User Experience
9/24/2020

10 Ways To Improve User Experience on Your Ecommerce Site

Written by
Photo of Sophie
Isabel Edwards

Only 1% of users say ecommerce websites meet their expectations, so I think it’s fair to say we’ve all got room for improvement. But where do you start when it comes to creating a flawless customer experience?

It’s a lot easier than you might think, and you don’t need a degree in web design or UX to create a fantastic user journey. Here are 10 simple ideas to get you started...


Fast Loading Speed

The first thing to do is check your site speed on Google’s free Page Speed Insights tool. You may already have a super fast site (go you!), but if your score is anything below 90 you should consider fixing it.

This free tool will give you an extensive list of all the things you can do to speed up your load time. It’s well worth working through these recommendations as 79% of online shoppers who experience slow site performance say they won’t return to the site.


Efficient Site Search

There are 3 things customers expect when using the search functionality on your website:

  1. Is the search bar easy to find? Make sure it’s easily visible for users to access.
  2. Is it easy to use? Don’t over complicate the design of your search bar, just make sure it works in the way a user would expect it to.
  3. Does it serve relevant results? There’s nothing more annoying for a user than being shown irrelevant results to their search query.


Make PLPs Easy to Navigate

PLPs are your product listing pages. Use filters (e.g price high to low) and sorting options (e.g colour, size) for an easy browsing experience. This prevents users from getting frustrated over being shown products that, for example, aren’t in their size, which could cause them to abandon their shop all together.


Frictionless Checkout

If you’ve created a good enough experience to get your users to the checkout, the last thing you want to do is create a frustrating checkout process.

W3.org highlight the biggest pain points for customers during checkout:

  • 75% of online shoppers want faster checkout, so keep the steps as minimal as possible.
  • 56% want more payment options, so relying on just one payment gateway isn’t good enough.
  • 21% abandon their cart if they can’t see the total cost of the order up front.
  • 34% will leave the checkout process if they’re forced to create an account.

The easiest way to check whether you have a positive checkout experience is to go through it yourself. If you find anything annoying, unnecessary or time consuming, your customers will too!


The After-Purchase Experience

The user experience doesn’t stop after your customer completes the purchase. Repeat customers are way more cost effective than trying to acquire new ones. 

Make sure you’ve got the basics covered like order confirmation and dispatch emails (provide tracking information if you can). Go one step further than that and ask customers if they’re satisfied with the product and the experience. This is also a great way to rake in some positive reviews which you can display on your ecommerce store.


Clear Product Descriptions and Images

Your product photos need to be 3 things:

  1. Clear - If the user can’t clearly see the products in your photos, they won’t purchase.
  2. Accurate - Making products look vastly different in photos to what they look like in real life only equates to high return rates and bad reviews.
  3. Professional - If you’re expecting users to trust your site with their payment details you need to take professional looking photos.

The same goes for product descriptions. If users can’t find the basic information they’re looking for in your descriptions they will become frustrated or will think the website is untrustworthy.


Ensure Customers Can Easily Contact You

If there is a time where you haven’t provided all the information that the user is looking for, or they would just like to talk to a real person before purchasing on your website, make the contact information easily accessible.

Hiding contact information or not having it at all comes off as scammy and untrustworthy, so it’s worth putting a ‘Contact Us’ page in your main menu. Include a phone number, email and even live chat on the website if you can.


Don’t Hide Things From Your Customers

If there’s extra fees or expensive shipping that your customers are going to inevitably see at checkout, don’t hide it from them everywhere else on the website. This is only going to create a negative experience once they’ve invested all that time into shopping on your website for them to discover surprise shipping fees when they’re ready to checkout.

Either work these fees into the price of your products, or be upfront and display them on the product pages.


Make Essential Information Accessible 

FAQs pages, shipping rates and return policies should all be easily accessible from every page. Many ecommerce stores put links to these pages in the footer so users can access them at all times. When you’re encouraging users to buy, information around purchasing should not be hidden on your website.


Build Trust

One of the most important factors around building a positive user experience is building trust with the user. Even if your website is brand new, there’s lots of ways you can build trust with potential customers:

  • Be transparent with fees, return policies and shipping times.
  • Refrain from being too salesy or pushy in your copywriting and promotions.
  • Use third party badges to show you work with secure/ trustworthy brands like PayPal or TrustPilot.
  • Show reviews and testimonials for your services or products.
  • Link to your social pages.
  • Regularly update your website content or post blog content to show you’re still a functioning business.


Know more ways to build a great user experience?

Let us know on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn. If you’re looking to switch ecommerce platforms, create your free store today.


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