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Ellie Hardinges and Blair Aitken

Published on

March 25, 2019


ecommerce, user experience, UX, website

When you enter a shop, it makes your experience so much more pleasant if the service you receive is friendly and hassle-free. This is especially true during the dreaded Christmas or Black Friday sales period. As buyer journeys are now increasingly moving online for many industries, it is vital that this painless experience is paralleled for online sales. Getting this right can be tricky, especially when a key focus has to be placed on security of personal information and payment details online.

Understand the journey

As everyone knows, the growth of online shopping has increased competition for retailers. Nobody wants to go into a crowded shop where you know it’ll be a pain to queue and buy your goods, and the same applies to online shopping. Websites need to make it as easy as possible for people to make purchases, or they just won’t bother. Also, people need to have access to the most appropriate information to help them make a decision on what to purchase, which your website should provide in an easily accessible way.

A great way to do this is to reduce the number of clicks that a user has to take before completing their purchase, so people don’t get bored or confused. Planning and designing key journeys on a site before they are built, to make sure there’s no unnecessary steps is a good way to achieve this. Also, using cookies to remember log-in details leading to automatic sign in helps to make the process simpler. If you’re website doesn’t deliver an ‘accessible to all’ experience, it won’t survive in 2019.

Relevance is key

It seems obvious, but a really important thing is to make sure your users are viewing the site in the right language and country specifications. Geo-locations can track where someone is and serve them the correct language and content.

It’s also good to implement tracking so that you can see what areas of your site most popular, and which areas users are dropping off. This makes it easier to know what information people are interested and what they aren’t. Also having information like a size-guide that can be viewed as and when someone needs it is also helpful.

5 ways to improve the customer journey

1) Reduce friction in the purchase journey – remember to minimise the number of clicks to purchase, remember sign in and credit card details, include tooltips for things like size guides and postage instruction.

2) Have consistent and complete product information across all pages on your site so the user can quickly identify what they are looking at and find the information they need and make the experience consistent across different devices.

3) Add the option to like/favourite something so users can build a list of products as they browse without committing it to a basket

4) Use geo-location to cater for different languages and show users the right content

5) Finally, track usage, this will not only allow you to see where people are dropping off and thus re-market to them, but also see what is and isn’t working. If a process is too clumsy, users won’t stick with it. Use the data to streamline customer journeys!

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