The research website eMarketer predicts continued double-digit growth for retail eCommerce through 2020, bringing sales to over $4 trillion. If you have an eCommerce website, you're looking at potential that is probably beyond your wildest dreams. However, you'll have to create an outstanding eCommerce website in order to compete in this high-growth market. Here are five mistakes you need to avoid, or your website is doomed.

1. Your Website Doesn't Look Professional

Keep your website design up to date. You don't want to make your website unrecognizable every few years, but website design trends do change over time, and you need to maintain a contemporary look. In addition, your website should always be mobile responsive.

2. Your Home Page Is All About You

Naturally, you're proud of your company and your website should reflect that. However, the home page isn't the place to make that point. When your home page is all about you, it's difficult for visitors to figure out what you're selling.

Until a visitor finds something they want to buy, they don't care about your journey. Reserve the home page for things such as product categories, specials and new product announcements.

3. Your Website Doesn't Build Trust

Online shoppers are very aware of the dangers of buying on the internet. Your website must build trust by answering the questions your visitors have before they'll decide to do business with you. You need to address these basics:

  • Security: An SSL certificate is a necessity. It's an indicator that you care about protecting your customers' information.
  • Contact information: Would you buy from someone you don't know and have no way to reach? Include as much contact information as you can, including an address, telephone number, email address and business hours.
  • Delivery information: People will want to know about delivery before they order. Describe the carriers you use, delivery times and costs.
  • Return policies: Online buyers try to make the best purchase decisions possible, but they know that the possibility exists that they won't want to keep the product for any number of reasons. Assure them that you'll work with them if a product isn't what they expected or if there's damage during shipment.

4. Poor Navigation

After you've created a website, it may seem perfectly obvious where a visitor should click to reach the information they're seeking. However, you must accept the fact that it won't be that obvious to your visitors unless you work hard on optimizing your navigation. Here are some tips that will get you started.

  • Use linked images: Visitors won't study your menu to find what they're looking for. Use images that link to key products and pages, especially on your home page.
  • Don't worry about duplication: Different visitors will respond to different triggers. Your home page may work best when you have a linked image, an entry on the menu and a big call-to-action button that takes the visitor to the same place. And don't forget that the linked image on the home page won't appear on interior pages, so you do need some duplication to help people browse easily.
  • Don't get too cute: Let's say that a visitor does a quick scan of the links in the footer for delivery information. They'll be scanning for a short link called Delivery. If you name that page "How You'll Get Your Stuff," the odds are the visitor won't find it.

5. No Customer Reviews

You know that customer reviews are important to online shoppers. In fact, research shows that 84 percent of people trust eCommerce reviews just as much as personal recommendations. If you don't have customer reviews, you'll lose visitors to sites that do.

Do you have questions about the effectiveness of your eCommerce website?
The experts at Electric Enjin can help. Contact us at (203) 939-9344 or online.

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