What do you think of this ecommerce theme collection? They always make me wonder why they are so popular. Well, I mean they are beautiful, but is design the key? I believe not.
So, what makes them successful? Here is a list of a few check points for you on your way to make a killer ecommerce WordPress website.
1. Choose the best hosting you can
Good hosting means good support quality, good capacity and good security.
The storage mostly depends on the size of your files, i.e. the images you put on your website. The more there are, the bigger the hosting and bandwidth you should get. A good-resolution image may take from a few dozens kilobytes to few megabytes. Plus, the traffic to your website every month should make you consider the hosting plan.
You can start small. A plan of 3GB storage and 3000GB bandwidth may be good enough to begin with, but always remember to check whether you need to upgrade or not.
Another tip is to host your photos (the most storage-consuming thing) on other services like Flickr or Photobucket. However they will be a little more bit complicated to integrated with your website. Moreover, there is a bandwidth limit for each photo on Photobucket.
You should choose a hosting that provides a good security system when you’re doing online payment. A 5-star-customer-service-hosting is also worth considering, especially when it comes to website compatibility and server downtime.
2. Design is not the key, but definitely a significant factor.
Who doesn’t love a stunning website? For instance, when I shop online for clothes and stumble upon a website like this:
It’d be a turn-off for me. You should take the best case practices of ecommerce themes as your reference; at least the navigation, style and buttons will help.
Make it very easy for your customers
Understand the habits of your customers. Most online shoppers tend to go away if the experience is complicated and time-consuming.
Put yourself in your customers’ shoes. Make sure that the navigation is clear. Some designs are very eye-catching, but hey, how do I find the Categories?
Your design should be intuitive and have a place for a call-for-action button (Buy or Promotion).
Showcase your products well.
Isn’t it cool to have the best-selling product under the spotlight? Or to have the new arrivals collection right on the homepage? Make sure you have a block for seasonal promotions.
I would suggest a Page Builder plugin to do so. Easy to customize your website and deliver the best results.
3. Avoid annoying your customers
Annoyed customers could be the result of anything. If the design can help you with the basic mistakes such as navigation, showcase, etc., the rest is all yours to handle.
How is the payment process? If it takes more than 3 minutes to complete, think again. Do you cover the most popular payment methods, such as PayPal, VISA and Master card, cash-on-delivery?
Do you state the shipping method and fee? Do you ship overseas? I would like to know that before I buy any of your products.
Avoid hidden fees. I don’t know about you but I like online shopping because I believe it saves time and money (a bit…). So I stop the payment process right away if something pops up in my bill, like “service charge” (what?) or “handling fee”. If you do have this kind of fee, make sure you talk about it somewhere on your website, otherwise the customers may never come back.
4. Manage the stock well
No one wants to see an ‘out of stock’ sign on a product for more than one week. If that’s the case, either remove the product or state the day it may be back in-stock. Still want to keep it? Consider creating a special category to store sold-out products.
And yes, no one wants to see the ‘out of stock’ sign everywhere on your website.
Worst still, once I happily checked out at an ecommerce website, two weeks later they contacted me and said my order was out of stock and that I would be refunded within a month. I checked my PayPal balance everyday for two months and one nice day my order arrived at my door. Not a word from the seller. Meh!
5. Keep in touch with your customers
That’s why communication is very important. An active contact form is a must-have. Customers must be able to contact you through the website. Check messages everyday, reply to them, and notify customers about their order progress.
Customer service is what makes customers come back to you. Trust me, communication is the key.
To make a long story short, make sure you understand your customers. It may teach you a few lessons until you work out the best way for your ecommerce website.
Do you have any tips to build an ecommerce WordPress theme? Share with us!