Top 7 Things Customers Expect from Your Online Store

January 6, 2016
January 6, 2016 admin

Does your E-commerce site have what it takes to be “The One“?

The One that can solve customer’s problems, provide the information and product they need, and basically make their lives a whole lot easier.If you answered “Uh, I guess so?” then you might be in trouble.
Does your E-commerce site have what it takes to be “The One“?
The One that can solve customer’s problems, provide the information and product they need, and basically make their lives a whole lot easier.

If you answered “Uh, I guess so?” then you might be in trouble.

Just like finding Ms or Mr. Right, customers have a certain set of criteria which they use to judge if they have found the right e-commerce site.

And it’s not just about whether the site looks attractive at first glance.

There’s more to it than that.

Want to unearth the mystery of what customers are actually looking for in your e-commerce shop?

Read below.

1. Fast Loading Pages

Does your site take forever to load?

Now you can kiss those visitors and sales goodbye!

Remember, online shoppers have the attention span and patience of a fly.

Sites that take a couple of seconds or, God forbid, a few minutes to load, are quickly abandoned in favour of a speedy and fully-optimised website.

According to an infographic by KISSmetrics, even a 1-second delay in page response can already lead to a reduction in conversions of up to 7%.

Additionally, page loading time can also affect your search engine rankings, so neglecting it can significantly hurt your bottom line.

 

To improve site speed, make sure to work with a reliable hosting provider.

You can also do a couple of tweaks, such as optimising images, enabling compression and browser caching.

Most of E-commerce platforms like Magento or PrestaShop offers this functionality as standard.

However, It does need good configuration.

2. Visually Appealing Design

If your e-commerce store were a physical shop, would it be clean, spacious and welcoming like an Apple Store?

Or would it be cluttered, disorganised and uninviting like a junkyard?

If your digital storefront does not look clean and professional, and make users say ‘wow!’ (in a good way) then you probably need to improve your web design.

A good web design, especially if you’re not a household name yet, can increase your trustworthiness and let visitors know there’s a reliable company behind the screen.

Get Elastic features several low-cost tools to help you understand whether your site is appealing to users or not, using feedback from real people.

3. Convincing Product Pages

The thing about e-commerce is that there are no salesmen to convince visitors to purchase your items; it’s your website that does it for you.

This is why it’s important to have very convincing product pages.

So what exactly does it take to have product pages that increase your chances of getting conversions?

There are only four elements:

  • powerful images or video,
  • clear and concise product descriptions,
  • customer reviews
  • and a well-placed call to action.

If you want inspiration for a product page, look no further than Best Made, an American company known to develop sustainable, artisanal tools.

 

Best Made includes extremely detailed and powerful descriptions of each product, as well as high resolution product shots that are nothing short of amazing.

The “Add to Cart” button also appears beside the product’s price, and is coloured to grab attention.

 

4. Trusted Payment Method Icons

So a customer has viewed your website, picked a product, and is ready for checkout.

What else could possibly go wrong?

There are a few ways, particularly not accepting certain payment options.

If a user sees that his or her preferred payment method is not eligible, cart abandonment could be the next scenario.

Accepting trusted payment options, and informing your customers about it by featuring their highly visible icons, is one way to gain the trust of prospective buyers and ensure a smoother and successful transaction.

5. Reliable Search Function

A search box can be critical to your e-commerce success, especially if you have a large catalogue of products.

An excellent on-site search engine must provide clear and easy-to-read results that are useful and match the intention of the user.

It must also deliver an optimal number of search results at lightning speed.

Adopting auto-complete tools is also recommended to improve user experience and the relevance of search results.

6. Valuable Customer Service Channels

When visiting an e-commerce store, customers also look for customer service elements, including live chat, About Us or Contact Us pages, and social media accounts.

These channels reassure customers that they can always contact somebody when something goes wrong with their purchase.

Live chat software, in particular, has been shown not just to improve customer service but also conversion rates.

Live chat works for many businesses and customers because it happens real-time and is more personal than e-mails.

One success story is the British airline Virgin Atlantic Airways, which reveals that for customers using the live chat function, average order values is 15% higher than those who don’t.

7. Exciting Promotions

Want to catch the eye of customers?

There’s no better way to seduce visitors than by offering discounts, promotions and other incentives such as free shipping.

Everybody loves a good deal and making promotions a part of the sales process is a sure way to improve conversion rates, minimise cart abandonment, and increase the average order value.

For your promotions to be effective though, they should be extremely visible and well-placed throughout your site.

A perfect example would be Zappos, a Las Vegas, Nevada-based online shoe and clothing shop.

Final Words

For your e-commerce store to excel, it’s important that you understand that it isn’t always about you, the online merchant—it’s about the customer.

It’s about catering to their needs, wants, and interests.

And by building and running a digital storefront that covers all the elements customers are looking for in an e-commerce site, you are greatly increasing the chances of turning lookers into buyers and into repeat customers!

Is there anything we missed? Feel free to add to our list by leaving a comment below. We’d love to hear from you!

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