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Top tips for launching a successful eCommerce store

In the last 12 months, it is estimated that 87% of UK consumers have purchased at least one product through an eCommerce store, and this is only set to increase.

If you were one of these people – and our guess is that since it’s Christmas, there’s a pretty high likelihood that you were – you’ll understand the importance of having a successful eCommerce store. At Foundry Digital we have designed and built many eCommerce stores, and therefore know all about the importance of making your site more appealing to users, so we’ve put together some of our top tips and recommendations.


Customer Journey is Key

eCommerce experience drives customer relationships.

If your customers have a negative eCommerce experience with your store, they’ll be leaving before you’ve had a chance to showcase the brilliance of your brand. But make it a good experience for them and they’ll be a returning customer, probably bringing some friends with them too.

Generating awareness is your first step to success here – how can you expect people to buy into your brand if they’ve never heard of you? To do this well it is important to engage your target audience, and make your products peak their curiosity. Do this by providing clear categories of the products you offer, this will make it easier for users to navigate your site, and find something their interested in.

To turn interest into sales you need to elevate levels of commitment to your brand. Get customers excited and make them feel like they’ve gained something from your brand as well as their purchase. Doing this will encourage customers to become advocates of your products – they’ll be marketing them for you.

All these things strengthen the relationship you have with your customers, and enable them to trust your brand. Done well and it’s an easy journey to success.

Reflect Your Brand

eCommerce stores are so much more than just a payment platform.

Being a business owner, you know your brand inside out and upside down.  Your challenge is to showcase how great your brand and your products are so that site visitors turn into paying customers, and your eCommerce store should be helping you to achieve this.

It is important to remember that your eCommerce store is your brand, so it needs to reflect your brand just as much as your products do. Make sure that its design reflects the identity you want your brand to portray to your target audience. Foundry Digital are experienced at ensuring this happens, check out the work we did for A Weathered Penny, an example of how an eCommerce store can perfectly reflect a brand and product type.


Platform and Payments

Choosing the right payment platform doesn’t have to be confusing.

From ensuring that the platform enhances your checkout user experience to considering the fees that they charge, there are many things to think about. So with something like this it’s definitely worth doing the research.

At the moment, Foundry Digital use WooCommerce as our preferred platform because it is a strong platform that can be integrated WordPress, meaning it offers easy product management for our clients. It is also free, which is always handy!

Another thing to consider is which payment methods you want to use. You’ll need to think about how it can affect your business, such as the transaction costs that come with the payment method. As well as this, considering your customers’ views is also important. Just because a payment method offers lower transaction costs, doesn’t mean that your customers will trust it more. If you’re concerned that this could drive them away, perhaps another payment method would work better.

Using an agency like Foundry Digital can really help you with problems like this. We know which payment gateways are the most customisable and can tailor checkout experiences to fit your brand.

Don’t Overlook Content

Never underestimate the power of content when building your eCommerce Store.

Whilst you might think “minimal” is stylish and attractive to users, its big downfall is that it is less readable. Having less content on your eCommerce store makes it harder for users to get to know your brand and can also negatively affect SEO.

If you’re concerned about keeping your eCommerce store looking neat and tidy, Foundry Digital recommend using an “About” page to post your content. Content has the power to draw in and retain your visitors so it definitely shouldn’t be ignored, and using a whole page to house it solves both of these problems.  The more relevant and captivating your content is, the more leads it is likely to generate, and the more conversions and sales you could create.

Finally and perhaps most importantly, what you use for your content will create an informative promotion of your brand – so make sure to employ a content strategy that fits in with what you are trying to achieve with your brand. Having a blog can help you to keep your content fresh and up to date, and will showcase your brand identity more effectively to your customers.


A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words

Visual aids are key to attracting customers to your product.

When selecting images of your products to include on your eCommerce store, there are a couple of things that Foundry Digital recommend keeping in mind.

Make sure to showcase each variation of the products you’re selling, this way you can appeal to a wider variety of your customers’ tastes. Colours, customisations, finishes: if your product comes in more than one version then you need to demonstrate this.

It can also help to have photos taken of your products being used in different environments (no, we don’t mean in the desert and under the sea). Providing examples of customers using your product in lifestyle shots will make it more relatable for potential buyers, and will help them to envision themselves using it.

A useful tool that Foundry Digital often include when building eCommerce stores is a zoom feature. Using a zoom allows customers to view your products in more detail and subsequently increases their knowledge of it, potentially converting visitors to customers.


Consider Responsiveness

Key benefits that responsiveness brings are manyfold.

Thanks to on-going advances in data allowance and personal device technology, people can browse the internet pretty much wherever they are. It is therefore crucial that your eCommerce store is responsive, as this will allow your customers to access your store and browse your products on-the-go. The more time they spend browsing, the more likely they are to buy something.

As well as this, having an eCommerce store that has responsive design makes it easier for Googlebot to index.  This means that your site will receive more traffic from Google and future changes you make will be picked up faster. It will also make your eCommerce store easier to maintain because you’ll be able to do it from one place instead of maintaining multiple versions. Finally, make all important information more accessible as this will streamline your site and make it more adaptable.

Don’t worry if this seems like a lot to think about, Foundry Digital can help! We are experienced website developers with extensive experience in designing and building eCommerce stores.

If you’re looking for some guidance, why not check out our eCommerce design and build service today?

Our ecommerce design and build service


UK Online Shopping and E-Commerce Statistics for 2017

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