching or overhauling an eCommerce store. Yes, it’s easier to adopt the latest trends and mimic the current market leader, but why follow when you can lead?
For your website to stand out, you need to have a brand that stands out. It’s then up to your site to reflect this.
Identify the key features, qualities and unique selling points of your eCommerce business or your products. Are your products strong and long-lasting? Do you offer a wider range than other suppliers? Or does the real value lie in your ten-out-of-ten customer service?
You can highlight these aspects in two key areas:
Well-written, original content will work wonders for your site. It’s the first thing visitors look for when they’re on a page, and it could be the key to guiding them to a conversion. Make sure the content on your home page and landing pages are carefully crafted to communicate your unique proposition.
Content is key on product pages too. It gives customers all the information they need before buying. Good content could also reduce the amount of customer service needed on your end by answering customer queries on-page. Again, make sure any descriptions are on-brand, with plenty of product features and specifications.
The saying goes, “a picture is worth a thousand words”. So, why do so many eCommerce businesses use generic royalty-free images on their site?
Bland and basic images can drain the life out of any brand. Instead, look for high-quality images that say something about your company or – even better – hire a professional photographer to help show-off the true identity of your brand.
This counts for product images too. Whatever your selling, customers want to see it from every angle possible. There’s nothing more suspicious than a product with a lack of photos.
3. Social proof
When you’re looking for somewhere to eat, what separates one restaurant from another?
In most cases, it’s the reviews. As consumers, we’ve become increasingly reliant on other people’s opinions. BrightLocal’s 2017 consumer review survey found that:
- 85% of people trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations from friends
- 73% of consumers trust businesses more if they have positive reviews
- 49% of consumers won’t use a business unless it has four-star reviews
Let’s face it, if you saw this review by American model and entrepreneur Karlie Kloss, you’d think twice before booking a flight with Philippine Airlines.
— Karlie Kloss (@karliekloss) June 7, 2016
Displaying reviews on your site gives your brand and your products social proof. It’s the idea that, because others are using and positively reviewing your products, it is more acceptable to purchase them. In short, it gives consumers another reason to trust you – and it could be the deciding factor which makes your eCommerce site standout.
Does your eCommerce site have a pulse? Or is it lifeless?
When customers are browsing and comparing numerous eCommerce sites, it’s easy for everything to fade into one. It’s a wholly one-way encounter, which is easy to forget and even easier to navigate away from.
By encouraging interactions, you can create a connection with your website visitors and foster ongoing relationships. This will help turn clicks into not just customers, but your brand’s biggest advocates.
There a countless way to encourage interactions, such as blog posts, forums, and newsletters. One of the simplest and most successful methods is live chat.
A simple pop-up chat window gives you the opportunity to interact with potential customers. Maybe they’re browsing your site looking for more information on your company or just want help deciding between products. Live chat adds a personal feel which could set you apart from the crowd.
It keeps visitors on your site for longer too, which is a key metric when Google ranks sites – not to mention the increased likelihood of a conversion. Best of all, live chat software means you’ll only be notified when someone sends a query.
5. Stand Out elsewhere
Standing out doesn’t just refer to your site’s design. It’s also important to make your site stand out across the web…
SEO and PPC
Search engine optimization (SEO) and pay-per-click (PPC) marketing are two ways to make your site stand out online. SEO is a long-term approach, in which you can increase the quantity and quality of traffic to your website.
PPC, on the other hand, targets these key terms with paid adverts on the likes of Google. Ads appear at the top of the search engine results page, which attracts the majority of clicks from search engine users. This provides more of an immediate impact but doesn’t have a lasting effect without continued investment.
You’ll still need to tailor your landing pages to the search terms to minimize costs, as Google charges more per click for pages that aren’t relevant. With both approaches, it’s vital you identify the right phrases before targeting them. After all, there’s no use having your site stand out when it’s for something too broad or irrelevant.
Sites like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest provide the perfect platform to establish a clear, unique brand identity and tone. You can build up a following, advertise your products and interact with your customers – all for free.
There’s even the opportunity to utilize some of the above techniques, such as social proofing, advertising and interacting. Social is a great way to tie everything together.