7 Best Practices for Building a Successful E-commerce Store in 2022
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The growth of e-commerce has accelerated rapidly, due to COVID-19 and the social distancing norms that were put in place as a result. The global e-commerce market is set to hit $5.1 trillion in 2026. This number reflects the high earning potential of an e-commerce store as a business model that is gradually becoming the future of business as we know it. E-commerce websites offer various benefits to customers including convenience, safety, and ease of use among other factors.
Reasons to Set Up your E-commerce Store in 2022
If you are still not sure about setting up your e-commerce store, remember that this business model survived the test of time during the most economically dark years of the pandemic.
The following are a number of reasons, why now is the perfect time to build your e-commerce website in 2022:
- E-commerce is one of the fastest-growing markets with high earning potential.
- The lower cost of setting up and running an e-commerce store. Most of these stores are automated and can be managed efficiently by a small team.
- Online stores are open 365 days, 24/7, giving customers a larger time window to browse and shop. Coupled with lower costs in terms of overhead, staff, and advertising, therefore, provides higher profit margins.
- E-commerce businesses rely on digital marketing, which is more targeted and cost-effective than traditional marketing.
- You can set up your online store using headless e-commerce platforms like Headless Magento for growth flexibility.
- There is no requirement to make heavy upfront investments in purchasing or leasing a store space, hiring staff, or maintaining a large amount of inventory.
- Running your own e-commerce business provides a greater degree of independence and flexibility regarding your working time and how you manage your day-to-day business operations.
- With no geographical limits, you can sell your products to shoppers across the country or across the world.
- E-commerce businesses offer more opportunities for scalability. You can expand your online store without the need to worry about opening a new store in another geographical location.
- Easy process of displaying products. You can upload images and write detailed product descriptions that provide your customers with a great degree of convenience, in just a few clicks.
- E-commerce websites give you access to a substantial amount of customer data. Customers usually sign up using their name, email, and phone number. In addition to that, you can analyze buyer behavior by looking at what products they browse and how often they make purchases. This helps you customize your user experience and generate more leads.
7 E-commerce Store Best Practices Checklist in 2022
Now that you got to know some of the advantages e-commerce stores provide for current and prospective sellers, you must be excited to jump on the bandwagon and launch your very own online store.
Setting up an e-commerce store requires more than uploading great product pictures and adding a checkout function. You must invest in creating an exceptional user experience that sets your business apart from the competition.
So, what does it take to build a profitable e-commerce website in 2022? The following is a 7-step e-commerce store best practices checklist to build a successful e-commerce website:
1. Mobile-Friendly User Experience for the E-commerce Store
Approximately half of all website traffic comes from mobile devices. Therefore, optimizing your e-commerce website for mobile is a must, to improve your user experience and increase your conversion rate.
- Make sure your checkout cart functions smoothly on mobile.
- Keep your mobile version clean and simple with clear links and call-to-action buttons.
- Upload a good quality mobile version of your product pictures including images for retina display.
- Implement easy-to-use mobile navigation.
- Provide enough design space for the checkout, page navigation, and next buttons, so that fingers/thumbs can easily tap on them.
2. Easy Checkout Process in the E-commerce Store
The biggest conversion killer for your online store is potentially your checkout process. You could easily lose up to 67% of customers if your checkout is poorly planned or designed.
Striking a balance between good functionality, usability, and building trust is key to offering a good checkout experience.
- Have a big clear checkout button.
- Don’t add unexpected costs at the checkout.
- Optimize your e-commerce website for loading time. Make sure it’s fast and highly responsive (particularly on mobile).
- Make editing the cart contents easy.
- Display shipping costs clearly.
- Display product images in the cart.
- Display security logos.
- Keep your checkout simple and clean, less clutter is better.
- Make it easier for customers to contact your support team.
3. Guest Checkout in the E-commerce Store
Lengthy registration forms can increase the likelihood of your customers abandoning a purchase at checkout. Therefore, give customers the option to checkout as a guest rather than register an account.
Online shoppers are keen to make their purchases quickly and can easily be distracted. So, make it easier for them to browse and get the products they need by giving them a quicker option to check out as a guest user.
4. High-Quality Product Photography in the E-commerce Store
High-quality product pictures could be the single most important aspect of your eCommerce website. This is what helps your user ‘buy in’ and is often the first experience of your product, so make it count.
- Make sure you upload high-quality product pictures with good lighting.
- Include a gallery of pictures to display all product features.
- Give your customers the option to see your product in context or while in use, so they can relate to the experience of using your product.
- Allow customers to see an enlarged version of the photograph either in a lightbox or a zoom function.
5. A Clear Returns Policy for the E-commerce Store
Having an e-commerce website with an excellent user experience helps you prevent the return in the first place. People return their products when they’re disappointed, so make sure to write clear and accurate product descriptions.
However, having a well-structured and easy-to-find returns policy can actually help your customer make the decision to purchase. Because they feel confident they can get a refund or replace the product easily if there’s an issue.
- Make your returns policy easy to find.
- Write in a simple, easy-to-understand language, with no legal or internal policy jargon.
- Avoid adding hidden return costs. Be explicit and clear about additional costs (if there are any).
- Be clear about whether the return is for cash, exchange, or credit.
6. Detailed Product Descriptions in the E-commerce Store
This may sound obvious but, adding clear and accurate product descriptions is one of the most crucial factors in helping your customers make the decision to purchase.
Your descriptions act like your store’s sales staff. Therefore, it needs to be informative and have the right tone for your target market. It is recommended that you include an FAQ section, to help alleviate any doubts about your products.
Other types of product details you may want to include are:
- Dimensions and weight.
- Type of materials or fabric used.
Capture the imagination of your customers and be creative with your product descriptions. Tell the story of your product and how it can benefit your customers. Will it save them time, and money, make them more productive, or keep them safe?
In addition to that, appeal to your customer’s emotional needs and show them how your product can improve the quality of their life. Go as far as uploading instructions videos that demonstrate how your products are being used to build trust and enhance your brand’s credibility.
7. Easy to Navigate Website Design
Start by clearly defining your shop categories and how your online store is structured. Poorly structured sites don’t perform well and struggle to convert. The goal is to make it easy for your customers to find what they’re looking for.
Work with your web designer and your team to understand how your products should be categorized. Make sure your navigation is intuitive with labeling that makes sense to your customers. Sometimes how your company labels something may not appeal to, or be confusing to your customers.
Therefore, do your research and keep the following considerations in the back of your mind as you are working on your e-commerce website design:
- Place the most important pages in the main navigation bar.
- Conduct frequent website usability tests to determine the best product labels, website categories, and user experience for your niche market.
- Differentiate between what is an attribute and what is a category.
- If it’s too complex, simplify it.
- Set clear conversion metrics and track how your website is performing against your business’s financial objectives.
- Build a user-friendly e-commerce website that works across all devices to improve your conversion rate, hence your profit margins.
The number of details involved in starting and setting up an e-commerce website can be overwhelming at first. But, running an e-commerce business can be a great source of income with minimal startup costs.
So, if you are ready to make 2022 the year you bring your e-commerce business idea to life, make sure to schedule a call with one of our e-commerce experts and check out our portfolio of e-commerce businesses.