Personal touches in ecommerce website design
A good online store designer understands that while the basics – colours, layout, written content – must all be done right, sometimes it’s the little things, the finer details, of a website or online store that make the biggest difference to user experience and conversion rates.
Details like contact submission forms, 404 pages and notification emails represent opportunities to build your brand – and, more importantly, build your brand’s personality in your audience’s minds.
Taking the time and making the effort to personalise and take such aspects of your site or store beyond the basic level can add a freshness and friendliness that won’t be lost on readers and customers whose browsers and inboxes are brimming with generic content and copy.
Take a contact form, for example. It’s an integral part of ecommerce website design. A visitor finds your site and wants to learn more about your products or services, so they fill in a short form to receive information in the form of an email.
Obviously, the email is a brilliant opportunity to connect with the customer. But even the form they must fill in presents one in itself.
Rather than leaving the fields blank and leaving it up to the user to decide whether it’s worth filling the thing out, add a couple of lines of “microcopy” to encourage them and reassure them in their decision. For example, next to the email address field, a short note such as “We don’t like spam and we know you don’t, either. So you won’t be seeing any from us!” both reassures the user and gives them the feeling that despite interacting with an ecommerce website, there are actually real humans behind the business.
The same goes for error pages. 404s and downtime screens are a brilliant chance to turn what are usually mundane, annoying pages which users instinctively feel negative about into light, funny moments they might actually feel good about.
Rather than simply presenting a generic “we apologise for the inconvenience” spiel, try offering your disgruntled visitors something unique that makes them glad to have stumbled across a 404 or downtime screen. For example “We’re really sorry about this! We’re working flat out to fix the problem and have systems back to normal ASAP. We’re so sorry that we’ve even decided you deserve to enter this exclusive competition to win a free product!”.
These details and personal touches don’t take much effort in terms of design or development – they’re down to content and considering things from the user’s perspective. And they’re well worth doing if you want to stick in your customer’s minds for all the right reasons.