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5 Things Every Online Store Owner Should Look Out For

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When you begin your dream of selling online, it can be incredibly easy to be gung-ho about things and only think about getting your stock ready, setting up a website, and then watching your business flourish. But before you get carried away with all that, the truth is that there are several rules to adhere to when creating your product pages. Yes, we know, rules are boring and uncool, but in the world of eCommerce, these rules could literally be the difference between a sale and a missed opportunity.

So, to make sure you stand every chance of succeeding when you first begin to map out your website design, simply take heed of the following errors many online store owners routinely make (and learn from their faults).

5 Mistakes to Avoid When Creating Product Pages

A great homepage notwithstanding, product pages are absolutely vital to get right the first time around, as potential customers are rarely forgiving when they don’t like how something is presented. We live in the golden age of commerce, as there are so many shops – both online and brick-and-mortar – which sell quality products at competitive prices. That’s why you need to make sure you stand out of the crowd as an e-store owner who does things right. Don’t do any of these:

1. Product photos are badly lit and vague

When you’re selling something online, the last thing you want to be is overly arty and interpretive with your photos. There is a time and place for creative photography, but this isn’t it. People simply want to see what your product looks like from a multitude of angles, preferably with a model (if applicable) to see a size comparison. Bright, colorful, and sharp images are all you could want when displaying your products. See this guide on taking great product photos.

2. Descriptions are too short or non-existent

Shoppers will hate not knowing anything about a product when browsing. In general, people ideally like to understand the materials used, exactly how much it will cost, and any special features it might have. It doesn’t take much – it can even be a few sentences – but if you’re aiming to be an online store owner for many years, then you won’t last long without basic descriptions of your products. Another great idea for this area is to add a “You might also like” to the side or bottom of the page, as people may well be interested in similar products to the one they are currently viewing.

3. No filter option

When you stock products of varying colors, sizes, or even prices, the last thing a browsing shopper wants is to trawl through product page after product page. Your job as a website owner is to make a potential customer’s experience as seamless and easy – anything less than that and they will simply look elsewhere if they are frustrated. This is a good example of product filtering, as these military watches can be sorted by a lot of categories, allowing browsers to keep narrowing down until they find what they’re after.

Common Mishaps at Checkout

It’s not just at the product search stage where many eCommerce sites falter, but also at the checkout process. This is perhaps even more crucial to get right, because if you get so close to a sale yet lose it at the last second, it can be devastating to an e-store owner. Make sure you don’t perform these typical errors when designing a checkout process.

4. Demanding an account to order

A customer’s path from search to (hopefully) purchase should be as effortless as possible, so why put more obstacles in their way? Many shoppers hate having yet another form to fill out and more passwords and usernames to remember. The best thing an e-store can do is simply give shoppers the option of signing up for an account for future visits (with the incentive of coupons, first-look at items, etc.), but also making sure there is a “Carry on as guest” button to click.

5. Not having popular payment options

A major reason that will turn off a lot of shoppers is when they are presented with a severe lack of payment options. There are many ways to pay online, and if you only allow a handful of them, then you’re really shooting yourself in the foot. Visa and MasterCard are of course a lock, but there are also customers who like to use American Express, PayPal, or even direct debit. Give people as many options as you can, as they will simply abandon their shopping cart if they can’t pay how they like.

John Culotta
John is the chief editor here at WebDesignDev. He is a creative who enjoys writing, research, and all things design related as well as (formerly) a full-time musician. As an entrepreneur, he has many years of experience in designing websites, packaging, logos, photo editing, and the development of his own top-selling products on Amazon and Shopify. You can see his motivational Instagram account or connect on LinkedIn and follow him on Twitter.

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