Why web design is crucial to online retailers’ success

Credits : Digitalcommerce360


Few factors affect an online retailer’s e-commerce sales more than the design of its retail website 61% of consumers will leave a retail site and go to a competitor if they have problems using a particular website, according to an exclusive Internet Retailer survey of 562 online shoppers conducted in October.

As technology improves, so do customer expectations. That means retailers’ web designs have to constantly evolve. For instance, Gap Inc., No. 20 in the Internet Retailer 2018 Top 500, is in the midst of a multiyear effort to offer more personalized and streamlined shopping on its e-commerce websites. The project doesn’t have an end date, says Greg Schuler, the retailer’s head of user experience design, because  it will always face pressure to use new capabilities to make e-commerce more satisfying—and faster—for customers. An emphasis on speed is especially important now, he says, as online shopping shifts increasingly to smartphones.

The 2018 holiday season will be the first in which shoppers will place more orders from their phones than computers or tablets, according to survey results from customer relationship management software company Salesforce.com Inc. Smartphones will account for 46% of all orders, edging out computers (44%) and far outpacing tablets (9%).

Consumers’ growing use of mobile devices to shop online has enormous implications for web design. Not only do retailers have to think hard about how their websites look and function on small screens, they also must account for less-than-reliable mobile networks and look for ways to make checkout easy to accomplish on mobile devices. Gap, for instance, recently re-worked its checkout process to eliminate up top 50% of the clicks required in the previous version.

Mobile shopping is just one of the big trends influencing e-commerce web design. Beyond being mobile-friendly, consumers also expect the navigation and search functions of retail websites to help them find the products they want to buy quickly and effortlessly. Online shoppers also expect retail websites they visit often to recognize and remember them and serve up personalized content.

Based on exclusive research by Internet Retailer, the just-released 2019 State of Web Design Report details the very latest website features and design elements that are helping online merchants reduce abandoned carts and increase conversion rates.

The 53-page report includes:

  • A list of the top 50 retail websites ranked on the basis of 22 quantitative and qualitative criteria
  • An analysis of which website features impact site conversion rates the most
  • An analysis, based on exclusive consumer surveys of what shoppers are looking for in retail websites and what prevents them from converting
  • The 20 website features used most by the Internet Retailer Top 1000
  • A deep-dive into mobile web design and site personalization
  • Examples of well-designed retail home and product pages
  • A closer look at four top e-retailers that recently redesigned their websites, including Gap Inc.
  • More than 20 charts and tables revealing the results of Internet Retailer’s exclusive consumer and retailer surveys on web design

This report, along with 20 other research reports, is immediately available to Digital Commerce 360 Platinum and Gold members. Single copy sales are also available for $299.

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