6 Tips to Consider When Updating Your eCommerce Website
Let’s face it guys; the internet world is totally unpredictable. It seems like there are changes every day. New features are being introduced at incredible speed, helping the web to stay relevant and inspiring.
And the competition is insane! If a website fails to “Adapt, Improvise and Overcome” the changing dynamics, it will inevitably and speedily fail. And thousands of new websites each day will be angling to plug that gap. This means that it’s now mandatory for online business owners and entrepreneurs to stay up-to-date with the latest eCommerce website trends. Simply, there is no option other than to keep up.
However, updating or restructuring of a website can be risky. There are chances that you may lose a small amount of traffic, and you can also experience a sudden decline in conversions. This is primarily because marketers and web developers in pursuit of achieving uniqueness and modish design, often ignore brand identity elements associated with their websites.
If you are thinking of updating or redesigning your website, you may find yourself at the crossroads deciding what factors to prioritize. In this article, I am listing down 7 tips to consider when updating your eCommerce website
1. Analyze The Conversion Funnel
Conversions are the lifeline of any business. The first thing is to analyze and interpret your conversion patterns and spot the possible defects in the conversion funnel. You must identify the reasons why your sales are going downhill (or not improving) and then make the changes to your website accordingly.
For instance, you observe a sudden increase in bounce rates or cart abandonment and these weaknesses are often connected with the website’s loading speed. Now in such cases, there is no need to make significant changes except making your website faster. So carefully inspect the conversion funnel and identify the defects to analyze if your website requires a minor upgrade or a complete overhaul. Otherwise, you may upgrade the website spending perhaps thousands of dollars without seeing positive results.
2. Ask Your Target Audience
During the redesign process, you must lose the focus on your key visitors. When you realize that your website needs improvement, you can ask your target audience to put forward their suggestions. This will give your eCommerce web development team a better idea about the needs and expectations of your target audience. The preferences of your target audience must not be ignored in the redesign process. Instead, it should be a major consideration.
3. Have a look at Your Competition
Believe it or not, there are times when you owe a big thank you to your competitors. Websites in specific industries share some common objectives and audiences. When you realize that your website needs improvement, have a look at your competitors. If they are doing better than you, then try to figure out the key elements they are targeting. Compare your website with the leader in your industry, and judge the overall elements of those sites to see where your website stands. Your competitors can give some better design ideas. And you can estimate the skill level required to achieve them.
4. Improve Navigation and Your Checkout Process
Navigation and the checkout process are two of the most critical elements that determine an eCommerce website’s usability. To be honest, there is no one size fits all when it comes to either of these. In my personal opinion, there is no need to change the navigation until and unless you are sure that it is no longer optimal. Never make drastic changes in navigation and always keep it simple as possible.
Checkout processes mainly depend upon the payment gateway of your website. Thanks to developers, there are hundreds of free and paid payment gateways developed by third parties. In the redesign process, you can also integrate the payment gateways that offer extra value to customers. For instance, you can incorporate partial payment extension that will allow your customer to purchase products from your store and pay you in installments.
5. Don’t Disturb Your Brand Identity Elements
Brand identity elements include colors, logos, typography, etc. They play an important role in brand loyalty, and visitors always want a website to look familiar to the original versions. Abrupt changes are likely to confuse your customers. Color scheme and logos must not be changed. However, if you think that colors and logos are outdated, you can make some minor changes – but only a slight facelift.
6. How Can SEO be Improved
During the redesign process, you must keep SEO elements in mind. There are possibilities that your current web design may or may not be search engine friendly, and if not then you must achieve it. Ask your SEO team to guide your development agency in the redesigning process so that the development team doesn’t skip any important detail related to search engine rankings. Moreover, the SEO experts will give their suggestion on internal linking; headers and this list can go on. It is important that if you don’t have a resident SEO specialist, you hire someone to take part in the redesign.
The development team must pay close attention to the structure and coding. Otherwise, it can cause damage to rankings. For instance, your SEO team has optimized certain pages for particular keywords. During the redesign process, the rankings of those pages may be adversely affected. So a predefined SEO strategy may help you sustain your ranking during the redesign process.
As I mentioned earlier, redesigning a website can be a risky maneuver. The goal of updating should never be just giving your website a fresh look. There must be a clear set of goals and purposes. Redesigning the website without any pre-defined strategy can do more harm than good to your website. If you really think your website needs changes, then you must keep the above0mentioned factors in mind.
Related reading: What Makes B2B and B2C eCommerce Different?
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