E-Commerce Website Design: What Essential Features to Include?

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From cars to clothes, online shopping has become a popular way for consumers to buy their products. In fact, e-commerce was a significant driver of sales for export businesses in 2021, according to the latest DHL Export Barometer report.

It is important not to lag behind as more businesses shift towards e-commerce to cater to the growing digital consumer base. However, building an e-commerce website is not easy and can be a complex process.

But, it doesn’t have to be this way. We'll discuss the essentials that every business should include when building their e-commerce websites. Whether you're just getting started or looking to make some updates to your online store, here are the three key features a good e-commerce website must have.

1. Back to basics: Domain name, user-friendly interface

If you are starting a website, there are some basic features you first need to have in place before you begin. For example, you must register a unique domain name for your website,  regardless if it is a B2B (business to business) or B2C (business to consumer) e-commerce website. A good domain name is one that is short, distinct to your business, and easy to type. The latter would mean avoiding symbols and numbers, if possible.

Next, ensure you have a fast, user-, and mobile-friendly interface so visitors can navigate your website with ease. In today’s digital age, it is more important than ever for your website to load fast because people’s attention shifts quickly. It is best to serve your customers with the page load time they need, a good goal being 1-2 seconds, according to SEMRush.

Incorporating these elements when you create an e-commerce website will allow you to start off with a solid foundation.

2. Create quality product and category pages

Once you have settled the basics, create your product and category pages. They are also important e-commerce website design features. Give your customers a good idea how each product and/or service looks by including high quality images and videos. There are many royalty-free websites that allow you to download stock images and videos. Some popular examples include Pexels, Pixabay, and Unsplash. 

In its description, indicate the product or service’s information, dimensions, materials, and/or other important details. Add Click to Action (CTA) phrases to spur your customers to make a purchase immediately.

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is also important to improve your website ranking. To make your online store SEO-friendly, add SEO keywords to your webpage titles, meta tags descriptions, image alt tags, and content. This increases the chances of your site appearing on the first page of the search engine results page, leading to greater incoming traffic.

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3. Add Wish List, Shopping Cart, and Checkout buttons

Buttons are important features for a good e-commerce website. 

The Wish List button is a great tool for customers to remember items they want for later. If they need more time before committing or are not sure what type of item they want, they can simply add it to their Wish List. 

Meanwhile, a Shopping Cart button can help customers keep track of how many products they have selected so there will not be any surprises when checking out.

Checkouts happen after customers finish their shopping session and proceed to pay for all the items added into their Shopping Cart. Using a high contrast Checkout button can greatly reduce shopping cart abandonment rates.

The buttons’ positions also have an effect on the web user’s experience. If the website doesn't provide a quick and easy checkout experience, you're going to lose your customers to the competition. When customers are ready to buy, they should be able to find both the Add To Cart and Checkout buttons quickly and easily at the top of the website. 

Add alternate payment methods 

As a business, you want to make it as easy as possible for customers to pay for your products or services. If you're only accepting payment through credit or debit cards, you may be missing out on a lot of potential sales. Ensure that your website accepts alternate payment methods, such as PayPal, Apple Pay, and Amazon Pay. 

Use a reputable payment processor that encrypts your customers’ data. A secure checkout process is what customers look out for as it ensures their personal information is kept safe and confidential.

Creating an online shopping website 

It is not hard creating an online shopping website when you know what features to include. A well-designed one will contain the following features:

  • Unique domain name

  • Business logo

  • Catchy tagline

  • User- and mobile-friendly interface

  • Product and category pages with high quality images and videos

  • SEO-optimised content

  • Buttons such as Wishlist, Shopping Cart, and Checkout

The best e-commerce websites are designed with the customer in mind. They stay on top of the latest e-commerce trends, are easy to navigate, and provide a pleasant shopping experience. By making sure the right features are on your website before it goes live, you can drive conversions and increase sales by providing customers with all the information they need at their fingertips.