Simple, isn't it.

Building your successful e-commerce website that's filled with emotionally engaging images, positive customer reviews, sitting high in the rankings, providing your consumers with a journey that flows straight from your optimized landing page to your highly converting shopping cart.

If it's so simple, why are so many people get it wrong?

But here's the thing, it is simple.

You can build an e-commerce site that appeals to a broader audience than a Macy's store in NYC.

You can position Call-to-Actions above the fold, so they drive sales figures skyward like a Space X rocket on, well, rocket fuel.

All you need is to put all the moving parts in the right order.

Captivating your audience and leaving them feeling they chose to make the journey to your buy box, while all along, it was your cleverly designed website that guided them along.

All you need is 7 e-commerce website design tips and best practices.

What are we waiting for? Let's dive straight in.

Use Minimalism to Gain Audience Appeal

Using a minimalistic approach when designing your website will ensure it appeals to a broader audience.

Because it provides a clean, fast functioning, easy to navigate, frustration-free shopping experience that encourages your visitors to purchase.

To create a minimalistic website, adopt a less is more approach.

Remove any elements that might slow your page loading speeds, all unnecessary pages and drop-down menus, and any advertisements that don't fit the searcher's intent because they don't work.

Consumers remember convenience; make them remember your website by being simple.

Learn more: Best Practices for Minimalist Website Design

Guide Your Visitors Journey to The Buy Box

Your website's main objective is to provide your visitors with the easiest possible route from the landing page to the buy box. It's that word convenience again, sure isn't it the reason we all shop online?

Today's UX designers know this; that's why almost every successful e-commerce store has adopted a strategy that smoothly guides visitors to the location, like making a purchase or taking targeted action.

You achieve this by putting your call to action above the fold, where consumers see it immediately upon arriving on the chosen landing page. Once there, everything must flow like melting chocolate, and the experience must be just as sweet.

Some tips on how to make it happen:

  • Your search bar: Enables users to quickly find what they need, again, put it where they can see it.
  • Breadcrumbs: Allows visitors to expand their search and return to numerous previous locations.
  • Filtering: Users can exclude all items that don't relate to their search terms and places them on their desired product homepage.
  • Your catalog: Enables instant category and product switching.

Visual Hierarchy Should Always Come First

Visual hierarchy is all about emphasizing the essential information blocks on your website. So, your users can see them, and you can control your visitor's journey by placing them in strategic positions, over-riding our f-shaped pattern of scanning while online.

If you create a simple structure with an easy-to-understand visual hierarchy, visitors will have no problems navigating your store and see where to click to be transferred to their desired location.

Take your call to action, you want it above the fold, but there are other essential information blocks that users need to see to understand your website.

And you help them by putting those blocks at the top of the page.

Most e-commerce stores have the following elements on their homepage to provide a user-friendly experience:

  • A logo located in the header
  • A well-positioned search bar
  • Easily viewed contact details
  • Navigation menu
  • Main content area
  • An image or slider
  • Finished with a footer

Position is crucially important; however, making sure you create a high-quality (both visually and file type) logo to display at the header, and images used in a slider or CTA is equally so. This can be easily done with a WordPress slider plugin which would do most of the heavy lifting.

Consistent Branding Creates Consistent Consumers

Most of us love consistency; it's reliable and familiar, and we trust it. The same goes for your target audience and your brand.

Recent studies show that people are six times more likely to buy from a brand that they're familiar with. We're not talking global recognition here, you don't have to be at a level of Apple or Nike, but you do need brand consistency if you want to succeed on any level.

Creating a consistent brand starts when you make a logo and then extends to both your website and any marketing strategies you're using to drive traffic to it. The branding has to match throughout, but it starts with your website.

Your site needs a clear and precise branding strategy that instantly projects your brand's personality and voice. It has to be heard throughout your website, so visitors become comfortable and familiar.

Use Visuals Effectively

Visuals are quickly becoming the most potent form of content because they're quick to understand, instantly relatable to, and we remember them for far longer than the written word. 

But they can do more than engage and inform; they can also add a flow and cohesion to your website, making your visitor's journey a visual feast that delights on every page.

And it doesn't matter what you're selling, products, services, ideas, or solutions; your visuals must be large and clear enough so viewers can see every detail, as this removes doubt and encourages engagement.

Always include several angles of any products you're selling, preferably in action; by doing so, you'll help increase your sales and decrease your returns.

Ensure You're Available to Your Market

A modern website must be responsive; otherwise, you could be losing over 50% of possible visitors, as that's the number of the global population now using smartphones to view and purchase online.

Suppose your e-commerce site isn't optimized for every screen size, let alone mobile devices. In that case, your text and interface elements will look too small and out of place. Today's shoppers won't accept the inconvenience of trying to read, let alone navigate your website, and your bounce rate will skyrocket.

You can avoid this by ensuring the website template you choose is optimized ready; if the one you're already using isn't, install the required plugin to bring it up-to-date.

Let Your Customers Sell Your Brand for You

Who doesn't read reviews before buying a product? Nobody, that's who.

And there's no marketing strategy more powerful than your past customer reviews praising your products or services.

Just like mobile-friendly optimized themes, most e-commerce themes now provide customizable testimonial blocks built in so you can have a dedicated review section right where you need it most, on your home page. 

Over to you

You see, creating your e-commerce store, so it performs at the highest possible level is simple.

All you have to do is take each step and implement them so they can help you achieve your e-commerce goal.

Once you do that, your website will do the rest.