By now, you probably know that you do need a website. Yes, even if you’re selling homemade cupcakes to your friends, family, and neighbors, because if you have any plans to expand your venture and make it profitable in the long term, then posting on Facebook and Instagram will not suffice. Consider an eCommerce website as a storefront for your business in the online world. In this place, you can showcase your fantastic brand and your amazing products, dazzle visitors with your excellent content, and provide a fantastic customer experience. Amazing, right?
That’s because a well-made online presentation has the power and potential to transform your business entirely and take it to that next level. But to achieve this, you have to make sure that you’re ticking all of the essential boxes of successful web design and that you have avoided the common pitfalls along the way. Here are the mistakes you should avoid when building your eCommerce website.
Designing the website without branding
Let’s start with one of the essential elements of a successful business in this overly competitive global marketplace – the brand. If you are to make a name for yourself and eventually compete with the top brands in your industry and niche, you have to invest time, money, and talent in building a truly unique brand identity. Because without a brand to give your products, services, and existence meaning and a real purpose, you won’t be able to create a meaningful relationship with your demographic.
But say you have already created a compelling brand. The most prominent mistake entrepreneurs make is that they fail to weave this brand identity into the design of their website. And it’s not just about the colors, images, and pictograms. It’s also about the brand’s narrative; it’s the tone of voice and personality and the unique set of values that makes it stand out in the competitive industry. From choosing an effective personal domain name that will resonate with your audience’s hearts and minds to compelling, on-brand visuals, you need to pay attention to every little detail. Make sure all of these elements are present, and people will start to take notice.
Cluttering without a website structure
Many don’t consider the next crucial element until it’s too late (so they have to backtrack and fix everything) is the website’s structure. To deliver a great customer experience and a positive user experience, every site needs to have a clear and straightforward structure that allows easy navigation and seamless browsing. This is especially important for those cumbersome sites that offer numerous product categories because visitors tend to get lost quickly. This will drive them into the hands of your competitors.
Your focus should be to minimize customer effort by making a clear-cut structure such as a “homepage-menus-products.” If you have many categories, it’s all the more important to create an XML sitemap to help search engines categorize your website easily and make browsing seamless for your customers.
Launching before it’s ready
You’re eager, you want to roll this thing out as quickly as possible, and that’s understandable, but that doesn’t mean that you should launch your website before going through your website launch checklist and ticking all of the boxes first. It might seem like a pretty obvious thing to do, but you would be surprised how many people forget to do this or skip doing it because they believe that they’ve taken care of everything. Before long, your customers will notice that some images are failing to load, that there’s content missing or that it has spelling errors, or that your site is merely sluggish.
All of these little errors and oversights will drastically hinder the overall user experience, lower your chances of ranking high in the relevant SERPs, and, worse of all, make you fix these problems retroactively, which will cost you precious time and money. Leave nothing to chance, and double-check everything.
Don’t just set it and forget it.
This leads us to the next common mistake, and that’s failing to monitor your website’s performance and improve it over time. Many people think you can turn your attention to other priorities in your company once you build a website. While you need to work on other projects, you must regularly inspect your site for any broken links, missing files, or pending updates. Updates are critical as they allow you to enjoy the latest cybersecurity measures and prevent data leaks that could prove disastrous for your brand.
Optimizing for a single device type
And lastly, keep in mind that online audiences are consuming content through numerous platforms nowadays, which means that you can’t just build a website for desktop PCs and hope for the best. With over 52% of online traffic coming from mobile devices, you must optimize your site for all platforms and screen sizes to make browsing as enjoyable and seamless as possible for everyone. Plus, Google loves mobile-friendly websites, so be sure to capitalize on that opportunity.
You need to build a website to grow a successful business, but it’s better to invest more time and effort into putting a great website together than to launch a site that doesn’t cater to the modern online audience. Avoid these common mistakes, and you should have no problem building a website that will take your company forward.