Is Your Ecommerce Website Scaring Customers Away?

October 31, 2014 Karen Axelton

ecommerce website

It’s Halloween, but ghosts and goblins aren’t the only frightening apparitions around tonight. Your ecommerce website could be scaring customers away from shopping with you. Here are six mistakes you might be making with your ecommerce website design.

  1. No physical address. Even though pretty much everyone is comfortable ordering online these days, customers still want to see a physical address and phone number on an ecommerce website before they place an order. Knowing that a real business is behind the website gives people confidence they’ll have recourse if something goes wrong. Always be sure to put your business address at the bottom of the home page.
  2. No way to get help. Does your website prominently display a phone number customers can call with questions or problems? This should appear at the top of every page. Better yet, offer a variety of ways to contact your business, including live chat and email, so customers can choose what works best for them.
  3. Security and privacy concerns. Customers want to know that their financial information is safe with you. Be sure to post your privacy policy where it’s easy to find on your website. Use firewalls, SSL security and secure payment methods that are Payment Card Industry (PCI) compliant. Display security certifications and badges prominently, especially on your website’s checkout pages, so customers can shop with confidence.
  4. Outdated design. Trends change quickly on the Web, and today’s popular online stores are modern, clean and simple. Outdated looks such as reliance on Flash, colors that were popular in 1994 and cluttered Web pages will brand your ecommerce site as amateurish. If it’s time for a redesign, enlist a professional Web designer or use Web design templates to give your site a fresh look with updated images, fonts, colors and icons.
  5. Slow loading times, timeouts and server errors. There’s nothing worse for a customer than completing a lengthy shopping session, going through checkout, clicking “Place My Order” and then having the site time out or losing connection to the server. Be sure your Web host provides uptime guarantees so customers won’t encounter such glitches. Streamline your ecommerce website design and image sizes for fast load times.
  6. Mobile-unfriendly. Customers will run screaming to the competition if your ecommerce website doesn’t work on a mobile device, so make sure your design is mobile-friendly and loads quickly on smartphones and tablets.
  7. Hidden shipping costs. Customers want to know what shipment is going to cost to decide if shopping your site is worth their while. Don’t make them go through checkout to learn the shipping costs—place them clearly on your site or provide a shipping calculator.

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Author information

Karen Axelton

Karen Axelton

Karen Axelton is Chief Content Officer of GrowBiz Media, a media company that helps entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses. Visit her company’s blog at SmallBizDaily.com.

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