One of the most popular posts that we've shared this year has been our comprehensive website features checklist. This infographic is a fantastic follow-up by another great agency that produces incredible infographics, MDG Advertising.
Which e-commerce website elements are most important to consumers? What should brands focus time, energy, and budget on improving? To find out, we looked at a host of recent surveys, research reports, and academic papers. From that analysis, we found that people across all regions and verticals consistently value the same few core website features when shopping online. What Consumers Want from E-Commerce Websites
The results of their research and survey of professionals resulted in 5 major categories that walk the ecommerce company's most important elements for driving awareness, authority, and conversions. I've added some favorites of my own that were missed by the survey results.
47% of consumers say usability and responsiveness are the most important elements of an e-commerce website
- Speed – the ecommerce site must be fast. 3 out of 4 shoppers say they’ll leave an e-commerce website if it’s slow to load
- Intuitive – navigation, common cart elements, and site features must be easy to find and use.
- Responsive – 51% of all Americans make purchases online via mobile, so the store must work seamlessly across all devices.
- Shipping – costly shipping charges and lengthy delivery times will impact sales.
- Security – ensure you go all out on an EV SSL certificate and publish third-party security audit certifications.
- Return Policy – let visitors know your return policy before they purchase.
- Customer Service – offer a chat or phone number to respond to sales or service requests.
Comprehensive Product Information
Visitors often aren't ready to purchase, they are actually there to research. When you provide all the information they need, they'll be more likely to make the purchase when it's comprehensive.
- Product Details – 77% of consumers say the content influences their purchase decision
- Question & Answers – If the information isn't there,40% of online shoppers look for a means to ask questions and get answers before making a purchase
- Accuracy – 42% of consumers have returned an online purchase because of inaccurate information and 86% of consumers say they would be unlikely to make a repeat purchase from the site where they bought it.
- In-Stock – There's nothing more frustrating than getting all the way to the checkout before you find out a product is out of stock. Keep your site and search results updated with in-stock status using rich snippets.
Images, Images, Images
Visitors are often searching for visual details on products since they're not there to inspect them in person. Having a great selection of high-resolution images will drive additional purchases.
- Multiple Images – 26% of consumers say they’ve abandoned an online purchase because of poor-quality images or too few images.
- High Resolutions – offering the ability to see finite details on elements of a photo are critical to many online shoppers.
- Zoom – 71% of shoppers regularly use the zoom-in feature on product photos
- Speed – Be sure that your images are compressed and loaded from a content delivery network to ensure they're loaded quickly. You may even wish to post-load images that don't have focus (as in a carousel).
Ratings and Reviews
Incorporating unbiased reviews/ratings into your site will provide a diversity of viewpoints and build trust with visitors. In fact,73% of shoppers want to see what other purchasers have to say before making a decision
- Unbiased – Consumers don't trust perfect ratings, they research poor ratings to see if others' opinions of a product will impact their purchase decision.
- Third-Party – 50% of consumers want to see third-party product reviews
- Variety – Consumers want to feel comfortable about a purchase, want to be able to hold companies accountable, and want to see a variety of reviews that focus on both the quality and safety of products.
- Snippets – expand the functionality of your ratings and reviews using rich snippets so that they show up in search results.
On-Site Product Search
On-site search is critical to every e-commerce experience. For some consumers,71% of shoppers say they regularly use the search, and often it's the first thing they go to on a site.
- Auto-Complete – Build in comprehensive auto-complete functionality that filters product names, categories, etc.
- Semantic search – Use semantic search to deliver better results
- Filters – 70% of shoppers say they highly value being able to filter products via a site’s search
- Sorting – The ability to sort on reviews, sales, and pricing are all helpful for users to find the products they want.
- Breadcrumbs – Include navigational elements, such as breadcrumbs in result pages
- Detailed Results – Present images and ratings within search results
- Comparisons – Offer the opportunity to analyze product features and pricing side-by-side.