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Dating Advice For Your Online Store, Pt 5

Closing the deal.

Welcome to the 5th installment in our adventure. If you’re just joining us, here’s what you have missed (but can get totally caught up by checking out all these installments):

Part 1 – some industry stats that underscore the importance of paying attention to the design of your site, plus a few core design principles to keep in mind throughout the entire site

Part 2 – we introduced the five types of shopping behaviors you’ll see in your prospective customers (and why we’re only going to focus on four of them).

Part 3 – we began looking closely at two of the five shopping types: hunters and researchers, and how your site’s design can make for an engaging experience for their ideosyncrasies.

Part 4 – where we dive into two other kinds of shopping behaviors you’re likely to meet on the way to ecommerce heaven

We are getting close to the end now! ready to go on? good.

So. you’ve given your Hunters & Researchers the search & navigation tools they need, Bargain Hunters the confidence they’re getting the best deal and you’ve even given Browsers a reason to come back.

Now it’s time to close the deal. Here comes your last chance to make your best case as to why you’re the one they’ve looking for. That’s right, it all comes down to …



Closing the deal.

I’ll leave that to you to figure out what that means in real life, but for your online store, it means you need to …



It’s probably the most important page on your site. So this is the place where it’s even more important to provide a frictionless experience for your customers. Here’s how:



Think about it. No one likes to shop in cramped spaces IRL, so why create one online? Since this is where the buying decision gets made, you don’t want anything distracting away from it. This means sometimes getting rid of functionality that was otherwise useful but now isn’t.

What do I mean?



Well, things like the left navigation. In this example, we have a typical three column layout, but…



This store saw an increase in conversions just by removing the left nav and giving the other buying related details more room to stretch out. Too obscure of an example for you? ok. Let’s compare Zappos in 2013…



It’s looking pretty cramped in here… To Zappos today:



Now there’s way more space for the product photos and transaction box. 




Another thing people need on the product page is reassurance. Remember, you’re having to compensate for the fact that they can’t physically interact with your product so you have to make sure they can find all the info they’ll need to be at peace with their decision.

In particular:



  • Product description: a thorough one that answers as many of the questions someone would have about that product.
  • Reviews!: according to econsultancy 61% of customers read online reviews before making a purchase decision. Even bad reviews can help increase sales.
  • In stock notification: a great place to put this is near to the add to cart button, because the last thing you want is someone getting through the buying decision process only to find out they can’t get what they want.
  • And of course, the ever important product photos. So important in fact, that they get their own section.



OK. Now, I’m going to show you three photos and I want you to tell me what they all have in common.



Figured it out?

Even though they are quite different, they are all sexy*. They all make you want the product. Some more than others, but even if you don’t have a sexy product like the boot over there, do whatever you can to make your product photos shine.
(* as defined by their product category at least)

Make sure they’re sharp, in-focus, well lit, and be sure to pay attention to details like how your background color affects the look of the product. Think background color’s not important? Which of the below images do you think converted better?



The light background contrasted better with the shoe and so it made it look more desirable resulting in an increase in conversions. So sweat the small stuff.



Another thing to think about is context.

Again, remember that you’re compensating for the fact that your buyer can’t touch your products, so give as much info as you can visually.



A good photo will help buyers understand the product’s size, show them how it will look in place, and even cross sell related items.



I like this one where they used household objects to give you a sense of scale. how many reviews have you read where reviewers comment on how much smaller or larger the item they purchased turned out to be? Even giving measurements can leave people confused about what they’re buying. Make it EASY.

Well you’ve made it this far, and we’re in the home stretch now. Our next and final installment will handle a few things to avoid when thinking about the look of your e-commerce site. Standby for that!

Andrew Davies

Drew's degrees in Illustration, 2D animation and Broadcast Design, and his volleyball skillz mean he can get your design done and play well with others at the same time. He’s the Creative Director at Paragon and will call you out if you start hanging out with shady-looking fonts and messing around with whacked-out color palettes.